Posted on Dec 08, 2021, 4 a.m.
In just a few days the 29th Annual World Congress will be underway! We hope you will be joining us live in Las Vegas between December 9-12, 2021, for the medical education event of the year hosted by world-renowned industry leaders. In line with A4M’s mission to equip clinicians and other medical professionals with the most clinically current advanced education, this year’s conference will deliver a packed agenda of the most relevant topics in advanced integrative medicine education.
The premier event will delve into the numerous challenges and changes that have occurred in the last two years and highlight emerging opportunities in the health care field. Themed “The Next Chapter: Unmasking the Hidden Epidemic,” this year’s World Congress will address the crises within our medical system that have left patients and health care professionals neglected, and our shared communities vulnerable. Attendees will leave with forward-thinking expert insights to help them confidently lead the next chapter in health care with comprehensive knowledge, innovative care strategies, and invaluable tools.
5 Topics You Can’t Miss at the World Congress
Attendees will have the opportunity to explore a vast selection of topics, from the growing burden of chronic pain and opioid addiction to the ever-increasing brain health crisis that permeates all aspects of health. Below, explore five of the numerous salient topics that will be covered at the Congress next week:
1. Chronic Pain and Addiction
Currently, the CDC estimates there are 50 million people in the U.S. living with some form of pain. This rate continues to rise, along with the prevalence of opioid addiction – both of which demand immediate attention, focusing on a shift to drug-free pain care. Innovations in pain management and alternatives to prescription opioids are plentiful and increasing rapidly as the medical and scientific communities work diligently to provide safe and effective solutions to millions of patients suffering from acute and chronic pain.
Centered on valuable strategies to tackle the complex issue of chronic pain, conference sessions dedicated to pain and opioid addiction will delve into emerging and existing clinical strategies for pain management. In particular, the Pain and Addiction: A Collaboration for Change session will provide clinicians with tools to advance from the reliance on opioids to mask pain symptoms and instead utilize patient-centered clinical strategies to offer pain relief and healing from underlying causes.
- Harnessing the Therapeutic Power of the Vagus Nerve | Peter Staats, MD
- Pain, Inflammation, and Autonomic Dysfunction: A Symptoms-Based Toolbox | Wade Cooper, DO
- Ketamine, Oxytocin-Limbic System Retraining with Chemistry | Sahar Swidan, PharmD, BCPS, ABAAHP, FAARFM, FACA
2. Mental Health: A Whole-Person Approach
An array of risk factors compound the mental health challenges facing the global population, ranging from unemployment and underemployment to increasing health care costs, childcare concerns, and mounting racial inequities. On top of this, mental health services have become inaccessible to many individuals in the U.S. as COVID-19 restrictions shuttered facilities, suspended support groups, and moved many services to online platforms. This immense psychological burden has acute effects on public health, leading experts to forecast an impending “mental health tsunami” – one of the most significant post-pandemic issues facing the population in 2021, and in years to come.
To effectively approach the already pervasive mental health epidemic, health care professionals need to implement whole-person, personalized patient care to promote wellness instead of simply mitigating symptoms. The latest evidence points to dietary patterns, lifestyle interventions, mindfulness practices, and drug treatments as critical elements for preventing, managing, and treating mental health disorders. During the World Congress, sessions on mental health will address integrative strategies for mental illness care and provide actionable insights to mitigate symptoms related to our new normal of working from home, decreased socialization, and increased isolation.
- The Tech Solution: Creating Healthy Habits for A Digital World | Shimi Kang, MD
- Frequency Breathwork: The Key to Mental Health and Longevity (Non-CME) | Vivan Rosenthal
- Unwinding Anxiety: Why Anxiety Levels Spiked During the Pandemic, How We Coped in Unhealthy Ways, and What We Can Do To Break the Cycle | Jud Alyn Brewer, MD, PhD
- The Epidemic of Mental Health Disorders – A Whole-Person Approach | Jeffrey Becker, MD
3. Disparities in Health and Care
In the past two years, indisputable disparities in health outcomes and access to quality care have emerged in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, specifically between racial/ethnic groups in the U.S. Not only do pervasive racial inequities affect the accessibility of health care for disadvantaged groups, but they also predispose certain racial groups to experience health conditions at higher rates. Educational and prevention efforts often do not cater to the most disadvantaged groups; meanwhile, many health issues stem from easily modifiable lifestyle factors.
Addressing the many factors contributing to these disparities, the Health Disparities: Can You Be Part of the Solution? session will delve into potential strategies for improving access to and quality of care across underserved populations.
- Shifting the Paradigm: Improving Access and Quality of Care to Underserved Populations | Jill Carnahan, MD
- Barriers to Serving the Underserved | Kristen Giesler, MSN, APRN, FNP-C, ENP-C, CFMP, ABAAHP
4. Nutrition, Hormone Health, and Vitality
Hormonal health is increasingly becoming recognized as an integral component of modern medicine, especially as the medical industry’s focus shifts toward maintaining and boosting immunocompetence in the patient population. More recently, the relationship between nutrition, hormonal factors, and autoimmunity has received growing attention as research links many adverse health consequences to hormonal imbalances and interferences. With immunity and public health at the forefront of global concern, there is an urgent need for integrative clinical protocols that address nutritional and hormonal deficiencies, imbalances, and other risk factors for illness.
Designed to provide a deeper understanding of critical factors related to immune system functioning and the tools to manage them effectively, the Optimize Your Health – Nutrition, Immunity, and Hormonal Balance session will present integrative strategies for care. Our renowned faculty members will discuss the intricate connection between dietary patterns, hormones, and the immune system, providing a roadmap for optimizing whole-person wellness in the current public health environment and beyond. Several other Congress sessions will focus on the interplay of nutrition, hormonal health, vitality, and autoimmunity.
- An Integrated Approach to Hormone Balance: The Hormonal Symphony | Filomena Trindade, MD
- Nutrition and Psychoneuroendocrineimmune Intelligence: How to Optimize Body-Mind Through the Spectrum of Nutrients | Deanna Minich, MS, PhD, FACN, CNS
- Nutritional Support for Optimal Brain Health | Amylee Amos, MS, RDN
5. Brain Health
Alzheimer’s disease currently affects over 50 million people worldwide. The prevalence of neurological disorders continues to rise, with 10 million new cases of dementia diagnosed each year. These rates are only expected to increase with a steadily increasing aging population leading experts to forecast the number of people living with dementia to reach 152 million by 2050.
As the burden of neurological disease increases, so does the relevance of brain health preservation. In this context, clinicians need to understand the intricacies of the brain aging process and the optimal strategies for maintaining brain health – a critical element of overall patient health and the most important goal of longevity science.
Diverse sessions scheduled during the World Congress will tackle the many components of brain health and evaluate the current evidence of potential risk factors, beneficial behaviors, and prevention strategies. Expert faculty members will discuss the impact of nutrition, metabolism, mental disorders, hormones, and more on brain health as part of an integrated approach to combating the neurological health crisis.
- Regenesis: Brain Doctor’s Guide to Health | Sheldon Jordan, MD
- Hormones, Brain, and Vitality | Sara Gottfried, MD
- A Multidimensional Perspective on Preventing and Treating Alzheimer’s Disease | Todd LePine, MD
Click here to view the complete agenda of topics being presented at the 29th Annual World Congress – less than a week from today! If you would like to join us but have not registered yet, a limited number of spots are available for last-minute purchase, accessible here.
As with anything you read on the internet, this article should not be construed as medical advice; please talk to your doctor or primary care provider before making any changes to your wellness routine.
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