DR SIOBHAN DAWSON

PSYCHIATRIST

FUNCTIONAL & INTEGRATIVE MEDICINE

Cape Town

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Integrative Practice

I offer a comprehensive approach to mental health and chronic disease. Through the Functional medicine lens, I evaluate and treat dysfunction by assessing the interplay between a person’s genetics, hormonal system, immune system, gastro-intestinal system and nutrition and environment.


My clients have a desire to attain full recovery and are motivated to use their illness as a catalyst to re-establish health, balance and connection in their lives.

They understand that mental health symptoms are just one aspect of a dysfunctional system and are open to discover how nutrition, energy systems, movement and self-development can enhance their recovery.

I see clients who suffer with any mental health symptoms including Depression, Anxiety, Bipolar, Postnatal symptoms, PTSD, Stress.


How I work

Initially it is ideal to commit to at least 2-3 sessions.

In the first session, you will be able to evaluate whether you have a connection with me. Most importantly, you should feel you can trust me and that the environment is supportive and safe.

When the real work is necessary to push through buffers and defences, one can start feeling cynical and frustrated about the therapy, seeking another quick fix.

Sustaining the course and developing the relationship with me and therefore yourself will help you create sustainable results.

You will receive a brief questionnaire before our first meeting. This helps you consolidate your expectations for our meetings.

The first sessions entail a multi-level check-up of your various systems; physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. I then aim to understand your concerns and together we set goals for the treatment.

The subsequent sessions are both structured and free-flowing. The structure comes from my Wellness Compass approach to overall health, but sessions can flow as you begin to become the expert of your own health.

  • Psychological therapies
  • ‘Food for mood’ Nutritional plans
  • Medication
  • Supplements
  • Mindfulness and relaxation techniques
  • Goal setting for behaviour activation
  • Visualisation/hypnosis
  • Neuromuscular stimulation
  • Movement

Your body and mind are remarkable. Before the presentation of mental health issues, there would have been alerts or early warning signals that “all is not well”. We often ignore these prompts because we have lost touch with our intuition and the wisdom of our bodies. Initially, it is therefore crucial to have a thorough physical examination or at least discuss potential physical symptoms which may be associated with depressed or anxious mood, lack of energy or insomnia. This may require other investigations e.g. CT scans, blood tests, hormone levels and a food diary.

Recognising that our minds and bodies are intrinsically connected allows the opportunity for complete return to health.