Meet our new practitioner Pam Gould, seasoned Herbalist & Lyme expert

 In Herbal & Traditional Wisdom, Holistic Tools & Strategies, Understanding Lyme

May is Lyme Disease Awareness Month, and we are more committed than ever to providing an effective path of natural healing to those who want and need it.  With so many people being affected by Lyme disease, other tick-borne infections, and broader complex illness caused by viruses, environmental toxins and more, we are very excited to have a new expert on our clinical team! Below you will find an interview and discussion between our new Clinic Associate Pam Gould, Registered Herbalist, and our Patient Support Specialist, Daisha Sen.

Daisha:  Pam, Thank you so much for giving us this extra glimpse at who you are and your approach to this much needed holistic work. We’re grateful to have you as a member on our clinic team and look forward to our patients and clinic benefiting from your experience and care as a practitioner.

Can you share a little bit about what brought you to this work and what inspires you to continue with it?

Pam:  Many years ago one of my children became ill with a sporadic, mystery illness with seemingly unrelated symptoms.  They were suffering from extreme fatigue, severe migraine type headaches, hip pain, sudden dizziness, and other issues. All the labs were normal and even after seeing several specialists their illness progressed over several years. When they were finally diagnosed with Lyme Disease I remember breathing a sigh of relief for having an answer to the mystery – but then realizing that no one at the time really knew how to help get them well. On top of that, all the information I could find seemed contradictory and unclear. 

At that moment as a mom, I took a deep dive down the rabbit hole to learn all I could about these diseases and how to help my child heal.  As a practicing Registered Herbalist this also led me from being a general community Herbalist to someone who specializes in helping others heal from these conditions.

On that journey, I found Hillary and her Holistic Lyme Practitioner Mentorship.  That was 7 years ago now!  I found her approach to be the missing piece to not only addressing the multiple infections at play, but also learned how to help return the body to greater vitality while addressing the infections. Not only that, but her approach integrates all the underlying levels of health – digestion, detoxification, sleep, emotional – that I knew was important through my work with people as a community Herbalist. 

Thanks to all of my research and education, I was able to more quickly recognize it when my other child became sick with a tick borne illness.  And then once again when I myself became ill. None of us saw a tick on us. Or a rash. And I am happy to share that we are all doing well and enjoying vibrant full lives now!

I know that the road to recovery from complex illness is often confusing and challenging.  What inspires me to work in this often difficult realm is seeing someone who was once debilitated get their life back.  It is deeply rewarding. 

Daisha:  Are there any cases that stand out to you that taught you something or have shaped your practice of holistic medicine?  

Pam:  Quite honestly I learn something from just about every client. Because no two people’s experiences are the same, it means that every person’s journey is unique. One of the things I really enjoy is figuring out the underlying pattern that is contributing to a person’s condition. It is not always clear at the outset, and requires a bit of detective work.

Here are a couple of examples of people I have worked with and that detective work at play…

One is a person who sought my help with chronic, weekly debilitating migraine headaches which had been going on for many years. They grew up in the Northeast and spent their childhood in the woods but now resided in the Southeastern US.  They also had fatigue and other health problems that seemed unrelated to their headaches. After doing a full intake and listening to their symptom picture and history I suspected Borrelia and asked if they had ever been tested or treated for Lyme.  That’s when they shared that they had asked their doctor years ago if it could be Lyme disease and were told that it did not exist in the Southeast.  I suggested that it might be the cause so we started them on an herbal antimicrobial protocol along with detoxification and liver support. After two months their almost daily headaches had diminished to 2 migraines per month.  After six months, their headaches were gone altogether, they had improved digestion and overall felt better than they had in years.  They continued on a maintenance protocol for several more months and it seems they made a full recovery.

Another person who comes to mind had a long list of symptoms including severe digestive issues, numbness in their arms and feet, and a recent positive Western Blot test for Lyme.  They lived on a 100 year old farm in an original log cabin bordered by woods. However, after several months of being on a customized protocol to address the Lyme disease they were not seeing much improvement.  I began to suspect they might be also suffering from exposure to mold.  A simple urine test confirmed that they were loaded with multiple mycotoxins which were likely contributing to their symptom picture and creating a roadblock to healing from the Lyme infection. After many months of addressing the mold, both internally and environmentally, we once again began to address the infection, and this time they saw marked improvement.  

Daisha:  Is there anything in particular within the realm of complex illness that you enjoy specializing in?

Pam:  I have been told that people find comfort in talking with someone like me who they feel really hears them.  I understand how isolating having these conditions can be and how misunderstood a person with complex health problems can feel.  They may look ‘fine’ on the outside, so others don’t understand what they are dealing with on the inside and how hard they are working to get better.

I enjoy uncovering the puzzle of what is going on and bringing clarity to the situation.  Herbs and natural medicine are powerful tools that support the release of each layer of infection, inflammation, and correct the body’s imbalances to restore true health.    People who have been suffering – sometimes for years with chronic conditions that have debilitated their life – see their health begin to improve and learn how to make themselves well through this approach.  We also support weaning off unwanted medications in many cases. 

Daisha:  What is one of the most helpful tools or steps you’ve found for supporting people with health setbacks?

Pam:  Teaching people lifestyle tools that support detoxification can be incredibly powerful and help people feel better when they have a health setback.  I am a huge believer in self- administering warm water enemas when a person is strong enough to do so as I have found it helps relieve the body of excess toxins that can be creating excess inflammation and making a person feel worse. If this is not an option, i find out what they are able to do and encourage them to focus on these steps until they are back on stable ground and ready to move forward. 

Daisha:  Is there any specific step you would recommend to someone in preparing for their first consultation and supporting their empowerment on their health journey?

Pam:  It is helpful to provide current and past treatment information ahead of time if possible so that I understand what’s already been tried, and to bring a list of questions so that we can use our time wisely and efficiently. Other than that, I believe just being ready to have an open and in depth conversation so that I can best understand how to guide them on their healing process is best. 

Daisha:  Could you share any insights into the detox process and how it relates to treating tick borne infections? 

Pam:  Tick borne infections can greatly impair the natural detoxification processes in the body. And, the longer someone has struggled with these infections the more impaired these pathways can be. It is paramount that detoxification practices be an integral part of the healing protocol.  These can take the form of lifestyle practices and supplements, and will vary based on what a client needs and what they are able or willing to do. But regardless, I have found that supporting detoxification often helps someone’s healing move forward more quickly and can also help manage excessive herxing symptoms.  

Daisha:  Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

Pam:  It is truly an honor to support people on their healing journey. I look forward to offering my guidance, hope, support, and many powerful natural remedies every step of the way! 

DaishaThank you so much again for taking the time to share some of your experience and insight with us here.

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