Homeopathy for Families
YOU MAY KNOW parents who have successfully evaded clinic visits, along with their high costs and long waits, by treating acute illness at home with homeopathy. They may have helped a fever run its course more quickly, prevented bruising after a fall, or resolved a bout of poison ivy – all with homeopathy.
What is homeopathy?
The term “homeopathy” is sometimes mistakenly used as an umbrella term to refer to all alternative health modalities. However, Homeopathy is its own separate and distinct medical system that uses specially prepared remedies to support the immune system and stimulate the body’s own ability to heal.
It is not herbs or vitamin and mineral supplements. However, herbs and other substances may be used to make homeopathic remedies.
How does it work?
The body is innately intelligent. All symptoms, no matter how uncomfortable, are the body’s attempt to restore itself to health. So, in the case of a mucusy cough, a readily available over-the-counter medicine will dry it up - an example of working in the opposite direction of the body. The body produces mucus to protect delicate linings and to move out irritants – there is a purpose for this symptom. A well selected homeopathic remedy will stimulate the body to move quickly in the direction it is already going, and, in the process, clear the mucusy cough.
Homeopathy is a system that looks at individuals and not at diseases. Each of us suffers a cold in his or her own unique way. Conventional medicine offers a common series of drugs – something to dry up the nose, something to bring down the fever, something to suppress the cough, something to ease the headache. Classical Homeopathy, on the other hand, looks for the one substance that will cure the individual case. The person with a beginning cold, characterized by slow onset, aching, loss of appetite, chills, and desire to be left alone will need a different remedy than someone who wants company and whose cold comes on a bit quicker, and is characterized by intense sneezing and runny nose. We characterize both as colds, but they are expressed differently, and, therefore, are in need of different homeopathic remedies.
Is homeopathy new?
Homeopathy is a complete system of healthcare that is over 200 years old. Its founder was a German Physician, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann. The guiding principle of homeopathy is “like helps like”. If a substance in nature can cause symptoms in a healthy person, then, in homeopathic doses, it can stimulate healing of similar symptoms in a sick person.
Today homeopathy is used worldwide. It is advocated by the World Health Organization. There are entire hospitals devoted to homeopathic care in places such as London, Moscow and India.
There are also many well-known people who use or have used homeopathy…The British Royal Family, Mahatma Gandhi, Cindy Crawford, David Beckham, and Catherine Zeta–Jones to name just a few.
What are the remedies?
The homeopathic remedies that stimulate healing are highly diluted and shaken preparations, derived primarily from botanical and mineral sources. They are made according to a book of standards called the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States (HPUS). The manufacture of all remedies is regulated by the Food and Drug Administration. Thousands of homeopathic remedies are available today and new remedies are continually being made.
Are homeopathic remedies safe?
Homeopathic remedies are gentle, non-toxic, and without side effects because of the minute doses that are used. It is safe for everyone from children and adults to seniors on multiple medications, infants and pregnant women, and even your pets. There are no known or suspected contraindications or drug interactions between homeopathic remedies and conventional pharmaceutical drugs.
What can I treat at home?
Parents through the years have had great success treating acute conditions at home. Acute conditions are those that are considered self-limiting – for example, the common cold or the flu.
It is not recommended to use remedies at home for treatment of chronic conditions. Homeopathy has amazing success with chronic conditions as well, but they should be managed by a trained practitioner.
Try it on yourself!
An excellent way to learn a little about homeopathy is to try it yourself. The remedy most commonly found in home kits is Arnica. Not the topical cream or gel (although it’s a good idea to have one of those on hand as well), but the little bottle of tiny pills. These are available at food coops for less than $10. Arnica is indicated when you feel aches and soreness, as if bruised. The next time you have a minor injury, dental work, or jet lag with soreness, give Arnica a try!
What is your experience with homeopathy? What remedies have you tried?
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