General Health Information: What Is Homeopathy?

Introduction to homeopathy, a natural, effective alternative method of treating your family, using remedies such as Arnica montana, Chamomilla, and Hepar sulph.

Homeopathy was developed in the early 1800's by Samuel Hahnemann. It is based on the "law of similars", wherein "like cures like". As in vaccinations, you receive a dose of what you're trying to eliminate. All homeopathic remedies are natural, derived form animal, vegetable or mineral matter.

Illnesses are treated according to their symptoms. It doesn't matter where you got the cold, flu, diarrhea, muscle cramp or headache. How it is manifested is what a homeopath looks at. For instance, a cold can come on slowly or quickly, make you thirsty or not. A headache can be in the front or the back of the head.

List the symptoms and include mental and emotional states as well. Include, too, the time of day your patient feels worse, and what, if anything, makes the symptoms worse or better (lying down, fresh air, movement, etc.). Now check out the repertory. This is a book (or just a chapter in a book about homeopathy) that describes symptoms categorized according to parts of the body. There are homeopathic remedies listed under each symptom. Once you have gone through the repertory with your symptoms, you will most likely find one or two remedies that repeat themselves.

Now turn to the materia medica, another book, or chapter in a complete book. It describes the remedies and their actions on the body in detail. Read about the remedies that show up most often for the symptoms you've listed. When you find what seems to be the most suitable, administer it. This is a 'dose' three times a day for three days, or until the symptoms change. At that point you would change the remedy.

Homeopathic remedies are non-toxic. If you administer the wrong remedy, there are no ill-effects. You just won't see a change in the symptoms. Simply re-evaluate and re-administer.

This is not as complex as it sounds, and can be simplified with the purchase of a good book on homeopathy in the home and a small kit. Some are sold as children's kits, with 8 remedies. Another kit has about 35 remedies in it. The small one is a good way to start, and frankly, kids only use a few of the same remedies over and over.

Here are the ones most used in my house:

Arnica montana - This is indispensable for bruises. It takes care of shock in any situation, and aids in healing of dental work (even a cleaning) and other surgeries. It reduces swelling, making the patient more comfortable.

Chamomilla - This is the best remedy for teething babies, when they are irritable and feverish.

Hepar sulph. - I use this frequently for colds at all stages. It's good for sore throats, abscesses and other infections.

Ipecac. - This is good for intestinal cramping and nausea.

Bryonia - Great for constipation. Usually works with one dose.

Hypericum - This is St. John's Wort, and is used for damage to nerve endings.

Sulphur - For skin problems.

Apis - For bee stings and bites.

You can see that homeopathy covers anything you could possibly need to treat in your family. With medical costs so high these days, homeopathy is worth looking into!

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