Treating “like with like”
Take for example, a case of insomnia( sleeplessness). The way of opposites (conventional medicine or allopathy) is to treat this by giving a drug to bring on an artificial sleep. This frequently involves the use of large or regular doses of drugs which can sometimes cause side effects or addiction.
The way of similars, the homeopathic way, is to give the patient a minute dose of a substance, such as coffee, which in large doses causes sleeplessness in a healthy person. Perhaps surprisingly, this will enable the patient to sleep naturally.
Homeopathic remedies, properly prescribed, are safe and can also be given to pregnant women, babies and children. This is because only a very minute amount of the active ingredient is used in a specially prepared form. They do not produce any side-effects.
Your homeopath will give you a homeopathic medicine or remedy which matches your symptoms as you experience them. This also takes account of you as a person- your individual characteristics, emotionally as well as physically.
How does it work?
Homeopathic remedies work by stimulating the body’s own healing power. This stimulus will assist your own system to clear itself of any symptoms of imbalance. The aim is to get you to a level of health so that eventually you will need less frequent treatment or you will be totally well.
What will your homeopath need to know?
In order to find the right remedy for you as an individual, your homeopath will need to know more about you. A detailed understanding of who you are, along with any complaints and details of how you experience them, is needed to assess your health correctly. So anything you can tell your homeopath that is typical of who you are will help this process. Finding out about your general energy levels, your past medical history and the way you live are also important. Anything you say will be treated in the strictest confidence. The initial consultation may last an hour or more.
What will the treatment be like?
Your homeopath will give you a homeopathic remedy, usually in the form of tablets, pills or liquids. Occasionally powders, which should be allowed to dissolve in your mouth.
If you are given homeopathic remedies to take at a later date, be sure to store them in a cool dark place, away from anything with a strong smell and try to avoid placing them near your mobile phone. If you travel, try to avoid putting the remedies through the x-ray scanner.
Please tell your homeopath about any medicine or supplement that has been prescribed for you by your doctor or that you take regularly. Also mention any recent or immediate dental treatment. These may affect your homeopathic prescription.
If you are taking a homeopathic remedy and you feel that you need to take additional medication-conventional or homeopathic-consult your homeopath to discuss how this may affect your treatment. Your homeopath can give first-aid advice, if necessary. If you develop a cold, headache or any symptoms that concern you please discuss them with your homeopath and if it is required with your doctor.
What will happen once treatment starts?
After taking your remedy, you may notice some changes. Some patients experience a period of exceptional well-being and optimism. Sometimes your symptoms can appear to get worse for a short time. This is a good sign that the remedy is taking effect. Sometimes a cold, rash or some form of discharge may appear as a ‘spring cleaning’ effect which means your system is going through a clearing out stage. Similarly, old symptoms can reappear, usually for a short period. These symptoms will pass and must not be treated, as they are a very important part of the healing process. If any response to your treatment concerns you, do contact your homeopath, as it is important for them to know what happens as treatment progresses. You might also want to make notes of any changes and discuss them at your next appointment.
How long does treatment take?
This depends very much on what sort of illness you have, as well as the other individual characteristics of your health challenge. So it is difficult for your homeopath to assess this until after your second appointment. A slowly developing complaint or one that has been experienced for some years, may take longer to improve, although there may be a response and improvement quite soon. Acute complaints can get better more quickly, sometimes in a matter of hours.
Homeopathy cures from the inside and often outer symptoms such as a skin complaint, are the last to clear. In the long term, it is much better for you to be cured of both the cause of your illness and its symptoms, rather than merely relieving or suppressing the symptoms. Remember that every case is different as no two patients are alike.
Will there be advice about diet and lifestyle?
A homeopath will ask you about your usual diet and lifestyle and may suggest changes, especially if it seems that this is contributing to your illness. Of course, a good basic diet is necessary for good health, with less sugars, fats, alcohol and refined foods.
Andrew Terry and Susanna Terry are experienced homeopaths and have been practicing professionally in Devon UK for twenty five years. They have worked with a very wide range of chronic and acute conditions and with all age-groups. In addition to prescribing homeopathic remedies they recommend nutritional and naturopathic measures when they are indicated. They aim to provide a personal and accessible service and encourage clients to keep in touch with them as treatment progresses.
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