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Homeopathy

Homeopathy is a system of medicine which involves treating the individual with highly diluted substances, given mainly in tablet form, with the aim of triggering the body’s natural system of healing. Based on their specific symptoms, a homeopath will match the most appropriate medicine to each patient.

As a holistic medicine, homeopaths see each patient as an individual, treating the person as a whole rather than the illness. This means that homeopathy can be considered for most complaints, either in conjunction with, or as an alternative to, conventional medical care, depending on the nature of the problem. Homeopaths often see patients with long-term, chronic problems, many of which have failed to respond to conventional medicine.

 

Homeopathy

Homeopathy, or homeopathic medicine, is a holistic system of treatment that originated in the late eighteenth century. The name homeopathy is derived from two Greek words that mean "like disease." The system is based on the idea that substances that produce symptoms of sickness in healthy people will have a curative effect when given in very dilute quantities to sick people who exhibit those same symptoms. Homeopathic remedies are believed to stimulate the body's own healing processes. Homeopaths use the term "allopathy," or "different than disease," to describe the use of drugs used in conventional medicine to oppose or counteract the symptom being treated.

Origins

Homeopathy was founded by German physician Samuel Hahnemann (1755–1843), who was much disturbed by the medical system of his time, believing that its cures were crude and some of its strong drugs and treatments did more harm than good to patients. Hahnemann performed experiments on himself using Peruvian bark, which contains quinine, a malaria remedy. He concluded that in a healthy person, quinine creates the same symptoms as malaria, including fevers and chills, which is the reason why it is effective as a remedy. He then began to analyze the remedies available in nature by what he called provings. Provings of homeopathic remedies are still compiled by dosing healthy adults with various substances and documenting the results, in terms of the dose needed to produce the symptoms and the length of the dose's effectiveness. The provings are collected in large homeopathic references called materia medica or materials of medicine.

Hahnemann formulated these principles of homeopathy:

  • Law of Similars (like cures like)

Law of the Infinitesimal Dose (The more diluted a remedy is, the more potent it is.) illness is specific to the individual

Hahnemann's Law of Similars was based on thinking that dated back to Hippocrates in the fourth century B.C. It is the same thinking that provided the basis for vaccinations created by Edward Jenner and Louis Pasteur. These vaccines provoke a reaction in the individual that protects against the actual disease. Allergy treatments work the same way. By exposing a person to minute quantities of the allergen, the person's tolerance levels are elevated.

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Homeopathic Remedies That Work

Name

Description

Aconite

Commonly known as monkshood, aconite is highly toxic. A nontoxic, diluted extract of aconite is used in homeopathy to treat symptoms similar to that of poison.

Allium cepa

Commonly known as red onion, homeopathic physicians use a dilute extract of red onion to treat symptoms similar to that of red onion—watery eyes, burning, etc.

Apis

Commonly known as the honeybee, apis as a homeopathic remedy is made from the body of the bee. It is used to treat symptoms similar to that of a bee sting—redness, swelling, etc.

Arnica

Commonly known as the mountain daisy, arnica is used by homeopathic physicians to treat bruises, sprains, and strains.

Arsenicum album

Also known as ars alb, arsenicum album is a diluted form of arsenic, a metallic poison. It is used by homeopathic physicians to treat symptoms similar to the effects of arsenic poisoning—dehydration, burning pain, etc.

Belladonna

Commonly known as deadly knightshade, belladonna is used in homeopathy to treat symptoms of dry mouth, nausea, delirium, etc.

Bryonia

Commonly known as wild hops, bryonia is used in homeopathy to treat vomiting, diarrhea, inflammation, etc.

Calcarea carbonica

Also known as calcium carbonate or calc carb, it is used in homeopathy to treat symptoms of exhaustion, depression, and anxiety.

Cantharis

Commonly known as Spanish fly, cantharis is used in homeopathy to treat conditions with symptoms of abdominal cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, convulsions, etc.

Chamomilla

Derived from German chamomile, it is used in homeopathy to treat irritability, impatience, etc. It is most often prescribed to children.

Ferrum phosphoricum

Also known as ferrum phos or iron phosphate, it is used to treat symptoms of low energy and anemia.

Gelsemium

Also known as yellow jasmine, it is used to treat conditions that effect vision, balance, though and locomotion.

Hepar sulphuris

Derived from the inner layer of oyster shells, hepar sulphuris is used to treat infection.

Hypericum

Commonly known as St. John's wort, hypericum is used to treat nerve damage.

Ignatia

Derived from seeds of a plant, this homeopathic remedy is prescribed to treat conditions with symptoms such as headache, cramping, and tremors.

Ipecac

Ipecac induces vomiting and causes gastrointestinal distress. Homeopaths prescribe it to treat similar symptoms.

Kali bichromicum

Commonly known as potassium bichromate, kali bichromicum is a poison used also in textile dyes, wood stain, etc. Homeopaths use it to treat localized pain.

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