Homeopathy is a complementary or alternative medicine that is used to treat a wide range of conditions both acute and chronic, including physical conditions such as asthma and psychological conditions such as depression. Here’s everything you need to know before deciding to try homeopathy.
By Mariam Elhamy
Many practitioners believe homeopathy can help with any condition. Among the most common conditions that people seek homeopathic treatment for are:
- Ear infections
- Hay fever
- Mental health conditions, such as depression, stress and anxiety
- Dermatitis (an allergic skin condition)
- High blood pressure
When you first see a homeopath (homeopathy practitioner), they’ll usually ask you about your health conditions, but also about your general wellbeing, emotional state, lifestyle and diet.
Based on this, the homeopath will decide on the course of treatment, the remedy that best matches all of your symptoms. Then they’ll tailor the treatment for you in the form of a pill, capsule or tincture (solution).
They may recommend that you attend one or more follow-up appointments so the remedy’s effects on your health can be assessed.
It is advised not to use homeopathic medicine for life-threatening illnesses, like cancer, and heart disease, or in emergencies. You should also avoid using it instead of vaccines.
5 Facts about Homeopathy:
- Homeopathy rarely causes side effects. This means it is suitable for adults, children and pregnant or breastfeeding women.
- It can also be used for minor issues like bruises, scrapes, toothaches, headaches, nausea, coughs, and colds.
- It is known that homeopathy might be effective due to its placebo effect. That’s when symptoms improve because you believe the treatment is working, not because it really is. This can trigger the brain to release chemicals that briefly relieve the pain or other symptoms.
- In some cases, homeopathic medicines might heighten or bring your symptoms to the surface before curing them. This is called Homoeopathic aggravation, and it will disappear in the course of treatment.
- Homeopathic medicines, known as remedies, are made from substances designed to help stimulate the body’s healing ability.
6 Misconceptions about Homeopathy:
1. You can’t use homeopathy along with the conventional system of medicine. In some cases, homeopaths actually advise using homeopathy with conventional medicine. Like in diabetes and high blood pressure.
2. Homeopathy can be an alternative for surgical procedures. Homeopathy is never an alternative to surgery. It has its limitations in treating surgical conditions, for example, dental.
3. Homeopathic remedies are natural. Not all ingredients in homeopathic remedies are natural, homeopaths employ all types of substances which are then potentized.
4. Homeopathy medicines contain steroids and heavy metals. All the sources used for preparing homeopathic medicines undergo a lengthy process of potentisation and trituration. Which means that there won’t even be a trace of crude metal element in it.
5. There are a lot of food restrictions with homeopathic medicines. Homeopathic medicines are absorbed from the tongue and the inner lining of the mouth hence patients are asked not to eat or drink anything 15 minutes before and 15 minutes after taking the medicine. Also, it is advisable to cut down on raw onion, raw garlic, strong coffee and mint as they may antidote some of the medicine. These are the only food restrictions.
6. Homeopaths are all medical doctors. Some homeopaths have studied medicine, but the majority are lay or professional homeopaths who have not been to medical school.
Consult your doctor before deciding to go for homeopathy.