Homeopathic medicines treat the individual, taking into account emotional and physical characteristics.
People vary in their reaction to an illness and therefore different homeopathic medicines may be needed for people with the same medical condition. On the other hand, the same homeopathic medicine may be used to treat many different illnesses.
When do I need to see a qualified homeopath?
Although homeopathic medicine is suitable for home treatment of minor ailments and for first-aid purposes, it's important to consult a qualified homeopathic doctor if you have a longstanding or more serious illness.
As we are all different in terms of our mental and physical makeup, it's reasonable to expect that our reactions to an illness will also be different.
Illnesses which occurred many years previously, sometimes in childhood or even in our parents and grandparents, can often lead to areas of weakness in our constitution. A skilled homeopath may spend some time tracing and removing these defects, using the correct homeopathic medicine.
Is homeopathy safe?
Yes. Even though some of the medicines are potentially harmful in their non-homeopathic state, the extreme dilutions used for homeopathic treatment eliminate these dangers and unwanted side-effects.
How is homeopathic medicine taken?
Homeopathic tablets should either be dissolved under the tongue or chewed. They shouldn’t be swallowed whole. Food, beverages, smoking and toothpaste should be avoided for 30 minutes before and after taking the medicine.
For young children, tablets can be crushed and given as a powder.
What reactions should I expect?
Very occasionally, after taking a homeopathic medicine, your symptoms may become slightly worse. This effect will be brief and is a sign that the body’s natural healing energies have started to counteract the illness. After this, the symptoms will subside as you regain your health.
Does taking a larger dose have a greater effect?
No, it is the frequency of taking the dose that matters, not the number of tablets.
What if I am taking conventional medicine already?
There is no conflict between conventional medicines and homeopathic medicine. In fact, both systems of therapy can sometimes be used together to complement each other.
In most cases, when starting homeopathic treatment, you should continue using your current conventional medicine. This is why it's so important to consult a homeopathic doctor. He/she will be able to advise you on how to reduce the use of your conventional medicine in the safest way possible.
[This article was written by Dr Debbie Smith (M:Tech:Hom). Dr Smith is a qualified acupuncturist and homeopath, specialising in iris diagnosis using high-definition photography. For more information on acupuncture, contact her on (011) 463 8564 or e-mail her.]