What Is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a healing process in which homeopathic medicines stimulate and encourage your own natural healing forces of recovery. It is one of the most widely used systems of medicine in the world.
The Difference Between Homeopathy and Conventional Medicine
The concept of homeopathic medicine and remedies was developed more than 200 years ago by Samuel Hahnemann, a German physician. Homeopathy is derived from the Greek words meaning "similar suffering". Like Hippocrates 2,000 years earlier, he realized that there were two ways of treating ill health: the way of opposite (allopathic) and the way of similars (homeopathic).
Conventional medicine is "allopathic" medicine. Consider insomnia as an example. The allopathic or conventional approach is to give a drug to induce artificial sleep, which frequently may cause side effects or addiction.
In contrast, the homeopathic approach is to treat insomnia by giving you a tiny dose of a substance that, in large doses, would cause sleeplessness in a healthy person. Surprisingly, the tiny dose reduces the insomnia.
Basic Principles of Homeopathy
- Like cures like: Substances that produce symptoms when given in large doses can clear up those symptoms when the substances are given in micro-doses.
- Symptoms indicate healing: Symptoms represent the body’s effort to heal itself. Therefore, symptoms are stimulated to complete the curative process.
- Homeopathic remedies are based on "provings": Medicinal substances are given to healthy people in small doses to assess how the substances influence their physiology. These “provings” continue until the healing potential of the substance is revealed.
- The totality of the symptoms is considered: Your complete symptom profile is taken into account, including mental, emotional, and physical aspects.
- A single remedy is given: One homeopathic medicine is chosen to perfectly match the totality of your symptoms.
- A minimum of doses is given: Only a small stimulus is needed to stimulate your innate healing powers.
- The homeopathic remedies are micro-doses: Homeopathic medicines are processed (“potentized”) to minute dosages in which there may be no remaining physical trace of the original substance.
What Are the Advantages of Homeopathy?
Homeopathy offers several advantages:
- Can be quite effective. When the correct remedy is given, results can be rapid and complete.
- Completely safe. Even babies and pregnant women can use it without the danger of side effects.
- Natural. Remedies are usually based on natural ingredients.
- Harmony with your body. Remedies work in harmony with your immune system, unlike some conventional medicines, which suppress immunity.
- Not addictive. Once relief is achieved, you can stop taking the remedy. If you get no relief, you are probably taking the incorrect homeopathic remedy.
- Holistic. All of your symptoms are treated at once, which is another way of saying your whole body is being treated. The focus is on the cause of your disorders, not the suppression of individual symptoms.
How Homeopathic Remedies Are Selected
To select a remedy, the homeopathic doctor carefully matches your symptoms to the symptom profiles listed in “Materia medica” publications for the more than 2,000 remedies currently in use. These remedies are derived from plant, animal, and mineral sources.
A full understanding of you is required in order to select the most appropriate remedy. Therefore, the homeopathic interview will explore areas such as your thoughts, dreams, emotions, physical sensations, habits, preferences in food, temperature, climate, sleep, and anything else that might increase our understanding.
What Is a Homeopathic Treatment Like?
You will receive a remedy, often as a tiny pill that you allow to dissolve under your tongue.
Don't put anything else into your mouth for 30 minutes before and after taking your remedy. Homeopathic remedies may be sensitive to outside interference, which may result in a relapse of symptoms. Avoid the following:
- Coffee, by itself or in products.
- Toothpaste and peppermint.
- Camphor, menthol, aromatic oils, or any other strong-smelling substance. Also avoid any products that may contain these substances.
- Dental work, especially high speed drilling.
- Over-the-counter medications.
- Electric blankets.
After taking your remedy, you may notice some changes. It's likely that you will experience a feeling of well-being and optimism after taking the remedy. However, it's possible that your symptoms may get a little worse for a short time. That means the remedy is taking effect, and your symptoms will then start to improve.
Can I Treat Myself with Homeopathics?
There are a number of "off the shelf" homeopathic remedies for various minor health complaints. You can keep them in your medicine cabinet until you need them. The Connecticut Center for Health dispensary carries the highest quality homeopathic remedies for common health problems.
In contrast, homeopathic remedies based on an interview with a naturopathic physician are much more specialized and are carefully customized to match your unique set of health attributes.