What Is Homeopathy & How Does It Work?
WHAT IS HOMEOPATHY?
Homeopathy is the second largest system of medicine in the world and is currently used by over 200 million people to treat both chronic and acute conditions.
It works on the basis that ‘like cures like’. If you take a substance that causes a well person to develop a set of symptoms and give the same substance to a sick person with the same symptoms they will get better. For example, a stinging nettle can cause itchiness, hives and burning. So, following this principle, when given in homeopathic form, it could be used if someone is suffering from these same symptoms.
HOW DOES IT WORK
Homeopathy is a holistic form of medicine and its aim is to trigger the body’s innate healing mechanism by giving a remedy (medicine) rather than remove the disease symptoms with drugs. In order to find the best remedy we work on the basis that you treat the individual rather than the disease, as no two people will manifest the exact same set of symptoms when they become ill. A simple example would be the common cold. Infect ten people with the same cold and, apart from the common symptoms of stuffy nose, cough etc, none of them will experience the cold in the exact same way. One might notice their sore throat gets much worse when outside, another will find it improves if they keep their neck warm. Another might feel really irritable and want to be left alone whereas someone else will feel better for some attention and sympathy. By collecting these unique symptoms the homeopath can prescribe a remedy to fit the individual rather than give a blanket prescription.
TAKING THE CASE
Homeopathic consultations are very different from medical ones and last anything from 45-90 minutes. The mental, emotional and physical aspects of a person are so intertwined that homeopaths give great credence to all three. Apart from getting a detailed account of the presenting complaint e.g.what makes it better/worse? When is your worst time of day? Describe the pain - we also ask how the issue affects the patient’s life, what they were like as a child, their favourite pastimes, any significant dreams they’ve had and how their relationships work. This is because we are looking for patterns that run throughout their life. It is not psychoanalysis, although it can feel like that sometimes. We are just trying to understand the issues so we can match a remedy. Sometimes patients tell us that the questions we ask have helped them make connections about their character they’d previously not made. And if there has been painful trauma we don’t need to investigate, we can still understand them in homeopathic terms by talking about other areas of their life.
WHO AND WHAT CAN WE TREAT?
We treat people of all ages and all stages of health, including pregnant or breast feeding women and babies. The remedies are given in tiny doses which means that the patient is rarely affected by side affects and there is no drug toxicity.
Generally Homeopaths treat a wide range of illnesses, from allergies, IBS, cancer, respiratory issues, insomnia, hormonal problems, auto-immune disorders, childhood illnesses and mental health. We are especially renowned for helping chronic conditions where the medical diagnosis is unclear, yet the patient is not improving in anyway. A good example of this is chronic fatigue syndrome.
HOW CAN IT HELP AND WILL IT AFFECT ANY CURRENT MEDICATION?
We always advise patients on medication to carry on as normal as our remedies use a completely different mechanism and therefore do not interfere. Remedies can also be used effectively to reduce the side effects of some treatments like radiation and chemotherapy. Health is such an individual thing. It is impossible to predict how quickly a patient will respond to homeopathy as it depends how ill they are, for how long and how complex their state is. Often the first thing a patient notices is a shift in energy levels, they may sleep better, feel a bit brighter, want to involve themselves more in life. Sometimes an issue that was really bothering them ceases to cause upset, as if their filter on the world shifts. Sometimes symptoms from long ago return briefly as the body works out how to rebalance itself.
HOW DO I WORK?
In my own practice I see a mixture of health issues, ages and sexes, although I definitely see more women than men. I generally see people face to face, but I do offer Skype sessions if people are too far away. I also do local home visits for a small fee. My consultations run from 45 minutes to 90 minutes and follow ups are anything from two to four weeks, depending on the issue.
I have been trained in the sensation method, which is a method that aims to get to the deepest level possible so that long term, deep healing can take place. Health is a constantly fluctuating thing that depends on so many factors, external and internal, that I sometimes ask patients to consider what health actually means. Our expectation of cure is often unrealistic coupled with the hope of a quick fix. In my experience, the more the patient is engaged with the process, the more they will learn about themselves and their innate healing ability which, even if the main complaint is not resolvable, will help them feel better in themselves.
Written by Dodo Kitching
If you are interested in finding out more or speaking to Dodo about an appointment, then please email email@example.com