Homeopathy, also known as homeopathic medicine, is
a time-tested healing modality used successfully around the world. Homeopathy is
based on a premise called the Law of Similars:
The very same substances that make you sick can be used
in minute amounts to heal your body and relieve your symptoms.
If you’ve heard of homeopathy but don’t really know what it is or how it works,
you have lots of company. But here in the US, people who use and trust homeopathy,
believe it is misunderstood and consider it the right solution for many ailments.
And more and more people are discovering its benefits — they like that homeopathic
medicine is natural and proven safe with no side effects. But mostly, people rely
on homeopathy because it works to help them feel better.
What is homeopathy? How does it work?
Dr. Stills explains homeopathy...
Many of my patients don’t quite “get” homeopathy until I use my favorite example:
poison ivy. If you’re allergic to poison ivy and you touch it, you’ll get a nasty
To make a homeopathic remedy for that poison ivy rash — or another rash with the
same symptoms — we take the compounds in poison ivy and dilute them many times over
until there is no physical poison ivy substance left but just the energetic signature
of that plant.
Now we can use that remedy to treat someone with poison ivy or a similar rash.
Homeopathy’s foundation rests on the simple principle that “like cures like.” In
practice, homeopathic medicines are heavily diluted substances that cause symptoms
in healthy people prescribed to relieve similar symptoms in people who feel sick.
Though this sounds counterintuitive, it has a long history of success, especially
among patients who feel they have been failed by conventional medicine.
One differentiator between the two schools of thought is that homeopathy uses just
enough of a given substance to stimulate the body’s own healing mechanisms — there
are no long courses of drug therapies. Patients are is seen as individuals, with
their own unique illness experience and the goal is to make them feel so much better
that no further medication is needed.
How can homeopathic remedies help?
One of the greatest strengths of homeopathic medicine is that it intends to serve
each patient’s very specific needs — nothing more. Though it has its skeptics, homeopathy
continues to amaze and impress actual users with its ability to relieve stubborn
symptoms, including those that are notoriously uncomfortable.
People who suffer from any of the following symptoms or concerns should consider
trying homeopathy to see how it works in their own bodies:
- Hot flashes, cramps, irregular periods, PMS and perimenopausal moodiness.
Even though these menopause and hormonal symptoms vary, a
generalized homeopathic remedy with a combination of active plant-derived
ingredients can provide relief for a diverse set of users.
- Hay fever congestion. Homeopathy has long been used to relieve
and prevent the respiratory effects of seasonal allergic rhinitis, better known
by its symptoms —
sneezing, stuffy nose and itchy eyes.
Food sensitivity after effects, including indigestion, upset stomach,
nausea and gastric discomfort. If you have a true allergy to a specific food, like
nuts or shellfish, you should avoid that food completely, as reactions can be extremely
Homeopathy is also a favorite prescription for ear infections, headaches, arthritis,
skin problems and pediatric issues. Many practitioners and users believe it can
strengthen the immune system. There is some evidence homeopathic remedies may have
biologic effects on immune responses though more research is needed to confirm a
How do you use homeopathic remedies?
For many common, everyday symptoms, prepared homeopathic remedies can be remarkably
successful at providing relief and helping you feel better. Ready-made remedies
come in a variety of strengths that are specified on the label by the number of
times each constituent has been diluted. They can be ingested or applied topically,
depending on the remedy.
It’s important to follow the directions closely for best results — you may use some
remedies multiple times to get the relief you need. In general, a homeopathic remedy
is taken as needed, rather than on a set schedule.
For example, unlike most drugs that may require long-term use, some homeopathic remedies are used only
for as long as you have symptoms. Hay fever remedies and similar
preparations can be different. They’re often used to stimulate a specific response
in your body to help desensitize your body to specific irritants by working with
your body’s natural detoxification processes.
Is homeopathy right for you?
Many people feel comfortable using both conventional medicines and homeopathy, depending
on their symptoms. Knowing your body and understanding how it functions can help
you decide whether homeopathy is right for you to try.
If you’re struggling with menopause symptoms that you can’t shake, like hot flashes,
night sweats and headaches, a good homeopathic remedy can be effective, safe and
easy to use. Many women find lasting relief and are happy to have more control over
their symptoms, and their bodies. Now wouldn’t that be nice?
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