The homeopathic method
Homeopathy is based on the premise that the body has a natural healing process – a vital force.
Homeopathy is not about finding the specific cause of a disease. It’s about stimulating this vital force.
Treatment begins with careful consideration of all symptoms, including :
- when and how symptoms appear
- any aggravating or alleviating factors
Two patients who, in conventional medicine, would be viewed as having the same disease, might, in homeopathy, be prescribed different remedies. Why?
- because of differences in constitutions
- because of differences in symptoms (e.g., the “same” cold, but not the same nasal discharge
Today’s practitioners use computer databases to choose remedies based on countless combinations of symptoms and constitutions.
X, C, M, what do these letters mean in homeopathy ?
A homeopathic preparation marked 6X means that the product has been:
- six times diluted…
- to one part drug extract…
- in nine parts solvent (e.g., a mix of water and alcohol)
At each of the six stages, the preparation is agitated 100 times to increase the vital energy of the original substance.
A preparation marked X is a decimal dilution or a low potency remedy. Low potency means that it is less diluted.
There are also high potency remedies:
- centesimal dilutions (C): one part drug extract in 99 parts solvent
- and millesimal dilutions (M): one part drug extract in 1,000 parts solvent
High dilution remedies are held to be of higher potency than low dilution remedies.
H, K, what do these letters mean in homeopathy ?
The letter ‘H’ is sometimes appended to ‘X’, ‘C’ or ‘M’. H is for Hahnemann, the creator of homeopathy. It refers to the dilution style.
There is another style, designated by a ‘K’, that was developed by Korsakov, a contemporary of Hahnemann’s.
The Korsakovian dilutions are more effective than Hahnemannian dilutions at low potencies, but both are equally effective at high potencies.
What form does homeopathic medication take ?
Once diluted, homeopathic dilutions are presented in one of four basic ways:
- granules (soluble white balls – generally sugar-based – that are dissolved under the tongue)
- drops (dispensed a few drops at a time)
- lotions or ointment, e.g., arnica cream
What is homeopathic medication made of ?
Vegetable, mineral, animal, it depends…
Sometimes the relationship between the remedy and the condition seems quite logical. This is the case with Apis melliflera (diluted bee venom), which is used to treat bee stings, and with arnica, which was traditionally used to treat bruises and sprains and has found a similar use in homeopathy.
Sometimes the relationship is more surprising, as with Lachesis mutus (diluted snake venom), which is used to treat the symptoms of menopause. Arsenicum album (a diluted form of arsenic, a highly toxic heavy metal) is used in the treatment of certain skin diseases and even against the common cold.
One of the best-selling homeopathic remedies, Oscillococcinum – used against the flu – is made from macerated liver and heart of duck.