Homopathy is the medical practice of treating like with like (homoios is the Greek word for like).
What can Homopathy treat?
Practitioners claim that Homopathy can be used to treat all ailments and is safe for babies, children and pregnant women. It is most often used for:
- longterm disorders
- anxiety, depression and stress-related problems
- menstrual and menopausal problems
- nausea, morning sickness and backache during pregnancy and can also be used during labour
- digestive problems
Known to the Greeks in the fifth century, Homopathy was introduced by the German doctor Samuel Hahneman as a safe alternative therapy in the nineteenth century. He observed that the malarial drug quinine produced similar symptoms in a healthy person to those displayed by the person who is ill. Hahneman defined the effect of other substances by proving that is, noting the symptoms they produce in healthy people.
Homopathy is essentially a natural healing process in which the remedies assist the patient to regain health by stimulating the bodys natural healing forces. Homopathy sees symptoms as the bodys reaction against the illness as it attempts to overcome it and seeks to stimulate, not suppress, this reaction.
Homopathy is recognised by an Act of Parliament. It has been part of the NHS since then and is accepted as a safe complementary form of medical treatment.
Consultation and treatment
Homopaths can be doctors with orthodox qualifications who are also trained in homepathy. They can also be professional homopaths who are trained and who practice but do not have medical qualifications.
During the initial consultation, the practitioner will want to find out as much as possible about you. She or he will ask about your medical history, diet, lifestyle moods, likes and dislikes and will then draw up a symptom picture to pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses. This picture will then be matched with those catalogued in the homopathic repertories.
The skill lies in prescribing the appropriate remedy or combination of remedies. Remedies come as tablets, granules, creams, drops and liquids, all prepared to the highest quality standards from pure plant, mineral and animal substances. The tablets and granules are sweet tasting and completely safe; even a child given an incorrect dosage will experience no harmful effects. You may also receive advice on your diet and lifestyle.
A prescription may contain anything from 3 tablets to be taken over 24 hours to several months supply. The number of consultations required depends on the nature and severity of the disease.
Initial consultations take up to 90 minutes; costs start at £30 (medically qualified practitioners will cost more but tend to see patients less often). Subsequent consultations take about 30 minutes. Costs for those start from £20 to £30.
Homopathy can be used at home to treat a range of ailments from coughs and colds to nausea and stress. Homopathic first aid, travel, nursery and labour kits often containing basic, low-potency remedies can be purchased at health shops and chemists. Reputable manufacturers provide full instructions for the use of any over-the-counter remedies.
How to find a practitioner
The Faculty of Homopathy has a register of approximately 300 medically-qualified doctors who have also received training in Homopathy.
Professional homopaths who are trained and who practise but do not have medical qualifications should be registered with the Society of Homopaths, the professional body of homopaths, the Complementary Medical Association (CMA) or the United Kingdom Homopathic Medical Association (UKHMA).
Ask for lactose-free tablets or liquid remedies if you are lactose-intolerant. Ask for vegan tablets if you are vegan.
Check unexplained symptoms with a doctor if consulting a non-medically qualified homopath.
Since the healing process can involve an initial aggravation of existing symptoms, caution should be taken when treating seriously ill patients.
Homopathic remedies can be taken alongside orthodox drugs but it is unwise to stop taking orthodox medication without consulting your GP. Tell your practitioner if you are using essential oils.
Make sure your homopath is registered and insured. Write to the Complementary Medical Association, sending two first class stamps.