Learn About Homeopathy
What is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a safe, gentle, and natural system of healing that works with your body to relieve symptoms, restore itself, and improve your overall health. It is extremely safe to use, even with very small children and pets, has none of the side effects of many traditional medications, is very affordable, is made from natural substances, and is FDA regulated.
It is used to treat acute illnesses, like colds, ear infections, migraines, and sore throats, as well as chronic conditions, like asthma, depression, autism, and arthritis.
Homeopathic medicines – known as “remedies” – are made from natural sources (e.g., plants, minerals), and are environmentally friendly and cruelty free. Most are available over the counter in grocery stores, drug stores, health food stores, homeopathic pharmacies, and online. They are also extremely affordable. Homeopathic remedies when used as directed, are completely safe for everyone – including pregnant and nursing women, infants, children, and adults. They are given in such small doses that they don’t cause side effects.
One thing to note is that the word homeopathy is not a general or “umbrella” term that describes a variety of different natural therapies. Although homeopathic remedies are derived from natural substances, homeopathy should not be confused with herbal medicine, Chinese medicine, or other types of natural medicines. It is its own, unique therapeutic system.
Anyone can learn to treat simple conditions safely at home using homeopathy, but a professional should treat serious or life-threatening conditions.
More About Homeopathy
Many people just getting started with homeopathy understandably have questions about what it is and how it works. The list below includes answers to some of the most common questions about homeopathy:
- How does homeopathy differ from conventional medicine?
- What is homeopathy’s history?
- What is “classical” homeopathy?
- What are combination remedies?
- Are homeopathic medicines regulated?
- Are homeopathic medicines safe?
- Can a pregnant woman, breastfeeding moms, or a newborn baby use homeopathy?
- Where can homeopathic medicines be purchased?
- Are homeopathic medicines expensive?
- When do I need to go to a professional homeopath?
- Who practices homeopathy?
- What kind of homeopathic training and certification is there?
- What happens during a homeopathic consultation and what does it cost?
- Will my health insurance cover it?
Homeopathy is based on a rule of nature called the Law of Similars. This law states that “like cures like,” or that a medicine can cure a sick person if it can cause a similar sickness in a healthy person. For instance, if you peel an onion, your eyes burn, itch and water. You might also have a runny nose and begin to sneeze. If you had similar symptoms during a cold or allergy attack, such as a runny nose, watery eyes and sneezing, a homeopathic micro-dose of the remedy Allium cepa (red onion) would help your body heal itself.
The homeopath regards symptoms as the body’s healthy attempt to restore itself to balance. That is why a homeopath will choose a remedy that supports the symptoms—rather than opposing them or suppressing them as in conventional medicine. In conventional medicine, a cold or hayfever sufferer is given an antihistamine to dry up the runny nose and watery eyes artificially. But this medication often comes with unpleasant side effects like sleepiness and constipation. With the correct homeopathic remedy, however, there are no side effects and a person is restored to health naturally.
Homeopathy also recognizes that each person exhibits his or her disease in a unique and slightly different way. That is why two people with the same disease will not necessarily receive the same homeopathic remedy. A cold sufferer with a stopped up nose and dry eyes would receive a different remedy than one with a runny nose and watering eyes. Unlike the “one size fits all” approach to prescribing often used in conventional medicine, a homeopath chooses a remedy that matches the unique symptom profile of the individual. Conventional medicine seeks to control illness through the regular use of medications; if the medicine is withdrawn, the person’s symptoms return. For example, the daily use of drugs for asthma (or any chronic disease for that matter) alleviates the symptoms but does not cure the underlying problem. In homeopathy the ideal is that a person needs just enough of the homeopathic remedy to stimulate their healing response. In other words, homeopathy seeks to cure a person so that they do not need any medications—homeopathic or otherwise.