Thursday, 25 February 2010

Colic in Babies

A newborn baby crying
Colic can be the scourge of the first few months of babyhood - really distressing both mother and infant! But there is so much can be done to give complete relief!

Here are three popular homeopathic remedies for colic to give the baby, whether the baby is being breast-fed or bottle-fed.  In fact, if the baby is being breast fed- the mother can take the remedy in order to pass it onto the baby. Alternatively, get hold of the remedy in granule form. The granules are very tiny- Mum can wet her finger, place a few granules on top and gently slip her finger with the granules into the baby's mouth. Another way is just to simply dissolve a few granules in a teaspoon of water and give directly into mouth or add to formula. (For busy Mums of very small babies who are not out and about shopping etc. yet, remember that many heath-food shops and homeopathic phaacies do mail-order and can send you help by post!)

1. Colocynthis 30c.  Give this if the baby is bending double and folding or curling up his/her knees against her tummy with the pain.
2. Dioscorea 30c - this is if the baby squirms around and keeps arching his/her back with the pain.
3. Chamomilla 30c - give for colic that is intensely painful causing the child to shriek and scream. A baby who is in a 'Chamomilla' state will want to be carried, but when you pick baby up - he will push you away. Nothing pleases and nothing you can do will soothe the baby.

Now. there are other fantastic remedies for colic but these would be the most commonly used ones. If none of these work, consult with your homeopath for an individual prescription.

Also, useful if you try New Era Tissue Salts Combination E. They are very tiny tablets that melt immediately in the mouth. Mum can also try drinking Fennel or Chamomile or Peppermint teas to relieve her own digestion and pass to a breast-fed baby.

All of the above-mentioned are safe, and effective and without any side-effects. Very gentle solutions - perfect for beloved babies.

Baby massage can also be very useful to learn as this may help with digestion and winding. Look up baby-massage classes in your area. You can also try massaging Rescue Remedy Cream onto the baby's belly to give some relief.

What causes Colic?

In my experience, many babies are sensitive to cow's milk. That is, if the breastfeeding mother is drinking and eating alot of dairy productswhile breastfeeding.  Some babies can be completely intolerant of Lactose - a milk-protein which may also be found in baby formula. If you are not sure whether this is the cause, then the simplest way to find out is to cut out dairy products in the diet of the breastfeeding mother and if the colic improves or stops then you know what has been happening. Do not worry - remember there are many other and even far betteer food sources of Calcium e.g. leafy greens (spinach, cabbage, salad leaves), sesame seeds (also Tahini - sesame seed paste), Calcium-enriched replacement-dairy Soya products, to mention a few. Alternatively, the mother can take a Lactase supplement - this is the digestive enzyme that helps to efficiently digest the milk protein. This can also be given to baby in small amounts.
Alternatively, switch baby formula. There is a wonderful alternative baby-formula on the market (UK & Ireland only) called Nanny Goat - it has all the nutrients necessary for the baby's health and growth only minus the milk-allergen as it is made from Goat's Milk. This is also useful to give babies with eczema who are allergic to milk.

It can be a very stressful time managing and looking after a new baby - so, try to remember there is much help on hand, and you have choices over what to give your darling. And try to keep in mind - this too will pass!

Monday, 15 February 2010

Nappy Rash

mother changing her baby's (6-12 months) nappyNappy rash in some babies can be pretty sore and look very inflamed and uncomfortable. If the skin becomes too excoriated then even doing a pee can also be uncomfortable and make your little one cry! Luckily, there are effective natural solutions to this: simple and gentle for baby!

Try a cream or ointment made from Calendula. Weleda do a great Nappy Rash Cream but there are also other good brands on the market. Nelsons Calendula Cream is another one. If the Nappy Rash is severe - try a water-based cream rather than a heavy oil-based one. Massage in when changing and hey presto! Better looking skin and quickly too. Calendula is a miracle skin healer. It reduces redness, inflammation and soreness. It heals and restores the skin.

Alternatively, you can add drops of Calendula Tincture to the baby's bath. It also comes in the form of a massage oil.

Sweet Almond Oil is a nice, light oil that can be rubbed in gently. You can then add some aromatherapy essential oils of your choice to this if you like. Such as Lavender which is soothing and antiseptic at the same time.

Avoid Vaseline (which may block airflow) and also Sudocreme. 

Another natural remedy you can use is Aloe Vera Gel. Be careful though as some brands can be ever so slightly drying. If you have your own plant at home, break off a leaf and squeeze onto your palm and rub gently in.

Some babies suffer from pretty bad nappy rash and no amount of topical applications seem to get rid of it. If the rash is that severe, fiery red and stretches all around the bottom  and is associated with other skin ailments - cradle cap, a touch of eczema or other things - then you might want to try just 2 or 3 doses (1 tab/pill = 1 dose) of Sulphur 6c , once daily over 2-3 days. If this does not work, ask your homeopath for an individual recommendation to solve the problem.  Homeopathic remedies are safe and effective in the treatment of infants, babies and children without any adverse side-effects! However, any repeated dispensing of internal homeopathic medicine should be supervised and directed by a qualified professional homeopath.

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

How do you raise low blood pressure naturally?

Plus-sized woman lying on couchHigh blood pressure is a hot topic but one does not hear overly much about low blood pressure. Some people do suffer low blood pressure and in general unless it is severe and associated with a specific illness such as heart complaints, it will remain untreated as it is not considered life-threatening. Low blood-pressure can be as a result of shock or injury or severe acute illness. It can be associated with low blood-sugar as occurs in people with diabetes. It also is associated with burn-out or adrenal-insufficiency. This state can arise in a person who has been 'stressed out' over a long period of time.  However, many people with untreated low blood pressure will have vague symptoms of unease and it may help to know that there are simple natural solutions which are effective and will help you manage it, radically improving how you feel on a day-to-day basis.

What are the signs and symptoms from low blood-pressure?

* Feeling generally fatigued, drained and washed out
* Sudden light-headedness and dizziness when rising from bed, getting up from a chair or any sudden movement - this is called "postural hypotension".  This can be in the morning time or after a sleep or rest.
* Or ongoing dizziness and lightheadedness
* Feeling close to fainting or actually fainting
* Anxiety or nausea and weakness in the body
* Clammy coldness

Do make sure to consult your G.P. if you have any of these symptoms but have not had it checked it out. Alternatively, you may want to consult your alternative healthcare practitioner to have this addressed.

What can you do?

1. If you have eliminated all salt from your diet and drink a large amount of water every day, you may find that your blood pressure drops. I always recommend that people improve their general level of hydration these days by drinking water, but am aware that many people are drinking too much water. ( They do this to improve their skin, suppress appetite and because they live in air-conditioned, centrally heated atmospheres which dry one out. But if done in excess, it can cause harm. Also, many people's diets are too low in food that has high water-content such as fruit). If your water/salt levels unbalance within the body, your blood pressure will drop. Increase the amount of salt you imbibe and reduce marginally the amount of water you drink (the latter refers to people who are drinking in excess of 1-1.5 litres of wtater a day). It is better if the salt is natural sea-salt, or salt crystals (for example, Maldon Salt. Herbamare is also a good brand.) rather than the refined table-salt you find in supermarkets. To this end, taking the Cell Salt of Nat-mur 6x will help sort out the imbalance and make a difference to your blood pressure.

2. I recommend you take Mistletoe (in supplement or tincture form) , the Latin name of which is Viscum Album, for a number of weeks to raise the B.P. You can also acquire it in 'x' potency in the form of tablets or pills from a homeopathic dispensary. It is very effective.

3. Take Ginseng and/or Liquorice Root combined with Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic Acid) to support the Adrenal Glands.Take these in a situation where you are contstantly running on adrenaline and pushing yourself to the limit.

4. Keep a careful watch over your blood sugars. This means do not  eat only 3xdaily but eat a small amount of protein  or complex carbohydrate (wholegrain only) or even a piece of fruit every couple of hours. You may need to eat 6-7 times a day to prevent a drop in your blood sugar. This will improve your Adrenal Gland function which will improve your blood pressure.

5. Take only gentle or moderate exercise with slower movements. Do not do any vigorous or high-impact exercise such as aerobics or jogging.

6. Avoid taking very hot baths and showers and extremes of temperature.

7. If your blood -pressure is very low, you may need to actually increase the intake of caffeine by drinking some coffee and tea which act as diuretics and lower the amout of fluid your body is carrying. I rarely recommend this however, as it is not a particularly healthy approach. Only a short-term approach. (This does not apply if you already are taking daily cups of tea or coffee).

8. Many people who have just undergone surgery, experience a huge and sudden drop in blood-pressure. This is because they may become over-hydrated from the application of a saline drip. It tends to heppen in people with a history of naturally low-blood pressure. In this situation, take the homeopathic remedy of Nat-mur 30c: 2-3 times over a period of about 12 hours. Nat-mur may also be taken by people who are not in this situation, but who do exsperience a sudden drop. Nat-mur is also indicated if the drop in blood pressure is due to emotional upset.

9. Find a way to de-stress. Just to BE, and not to do. Remember, you are a human be-ing not a human do-ing! Relaxation, moments of inner peace and contentment - these are the stuff of true presence, being and wellness. Try to turn inward and become quiet. Experience silence or you may want to just laugh! If you have been 'under pressure', get support and help. Take care of yourself - try not to live constantly  in 'crisis'. If you feel you have no control over circumstances, I understand, but remember there is help and loving kindness to avail of. Just Ask.

"The great omission in is solitude, that zone of time and space, free from outside pressures, which is the incinerator of the spirit"   Marya Mannes

Wednesday, 3 February 2010

The Common Cold

Woman sneezingColds as you know are quite common! But they can be very uncomfortable and make it impossible to function normally for a few days. For some people, they turn nasty and travel downwards causing a sore throat and in vulnerable people, what began as a cold ends in a chest-infection.

A cold has a cleansing effect. It is when the immune system kicks into action throwing off bacteria, bugs, and viruses. It often happens when the seasons are changing. Summer to autumn, autumn to winter, winter to spring etc. So many people get a cold twice yearly, most usually in the spring or autumn. When this is the case, it can be likened to a preparation, the laying of a foundation the immunity needs to start defending itself against more serious illness. For this reason, the cold should be supported not suppressed. And handled naturally so that the immune system gets the boost it is looking for.

It is true that some colds, especially if experienced frequently, may not indicate heightened immunity but instead a lowered immunity from stress, poor nutrition, and becoming quite simply 'run down'. If you are getting them frequently, you need to look at your lifestyle alongside your overall health to solve the recurring problem. This might involve consulting an alternative medicine therapist for example including homeopaths.

So what can you do to beat it? Here are some tips for how to handle a cold.

* If your cold has come on from catching cold or becoming chilled from either being outside in cold weather with insufficient clothing or being exposed to a dry, cold wind or if the cold comes on suddenly out of the blue. Try the homeopathic remedy of Aconite 30c. This very often will stop it mid-track. In this situation, it is important to warm the whole body to get rid of the chill, and keep warm. It really is true that sometimes a 'hot toddy' does the trick -  a bit of brandy or whisky with hot water and a slice of lemon and a spoon of honey. Go to a warm bed and you may wake up the next day feeling alright.

* Beware, all Paracetomol-containing products and Aspirin too. My advice is NOT to take these. What happens here is that the Paracetomol does help to dry up symptoms of congestion and make you more comfortable. But it also suppresses your body's natural response-mechanism . The body produces mucus and makes you feel incapable of anything but rest - for a reason. The mucus builds up in order to surround and absorb bacteria, and it becomes so congested so that you have to blow your nose, spit up mucus and phlegm thus ridding the body of  the germs. If you dry up the mucus, then your body will have no protection (you will literally have disarmed it) and the bacteria can establish themselves more completely in your system. You will find that suppressing your head-cold will lead to sore throats, coughs, chest infections and a build up of mucus lower down your body. It moves from your head downwards.

* Instead, take things designed to help support your immune system in what it is doing.

Take Vitamin C - 1000mg once or twice a day. (Beware, juicing citrus fruits in order to get Vitamin C as they tend to cause acidity and will increase your mucus congestion)
Take Vitamin C and Zinc lozenges.
Drink plenty of water.
Take the herb Echinacea. This has natural anti-viral properties and fights infection. Echinacea is safe for children- you can buy specifically tailored children's Echinacea in the shops, which tend to be preserved with Glycerine as opposed to alochol and so taste less strong.
Another remedy for children is Sambucol (Elderberry Extract) . It is flavoured nicely and works very well.
You may also want to try Bee Propolis. A very strong substance that will fight infection. It comes in a liquid tincture or in a handy mouth spray. (The liquid does taste foul but you can add a little fruit juice to temper the taste)
Eat plenty of raw garlic. But if you cannot stand the smell - take a capsule or tablet instead.

Woman inhaling from a bowlFill a bowl with hot steaming water, add some drops of Pine or Euclayptus Essential Oil to the bowl. Place your head over the water and inhale, and cover it with a towel. This will help to clear the airways. (Note that some essential oils may interfere or antidote homeopathic remedies. So do not do this at the same time as ingesting  remedies)

Honeycomb with Ginger and Lemon Half
Try making up the following tea: Fill your teapot with boiling water. Grate some fresh ginger into it, add some slices of lemon, add 2-3 tablespoons of honey (MANUKA honey is the best). Drink regularly throughout the day.

* What homeopathic remedies can you try?

1. Nat-mur 30c. Take this remedy if the cold is accompanied by a cold sore. If your sinuses flare up with the cold and you have a bad headache. If you are very thirsty and worried about your health, weepy and fed -up. Take if the cold comes on at the beginning of your period. You will have clear,watery mucus and sneezing.

2. Try Allium Cepa 30c if your nose is running constantly like a tap and the end of your nose gets red and sore from blowing your nose. Your eyes may be watering and your head will have a stuffed feeling and you won't be able to concentrate.

Homeopathic remedies are very effective but there are many common-cold remedies. If you have tried Aconite, Nat-mur and Allium Cepa without success - you may need to ask  homeopath to decide for you and prescribe.

If you follow these guidelines, it would be unusual for you not to recover. In cases like this, you need extra support from a practitioner to prevent anti-biotic use and a more prolonged episode of being sick.

Friday, 29 January 2010

Taking Iron to resolve Anaemia

I will discuss anaemia in further detail later but first a quick word about iron supplements. Many people dislike taking them or find them impossible to digest as they are known to cause constipation. This can vary from mild to severe constipation. This is unacceptable to a large number of people as they may have underlying digestive problems including symptoms of Iritable Bowel Syndrome. So here are some suggestions about different forms of iron supplementation designed to bring up your haemoglobin levels withut causing nasty side-effects.

1. Try taking Spatone. This is water from a natural spring in the UK which has high levels of iron. It is very gentle and the fact that it is merely 'water' means it is free from artificial ingredients and certain chemicals which can cause stomach upset. Many midwives recommend this particular product during pregnancy. You can dissolve it in more water or fruit juice. It has a slightly metallic taste but is not unpleasant and comes in convenient sachets to take daily.

2. You may be aware that increased amounts of Vitamin C can sometimes aid in the digestion and assilimation of iron. One reason for this is that Vitamin C in a medium to large dose (1000mg upwards), can act as a natural laxative. Many fruits are rich in fibre and water content, taking a good amount of this on a daily basis will counter-act constipation.

3. Most iron tablets or capsules contain Ferrous Sulphate. The ingredient of Sulphur is a major contributor to constipation. Sulphur is a mineral in the body and necessary. But Sulphur in supplement form can be very tough to digest - the liver has terrible trouble with it as it exists naturally in the body and in foods, only in trace amounts not concentrated amounts. Switch your iron supplement and look for Ferrous Gluconate instead, which is far easier to digest and assimilate. I often recommend one excellent product Salus-Haus Floradix. Salus-Haus also do an Iron tonic that is yeast-free (suitable for women who suffer Candida) as well as an Iron tonic suitable for women who are breastfeeding. It also in liquid form and has other vitamins and nutrients added in.

4. Some people may even feel nausea after taking iron. For people who cannot digest iron at all - I recommend the Cell Salt Ferrum-phos 6x. These little tablets are made of milk sugar and are taken by dissolving in the mouth, on or under the tongue and are ingested through absorption over the mucous membranes and not the stomach. You take them 2-3x daily (or follow directions on container). They assist the body in making use of and assimilating any iron already included in one's diet. In other words, the uptake and procesing of iron which has been already digested, improves and becomes more efficient. Thus raising haemglobin in the blood. This method may not be as fast or as strong for some people with very low iron levels which need to be addressed immediately but it is a solution over time for people who have given up on the usual recommendations. If a person suffers from congestion and constipation- part of their underlying condition anyway is connected with poor assimilation of nutrients (for whatever reason) and taking this simple remedy is right for them.

5. Many people with reduced blood haemoglobin levels are deficient in B12. And when iron supplementation does not work, B12 injections are offered as a treatment. Having an adequate supply of B-vitamins nourishes many different bodily functions. Taking iron but being low in B-Vitamins will affect how quickly you recover from anaemia. Another common accompanying deficiency is Copper. Supplementation with this mineral can help raise iron levels. How to tell if you may be low in Copper? You sometimes get electric shocks when touching metals and surfaces.

6. If you have assimilation problems and digestive issues - this affects all uptake of nutrients. Without addressing these issues, you may continue to suffer bouts of anemia and all iron supplementation acts only as a temporary solution. One important factor in anaemia is to avoid tea and coffee in your diet which deplete iron in the body.

7. What are your food sources for Iron? The best solution is often to look to your food. Dried fruits such as apricots, raisins and sultanas. This is a good source for people keeping an eye on weight-loss and who experience severe bloating as a result of constipation as a result of iron supplementation. Also leafy green vegetables such as spinach, cabbage, lettuce. Nuts and seeds (in particular pumpkin seeds). And wholegrains such as wheat and millet.

8. Some cases of anaemia also have accompanying health issues such as decreased blood pressure,and low energy as well as poor digestion and chronic underlying illnesses. Homeopathy can provide solutions in the treatment of anemia while at the same time addressing issues leading to its development. I would recommend seeking out help from a professional homeopath if all else is failing.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

More for Insomnia Part III

There are natural medicines that can be used as sleep-aids and which have a sedative effect. The following can help you to fall asleep:

1. Tincture of Scutellaria or Skullcap.
Take 10-15 drops in a little water before going to bed.
2. Avena Sativa Tincture (Wild Oats). This has a relaxing effect on the nervous system. It also has mild anti-depressant effects. Take 5 drops in a little water 2-3xdaily and especially before sleep.
3. Valerian-Hops Herb Tincture. Many people use this particular combination which works very well. Take drops in water before bed. for nervous or highly-strung people I would not especially advise you to take Valerian as it may stimulate rather than calm.
4. I would also recommend taking a Calcium tablet before bed, at nighttime rather than in the morning. Calcium helps the nervous system as well as strengthening the bones.
5. Try burning the essential oil of Lavender in your bedroom. or placing a few drops on your pillow for you to inhale as you drift off to sleep. Alternatively, you could add to some Sweet Almond Oil and massage into your temples.

There are many herbs in different combinations and brands available as sleep aids on the marfket in health food shops. Try experimenting with these. Some examples are Natrasleep, Natracalm, Weleda Sleep Compound etc.

Most of the above will provide some help and may even solve the problem for you. But as mentioned previously, it is better to uncover the reasons for sleeplessness and tackle these, as well as availing of temporary helps. For those with chronic sleeplessness, you must look at stress in your life and build strength and resilience to this on every level with the right support. Emotional and physical.

If you have tried everything and still the problem persists then the issue of sleeplessness goes much deeper and you may need help of a different kind- for that help, I can recommend homeopathy and consulting a homeopath in order to get help tailored to your individual form of insomnia. It works.

Other relevant posts:
Grief causing sleeplessness
Sleep interrupted by night-sweats

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

More tips regarding sleep (Part II)

In order to fall asleep more easily, what can you do before bedtime?

* Have a relaxing hot bath. Use Lavender or Rose or Chamomile. Drop: Vervain, White Chestnut and Olive Bach Flowers into the bath.
* Do not watch TV and most especially any violent films. It is not relaxing and it over-stimulates the mind. It is difficult to filter and choose images when your mind is tired and there are so many images coming your way. It is better to use your own imagination as You are the one who chooses what to experience.
* Do not fall asleep watching TV. Remove the TV from your bedroom.
* Never work in your bed, make calls from there. Your own associations with this place should only involve rest, relaxation, safety, protection, inner life.
* Do not eat after 6pm. Do not eat heavy meals in the evening. Otherwise, your body will need to use energy for digestion rather than rest and repair and refreshment. If you wake around 4 am or after, your liver may need support.
* Do not let yourself get dehydrated during the day to the extent where you become thirsty in the evening time.
* Do nor drink alcohol. Although alcohol sends some people to sleep - it does not make for refreshing sleep. And it will affect the morning of the next day as your body goes into detox instead of refuelling for activity and being ready for it. Some people are over stimulated by alcohol in their thoughts. If you are one of those take Coffea 30c (the homeopathic remedy)
* Try to have or experience silence as you wind down at night time. Potter around with nothing except your own thoughts, conversation with loved ones, family activities and NO background radio, TV etc.
* Do not have an overheated airless room to sleep in. Make sure that the window has at least been open during the day re-circulating fresh air. It is better to have a cool room and warm covers.
* Make sure you are warm in the bed. Coldness will keep you awake but you may not even identify it!
* Read if you like, as this can relax and tire at the same time before falling asleep. But read something good.
* Have low lighting, pastel colours, a good quality mattress. Be careful of plants, fluroescent lighting in the room. Do not place your bed opposite the door if you can help it. Never lie so that your feet point towards the door. Try to minimise electrical equipement in the bedroom including alarm clocks. Do not store things under your bed (depending on the space available to you).
* Never sleep with a mirror opposite the bed
* Take a glass of water and place beside you on a bedside locker.
* Rub Bach Rescue Remedy Cream on your forehead over the top of your nose.
* Place an Amethyst crystal under your pillow.
* 'Day-dream' or visualise nice things, special memories, retreat to something favourite inside yourself.
* Even your breathing. Make sure your in-breath is the same as your out-breath. become aware of your body and how it feels.

If you have any tips or tricks to add - why not post them below?

Saturday, 9 January 2010

Insomnia & Sleeplessness Part I

It is hard to understand the consequences of insomnia in one's life. It affects everything - your thoughts, feelings and mood, ability to function, your work, your happiness. It wears you down making all problems  seem larger and more unmanageable than they actually  are. It affects your relationships as the 'negative' side of one's personality emerges because of this 'overwhelm'. Of course, sleep deprivation has always been considered a good method of torture - as the thought processes become disturbed and the unconscious blends with and bursts into conscious life, changing one's perspective on 'reality' and revealing deep vulnerability.

"I reached for sleep and drew it round me like a blanket muffling pain and thought together in the merciful dark"

Mary Stewart 

Imagine if you can't do what Mary Stewart said?

What are the different types of insomnia?

Sleeplessness can be mild or severe. Mild sleep disturbance can involve frequent waking. The waking can be as a result of physical symptoms such as the need to go to the toilet, from body temperature- coldness or overheating,  thirst, hunger, or pain, or conditions such as arthritis for example. When a person wakes too often, the length of time experiencing quality sleep is reduced. Falling asleep after waking may be difficult. So a full night's rest becomes impossible. And of course all those mothers out there with small or older children often have interrupted nights when their children come in needing company, because they are frightened or simply because they are early wakers!
Sometimes people are able to fall asleep with no problems but wake later in the night as a result of anxiety, stress or an overactive mind and racing thoughts - making plans for the next day, going over conversations in their minds, pondering a life problem. Once wide awake, they do not sleep again.
Some people cannot get to sleep no matter how they try and  they lie for hours trying to relax but becoming more and more tense, imagining what it will be like to go through yet another day- unrested.
Insomnia can come in phases - it can last a week or three weeks. For some people, it is not a constant in their lives just a temporary guest. For others, it is more serious and chronic an always an issue.

What causes it?

There are as many different causes as there are sufferers! But to name a few: poor indigestion, kidney and bladder problems, pain, illness, stress (a broken down nervous sysem) , anxiety, grief, parenting, interrupted circadian rhythms from shift work, travel, over-tiredness and exhaustion, back problems, cold and heat, night sweats, nightmares, excessive dreaming or lack of REM sleep, poor mattress and bad quality bed, geopathic stress (e.g. poor bedroom layout , furnishings and too much electrical equipment), disharmony with sleeping partner, pregnancy and the list goes on..............

What help is there?

Conventionally - for severe insmonia, the help has consisted of sleeping tablets. Or for mild insomnia the advice  "get on with it - it's not that bad" seems to suffice (usually given by a person who has never had the experience)! I actually am not completely against sleeping tablets in emergencies but it is not a cure nor is it a long-term solution. Sleeping tablets are addictive. Also, you will never dream during sleeping-tablet-induced-sleep; it shuts off a particular part of your psyche. Many people report unrefreshing sleep (which means they do not feel as though they had slept properly)  and many other side -effects such as being generally slowed down the following day, unable to concentrate etc.

In the world of alternative medicine and natural health - there are so many potential solutions.These have no side-effects, are safe to use, and address the causes rather than the symptoms .That way, you know that it is a more permanent solution. Insomnia is the end-result, not the original problem.  Be aware of the uniqueness of your particular experience  and  choose what is right for you, and understand why you have insomnia. And do not lose hope.

Here are some  tips to start with, from my experience. Bear in mind, that I have divided this topic into several posts, as it is so comprehensive. Stay connected for the upcoming posts - follow me or subscribe to this blog.  If you have a question or wish to describe your particular form of insomnia, I may be able to give you more individualised advice! Feel free to comment.

Thursday, 7 January 2010

What to do when you have a fall?

The whole of  Ireland is experiencing a cold snap not seen for over 50 years. Snow and ice everywhere. And also many injuries from slipping and falling. The A&E departments are under pressure. Some people can take a fall (young people, fit people). Despite bruising and soreness. Others, however, who are elderly, or who have had broken bones before or who have some struggle with walking and balance - to these people it is traumatic. One can lose confidence, be very uncertain and have to pick out one's steps going forward. For the elderly it can be a disastrous happening. Say you have a hip replacement and then have a bad fall? What if you have brittle bones, more easily fractured? If you are overweight and fall badly then you will be more likely to be injured as well. For some people the fear of falling is a tangible and horrible fear.

So homeopathy provides a miracle remedy for just these scenarios. Don't ever go around without it!

ARNICA MONTANA. This remedy will help you with the effects of a bad fall, blow to the body, injury of any kind. It heals bruising, relieves pain, relieves shock. Sometimes the shock and upset from a previous fall can almost leave you predisposed to experiencing another one. Taking Arnica will prevent the susceptibility to the same event. have you ever thought is strange that sometimes people experience injury in exactly the same spot from a previous incident?  Have you ever seen someone fall really badly and then get up and claim they are fine, they don't need any help and they hardly feel the pain? That is the shock speaking. It is only later that they will feel the pain. Especially after a night's sleep. All their muscles, all of their body will protest. However a few doses  of Arnica prevents the bodily outcry! Take 30c or take 200c tablets. Arnica will help give complete pain relief even if a bone is broken. It speeds healing and recovery.

You can also use Arnica Cream to alleviate bruising - it works wonders!

For people who break a bone or several after falling. Take Arnica. Then wait until the bone is properly set by a medical expert. Beware though of a cast that extends over too large an area. Unnecessary coverage will add to muscle wastage and lengthen recovery of the whole part. Beware too of over-long periods of time spent with a cast on. Medics set one standard parameter for healing and everyone is expected to take the exact same period of time to recover despite individual differences in bodily health.

Once the bone has been set in place, you can take the following to speed the mending and repair:

Symphytum 30c. The common name for this remedy is Boneset - and that is because this will help the bone tissue to knit together very fast indeed. It can halve recovery time, in my experience. Take one or two doses a day for 10 days up until 3 weeks. Depending on the severity. with multiple fractures - you will need to take a good bit. However, remember only after the bone is set , otherwise the tissue will knit back in the wrong place.

Cell Salts: Calc-phos. This speeds healing of bones and strengthens them.

If the fracture has been at the site of a joint - take Cell Salts Calc-fluor every day.

If in the past, you have been slow to heal, whether it is from a small cut or a larger injury then you will need to support your body's healing capacities. Take Cell Salts Silica to achieve this.

By the way, if you are interested in learning more about how these simple remedies can help you in daily life- why not have a look at this book: Homeopathic Cell Salt Remedies: Healing with Nature's Twelve Mineral Compounds

If after a bad fall, you have alot of fear of the same thing happening again and are anxious and afraid, and you have lost your confidence; take Aconite 30c.

Sometimes, there are other complications after a bad fall that have long-lasting effects beyond the specific injury. A shock to the body can activate latent illness, ready to appear as a result of genetic predisposition and heredity. You develop a complaint that seems unrelated to the event and which you have never before experienced, but which seems here to stay - like an illness. It's a "Never well since..." scenario. For situations like this, consult a homeopath for individualised treatment.

So be careful as you go, and go lightly ...but remember there is help on hand to minimise the damage as a result of falling. A secure footing gives us alot in life.

Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Giving up Smoking

A popular New Year's resolution - this one! And for many people it is difficult to achieve. I have spoken to some smokers who said it was easy to give up once they had made a conscious decision and through a single act of will they stopped and never went back smoking. I have also spoken to people who have done this and who resumed smoking again even years later. Many ex-smokers cannnot bear the smell of smoke and are less tolerant to smoking than people who have never themselves smoked before. But many people have a serious nicotine addiction which is a physical craving. In my experience, smokers have several things in common.

  • A certain lack of confidence
  • Stress, but most especially a build up of suppressed anger
  • A potentially addictive personality. Smoking seems to allay the dangers of choosing other substances.

I usually recommend Allen Carr's Easy Way to Stop Smoking. Most people find it good but not all.

What can you use to help yourself, if you have decided to give up?

Sunday, 3 January 2010

Airport and Travel Stress during the Holidays

I just returned from my Christmas travels - generally they passed off very well but not without the usual bodily stress of many hours spent in the airport, on buses, trains and trams. Hours spent in air-conditioned, centrally heated atmospheres with no fresh air and nothing green. Time spent under the continual glare of fluorescent lighting, not to mention engine and equipment noise. Hours spent on one's feet, crowded amidst many strangers.

So, any tips for feeling better? How do you remain at ease while travelling ? Jet-lag, aching muscles, stress.....
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