We’re generally used to taking over the counter pills or medicine prescribed by a GP - often a daily dose or a course of antibiotics. Homeopathic remedies (medicines) are prescribed differently, geared to the person, their complaint and level of vitality.
I sometimes ask my patients to take a single dose (one pill), or two or three and then wait perhaps for over a month before taking anything else. Equally I might ask them to take several different remedies on a schedule that involves one monthly pill, one weekly and one daily. This can seem counter intuitive to what we are used to so I wanted clarify in this blog - how to store and take remedies, who can take them and what might interfere with them.
Homeopathic remedies and how to take them
I generally prescribe homeopathic remedies in the form of small pills, granules or drops.
If you are taking tablets it is best not to handle them but tip them into the bottle cap and then drop them into your mouth and let them dissolve under your tongue.
Another difference to conventional medicine is that it is best not to eat or drink (except water), brush your teeth or smoke for twenty minutes before or after taking your remedy. This is to make sure that any residue of food does not affect the action of the remedy.
Some homeopathic medicines are formulated as oro-mucosal sprays or drops (such as LM potencies) which you can spray or drop into your mouth, onto or under the tongue or the side of the cheek where the remedy is absorbed by the mucosa lining the oral cavity. Due to the alcohol content of the spray and drops, I advise you change the site of application each time, to minimise any potential irritation. Again don’t eat, drink, smoke or brush your teeth for twenty minutes before or after taking these forms of remedy.
For babies and young children
To give a remedy to a baby or young child the pills can be crushed between two spoons and given as powder. If necessary a little cooled, boiled water, or spring water can be added to the crushed powder and they will happily suck this off the spoon.
Things to avoid while taking homeopathic remedies
Strong substances such as peppermint, coffee and some essential oils may occasionally affect the effectiveness of the remedy you are talking. This can vary from individual to individual, so it is best to avoid them at the start of your treatment. For this reason I ask my patients to buy a non-mint toothpaste or take their remedy at least half an hour before or after brushing their teeth.
What are homeopathic remedies made of?
Homeopathic tablets are made of sucrose and lactose, the pills are made of sucrose. I always use pills that are vegan and suitable for those who are lactose intolerant. Liquids have an alcohol base.
How to store homeopathic remedies
Homeopathic pills will keep their strength for years without deteriorating. You should store them in a cool, dark, dry place with their tops screwed on tightly well away from strong smelling substances. It is wise to keep all tablets out of the reach of children as a matter of course. However if your child gets their hands on a bottle of pills and eats them, do not panic. A single dose at one time is a single dose, whether it is one pill or the whole bottle.
Other differences to conventional medicine
With homeopathy, especially in an acute situation, you gradually stop taking the remedy when you notice an improvement in your symptoms, by spacing out the doses to wider intervals. When there is a marked improvement, you stop altogether. If the same symptoms recur, you can resume the dosage. If the symptoms change, you should stop and speak to your homeopath.
Can homeopathic remedies be taken with other drugs?
There is no known report of any cross-reaction with conventional medical treatments, although powerful drugs such as antihistamines or steroids may slow down or negate the action of homeopathic medicines. Additionally, the side-effects of conventional drugs can make it harder to judge whether homeopathy is acting effectively or needs to be changed. It is always best if you tell your doctor if you are taking a homeopathic medicine together with a prescribed drug and you should not stop taking conventional medicine when you start homeopathic treatment. Any change in your prescribed medicine regime should be under the guidance of your homeopath and GP and be done gradually.
When I treat you I try to make my remedy instructions as clear as possible but if you have any queries or doubts always call on 07810 464527 or email me at email@example.com.