“Be careful about reading health books. You may die of a misprint.”
A major misconception about homeopathy is that it is natural medicine that can never do any harm. It is true that homeopathy can heal gently and without side effects, but the treatment in most cases must be directed by a trained practitioner who knows how to avoid the pitfalls. I can’t stress this enough. Homeopathy is a very powerful, deep-acting form of therapy. Its effects are more profound and longer lasting than those of any modern-day allopathic drugs. The longer I practice homeopathy, the more respect I gain for its power and the more cautious I become in its use.
We often say that homeopathic remedies are perfectly adopted for home use. Homeopathic first aid kits are widely available. I would not disagree. However, because this method of healing is so powerful, it is a good idea to learn as much as you can before using it on your own. See the Further Reading chapter at the end of this booklet for the suggestions.
Sometimes, when used inappropriately, homeopathic remedies may cause problems. These are rare but anybody planning to use homeopathic remedies at home must be aware of the possible complications and know how to avoid them.
We know that homeopathic remedies may aggravate a pre-existing condition. This is usually comparatively mild and brief. Nevertheless, in some cases, even a mild aggravation can be very serious. This must be considered especially in people with week Vital Force, such as the elderly and patients with severe chronic diseases.
For example, people with coronary artery disease have cholesterol deposits blocking the arteries that supply their heart muscle. In advanced cases they experience chest pains with even mild exertion. Coronary arteries have a tendency to spasm around obstructions and this can cause more pain and, if prolonged, a heart attack. An otherwise correct homeopathic remedy given in too high of a potency for the particular patient could produce an aggravation by causing spasm around the obstruction. A point to remember here is that the choice of the potency is always individualized and what is low for one patient may be high for another. A qualified professional will know what is appropriate in a particular case. Somebody treating such a patient at home may not know the difference and cause more trouble than they are ready for.
Another way a homeopathic remedy could cause harm is by producing a proving. This happens if a remedy is repeated too frequently and for too long, even in low potencies, especially if a patient is particularly sensitive to the remedy. The symptoms of the remedy may start appearing (as in a proving), and the patient may get quite ill. Many professional homeopaths do administer remedies in repeated doses, but they know what to watch out for. Any qualified professional homeopath should be able to recognize a proving immediately and adjust the treatment before any serious problems occur. This situation is similar to when a conventional drug produces side effects and the doctor must make changes in the treatment. Home prescribers may not always recognize the problem if they are lulled into complacency by the commonly held mistaken belief that everything natural is always safe.
Combination homeopathic remedies may cause harm in a different way. This approach creates confusion in the Vital Force and, while occasionally helping in the short run, it may cause serious health consequences in the future. You will find practitioners that would disagree with this statement, but given my education and experience I believe it to be correct. Since the jury is still out on this question, I suggest, if you are considering using over the counter combination remedies, to limit the use to no longer than a couple of days, just in case I am right. Personally, I would never use any of these preparations in my practice. This also goes for the “homeopathic weight loss patches” currently flooding the market.
In conclusion, if you are planning to use homeopathic remedies at home, first learn as much as you can; stick to lower potencies, especially in the beginning; treat only acute self limiting conditions like colds and flues; treat only generally healthy people; don”t change remedies frequently; and above all, always remember your limitations and ask for proper professional help whenever you have any doubt. Then, by all means, go ahead and you too will make a miracle from time to time.