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What is Homeopathy
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Homoeopathy is not a new age medicine. It has stood the test of time and has been in use for over 200 years. It is a safe, natural form of medicine that stimulates the body to heal itself. Introduced in 1810 by a German doctor and chemist, Dr Samuel Hahnemann, it is now one of the most widely used forms of alternative medicine.

Homoeopathy works on the principle of "like curing like", for example, if you drank large quantities of coffee, a known stimulant, you would very likely suffer with insomnia.. A homoeopathic preparation made from Coffea, (Latin for coffee), may relieve those symptoms.

Homoeopathic remedies are prepared by taking a minute amount of a substance, diluting it and succussing it. Succussion is the term for vigorous shaking with impact. The process of dilution and succussion was termed by Hahnemann as "potentisation". Hahnemann discovered that potentisation increased the effectiveness of the medicines and reduced the possibility of any unwanted effects.

Whilst certain remedies can be purchased over the counter at a health shop, the treatment of a chronic condition should be supervised by a qualified practitioner.

So now that you have decided to visit a homoeopathic practitioner you are wondering what will happen? During the first consultation the practitioner will take a full case history from you and it is important that you answer the questions as honestly and as fully as possible including current and previous illnesses, your emotional state, how you are affected by the stresses and strains of everyday life, etc.

The information gleaned during this consultation will enable the practitioner to understand you, as the individual that you are, and be able to prescribe the most appropriate remedy for you. The time spent in a consultation will vary but generally it is between one to two hours. Follow up consultations are between 20 to 45 minutes.

Homoeopathy treats a variety of illnesses because practitioners are trained to choose a remedy that relates to the mental, physical and emotional state of the patient.

Homoeopathic medicines can be supplied in tablet, liquid or powder form. Many people express a feeling of well-being after taking the remedy, but if your condition is a long-standing 'chronic' one, it may take longer for you to experience any noticeable difference. This is not to say that the remedy does not work, it will depend upon the way your body reacts to the stimulus of the remedy. Patients suffering with acute complaints are likely to notice an improvement very quickly.

Homoeopathic remedies are not tested on animals. They are safe, non-toxic and non-addictive and can be taken by people of all ages, including women during pregnancy. The remedies can be taken alongside prescribed medication and will not interfere with them but you should never stop prescribed medication without first discussing this with your doctor.

By June Sayer D.Hom (Med), HMD, MARH, D>N>Th., D.Iridol
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