Homeoapthy: First Aid
Homeopathic: Case study.
I was recently reminded by a neighbour, who has just returned from a tramping and kayaking trip, how wonderful homeopathic remedies are for First Aid use. She told me that while away she was ‘camp homeopath’ using homeopathic remedies everyday for herself and her travelling companions. She told me that she tells anyone and everyone about how effective they are.
There are a the myriad of problems associated with the great outdoors- sunburn, fire burns, stings, bites, over exertion, bruising, strains and sprains – the list goes on. She reminded me of my kayaking trip to the Abel Tasman Park 2 years ago. We kayaked for 5 days solid. I had never kayaked in my life before and with the use of Arnica I can say, with some amazement that I suffered NO ill effects – tired but no strained muscles or bruising!!
I decided that I should pass the information I gave my neighbour onto readers and hope that you and you family might benefit from this information too. I will cover the main homeopathic ‘First Aid’ remedies and their use.
Some of the following First Aid remedies are best used in a cream form and some internally.
For internal use remedies can be purchased in liquid form (take 3-4 drops per dose or as directed), in tablet form or in pillule form (small pills take 1-2 pillules per dose).
For external (topical) use remedies can be purchased in lotions, creams and tinctures
Potency and repetition – the most important thing to remember is to match the symptoms of the injured person with the symptoms of the remedy (the remedy picture). Give 1 dose of the remedy in the strength (potency) you have available and repeat the remedy if the symptoms start to return again. Once improvement is evident you do not need to repeat the remedy further. In very acute situations you may need to repeat the remedy every 10 minutes.
If symptoms have not improved after the first dose then repeat the remedy for 3 doses before consult a professional homeopath as another remedy would be indicated or a different remedy strength or dosage regime.
I have given you a suggested remedy strength below where internal use is indicated. BUT the main thing to remember is to give the remedy in whatever strength you have. You should consult your homeopath or homeopathic pharmacy when putting your First Aid kit together.
If you can find an emotional symptom e.g. irritable and a physical symptom e.g. better for movement, worse with the least touch this can be very useful combination to finding the right remedy.
Remember- homeopathic remedies are a wonderful adjunct to conventional First Aid. The use of homeopathic remedies have been found to support recovery from many injuries. The usual checks need to be undertaken to ensure there is no internal bleeding or fractures and so on and remember RICE – Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation. Remedies will not interfere with conventional medication.
Arnica is always the first remedy we call on for support to help soothe and calm bruising or soft tissue damage and trauma. Apart from obvious bruising arnica is also suitable to use for any overexertion e.g. gardening, sports etc where you may have over done it and feel sore, tender and bruised all over and some soothing calming support is needed. The bed feels hard and you cannot get comfortable. You don’t want to be touched, you just want to be left alone, “I’m alright-go away” is a sure signal arnica is your remedy.
Specific uses include: black eyes; bleeding nose after a blow to the nose; sore muscles after unaccustomed exercise or exertion and acute sprains with bruising and pain.
Arnica should also be used as additional support for healing after labour and surgery including dental work.
The pain experienced is often “as if beaten” – fear to have anyone touch the area due to the pain.
Note: Arnica can be applied as a cream to minor bruises but should never be used as a cream on any open wounds – take the arnica internally in this instance. Arnica is more effective taken under the tongue for more serous trauma and any trauma that is more whole body e.g. effects from over exertion. Arnica purchased in the 30c or 200c potency is recommended for home use. I would use 200c for bad bruising, operations and unaccustomed over-exertion.
A big remedy for emotional shock and fright and so is often useful in the first hours of a major trauma where the person has also received a big shock or fright – even if the person concerned received no physical damage.
Give the remedy internally as a 30c or 200c. Repeat the remedy if symptoms start to worsen again.
Calendula and Hypercal
Calendula is made from the calendula flower. It has marked antiseptic properties. This can be used internally, as a tincture and as a cream or ointment.
Alternatively hypercal can be used which is calendula and hypericum combined for the same purpose. Adding the hypericum will help further support for natural healing and to calm and soothe those affected areas.
Wonderful to apply to any open wound or abrasions e.g cracks on hands and heals burns including sunburn. Calendula will support the natural healing process. You can bathe with tincture diluted 1:10 of sterile water and then apply cream. If you only have one of these use what you have got.
You can also apply to sunburn to soothe the effects and support healing.
Injuries to nerve rich areas of the body – fingers, tongue, genitals, coccyx. Specific uses include crushed injuries (e.g. fingers slammed in a door or by a hammer); the first remedy to think of if there is an injury to the tailbone or a puncture wound and any blow to the nerve rich areas e.g fingers.
Hypericum is wonderful after dental surgery, particularly if you have had a rot canal done or a tooth extracted. Please note, take hypericum AFTER the dental work as the anesthetic may not be as effective should you take it prior.
Pains are generally sharp shooting pains.
For these injuries take the remedy internally in a 30c or 200c potency
This remedy is made from poison ivy. This makes it a wonderful remedy homeopathically for soothing sprains and strains. A must for sports people and for holiday injuries.
A remedy for soothing sprains with a stiff painful restless feeling. The part – muscles and/or joints will feel very stiff.
This is the remedy of first choice when the injury is worse for first movement and better after warming or limbering up and better for applying heat to the part e.g. soaking in a warm bath.
For this type of injury I would recommend taking internally in a 30c or 200c potency.
A great remedy for bruising to bones close to the surface of the skin e.g. shins, heel, hips, ribs etc. There may be deep bruising and great stiffness.
Ruta is also the first remedy to think of for tendon injuries to aid healing. Also useful for helping with the pain and healing of tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive strain injuries especially when the wrist is affected.
You may need to decide between rhus tox and this remedy. If the stiffness is clearly better after limbering up then try rhus tox first.
For this type of injury I would recommend taking Ruta internally in a 30c or 200c potency.
This is a remedy made from the stinging nettle and has many uses in first aid.
Burns – any minor burns, where the skin is not broken e.g minor burns from the stove, BBQ and especially burns from being scalded with boiling water.
Urticaria – which is an itchy allergic skin reaction with a stinging burning sensation. Constant desire for rubbing or scratching. There may be white welts.
Where the area is small I would apply topically in cream form. If the area is large then take the remedy internally in a 30c or 200c potency.
This is a remedy made from the bee. The symptoms that indicate the use of this remedy homeopathically look like a bee sting reaction. This means the part will look red, often shiny red and swollen. The sensation of the area affected will be hot, burning and stinging.
Apis is therefore great for conditions such as:
Urticaria – which is an itchy allergic skin reaction that is red hot, burning, itchy and swollen. The part feels better for being cool and from cold applications and much worse for heat and touch. Often the remedy when the rash affects the face and mouth.
Stings and Bites – with marked redness, swelling and burning pains that are better for cold applications. The bite maybe a mosquito bite which you have had a bad reaction to.
Penetrating wounds – where the part is red or even purple and the part is swollen burning or stinging.
If the part is small you can apply apis cream or you can take the remedy internally in a 30c or 200c potency.
A plant remedy made from Marsh Tea. It is used for the treatment of bruises and wounds, bites and stings, where typically the part feels cold to touch and much better for having cold applications.
Bruises – with severe pain, purple in colour and better for cold applications. Ledum may be needed after arnica in this situation. Ledum is therefore a wonderful remedy for a black eye when you want to put a cold steak on the eye for relief. For this type of bruise I would recommend taking the remedy internally in a 30c or 200c potency.
Puncture wounds – from stepping on nails, sewing machine needles, staples, injections into the muscles with complications. You can apply using a tincture diluted 1:10 with sterile water. It is important not to plug the puncture wound with cream as bacteria may get trapped in the wound leading to infection.
Stings and Bites – ledum is the main remedy for infections and inflammation from stings and bites e.g. spider bites, dog bites, cat bites and bites from any other animal where bleeding is minimal but the teeth have penetrated deeply.
For spider bites or stings you can use ledum tincture full strength. You can also take ledum 6c or 12c, 3 times a day for 3-4 days. It is important not to plug the puncture wound with cream as bacteria may get trapped in the wound leading to infection. Stop as soon as you are your symptoms improve.
If none of the above remedies seem appropriate your homeopath will be able to prescribe a remedy that matches your symptoms exactly.