Thoughts on the world, homeopathy, mindfulness and food...
A collection of blog posts - feel free to respond with your thoughts and comments - I love to have feedback - thank you!
Interesting this should pop up (I'm still on my unfollow mission due to overwhelm of info and working through pages I've liked etc) on the same morning I've responded to someone with some thoughts on - wait for it - social isolation.
My response is here...along with a few additional thoughts. I think those thoughts are all really valid and it's good to honour them - and any training you had before (not formal necessarily) on mindfulness/being present etc is needed right now. It's time to dig deep and be, to tread lightly where we can I feel. I definitely identify with the down thoughts especially with the 'lockdown' going on... I'm mildly optimistic there may be a new normal - if not from the government, from the people, and that we'll all, if nothing else, appreciate the hugs, love, contact more then and for now we can appreciate what we have here - which is flowers opening to the sun, lengthening days, birdsong, having people we love in our lives, even if not in direct contact with them - and lots more of course.
I recommend FaceTime calls for dinner times with friends/family - they've really cheered us up and lifted spirits, also making that one 'allowed' exercise session count - we've been out for an hour/hour and a half with the dogs for the last 3 days. And speaking/writing about the discomfort then coming back to the positives we can take from the situation. I don't think switching immediately to the positive and ignoring the feelings is OK (that feels like a sticking plaster - as I explained yesterday to my long-suffering boyfriend) but to for me to consciously not stay too long in the muddy bit is definitely easier for him - when I've been in the mud recently that is.
Sending love - get creative is probably my best tip - with ways to include lots of people without it being physical contact. I'm thinking I want a dinner party via zoom/whats app (can have up to 4 on WA) or a kitchen disco. We've a visioning group - done vision boards together and that's a really supportive place for going through things right now, along with creative ideas of ways to process feelings, e.g. mood cards. You could even have a knit and natter (ours is a stitch and bitch) group online like this.
There's some brilliant people offering food parcels/take away - we're excited about That Vegan Chef doing food boxes and will be ordering this week. Businesses offering classes online - my favourite (actually only so far in my pilates career) and brilliant teacher Amber Rose Pilates and Wellbeing is doing classes via Zoom - which now anyone can attend - not only the people in this area.
Creating a new temporary normal during these times may help where you can. I read a lovely post going round on Facebook by a psychologist who'd been talking to her clients about what they needed, and will share that at the end - it's quite a long read and I thought there were many worthwhile points made.
The sunshine has definitely helped me the last few days and I'm mildly concerned about when it goes this weekend - but I'll be OK, the practices above will help and I'm taking time to watch webinars, listen to YouTube whilst making dinner/lunches for everyone at home. This is a really interesting one for anyone interested in homeopathic treatment of epidemics, which is a time that it's really come into its own. Also yesterday I was fascinated by this one featuring an infectious diseases specialist in Germany. So I guess I'm questioning things lots too, as, it seems, are specialists in the field, but equally this is where we are right now, at this point in our collective history.
Being gentle with each other, supportive, nourishing our minds and bodies, learning new things (I'm doing Wim Hof breathing techniques when I wake up now) and am excited about my new drum hopefully coming soon... I've up cycled a table and am planning to have my first Annie Sloan experiments with a set of drawers - actually two sets. I want to learn how to do the ombre technique. I threw my toys out after waxing my table (and it turns out it looks brilliant!) so wish me luck!! I guess remember you're human - it's OK to be frustrated, just remembering what we have and are grateful for is helpful too. Diving into things we'd meant to do for ages - my wardrobe and a bookcase - possibly also our DVD collection - are on the list for me too.
So to close, dig deep, hang on in there, support each other and love much,
Edit 2: A lot of people have been attempting to connect via friend requests, so I thought it best to create a professional page that people could like and follow. Please connect for future information via Eileen M Feliciano, Psy.D. At the request of readers, I will share a mental health tip of the day until quarantine is over! I will also be posting useful mental health articles related to the pandemic, as well as general mental health.
Edit 1: I am surprised and heartened that this has been shared so widely! People have asked me to credential myself, so to that end, I am a doctoral level Psychologist in NYS with a Psy.D. in the specialities of School and Clinical Psychology.
After having thirty-one sessions this week with patients where the singular focus was COVID-19 and how to cope, I decided to consolidate my advice and make a list that I hope is helpful to all. I can't control a lot of what is going on right now, but I can contribute this.
MENTAL HEALTH WELLNESS TIPS FOR QUARANTINE
1. Stick to a routine. Go to sleep and wake up at a reasonable time, write a schedule that is varied and includes time for work as well as self-care.
2. Dress for the social life you want, not the social life you have. Get showered and dressed in comfortable clothes, wash your face, brush your teeth. Take the time to do a bath or a facial. Put on some bright colors. It is amazing how our dress can impact our mood.
3. Get out at least once a day, for at least thirty minutes. If you are concerned of contact, try first thing in the morning, or later in the evening, and try less traveled streets and avenues. If you are high risk or living with those who are high risk, open the windows and blast the fan. It is amazing how much fresh air can do for spirits.
4. Find some time to move each day, again daily for at least thirty minutes. If you don’t feel comfortable going outside, there are many YouTube videos that offer free movement classes, and if all else fails, turn on the music and have a dance party!
5. Reach out to others, you guessed it, at least once daily for thirty minutes. Try to do FaceTime, Skype, phone calls, texting—connect with other people to seek and provide support. Don’t forget to do this for your children as well. Set up virtual playdates with friends daily via FaceTime, Facebook Messenger Kids, Zoom, etc—your kids miss their friends, too!
6. Stay hydrated and eat well. This one may seem obvious, but stress and eating often don’t mix well, and we find ourselves over-indulging, forgetting to eat, and avoiding food. Drink plenty of water, eat some good and nutritious foods, and challenge yourself to learn how to cook something new!
7. Develop a self-care toolkit. This can look different for everyone. A lot of successful self-care strategies involve a sensory component (seven senses: touch, taste, sight, hearing, smell, vestibular (movement) and proprioceptive (comforting pressure). An idea for each: a soft blanket or stuffed animal, a hot chocolate, photos of vacations, comforting music, lavender or eucalyptus oil, a small swing or rocking chair, a weighted blanket. A journal, an inspirational book, or a mandala coloring book is wonderful, bubbles to blow or blowing watercolor on paper through a straw are visually appealing as well as work on controlled breath. Mint gum, Listerine strips, ginger ale, frozen Starburst, ice packs, and cold are also good for anxiety regulation. For children, it is great to help them create a self-regulation comfort box (often a shoe-box or bin they can decorate) that they can use on the ready for first-aid when overwhelmed.
8. Spend extra time playing with children. Children will rarely communicate how they are feeling, but will often make a bid for attention and communication through play. Don’t be surprised to see therapeutic themes of illness, doctor visits, and isolation play through. Understand that play is cathartic and helpful for children—it is how they process their world and problem solve, and there’s a lot they are seeing and experiencing in the now.
9. Give everyone the benefit of the doubt, and a wide berth. A lot of cooped up time can bring out the worst in everyone. Each person will have moments when they will not be at their best. It is important to move with grace through blowups, to not show up to every argument you are invited to, and to not hold grudges and continue disagreements. Everyone is doing the best they can to make it through this.
10. Everyone find their own retreat space. Space is at a premium, particularly with city living. It is important that people think through their own separate space for work and for relaxation. For children, help them identify a place where they can go to retreat when stressed. You can make this place cozy by using blankets, pillows, cushions, scarves, beanbags, tents, and “forts”. It is good to know that even when we are on top of each other, we have our own special place to go to be alone.
11. Expect behavioral issues in children, and respond gently. We are all struggling with disruption in routine, none more than children, who rely on routines constructed by others to make them feel safe and to know what comes next. Expect increased anxiety, worries and fears, nightmares, difficulty separating or sleeping, testing limits, and meltdowns. Do not introduce major behavioral plans or consequences at this time—hold stable and focus on emotional connection.
12. Focus on safety and attachment. We are going to be living for a bit with the unprecedented demand of meeting all work deadlines, homeschooling children, running a sterile household, and making a whole lot of entertainment in confinement. We can get wrapped up in meeting expectations in all domains, but we must remember that these are scary and unpredictable times for children. Focus on strengthening the connection through time spent following their lead, through physical touch, through play, through therapeutic books, and via verbal reassurances that you will be there for them in this time.
13. Lower expectations and practice radical self-acceptance. This idea is connected with #12. We are doing too many things in this moment, under fear and stress. This does not make a formula for excellence. Instead, give yourself what psychologists call “radical self acceptance”: accepting everything about yourself, your current situation, and your life without question, blame, or pushback. You cannot fail at this—there is no roadmap, no precedent for this, and we are all truly doing the best we can in an impossible situation.
14. Limit social media and COVID conversation, especially around children. One can find tons of information on COVID-19 to consume, and it changes minute to minute. The information is often sensationalized, negatively skewed, and alarmist. Find a few trusted sources that you can check in with consistently, limit it to a few times a day, and set a time limit for yourself on how much you consume (again 30 minutes tops, 2-3 times daily). Keep news and alarming conversations out of earshot from children—they see and hear everything, and can become very frightened by what they hear.
15. Notice the good in the world, the helpers. There is a lot of scary, negative, and overwhelming information to take in regarding this pandemic. There are also a ton of stories of people sacrificing, donating, and supporting one another in miraculous ways. It is important to counter-balance the heavy information with the hopeful information.
16. Help others. Find ways, big and small, to give back to others. Support restaurants, offer to grocery shop, check in with elderly neighbors, write psychological wellness tips for others—helping others gives us a sense of agency when things seem out of control.
17. Find something you can control, and control the heck out of it. In moments of big uncertainty and overwhelm, control your little corner of the world. Organize your bookshelf, purge your closet, put together that furniture, group your toys. It helps to anchor and ground us when the bigger things are chaotic.
18. Find a long-term project to dive into. Now is the time to learn how to play the keyboard, put together a huge jigsaw puzzle, start a 15 hour game of Risk, paint a picture, read the Harry Potter series, binge watch an 8-season show, crochet a blanket, solve a Rubix cube, or develop a new town in Animal Crossing. Find something that will keep you busy, distracted, and engaged to take breaks from what is going on in the outside world.
19. Engage in repetitive movements and left-right movements. Research has shown that repetitive movement (knitting, coloring, painting, clay sculpting, jump roping etc) especially left-right movement (running, drumming, skating, hopping) can be effective at self-soothing and maintaining self-regulation in moments of distress.
20. Find an expressive art and go for it. Our emotional brain is very receptive to the creative arts, and it is a direct portal for release of feeling. Find something that is creative (sculpting, drawing, dancing, music, singing, playing) and give it your all. See how relieved you can feel. It is a very effective way of helping kids to emote and communicate as well!
21. Find lightness and humor in each day. There is a lot to be worried about, and with good reason. Counterbalance this heaviness with something funny each day: cat videos on YouTube, a stand-up show on Netflix, a funny movie—we all need a little comedic relief in our day, every day.
22. Reach out for help—your team is there for you. If you have a therapist or psychiatrist, they are available to you, even at a distance. Keep up your medications and your therapy sessions the best you can. If you are having difficulty coping, seek out help for the first time. There are mental health people on the ready to help you through this crisis. Your children’s teachers and related service providers will do anything within their power to help, especially for those parents tasked with the difficult task of being a whole treatment team to their child with special challenges. Seek support groups of fellow home-schoolers, parents, and neighbors to feel connected. There is help and support out there, any time of the day—although we are physically distant, we can always connect virtually.
23. “Chunk” your quarantine, take it moment by moment. We have no road map for this. We don’t know what this will look like in 1 day, 1 week, or 1 month from now. Often, when I work with patients who have anxiety around overwhelming issues, I suggest that they engage in a strategy called “chunking”—focusing on whatever bite-sized piece of a challenge that feels manageable. Whether that be 5 minutes, a day, or a week at a time—find what feels doable for you, and set a time stamp for how far ahead in the future you will let yourself worry. Take each chunk one at a time, and move through stress in pieces.
24. Remind yourself daily that this is temporary. It seems in the midst of this quarantine that it will never end. It is terrifying to think of the road stretching ahead of us. Please take time to remind yourself that although this is very scary and difficult, and will go on for an undetermined amount of time, it is a season of life and it will pass. We will return to feeing free, safe, busy, and connected in the days ahead.
25. Find the lesson. This whole crisis can seem sad, senseless, and at times, avoidable. When psychologists work with trauma, a key feature to helping someone work through said trauma is to help them find their agency, the potential positive outcomes they can effect, the meaning and construction that can come out of destruction. What can each of us learn here, in big and small ways, from this crisis? What needs to change in ourselves, our homes, our communities, our nation, and our world?
Is this virus the enemy? Is any virus the enemy? In the conventional world of thinking, of course it is. I'm seeing reference to 'fight' to 'battle' to 'wipe this out' and of course 'kill it'. And yet they keep on coming. Viruses that is, not patriarchal battle references. Viruses, being clever little beasts, mutate. So every year the flu shot for example, is a best guess, not what the flu virus actually is this year. It's a prediction. And sometimes it's pretty close. Sometimes, according to the gov.uk stats, it has a 15% efficacy rate. So not that near. However, I'm not on a plan to head down that particular rabbit hole right now.
What I'm curious about this morning is where is the talk of 'increase our immunity', 'strengthen our vital force' (that one would likely be unique to homeopaths - others talk of energy in their own terms). Where is that? It's coming - but from the alternative/complementary health sector. Where are the recipes brim packed with nutrients to make you feel great and give your body a boost of much needed vitamins and minerals. They're out there but you need to look. Do look, and take the time you're not commuting to fall in love with creating beautiful, vibrant, life giving dishes. That is if you don't already.
Where are the antidotes to fear? The viral pandemic, as I see it has been overtaken by the fear pandemic, which, as we know, weakens our ability to be able to respond well to external stressors. Maybe look at ways to redress that. Perhaps tap into laughter yoga online if you can. I've been wanting to train in that for some time - maybe helped by the suggestion that at times the laughter from my work room seems to be a part of the therapy. It's not always laughter in there. And I do generally discount it as a part of what I do... But laughter as a whole? I do think it can be so very healing. Where are the comedies streamed into our screens to offset the news? They might be on there - I got rid of our TV licence last year as a cost-cutting and stepping away from media exercise - if so tune into them! Find them in other places and have a good belly laugh.
Chat with friends - we've loved having dinner with friends via video call and has been a great way to connect, laugh and be.We've all found it refreshing.
I'm going with supplements, homeopathy, getting into the sun (whilst walking the dogs or sitting in the garden), going to start online pilates as of tomorrow. Amber, my fabulous friend and brilliant teacher has set up online as a result of the situation. I highly recommend her. You can join her Facebook group here and start changing your life - and body - for the better. I genuinely feel her classes help make me a better person. This break in the rain is making me think that running could be back on the menu (yup, I've been rather fair-weather around that recently). We're eating well, loads of fresh foods, home cooked, whole food, plant based. We're also listening to guidelines and adhering to these. This blog is in now way supposed to replace those. Do be aware of NHS and Gov.uk suggestions too.
Where are the people reassuring us that this one might not be pleasant, might be pretty virulent, but after this time we'll start on things which cause far more deaths/year? Heart disease, diabetes - which I know can be resolved, or at least massively improved with diet and lifestyle changes, even if you aren't a homeopathy fan (which I've seen help in both) there's loads can be done. Climate changes may well kill far more, and yet we drag our heels with that one still.
I've included some suggestions in earlier blogs of things we may do to improve our immune system in terms of homeopathic remedies and supplements. I'd love to see it out there in the mainstream, but I think we may be waiting a while.
I wonder also if there's a personal invitation to many of us to stop living in an unsustainable way. Grounding us certainly feels like an invite to 'make do and mend', to get creative with ideas, and ways of being. To grow our own instead of fighting at the supermarket. It'll be a challenge in a terrace but challenges provide opportunity - right?!
Lastly, to just mention that I'm aware many may struggle over the coming months and where finances are an issue I'm open to offering reduced prices - contact me if you want to discuss this.
With love to all.
There's a few things I want to share - and they're really new to me. My thoughts feel to be in development but I felt others might find some comfort from them. One thing I need to say is the situation was frustrating me and was really getting me down, hence taking action to step away from news, from constant media on the topic. It's definitely something that helped ease my anxiety around it and whilst I can dip in here and there, constantly bombarding me from all angles didn't feel good.
Another is that I have this feeling... this could just be crazy talk - you can stop reading here if you like - but if you're with me so far, my feeling is perhaps we could start to find a new way through. The fact that we're all so busy all of the time, too busy to talk, too busy to stop - in fact too busy to stop until our body makes us. I've been there and it's really not clever. To burnout. To push and push and push - for what? What's all the striving for?
For some of us, for money, for food, to survive. To support our families. I've been a single parent - with maintenance input - and have friends who've done it all themselves. I have support from an incredible family. They really are amazing. I've had friends who've done it without that. So yes, some of the striving is needed, and I would never want to downplay that. Striving meant survival. Once it reaches a certain threshold though, the keeping getting more and more and more all the time. Do we need to do that? Society has certainly told us so. Nature however shows us that there is growth and death and an eternal cycle of letting go and enjoying and letting go again.
I do have concerns right now - for self employed people unable to work online, or those on zero hour contracts who have nothing lined up in terms of income due to their line of work or circumstances, for an uncertain future. And I'd like to be able to do something about that. A fund? Help those near me if I can. I'm unsure how that needs to unfold but without support from a government source to help ease the impact of these times, I feel it needs to come from somewhere. I'd love to have conversations with those who may have insights into what something like that could look like. I guess the food banks are open and running but feels like we're going to need more than that. You can't pay a bill with a tin of beans. It feels like perhaps those who've got a few spare £s could help out those who haven't. Not as a loan, my feeling is as an unconditional gift of kindness. If you're interested do get in touch.
Concerns around health for loved ones and others is another one, though I'm not heavily tapping into the fear around that. I'm doing what I can and there's a great medical service when it's needed, and also much homeopathy can do so much to support viral flu type symptoms. My previous blogs Current times and Current times: part 2 share some thoughts. Since those were written I've had contact with colleagues updating me on more cases that are doing well with homeopathy. One was someone with type 1 diabetes too. A good recovery using homeopathic medicines. Of course take the conventional advice. I don't suggest anyone doesn't. But if you're a holistic health advocate or user, there's much you can do alongside that too.
What I am excited about though, is that perhaps there can be a new way we do things. We've become a throwaway society focussed on growth and expansion and frankly more and bigger and bigger. Bigger cars, bigger TVs, bigger holidays. More. Doesn't work? Get a new one. My partner has had a non-working Dyson for about 4 years now, this last week has stripped it all back and put it together - it works perfectly. That's not my thing, but I'm so happy he's done it and love the make do and mend approach. We've a table, given to us for free by a friend and I've just painted it up - looks as good as new and am so excited about waxing it and sitting down for our first meal at it. I've refurbished cushions recently for a new bedroom from old ones I've had for years with a cut off of fabric I found at a local shop.
Perhaps we can develop better, more cohesive communities. Perhaps we can rally around and look after our elders - which seems to be happening in communities around the UK. Maybe this can continue after the current time. The elders have so much to offer in so many ways and to honour this is beautiful.
I've no answers, only questions, but I guess my big one is, we're here right now, so what are we going to do - to feel fear and panic, or to feel love for our planet and our fellow creatures? I'm going for the latter where I can. I'm excited about the creativity that might come about, the gentle leaning into nature. It feels, it really does, like this could be an opportunity for the planet to breathe, to recover. And I believe we can use it for such ourselves. To go inside, to meditate, to discover, instead of distracting and striving outwards all the time.
Get in touch if you'd like to be a part of something - I don't know what it feels like or looks like but if you've got a similar vision I'd love to hear from you.
With much love,
I've been thinking a lot about homeopathy recently, as I often do.
I'm learning to slow down and enjoying the things I mentioned in my last post which has been a real gift in itself. I even had an afternoon nap yesterday - and today a cheeky half hour one. Our schooling, which is a mix of home ed and a democratic school has gone online. So that means less travel, less rushing to come for the next few weeks. I've taken my work online and it will remain that way for a while. I do feel lucky that I'm able to do so and really feel for others who don't have that option. I hope there is support out there for them.
I'm still on my research mission on this topic, learning from others and I imagine that will evolve over this period of time, with another seminar just booked in for the weekend. The homeopathic community feels to be coming together, sharing information as they learn it and I'm really enjoying the spirit of sharing.
Speaking of that, my purpose in this blog is that I do want to share some homeopathic medicines that may help with symptoms if you're experiencing them. Generally I like to find the one remedy to suit best, but if you're deciding between two or three, there are options. Pick the one that feels closest to your symptoms if you can, but if you really can't decide try one, take it a couple of times, see if it helps and move onto the next if not. The other choice is that you could simply take two remedies at a time. It's not my favoured course by any means, but is something I've been known to do on occasions. If I'm bruised and with crushed nerves for example, I'll take arnica and hypericum. That said, I'm still a bit of a puritan and if you can find 'the one' to help with the symptoms you're experiencing then great.
Of course, and once again, I'm sure it goes without saying but in these strange times I feel I need to... ALWAYS go with the conventional advice for medical conditions - I'm not trying to replace a medical service, phone/look online at 111, speak to a doctor if needed. DO NOT use the suggestions following as your only treatment.
That said, the conventional advice currently for non-urgent cases of viral flu is paracetamol and not much else, so if you do want some additional help, or you're someone who doesn't use paracetamol (I've not taken one for over 12 years) then you may wish to take note of the following remedies.
I'm going to start with 10 remedies that I am aware are being used at this time. I may add to this blog as time goes on with more that look to be proving useful, and will likely add additional information to it. However I'm aware people are looking for remedies to help and wanted to get it shared now so they can order/check kits etc and be aware of what they have to hand if needed. I can't say enough how much I value both my Helios Homeopathy 36 remedy kit, and my Ainsworths 42 remedy kit and would love for every home to have one. Most of the medicines follow are in the kits, though not all of them.
Another thing that's really useful is the Homeopathy UK app which you can download for free on both apple and android gadgets. Loads of really helpful info on there.
So let's dive in...
Aconite - is so often known as a remedy that can head off a cold. It can be really useful when symptoms come on after getting cold, especially when they do so suddenly. It was AMAZING when my daughter had croup - she went from struggling and me thinking we might need an ambulance to sleeping calmly with no issues within minutes. It can be taken at the first sign of a cold and sometimes that'll be all you know about it. There can be a high fever, shortness of breath and often a lot of anxiety, patients may predict the time of their own death even (which is generally not the case but gives an insight into how much worry and anxiety there can be). Much restlessness and as mentioned earlier, a croupy, dry cough.
Antimonium Tart - there can be a bubbling, crackling sound in the lungs, white mucus that is hard to cough up. Short, difficult, and oppressed breathing. The patient may feel as if they would suffocate, feel better sitting up. There may be nausea and they may try to vomit.
Arsenicum Album - this is a big remedy right now for the fear and anxiety that is strongly present. I'm one of the least anxious people out there but was really affected by the constant news on the topic (see earlier blog and the mention of unfollowing lots of things on the book of face - it's to be recommended). Much of the fear isn't necessarily around the virus, it's around the economy, is there something we're not being told, how will everyone cope, will there be enough food etc. Or that's the people I've been talking to anyway. As with any of the remedies mentioned here - or the conditions discussed, it's not just one remedy per thing, but each could be a good starting point to think of. People who need arsenicum may have an 'unquenchable thirst', drinking little and often. Breathing may be anxious, and there will often be great anxiety in general. Cough will be worse lying on their back and there may be burning all over. Burning pains, which are often relieved by heat.
Belladonna - much dry heat - often the fever came on suddenly. I can't think about belladonna without thinking about beautiful (bella) ladies (donna = lady). Atropine from the plant has the property of dilating the pupil - and was one of the conventional meds we used to use when my horse was experiencing attacks of uveitis. That is until we used homeopathy and she never experienced it again.. So a tangent, for a change - sorry! Think dilated, wide pupils. Belladonna can help where the fever is such there are hallucinations and the patient may be jumping, or starting in sleep. Cough can be dry, barking, and sometimes spasmodic and often worse at night.
Bryonia - I don't recall who described this remedy as 'the bear with the sore head' but so the description goes. Think of the person who holds their chest when they cough as it's so painful. A dry, hacking cough and there may be sharp, stitching pains in the chest. They want to lie perfectly still and any movement hurts. Really irritable. Think about the bear! Pain is worse on the least motion.
Camphora - as mentioned above the spirit of sharing is strong and earlier today I was reading cases from a colleague in Iran who had used this remedy in several cases to great effect. There is extreme weakness and prostration and there may be sudden collapse. Desire for cold drinks. Sleepiness before or during the fever and there may be a low grade temperature. Colleagues are using the 1m potency in general - in more severe cases the 10m. They've seen perspiration with shivering and chills, cold hands.
Ferrum phos - often useful in early stages of infection. Can be used where there is a temperature but not many other symptoms to go on. Weakness and tired feeling. Cough can be hard and dry, and the chest is painful. Cough is worse on going into open air
Gelsemium - think about that typical flu-y feeling - the ache in the joints, fatigue, weariness. Gelsemium is a great remedy to think about at that point. It may be good for the early stages of the infection, there may be sinus issues and perhaps feelings of numbness. It can be good in acute flu or sore throats, with weakness, limp limbs, chills, fever, headaches with double vision, and heavy, drooping eyelids. There may be a lack of thirst, even during fever.
Merc Viv - (there are other types' of homeopathic mercury, but a colleague has found Merc Viv to be the one he's used most so far). Merc can be helpful where the temperature is up and down, they may struggle to regulate it properly. Flu like symptoms may have lots of sweating and increased saliva, both with a bad smell. Violent, racking, dry cough, especially at night. Better in the morning, when at rest and lying down.
Phosphorus - there may be a tightness across the chest, cough can be dry and unproductive. Cough can be worse from going from warmth inside to outside and is a hard, tight, racking cough. There can be great weariness, indifference and apathy. I remember many years ago treating someone who had had meningitis and been discharged from hospital. They had no energy to do, no enthusiasm - within a short while after the remedy they were back with their sparkle for life. Really great to see. Think exhaustion - and if this is severe, you may be looking at phos-ac as a remedy for them. They crave cold drinks and may feel as if they have a weight on their chest.
So there's a starter - it's definitely not exhaustive, and there can be pages written on each remedy (and there are - I have books and books full of descriptions). Hopefully though it's a starting point. To reiterate, none of what I've written replaces professional medical advice, but if you're sat at home, a non-urgent case, with no treatment suggestions and managing without additional care, these remedies may help you at different stages of your cough/flu like symptoms.
There are around 4000 different remedies we use as part of our homeopathic pharmacopeia. These are 10. If you need more help with homeopathy, may I suggest finding a practitioner to work with. www.findahomeopath.org may help you to find someone near to you.
With all good wishes for your health and happiness in these interesting times,
PS I thought these charts may be helpful to share again here too.
. In response to a few requests for information about the current times, I decided to put pen to paper, metaphorically at least, and share some thoughts which might be useful.
My curious mind always wants to know more. So I’ve been researching what I do know, homeopathy. I’ve been watching webinars from excellent homeopathic teachers and still want to do a little more before I share more remedy thoughts on the topic. However as luck would have it, whilst writing this post I was in contact with the lovely Lee Kayne, homeopath, pharmacist and much more, from Freeman's Homeopathic Pharmacy. Lee and Steven Kayne have a brilliant little book which is fantastic for home prescribing. Have a look here. Lee was kind enough to share some fantastic flow diagrams with me for me to share on another page, but was happy for me to share them here too. Keep reading, they're towards the end.
What I do know though is may people are concerned, worried and not just about the virus itself. In some ways, the numbers and the locations and the (insert more and more and more information) doesn’t really matter (I can certainly be known to forget that though!), what matters is that here we are in this setting, right now. We can be here and see the benefits or we can panic and make things harder for ourselves. It’s not easy to set aside the world panicking around us and be calm, though that’s where I think the gifts will be found. I think there is an invitation to go inside, to meditate, to journal, to create. We’ve been painting today, creating a beautiful space and I look forward to sketching, knitting and writing, reading and getting cosy on the sofa with a movie or two in the days ahead.
Also perhaps to stop the news where you’ve noticed it’s increasing levels of anxiety. I’ve unfollowed so many pages and people on Facebook as the constant news became overwhelming and can at this stage let you know there’s a certain peace there. A stopping of the constant flow of never ending information. That said, news today shared that there are many positives in China and things are steadily recovering well there which was great to read, but there has been no off switch for much of it, it’s there from every angle and I do believe our brains need some downtime. Getting outside in nature and walking with the dogs helps me loads too. Chatting with friends after dinner over video call was a lovely boost today - and easy to do if ‘lockdown’ heads our way. Getting creative on ways to lift spirits – watching funny films, doing the jobs you’ve put off for ages (always makes me happy anyway!), catching up, writing letters… finding art, doing art, making art.
On a more practical level, I’ve seen various suggestions going around of supplements which might help support better health and if our bodies are faced with infections, to enhance their ability to deal with it. The latest from the International Society for Orthomolecular Medicine (Dr Downing and other physicians) urged preventive supplementation to ‘prevent or minimize symptoms for future viral infection,’ including the coronavirus.
Vitamin C: 3000 mg daily, in divided dosages
Vitamin D3: 2000 IUs daily (Start with 5000 IU/day for two weeks, then reduce to 2000 IU
Magnesium: 400 mg daily (in citrate, malate, chelate, or chloride form)
Zinc: 20 mg daily
Selenium: 100 mcg (micrograms) daily
Of course these aren't the only things that can help, but they could be worth looking at taking if you're not already.
The Natural Dispensary is the source of most of my supplements, and clients can get a discount if they mention my account* when setting up their account to order. Supplements aren’t what I work with all the time, but these guys do so I wanted to share their thoughts on the topic. There’s more information on their website here: https://isom.ca and a conference on the 19th March on Vitamin C for the treatment of Coronavirus if you wanted to discover more.
*ECOLL13 (combination of letters E C O L L in upper case and numbers 13).
If clients ring up to place an order over the phone, please quote the code ECOLL13 to ensure that they receive their discount.
If clients wish to order via the website, they would firstly need to complete the online registration form, putting your name as the name of the practitioner who referred them. Once through to checkout with their products, clients would need to enter the password ECOLL13 into the promo code box and click ‘apply code’ to see their discount appear.
Regarding homeopathic treatment, I want to first direct you to the joint statement from 4Homeopathy issued recently which feels important to share here.
I am also aware that the conventional advice from the NHS is that you can take paracetamol, and having earlier shared to take ibuprofen, recently this additional guidance has been updated onto their site. I've seen several reports of doctors advising not to take ibuprofen (as I've been unfollowing Facebook) and also seen it written about in papers such as The Guardian discussing how the French minister mentions anti-inflammatories can make COVID-19 worse.
Are there other things you can do besides just these two options? Having seen homeopathy help in instances of colds and flu in the past and reports from around the world of it relieving symptoms here too, I would feel it’s definitely worth a go.
From the 4Homeopathy document mentioned above: 'Homeopathic medicines have been used extensively for flu-like symptoms and in epidemics around the world. If you decide to take a homeopathic medicine, this should be in addition to the various measures outlined above and should not be your only approach. Selection of the most appropriate homeopathic medicine is based on an individual’s unique symptoms. However, Gelsemium 30c and Bryonia 30c are commonly used for flu-like symptoms and have a long-established, traditional usage over many years.
Homeopathic options can form one part of your approach to the current Covid-19 outbreak but should always be used alongside other measures. If you have current symptoms or are concerned that you may have been exposed to coronavirus, it is important to call 111 to seek appropriate advice, in keeping with current guidelines.'
The virus might have a fancy name, but remember your standard fever, cough, flu remedies to start with – they’ve been working for homeopaths and users of homeopathy for many years in many different situations. As ever, there’s often remedies that you can use at home without input from a practitioner but if you do need a hand then do find someone to help you: www.findahomeopath.org.
There'll be more coming in the next day or so on the topic of remedies that can help in flu-like symptoms. I’m going to discuss Aconite, Arsenicum, Baptisa, Belladonna, Eupatorium, Gelsemium, Phosphorus and a few more. I'm also going to look at some of the anxiety remedies that may be helpful currently. Most are readily available in the Helios blue kit – it’s so handy for every home to have one of these!
I am very happy to leave you with these from Lee and Steven Kayne's book Homeopathic Prescribing.
Back very soon!
With love to all, Em
I'm a Homeopath working in the Skipton (North Yorkshire) area. I am also able to offer food intolerance testing using Kinesiology and advice around diet and lifestyle.
Em Colley MARH, Practitioner of Classical Homeopathy, BSc(Hons) Psychology and Neuroscience
Focussed Mindfulness Practitioner
Dip (SNHS) Kinesiology
Dip (SNHS) Holistic Nutrition
Certificate in Whole Food, Plant Based Nutrition