Homeopathy is an alternative to conventional medical treatment that uses very small quantities of natural ingredients which have been diluted and shaken in a solution of water or alcohol multiple times. They can be available as pills, capsules, creams, ointments or tinctures.

The principal concept in homeopathy is of ‘like cures like’; that a minute amount of a substance which can cause symptoms can also treat them and enable the immune system to heal itself. Many of the same substances are cited as cures for a number of seemingly unrelated ailments.

It is claimed by practitioners to be useful in treating a range of conditions; however the benefits of homeopathy have yet to be proven scientifically and the NHS and NICE (National Institute of Health and Care Excellence) do not endorse its use. A 2010 report from the House Of Commons Science and Technology Committee concluded that homeopathic medicines produced effects similar to the ones offered by placebos. [1]

Below are some of the common ailments for which homeopathic solutions are offered.

Allergies

Homeopathic allergy treatments are said to work differently from typical remedies in that rather than suppressing the symptoms of the allergy they encourage the body to become accustomed to the allergens. An example would be that instead of taking antihistamines for hay fever, someone would instead take a treatment with a small amount of histaminium as an ingredient.

Skin Conditions

Eczema, psoriasis, rashes and dermatitis are some of the skin complaints that homeopaths believe they can treat. As well as the skin, other factors are taken into account, such as emotional well being, any family history of skin problems and your general health.

Mental Health Conditions

Homeopathic treatments are available for anxiety, depression and phobias, though they are not recommended for people with severe psychological disorders or those who may be feeling suicidal or considering harming themselves or others. Aurum Metallicum and Arsenicum Album are two commonly prescribed treatments.

Asthma

The treatment you would be offered as most suitable would be dependent upon the type of asthma you have, your symptoms and whether or not it is caused by allergies or another underlying problem. Nux Vomica is used in cases of asthma caused by gastric problems, while Antim Tart is used by patients who have asthma with a ‘rattling’ sensation in the chest.

Arthritis

A number of options are available which are claimed to reduce joint pain and inflammation. They include Rhus Tox and Bryonia Alba. A specialist may recommend a number of lifestyle changes in conjunction with your treatment.

Infections

Homeopathic remedies are said by advocates to be advantageous in the treatment of infections of the sinus passages and throat, skin and bladder infections, among others.

Hair Loss

Flouricum acidum is used to treat alopecia areata (small temporary bald patches), and Silicea is recommended for patients with a painful balding scalp. It is said that hair loss caused by skin conditions and menopause and pattern baldness can also be cured with homeopathy.

 

[1] http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200910/cmselect/cmsctech/45/4502.htm