Winter has its joys and pleasures, but flu is certainly not one of them.
Aurora Yaacov, Shine’s resident Homeopath is here to explain just how much homeopathy has to offer in the treatment of influenza. She will also introduce important study results that support the fact that pain killers used can reduce fever, but this inhibits a necessary part of the healing process.
There are many remedies that can be effective in treating the symptoms of flu, as there are many ways that flu can affect you. The top six described here with their most important, salient indications and symptom pictures, are the most commonly needed.
6 Top Homeopathic remedies for influenza
This remedy is needed when the influenza comes gradually over 1-3 days, and produces a feeling of intense weariness, weakness and sleepiness. The patient feels hot, with little shivers running up and down the spine. Thy can also get very shivery if exposed to cold air. There is tremulous weakness and heaviness of arms and legs. The head feels very heavy, and the patient can hardly lift the head from the pillow; the eyelids are also heavy and droopy. There is a bad headache located at the back of the head, and the patient’s face is of a dusky red colour. In spite of a dry mouth and yellow coating of the tongue, the patient is totally thirstless!
This is needed in illnesses, which have a sudden and rapid onset, with a very high fever (40C+), which may be accompanied by delirium. The face is flushed red, pupils dilated, eyes glistening; the hands and feet are icy cold but the head and body hot. The patient is very sensitive to the slightest jar or motion. They refuse to drink any water but may accept lemonade, or even just a slice of lemon. There may be a very severe, throbbing headache, often localised on the right side of the head. Symptoms get generally worse at 3PM.
3. Arsenicum album
This remedy is indicated when the patient is afflicted with ‘gastric flu’: gastroenteritis, vomiting and diarrhoea, which develop suddenly after a couple of days of feeling under the weather. The patient may develop a high fever, over 39C, followed by chills and rigors. The face is hot and the patient may want fresh air, but the body feels chilled. They feel worse around the hour of midday and midnight. They are worse for eating or drinking, but also thirsty for frequent small sips of water. Between bouts of weakness (almost to the point of collapse) they may be quite restless. They want company at all times and suffer with anxiety, which is often out of proportion to the severity of their symptoms, sometimes even fearing they might die.
The symptoms requiring this remedy develop slowly, over a few days. There is severe aching all over and fever with marked perspiration, but the patient does not like to be in a warm room. All symptoms are aggravated around 9PM, and the slightest motion makes everything worse. The patient is irritable and dislikes answering any questions, they just want to be left alone!
A keynote symptom to help in confirming the choice of Bryonia, is their tremendous thirst. The patient drinks in gulps at intervals.
The general state of the patient needing this remedy indicates a state of increased toxicity: the tongue is dry and coated, they complain of an offensive taste in the mouth and a sensation of swelling in the throat and pharynx, but NO pain! The patient feels extremely ‘groggy’ and dull, find it hard to concentrate on anything and may even fall asleep in mid-sentence. They toss and turn in bed as they feel sore all over and may tell you that the bed feels too hard.
6. Eupatorium perfoliatum
The most noticeable characteristic in this type of flu is the severity of pains, with deeply set aching felt in the bones of arms, legs, shoulders, back, hips and particularly the shins. The patient often says that it feels as if the joints are dislocated, or as if the bones are broken. There is a high fever, and the patient feels generally very chilly and sensitive to cold air. Paradoxically they are very thirsty for cold drinks and they may also ask for cold food and ice cream. They are very restless with the pains, but get no relief from moving about.
Potency and repetition
Remedies should be taken one at a time (and not mixed or alternated). Use potency 30, one pill every hour in the first 4 hours, reducing the frequency as the symptoms improve. The most effective homeopathic treatment is where the symptoms of the patient match as closely as possible the indications of the remedy. It is also worth bearing in mind that apart from the above mentioned, there are quite a few other remedies, which may be indicated, according to the particular symptom picture of the individual patient. At times the patient may need higher potencies, of 200c or 1M. Here the guidance and support of a professional homeopath could make a significant difference in their progress to recovery.