A teenage girl loses her best friend to suicide and can’t eat or sleep. A young man experiences a humiliation during a break-up and develops debilitating headaches. We all think of counselling for these situations and of course, counselling is a first step, but it is not always enough – which is when homeopathy can help. Here in Canada though, many people aren’t even aware that homeopathy can help support the body’s recovery and healing from trauma and grief.
I met a woman – not a patient of mine – who told me the story of how she discovered homeopathy. Then she asked me to share that story so that others would know about the powers of homeopathy in healing trauma.
This woman was a teenager when her best friend committed suicide and she felt horrible: guilt mixed with profound sadness, anger and confusion. It left her paralyzed, unable to cope. She couldn’t go back to her daily life, which now felt meaningless. She couldn’t breathe, she couldn’t eat, she couldn’t sleep, she couldn’t function. Her parents watched as she spiralled into deeper despair and they took her to the doctor. He suggested antidepressants. But weighing the risks, they decided to see about other options first and consider the pharmaceuticals as a back up plan. A family friend recommended a homeopath and off she went to tell her story. I don’t know the remedy she was given but it’s possible it was simply Ignatia amara, an excellent remedy when grief gets stuck and feels overwhelming. It can be used for any trauma right at the start, when shock is fresh, breathing is hard, there’s a lump in the throat and you can’t cry – or you cry all the time. Or it can be used when an illness starts with grief, maybe an irritable bowel or hormonal disturbance or a depression and without an intervention of homeopathy or some other treatment, it goes on, even years later.
Homeopathy is so wonderful because it stimulates the body’s self healing process – so it helps the body resolve it in the way that only the body-mind-spirit knows best. We may never be the same again, but we can recover, And homeopathy can help that process along, so that it’s a little easier, sometimes even a lot easier, and doesn’t take as long or doesn’t affect our life as negatively in the long term.
Another story of the remarkable healing powers of homeopathy is of a man who came to homeopathy for headaches after a humiliating break-up. He was sent by his psychologist because although therapy was helping him emotionally, his headaches were debilitating and recurring – and nothing seemed to help. Mostly, the headaches appeared anytime he had to confront his ex-wife, or think of his relationship with her. To make matters worse, he needed to confront her in a looming court case. He was a quiet man, who had a strong sense of fairness and felt his reputation had been damaged by this break-up. He felt deeply mortified and ashamed. but he had no choice but to appear in court and face his ex-wife. Although chronic headaches following grief sometimes require Natrium muriaticum, because of the deep sense of humiliation he experienced, Staphysagria was the better fit. The resolution? His headaches disappeared and he was able to attend his court case with his dignity in tact. Staphysagria is often recommended when trauma leaves one feeling victimized, assaulted or humiliated – whether it be from a bullying situation, or a sexual assault, leaving one feeling too vulnerable and open, and unable to protect oneself from further injury. Staphysagria, when it fits the picture, can help strengthen the person so that they can cope again.
These are just two examples of how homeopathy can help heal trauma and there are so many more. Experiencing fear after an accident? Aconite, Arnica or Gelsemium could help the body and spirit recover, whether the shock has been recent or not. Remember that while homeopathy does not replace counselling support, many psychologists find that homeopathy can help therapy work more effectively. Consider homeopathy when therapy just doesn’t seem to be enough. For any type of complex trauma, seek the professional expertise of a homeopath for the best prescription and dosage. In both of these cases, homeopaths were consulted. Remember, there is a homeopathic medicine for all kinds of situational trauma, for shock or fright, for depression and despair, anger and shame – and whether the trauma was recent or long ago or the person is a child, an adult, or elderly. For home solutions for acute grief and stress in common situations, a home remedy may also be appropriate. For more information, check out this blog on Anxiety and Stress.
This study published in 2011 in the medical journal Evidence Based Complementary Alternative Medicine shows that homeopathic medicine compared with fluoxetine medication for acute treatment of moderate to severe depression. Note that this was a double blind trial, the gold standard for research.
Another published article showed that Aconite produced amazing results – 95% positive – in calming children in the hospital recovery room after they experienced postoperative anxiety.
Finally, this article highlighting a homeopathy community clinic in the UK showed that the main complaint at the clinic was depression, anxiety and grief with 75-81% showing an improvement of their main condition and another 58% an overall improvement of well-being.