One only needs to experience
flu-like symptoms one time to understand the discomfort they cause.
Luckily, homeopathy can help you manage those symptoms should you or a family member have the misfortune of feeling like that again.
What can you do to get ready?
There are a number of single remedies you should have on hand during cold and flu season. Here's a short list of some of the most commonly used along with their indications for use:
Arsenicum Album: A person needing the remedy Arsenicum album tends to be chilly, weak, restless and worried. They have a tendency to be thirsty for frequent sips of water. A common clue to needing this remedy is watery discharges from a blocked, stuffy nose. The Arsenicum patient is worse from cold air, cold applications, from 1-3:00AM and better from warmth in general. They want company and worry about getting better.
Baptisia: The person needing Baptisia tends to experience a sudden onset of symptoms with a fever and weakness. They often feel sore and bruised all over and have a dull, red face and intense thirst. Any discharges tend to be offensive. A great clue to this remedy is a very swollen and red throat which is painless.
Bryonia: A patient needing Bryonia tends to be hot and dry with pain all over the body—the pain is always worse from movement of any kind, and better from pressure. When there is a cough, any headache is made much worse with each cough, and you will frequently see this patient holding their head or chest when coughing. There is also a great thirst for large quantities of liquids. The patient is typically irritable and wants to be left alone.
Eupatorium perfoliatum: The patient needing this remedy also complains of great soreness, a deep hard aching in the bones which almost feel as if the bones are broken. There is a thirst for cold drinks and often a painful cough. Another characteristic of someone needing the remedy Eupatorium perfoliatum with flu-like symptoms is that there is typically deep soreness of the eyeballs.
Gelsemium: The person needing this remedy is hard to miss. They look and feel dull, listless, drowsy and apathetic. There are often chills that run up and down the back. The body and limbs feel heavy and weak. They are thirstless and likely complain of a dull headache that is made better by urination. They also report feeling like their eye lids are heavy, as if they are too weak to hold them up. There can be some stiffness of the neck.
Mercurius solubilis: The person needing this remedy often experiences a creeping chilliness at the onset of symptoms with a strong thirst despite having a very moist mouth. The breath is often foul smelling and the discharges can be thick, smelly and green. The patient is often sweaty and the symptoms are worse at night.
Nux vomica: The patient requiring this remedy is very chilly and sensitive to cold, including drafts of cold air. Uncovering can be almost unbearable and often makes symptoms worse. People needing Nux vomica tend to have an unmistakable emotional state – cranky and irritable. Like Ars Alb, nose can be blocked with a runny discharge at the same time.
Rhus toxicodendron: The patient gets comfortable in bed but soon has to move again to feel better—the change of position bringing only temporary comfort. Stiffness of muscles and joints is common the patient being worse at rest and better with continued motion. They are thirsty and better from warmth, worse in the cold and in cold, wet conditions. Generally worse at night, with restlessness.
Once you have chosen a remedy that appears to match your symptoms, dose with either a 30C or a 200C to start - placing one pellet under the tongue (let it dissovle) or one pellet in water (the pellet does NOT need to be fully dissolved before you dose), stirring vigorously and then giving a teaspoon dose as needed (for an infant, the remedy can be added to their formula if they are taking a bottle). Always cease dosing when relief begins and only redose if symptoms again worsen.
If you think you have the influenza virus, please seek the advice of a medical professional.
About Dr. Lisa Samet
Dr. Lisa Samet N.D. provides Washington Homeopathic Products with a regular column on using homeopathy for the family. She's a naturopathic physician who specializes in homeopathic medicine and she's a partner with Dr. Andre Saine N.D. Dr. Samet graduated from the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine in 1998 and has been practicing in Montreal since then. She was born and raised in New York.
Dr. Samet has chosen to focus on homeopathy because in her experience it is the deepest healing modality available in that it does not just soothe or palliate symptoms but can actually stimulate the body to start to heal itself. Dr. Samet sees patients in her Montreal office as well as long distance using Skype. Learn more here: Dr. Lisa Samet