We have all experienced periods of frequent loose stools—that very common condition called diarrhea. For over 200 years, homeopathy has been used with great success to relieve patients with this unpleasant condition. In fact, the homeopathic treatment of patients with diarrhea has been the subject of numerous research studies showing homeopathy's effectiveness.
The following are just a few of the more common remedies frequently used for patients with diarrhea:
Aloe: this person has to get to the toilet in a hurry or risk an accident. The urge to stool often comes immediately after eating or drinking. There can be loud rumbling sounds from the abdomen, as well as some painful cramping after food or drink. Not uncommon for there to be the discharge of much flatus that burns, smells offensive and, when discharged, provides relief to the abdominal pain. The flatus can appear after each meal, in evening and morning, and before stool. The stools are gurgling and sputtering. There is also this common symptom: every time on passing urine, there is the feeling as if stool would also pass. This person can feel worse in damp or hot damp weather.
Arsenicum album: the adult or child is restless, cold, and weak with a great thirst for small sips of water. They may have painful cramping in the abdomen with a sensation of burning. There is little or no appetite and they are worse from eating and drinking—in fact they may vomit after drinking. May have excessive vomiting and diarrhea at the same time. Stools are often yellowish-brown and very offensive smelling—sometimes with the odor of rotten eggs. Can have very chilly extremities before and during any discharge. There can be a bit of rectal burning after bowel movement. Patient is worse after midnight, usually around 1 am.
Colocynthis: this person will have violent cramping, often obliging him or her to bend over. Pain is felt in the abdomen, sometimes around the navel, and only relieved by pressing on the abdomen and doubling up. Cramping pains are generally worse on straightening or standing up. Pain is often worse after food or drink. There will be a frequent urge to stool and those urgings can be intense. The diarrhea (and vomiting) may be brought on by anger or indignation. This person may also have a burning thirst but the diarrhea is worse from the least food or drink. The stools are often a greenish tinge.
Magnesia phosphorica: Again the patient has violent colic and cramps which may make the patient bend double and press the hand on the abdomen. The person may experience pinching colicky pain from navel to back. In this case, warm applications to the abdomen bring relief. The child or adult cannot lie on their back stretched out. They feel worse in cold air and from cold water. Stools are generally watery and often expelled with force.
Mercurius corrosivus: This patient is recognized by their incessant, persistent urge to stool with cramping pains. The child or adult strains before, during and after the stool. The stool is often hot, slimy, offensive, and yellow or greenish. They also may feel cutting, cramping pains around the abdomen. Weakness is not uncommon. They are typically intensely thirsty for cold water.
Veratrum album: No household should be without this remedy. The patient needing it has these three characteristics: excessive vomiting and diarrhea (sometimes simultaneously), excessive cold sweat (particularly on the forehead), and exhaustion. There are profuse watery discharges which are often violent in both directions. Stools are often frequent, gushing, profuse, and watery. They can be greenish or like rice water and mixed with flakes. Much shivering. Thirst is intense for ice cold drinks. They often crave ice. They may also crave fruit or salty food.
Podophyllum: characterized by painless, very offensive diarrhea, often worse at 4am and after eating. Also worse in hot weather. The stool is usually quite forceful and can be green, yellow or chalky colored. It can be frothy with pieces of undigested food. As earlier homeopaths described them, the “stools are often watery, scanty, though gushing, as if abundant.” There may also be much rumbling and gurgling. Generally, the patient has no appetite though there may be a desire for something sour.
If you or someone you know generally matches the above description, dose with either a 30C or 200C potency to start - placing one pellet under the tongue or one pellet in water, stirring vigorously and taking teaspoon doses as needed. Always cease dosing when relief begins and only re-dose if symptoms again worsen. Keep your patient well-hydrated as well. As with any medical condition, consult with your physician if you have any concerns about the severity of your problem as it may first require medical diagnosis and/or intervention and monitoring.
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. You can follow her on Facebook as well.