We all know that severe physical pain can cause an emotional response, and our system can also respond in reverse. When we experience strong emotions such as overwhelming fear or grief, our system can respond rapidly and biochemically to express or 'discharge' the intensity of that emotion by feeling faint, nauseous or weak. In the longer term, acute emotional pain can also lead in some cases to chronic physical illness.
As a homeopath, we often treat patients suffering years of chronic illness which began after a traumatic event such as a divorce, death of a loved one, or a severe fright. Sometimes it can even begin after something that seemed relatively simple at the time such as a house move, new school or a child's best friend moving away.
I am keen to let you know that treating acute emotional distress is very important as it helps prevent an individual internalizing their emotions and co-expressing it on other levels leading to health problems.
I have outlined some extreme emotional states that can be helped with Homeopathy and explained what you can use to treat them.
Fear and Fright
Any sudden fright or a prolonged state of high anxiety and fear will respond well to the homeopathic medicine called Aconite. This is the medicine to give when something happens unexpectedly and has a high impact. There is often a fear of death and for one's own safety or the safety of others. Give Aconite in either the 30 or 200 potency to help the individual to cope. If a child/adult is re-living their extreme fear in nightmares and hallucinations then give Stramonium 30 twice a day for up to 7 days.
If you have no other Homeopathic medicines available to you except Arnica..then give it in all cases of emotional shock and trauma as soon as possible in the highest potency that you have. In an ideal world you would give it in an M potency but a 200 would do just as well given once a day for 7 days to all those who have experienced severe trauma. Read my Arnica article for more information on this marvellous medicine.
Acute Grief and Loss
When we think about grief in its acute stages we tend to think of the loss of a loved one as the obvious acute grief situation. But an acute grief state can also arise when sudden and unexpected circumstances lead to the loss of our home, community and friends. In both cases, the acute sense of loss is in fact a grief, and can be treated with a homeopathic medicine called Ignatia. Give Ignatia in acute grief in a 30 potency 3 times a day or 200 daily. If you have it, Ignatia 1M can be given once only instead. This medicine will help the adult or child process their grief and come to a point where they may feel that they can cope.
This is grief that is no longer acute in the sense that it is not recent but it can still be felt 'acutely' and be experienced as intense. It may be grief over something that happened months or years ago, but the characteristic of this grief is that it has never been fully expressed or processed; and tends to be intensely present for an individual when they tap into it by perhaps relating the event. Natrum Muriaticum 200 taken daily for 7 days will help the individual process their grief and trauma. This is an important step as grief can often make a person feel very stuck and when they begin to process chronic grief they can experience a sense of freedom again in their life.
Acute anxiety can come up in many situations where people experience prolonged and/or severe trauma. I am thinking particularly of the adults and children who survived the recent Australian bushfires whose traumatic experiences will have involved fleeing in extreme fear and the loss of life, house and community. Bach Rescue Remedy is available in heath food stores and can be given to adults and children for general anxiety either with a drop or spray into the mouth or 3-4 drops into a water bottle that can be sipped through out the day. This can help to calm and reassure.
In addition, anxiety that is manifesting in a panicky state, or as nightmares, will respond well to the homeopathic medicines Arsenicum 30 or Aconite 30. Those who are extremely anxious, who will need Arsenicum, are likely to feel their fear also in their gut with symptoms such as diarrhea or nausea; and those who will benefit from Aconite will experience a rapid heart and feeling of rising panic. The medicines can be taken 3 times day for up to 7 days or until the anxiety lessens or the symptoms subside.
These Homeopathic medicines described above can really make a substantial difference to a person in trauma and can help them orientate themselves emotionally. As with most trauma is is not usually expected and so it makes sense to have a homeopathic kit handy for these emergencies as tyou never know when you will need one. Go here to see what kits are available.
© Sam Adkins 2009
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This article was brought to you by Sam Adkins The Homeopathic Coachwho teaches families about healthy living and natural remedies using homeopathic medicine. An internationally renowned expert, her helpful articles are regularly syndicated online. She publishes the ezine Homeopathy@Home to provide free Homeopathic tips, tools and resources to educate and inspire you to use Homeopathy at home. www.thehomeopathiccoach.com