What Is Homeopathy? Part 2
In my last blog I discussed the simplicity of using homeopathy for acute symptoms (those symptoms that come on quickly and suddenly). When it comes to treating patients for a chronic dis-ease, homeopathy becomes more complicated. I compare it to puzzles.
You can have a simple puzzle with big pieces that easily fit together. When I look at a simple chronic case, the symptoms jump out at me and I can easily repertorize the handful of symptoms to come up with a remedy. The patient is usually better within a few days.
Then there is the more complex puzzle. There is a list of symptoms but they don’t seem to be specific to that patient. For example, a dog with skin problems. He is itchy, his skin is hot, his skin is red, and he scratches throughout the day. That describes most dogs with skin problems. Homeopathy is based on individualized medicine, which means I need to find more symptoms that are specific to THAT particular dog. So I keep digging, and I ask the owner more questions. It turns out the dog drinks A LOT of water and the water has to be COLD. He doesn’t touch his water dish if it’s been sitting out all day. He is really social with other dogs and people. His owner calls him a “social butterfly.” Now the pieces of my complex puzzle are coming together. I repertorize this dog's symptoms and come up with a remedy that fits his symptoms as well as the essence of the dog. The dog gets better within a week or two..
Then there are the complicated puzzles. The picture is an abstract drawing, the puzzle pieces have rounded, instead of straight, edges, and there are thousands of tiny pieces. Now we have an older dog with chronic ear infections and a cough that keeps the dog and the owner up at night. The dog has been treated repeatedly with suppressive antibiotics, ear flushes, medication, and antitussives for the cough. I realize the dis-ease actually started when the dog was much younger. The dog was adopted through a dog rescue years ago. His owner fed him only the best food, had him on expensive supplements, got him vaccinated religiously, spent thousands of dollars on grooming, and left soothing music playing on the radio when he left the dog alone while he went to work.
Now you could say that the food, the supplements, the vaccines, the frequent grooming sessions, and the stress from being left alone caused enough stress on the immune system to cause the recurrent ear infections. However, the owner had switched foods, discontinued the supplements, stopped taking the dog to the groomer, and spent most of his time working from home before he consulted me. The dog was still suffering from ear infections and now also an irritating cough.
By digging deep into the dog’s history and listening to the owner tell numerous stories about this dog, it became apparent that the underlying cause for the dis-ease was a severe grief that happened during the rescue process when this dog was separated from his human and his kennel buddy. Had he been treated homeopathically for grief, this mental and emotional dis-ease would have not been suppressed and the ear infection and cough would not have appeared.
Please remember a patient is a complex system of physical, emotional, and mental parts working together perfectly when healthy. When dis-eased, an emotional or mental disruption will cause an imbalance on the inside that will eventually work its way to the outside. In the veterinary world, we SEE the dis-ease only when it’s worked its way to the outside.
The next time you see an itchy dog, don’t just look at the skin but also look at the mental and emotional aspects of your fur baby.