If you’re looking for something natural to give the family for colds and flu, then think no further than homeopathy. There are numerous homeopathic remedies you can take to help beat the symptoms of colds and flu – not just masking symptoms, but really helping you get better. And they come with no side-effects
Adults suffer an average two to five colds every year, according to the Common Cold Centre in Cardiff, and schoolchildren seven to 10. Winter is, of course, prime time for us to succumb to colds – but beware of then succumbing to over-the-counter cold ‘cures’. They may stop your nose running like a tap, or clear your sinusy headache so you can still drag yourself around town Christmas shopping, but they are merely dampening down your symptoms, not curing you.
‘Conventional medicines provide only relief from symptoms,’ says a spokesman for the Common Cold Centre. ‘They do not work against the virus or help the immune system to throw off the infection.’ Homeopathy, on the other hand, not only eases symptoms, it raises your ‘vital force’ or body’s innate ability to heal itself. So you’re not suppressing, you’re overcoming the virus itself plus kickstarting your immune system so you’re way less likely to get a recurrence.
There’s no catch-all homeopathic remedy for colds – that’s not how homeopathy works. Choose a remedy according to the symptoms it’s for. Treating the sniffles homeopathically will reduce both how much you suffer and how long.
Homeopathy for colds
Allium cepa: the cold that makes your nose/upper lip red raw.
Arsenicum album: colds that come with every change of weather. Frequent sneezing, very chilly and you need to drink little and often. Burning pains are a sure sign you need this.
Belladonna: it comes on suddenly and knocks you like a sledgehammer. Belladonna’s hot – you’re flushed, red faced with a violent headache and very thirsty.
Natrum mur: streaming colds with watery eyes, runny nose and clear mucus. Often accompanied by dry or cracked lips and/or cold sores.
Hepar sulph: you can’t stand the least draft – woe betide anyone who moves the duvet so your foot’s exposed! This usually follows exposure to cold weather. You feel ratty and peevish. Also good for sinusitis.
Kali bich: dry, headachy cold. Blow as you might and you can’t clear your nose. Or your nose is constantly blocked by huge, dry, crusty wodges. One of the best remedies for sinusitis.
Pulsatilla: for heavy, heady colds with loads of greeny-yellow snot. No thirst and you feel stuffed up and dreadful in a warm room. Particularly good for children who have persistent colds.
Homeopathy for flu
The 1918 Spanish flu pandemic killed 3-5% of the world’s population, more than the number of people who died in World War 1. Those lucky enough to receive homeopathic treatment, however, were significantly more likely to survive: according to one source, of 26,795 treated by homeopathic physicians just 1.05% died compared to a mortality rate of 30% among those using ‘old-school’ methods.* Gelsemium and bryonia were the top two remedies used.
As with colds, you choose the remedy according to the person’s symptoms. Usually the flu that does the rounds in a particularly season responds best to one remedy – winter 2017-2018’s remedy was eup perf but who knows yet what kind of flu we shall have this year. Whatever the type, take oscillococcinum and you could knock flu on its head…
Oscillococcinum Take as soon as you feel any telltale flu symptoms. Discovered in the 1930s, this remedy’s success is well documented – take it (in the 200c potency) at the first hint of symptoms and you can often nip the virus in the bud. Controlled trials in France, published in 1991, report effectiveness in relieving fever, cough during day and night, runny nose, muscle/joint stiffness and shivering in 80-90% of cases if taken within 48 hours of the onset of symptoms. For this reason this remedy is licensed as a drug in both France and America.
Gelsemium The no1 remedy for flu. You’re out of it: you ache, you’re dizzy, drowsy and sore, you can’t eat, you haven’t the energy to lift a finger and you alternate hot and cold.
Eup perf The flu when you’re chilled to the bone. You have to stay warm and sweat it out. Sure sign: intense thirst before the chill descends – you know it’s on the way and can’t drink enough.
Bryonia alba Extreme aching, weakness, fatigue, heaviness and apathy. Your eyes can hardly stay open, your head throbs, cold shivers run up and down your back and the slightest move is agony. Usually with dryness: a dry cough and mouth, with great thirst.
If a cold is dragging on for weeks, or you’ve still not got back to feeling like you after flu or a chest infection, then homeopathy can help give you the boost that you need. It is also particularly effective for helping people who are prone to being mucousy, or have a tendency to respiratory and chesty problems, enabling them to become more immune to succumbing to these problems. The Hub’s homeopath Sue Leach jokes she’s ‘queen of snot’. To book an appointment with her click here