image by: TonisPan
One could be forgiven for finding confusion that results from heel pain. Stress fracture? Arthritis? Tendinitis? Achilles tendon issues? Bursitis? Maybe. A common cause of heel pain is plantar fasciitis.
Plantar: relating to the sole of the foot. Fasciitis: inflammation of the fascia, the thin, fibrous tissue that surrounds muscles or other organs. The “itis” means it is inflamed.
Plantar fasciitis is a painful experience. Every step. Standing too long. Those first steps when you get up from sitting or get out of bed in the morning. When I was suffering from it, I was seriously contemplating what my life would be like when I could no longer walk. That’s how bad the pain was.
I tried the Banerji protocol for Plantar fasciitis: Symphytum 200c mixed with Rhus tox 30c, taken twice daily until better.
I took it twice daily for a long time. It wasn’t getting better.
Then, I had an x-ray done. Aha! I had heel spurs. The internet will tell you that heel spurs are not (necessarily) what causes the pain, it’s the plantar fasciitis that causes the pain. They figured this out because once upon a time they used to do surgery to remove the bone spur, but I guess that didn’t fix the pain so they decided that heel spurs aren’t painful.
I disagree. Why do I disagree? Because when I took the remedy for bone spurs, Hekla lava 200c, my pain lessened by 80% within about a week. After many, many weeks of taking the plantar fasciitis remedy and getting nothing, and then trying a few other remedies to no avail — this was amazing progress.
Could it have been that the Symphytum/Rhus tox combination finally kicked in and did what it was supposed to do? Maybe. Or, it could be a causal relationship between the two conditions. It could be that the plantar fasciitis causes the bone spurs or it could be that the bone spurs some how causes the plantar fasciitis. Heel spurs (aka plantar calcaneal spurs) are present in 45%-85% of those with plantar fasciitis (Kirkpatrick, Yassaie and Mirjalili, 2017). I don't think they have figured all this out yet.
When you look at the remedy Hekla lava and how it was discovered, I’m going to give it the credit for reducing my pain.
Hekla (sometimes spelled Hecla) lava is named after the Hekla volcano in Iceland. In the 1800s, a London physician noticed that the sheep grazing a short distance from the volcano had bone deformities (exostosis) of the jaws. They surmised that the finer ash from the volcano was actually the culprit. So, like cures like. The ash of the Hekla volcano causes exostosis of the jaws. (Exostosis: benign outgrowth of cartilaginous (made of cartilage) tissue on a bone.) The potentized (the dilution process used to make homeopathic remedies) Hekla lava can assist in removing the exostoses.
I have not had a follow up x-ray to see if the heel spurs are gone. I don’t care, because the pain is gone. But, this story is a good indication of how conventional medicine and homeopathy can work nicely together. According to the Internet, the main answers to these painful foot problems in conventional medicine are: rest, icing the foot, orthotics, physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medicines, cortisone injections and surgery. To each their own.
If you are experiencing foot or heel pain, contact me to see if homeopathy might help you.
For more information:
1. on the proving of Heckla lava
2. Kirkpatrick, Yassaie and Mirjalili, 2017: The plantar calcaneal spur: a review of anatomy, histology, etiology and key associations.
Photo by Conscious Design on Unsplash
Early on in my homeopathic training, a friend’s son was scheduled for surgery to remove his tonsils. I had my tonsils out as a kid and as an adult, I realize having tonsils would be a useful thing. They are not as expendable as mainstream thought might otherwise have you believe.
What are tonsils? According to Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary, tonsils are “a mass of lymphoid tissue in the mucus membranes of the pharynx and base of the tongue.” Let’s break that down further, again using Taber. Lymphoid: "Pertaining to lymphocytes." Lymphocyte: "A white blood cell responsible for much of the body’s immune protection." It sounds to me like tonsils are an important part of your immune system and may best be left intact. In fact, according to What are the Organs of the Immune System, “Because of their location at the throat and palate, they can stop germs entering the body through the mouth or the nose. The tonsils also contain a lot of white blood cells, which are responsible for killing germs.” Yep. Tonsils sound useful to me.
Back to my friend’s son who was scheduled to have these useful things removed. The reason he was scheduled for surgery was recurring tonsillitis and the presence of tonsil stones. At that time, I had never even heard of tonsil stones. Turns out a tonsillolith is “a calculus in a tonsil.” There’s no difficult math equation hiding in the tonsil (I crack myself up sometimes! 😂), a calculus is “a stone, usually composed of mineral salts” (Taber). A quick search of the Internet shows they can either be asymptomatic or be a cause of sore throats.
As I said, I was brand new to homeopathy, and I had just learned about the cell salt Silicea (or Silica). Silicea is known to push things out. And push things out, this Silicea 6x did indeed do for this young man. He not only spit out a bunch of tonsil stones, an old splinter that had been lodged in his leg for years popped out! (And, they cancelled the surgery because his recurring tonsillitis stopped. Yay!)
I knew homeopathy was good, but hearing a report like this, just as I was getting underway with my studies certainly propelled me along.
If you (or your child) is suffering from recurrent sore throats, homeopathy may be able to help, whether from tonsil stones, strep throat or a hoarse voice/sore throat from over use. Contact me at classicallypractical.com.
A stiff neck is more than a pain in the neck. A stiff neck can ruin your day and your sleep! Grumpiness sets in. Driving is difficult and forget reversing out of your garage — that’s not even an option! The fatigue from the missing sleep sets you up for more stiffness and holding your neck in a position to keep the pain (somewhat) at bay can cause other muscular problems to follow.
Bad pillows. Too much computer work. Old injuries. Long drives. It doesn’t matter what has caused the pain.
Torticollis, the official name for a stiff neck, can result in pain, neck spasms, and the inability to turn your head. Traditional therapy may include heat, physical therapy or wearing a neck collar.
The Banerji’s have provided another option. Symphytum 200c mixed with Rhus tox 30c is the Banerji Protocol for this pain. Drop a couple of pellets of each in your mouth at the same time and let them dissolve. Repeat twice daily, or even more frequently as indicated by the pain and discomfort.
Symphytum officinale, also known as comfrey or “knit bone” is a well known remedy to assist in bone fractures, but it is also very helpful for backaches/pain from overexertion and injuries to cartilage, ligaments, joints and tendons — with excessive pain.
Rhus tox is a go-to remedy for joint pains that are worse at first movement. If you’ve had a stiff neck, you know that initial turn of the head can be excruciating, a symptom indicating that Rhus tox is a good fit for this condition.
I have had clients who have experienced relief in seconds, but not everybody’s pain will resolve that quickly. What you’re looking to happen is a little less stiffness; a longer period of time before the stiffness sets in again and ultimately a return back to a normal swivel and unhindered activities.
Not all stiff necks are a simple fix and may need further homeopathic investigation. If you find yourself in that position, contact me at classicallypractical.com and we’ll see what we can do to get you on your way again.
And, like any condition, if you don’t have quick resolution, have yourself checked out by a medical professional.
If you know what these are, then you have experienced quite an amazing amount of pain.
For those of you unfamiliar with these, this is an assortment of kidney stones and I guarantee you that you don’t want to know what they feel like.
Some people have said that kidney stones and childbirth are about equal in the amount of pain they cause. I would say from personal experience, that it is actually pretty close.
I had my kidney stones years ago, before I knew about homeopathy. I went through the whole lithotripsy experience and while I was happy to have my 2 stones gone (one at 8 mm and the other at 9 mm), I don’t ever want to experience the pain of kidney stone OR the lithotripsy procedure again. Lithotripsy uses ultrasound shock waves to break the stones apart. It felt like I had taken a terrible beating in a boxing ring and it took many weeks to get back to feeling somewhat normal.
Touch wood, I have been stone free for a long time now.
If you’ve had one kidney stone, you’re likely to make more. Should I find myself in that painful predicament again, I know exactly what I would do. I would tackle these painful little stones with homeopathy.
If you are suffering from kidney stones, book an appointment now at classicallypractical.com and let’s see if we can get you some relief from this pain.
My latest read arrived in the mail today. “Pigs: The Homeopathic Approach to the Treatment and Prevention of Diseases.” Once I have read it, it will sit on the shelf next to “Homeopathy for the Heard: A Farmer’s Guide to Low-Cost, Non-Toxic Veterinary Care of Cattle” and the “Practical Handbook of Veterinary Homeopathy: Healing Our Companion Animals from the Inside Out.” I have more like this on the shelf, but that’s not the point of this article.
The purpose of this article is to point out how marvelously well homeopathy works for all creatures. I have recently written about Rufus and his troubles ["An insecure rectum"& "What Hurts?"], but homeopathy has in the past helped our chickens and our peacock, too.
Now, let's take a look at our imaginary creatures from the title of this article.
I have no doubt this powerful medicine would be able to help “The Lion in Love.” That’s the Aesop’s Fable where the poor lion, in love with the woodsman’s daughter, was de-fanged and de-clawed and still denied the woodsman’s daughter anyway. This poor fellow most certainly could have been helped by Natrum muriaticum, the preeminent remedy for unrequited love.
Though tiger balm isn’t made from any part of a tiger (at least not that I can find!), and can be useful for straining injuries — the mechanism behind the active ingredient is to numb and block nerve sensations to make the area feel temporarily less painful. Now, if our imaginary tiger from an Aesop’s fable was in need of tiger balm, I’m not certain it would do him much good due to his thick coat and skin. BUT, homeopathy could help him. Helios pharmacy makes a lovely remedy they call “Helios Injury.” This is a combination of Arnica, Rhus tox and Ruta grav which will bring relief to strains and sprains and bruises (oh, my! — sorry, I couldn’t resist). If you are not near a Helios (located in the UK), you can make your own combination remedy by putting a couple of pellets of each of the 3 remedies in your mouth at one time and letting them dissolve together to create this powerful remedy.
The bear in Aesop's “The Bear and The Bees,” who was stung so terribly by the whole hive from whom he was trying to steal their honey… Apis mellifica is the remedy needed if the area is warm, red and swollen. But, if the sting area feels cold and it is relieved by cold, then Ledum palustre is the better choice.
Whether it’s a chicken or a peacock or a dog or a pig or a whole herd of cows… homeopathy can help clear up what ails them quickly, safely and non-toxically.
If you are interested in setting an appointment for your lion, tiger or bear, I'm willing to give it a try! Contact me at classicallypractical.com.
Heading back to school under normal circumstances can be a harrowing experience for some kids. Going back to school in the year 2021 must be unthinkably stressful. Not only are these kids having to endure the usual stressors of finding their classroom and meeting their teacher/s, this year they have to worry about possibly wearing a mask all day long and worrying about how to make friends while remaining the prescribed distance apart from other human beings, lest they give or receive deadly germs to one another. That is beyond a doubt a recipe for anticipatory anxiety.
Anticipatory anxiety, (the discomfort felt when entering an unknown situation), is nicely met through homeopathic remedies.
Gelsemium sempervirens is what they used to give to the soldiers during the Civil War -- you know, the boys and men who knew they were up against nearly impossible odds? This gave them the courage necessary to step foot onto the battlefield. It can help with "nervous dread" and stage fright; fear of going to the doctor or the dentist and fear of pain, injury or even death. With this anxiety, a dull stupor may be seen or headaches resulting from nervous excitement. Tummy troubles, diarrhea in particular, or sleeplessness from the anxiety may also be present.
Argentum nitricum also addresses anticipatory anxiety but this may cross over into a bigger fear, even panic attacks or anxiety attacks as opposed to just being nervous. An irresistible desire for sugar may be present. Headaches resembling migraines may be seen. Tummy troubles of rumbling, gurgling and flatulence. Restless, disturbed sleep may be an issue.
Silicea (or Silica) presents with more timidity. This person may be feeling bashful and focusing on the minutiae, making sure every last little thing is just right. Headaches located over just one eye or a headache that is worse from exertion or even a "sick headache" may be seen. The tummy trouble in a person needing Silica can be a griping pain and they may be sleepy all day long.
Anticipatory anxiety, fear, dread, timidity, panic attacks -- nobody should have to live with that and homeopathy may help. For more information, please contact me at classicallypractical.com.
Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash
Rufus is a big dog and he most likely suffers from the hip joint problems these big fellows are known to endure. He’s been slowing down for a while now and we dare not take him on a long off-road walk because there would be no carrying him back home if he decided to sit down and be done with the walk.
The other day, poor old Rufus couldn’t (or wouldn’t) get up to get his breakfast. He had to have his back end lifted for him to get him on his way. He seemed fine the day before. Fine is relative here. It always seems an effort for him to stand up. There is almost always a groan and a sudden drop when he tries to make himself comfy.
Having no idea what happened to Ruf — did he injure his leg or back or is it just the old age aches of a big dog — I wasn’t sure where to start and he wasn’t helping me figure it out.
After being helped up, he had his breakfast and took himself outside for a bit and plopped back down in his cool room.
I brought him a T-Relief spiked treat*.
T-Relief used to be known as Traumeel and was one of the first homeopathic remedies that I began using on my own. It’s a homeopathic mix which covers a lot of ground:
Arnica — Joint, back, muscle pain
Calendula — pain reliever
Hamamelis — a good remedy to think of when Arnica didn’t act.
Bellis Perennis — joint and muscle soreness
Belladonna — pain reliever
Hypericum — nerve pain (see “Poked by a Branch” blog)
Ruta — tendons and ligaments
And a few more remedies thrown in for good measure.
A lot of homeopaths don’t like the combination remedies. Could an injury or pain be more specifically addressed through a targeted remedy? You bet. But, in a pinch and when you don’t have the working knowledge to guide you to the “correct” remedy, combination remedies can often quickly get you the relief you need.
And, for Rufus, it did just that.
He lounged most of the day, as usual, and he was able to get up for his dinner, albeit slower than usual. A few more doses of T-Relief put him back on track.
[In writing this article, I see Medinatura also offers a line of Pet products. I have not tried them. The ingredients and price appear to be identical to the people version.]
* I crush the tablet with the back of a spoon or the flat part of a knife and pick up the powder on a piece of meat or cheese and give it to him that way. They can also be put directly in the mouth, between the gum and cheek.
** Follow the manufacturer’s recommendation.
Julia Coyte, CHom
I am passionate about homeopathy and I love sharing this passion. Having a working knowledge of homeopathy shouldn't be kept a secret. If parents have the ability to help their children when they have minor ailments, life just gets better for everyone. That is the purpose behind Ruminating on Remedies.