Posted on

Understanding Constitutional Remedies!

ID-10081338If you’ve had a constitutional (I prefer to call this individualised) remedy dispensed for yourself or your child, this remedy may well be your best choice for support during an acute illness.

I’ve noticed that people have a tendency to immediately stop giving their children the remedies they’ve been prescribed by their homeopath when they get sick and reach for the over-the-counter (acute) remedies. But if you think about it logically you’ll understand why this doesn’t really make sense.

Homeopathy looks at the whole person and your homeopath looks for a remedy that fits that whole person, an individualised remedy that helps brings the system into balance.

Generally, as homeopaths, we do a really great job and your symptoms resolve nicely, either quickly or over time. Sometimes it does take work if an immune system is weakened by family inheritance or environmental issues but the individualised remedy is still the best choice. It’s matched to your personality, your quirks, your likes and dislikes, your energy and anything else that makes you unique. And yes it should cover the types of illnesses that you are prone to suffer, for example tonsillitis, coughs and colds or ear infections, even if you don’t necessarily get them often.

We are all different and so are our remedies, the potencies we need and how often we need to take them – and this includes during an acute illness. Not every ear infection is going to need Pulsatilla or fever need Belladonna or Aconite – acute illness is individual too!

Do also bear in mind that children grow and change and so their remedies can change too. If you haven’t seen your homeopath for some time, the remedy they prescribed last year, may not be indicated this year or next year and it’s always good to check in.

So if we think about illness as your system being out of balance – and that is the case whether it is an acute illness or a longer term chronic illness – that same remedy should be able to bring you back to balance in both situations.

If a remedy doesn’t work, it isn’t necessarily down to it being “the wrong remedy” but more likely there is a block or obstacle to cure which needs to be addressed. Vaccination would probably be the biggest block these days and don’t forget that an unvaccinated child usually has a vaccinated parent, so again that inherited layer!

If you or your child come down sick with an acute illness, this is really just an imbalance in the system, and with a little encouragement from the individualised remedy, things can be resolved much more quickly than by giving a whole bunch of acute remedies.

A good example of this would be the remedy Tuberculinum or Tub (which yes … originates from Tuberculosis and no … you can’t get TB from taking the remedy!).

I always tell people who are on this remedy that it relates to the family history of asthma, allergies, hay fever, eczema and so on. Somewhere way back someone in the family probably had TB, which was very common at one time. This means that these conditions (asthma, allergies, hay fever, eczema) may be somewhere further back in the family (mum, dad, grandad) and the child shows some other traits of the remedy, such as behavioural issues, or the child may have a tendency to asthma or coughs and colds themselves.

If they come down with a cold which starts to go to the chest, the logical thing to do would be to support them with the remedy that we know fits this picture. We may still use related remedies such as Calc Carb, Phosphorus, Belladonna, but the Tub, in the right conditions, is a great immune support during an acute illness and the right remedy for that individual – the Simillimum as we call it in homeopathy.

I often get calls from parents who have stopped the prescribed remedies, spent a week or so trying a variety of acute remedies and then eventually call to say that most of the symptoms have resolved except for a lingering cough!

What’s left is still the constitutional layer, and elements of it often relate to the family medical history, particularly where there is respiratory weakness or history of ear infection or tonsillitis. This is the layer that needed supporting in the first place, that was being treated and needed to be addressed when the individual became ill, so stopping the remedies stopped that support.

I always say to my mums and dads that it’s better to contact me early for advice, than struggle on for a week and need more in-depth help to get things back on track. Acute illness is sometimes part of the healing process and it is definitely part of the whole picture of the individual and needs support from your homeopath, just like the chronic symptoms you originally consulted for.

The other thing you might find after your child has had an acute illness which you’ve successfully managed, is that some of the old symptoms that the prescribed remedy resolved seem to be creeping back. This is quite common after an acute illness and just shows me that further treatment is required. It indicates that the potency of the remedy you’ve been using, or had used in the past, has run out of steam or the remedy may even need changing.

If we think of homeopathy as energy medicine, what we could say is that the resonance of the patient and the remedy or potency no longer match, so things need reviewing to get you or your child back on track after an acute illness.

The moral of the story?

Don’t stop giving/taking prescribed remedies if you come down with an acute illness.

Contact your homeopath sooner rather than later to find out the best thing to do and often results will be quicker and easier.

This is also your best course of action rather than self-prescribing remedies your homeopath has dispensed, as sometimes these potencies can be much higher than your acute remedies and you will need advice on frequency of dose.

While home prescribing is great and can be really empowering, if you’re not getting good results in a day or two, or symptoms are quite intense, contact your homeopath!

Melanie Creedy is a UK trained and Australian Registered Homeopath (AROH). She was Vice President and Professional Development Coordinator of the Australian Homoeopathic Association from 2011 to 2015 and is editor of the AHA National Newsletter.
Melanie has used homeopathy for 30 years and has been in practice since 1998. For many years she ran The Children’s Ear Clinic in Western Australia, but since her tree change to Tasmania, has a special interest in women’s and children’s health generally and helping individuals manage their journey on the spiritual path with homeopathy and her range of essences.
Melanie has developed her own methods of dealing with complex cases over the years and offers distance consultations via phone and skype to allow people Australia-wide to access her services.
Homeopathy is a traditional medicine. It may be used in conjunction with other medicines. For any ongoing chronic condition, it is important to be assessed or examined by your healthcare professional or specialist. Always seek medical advice in emergencies. The information provided in this blog does not constitute medical advice but is for information only. If in doubt as to the appropriateness of a  suggestion or treatment seek advice from your homeopath.
Image courtesy of Ikuni at