Here are answers to some of the FAQ’s practitioners get about homeopathy.
And here as a starting point is our Home Remedy Notes which may give you quick answers to doses, frequency, etc. This is a downloadable document so you can refer to at your leisure.
Homeopathy is not the same as naturopathy, nor is it aromatheraphy, reflexology, supplements or herbs.
Homeopathy is a complete system of medicine which stimulates the body to work harder to overcome the symptoms naturally, basically it enhances the body’s own healing mechanism (immune system) to work harder to overcome the current symptoms.
Homeopathic medicines stimulate the system to return balance and with that balance, health. This can happen on the physical level in the case of a cold or sore throat (acute illnesses) or headaches (chronic illness if recurrent), or on the mental/emotional level in the case of stress or mild anxiety, or where a physical problem actually stems from an emotional issue.
Here’s the longer answer to this question.
Homeopathic remedies work best when they are individualised, ie the remedy matches the whole person and not just their symptoms. We look at and help the whole person – mental, emotional and physical. We get better results looking at our patient this way than just treating their physical symptoms alone. Sometimes there are remedies that will treat everyone like Arnica for bumps and bruises and often Chamomilla will work for teething babies, but when they don’t, you know you need a different, more unique remedy.
Homeopathy is often termed “placebo” because of the misunderstanding about what it actually is and how it works (See ‘Why is homeopathy called energy medicine?’ in the FAQs).
There have been enough studies done to show that homeopathy is not placebo, but a low risk, gentle but powerful system of medicine. It has changed peoples’ lives where other forms of medicine have failed to bring benefit, and it works on babies, animals and plants, who are not susceptible to the concept of placebo.
A study undertaken by the NHMRC in Australia in 2014 went out of its way to disprove homeopathy and sadly is still being quoted by sceptics and those who don’t want homeopathy to continue as a modality. The study has been shown to have been a corrupt and flawed process which went out of its way to hide solid homeopathic research by manipulating the data and the criteria. The homeopathic associations in Australia and homeopathic bodies worldwide have come together and are awaiting the outcome of an independent review.
A good place to look for solid science is the website of the Homeopathy Research Institute in the UK.
We’ve always said homeopathy is about physics and not chemistry, which is why conventional medicine often can’t get to grips with it. If you try to look at it like a pharmaeutical medicine or a naturopathic supplement then you are never going to understand it.
Our remedies are made by a process of succussion and dilution. Dilution is the part where many sceptics roll their eyes and declare that homeopathy can’t possibly work because now there’s nothing in it but water! But the succussion (or banging) is the process which releases the energy inherent in the substance – it becomes dynamized or dynamic, it now has a measurable resonant frequency.
When I first started using homeopathy in the mid 1980s, we really didn’t have a concrete idea of how a remedy worked, but modern technology is beginning to identify homeopathic remedies as containing nano particles of the original substance. If you take your remedy to a pharmacist for testing in a laboratory they won’t pick up any physical substance because the remedy has been diluted so many times and the particles are so small. What we need to do – and there are now a couple of ways to do this – is to test the substance for energetic frequency or for nano particles.
Quantum physics has shown that we are working with an energy or resonant frequency – not necessarily a physical substance – and there is still discussion even amongst homeopaths about the mechanics of action. Even though we know the particles are there, they’re pretty minute, so its action within and on the body must be different than the larger doses we use in conventional medicine and supplements.
I find the explanation of our remedies as each having a unique resonant frequency fits with what I see in clinic. The human body is energetic, with a distinct electrical system; homeopathy is energy medicine and can be measured as such on the appropriate equipment. The remedy acts as a stimulus to the immune system to encourage it to bring balance.
By matching the frequency of the remedy to the frequency of the pathogen or negative energy we need to address, we can help negate the symptoms or state.
Because homeopathy works differently to pharmacy medicines it will not generally interact with conventional medicine or other complementary medicines and supplements.
However, if you are taking medicine from your doctor it is always best to consult your homeopath before use or if you are unsure, and it is usual to advise your doctor or specialist that you are using homeopathy.
Always read the label, use only as directed and if symptoms persist contact your healthcare professional.
Can homeopathic medicines be taken with conventional medicines, naturopathic prescriptions and other traditional treatments?
Homeopathic medicines have not been known to produce side effects and can be taken in conjunction with pharmaceutical medications as they are not contraindicated.
Other traditional therapies will complement homeopathic treatment, however confer with your homeopath to ensure that the timing of this in your overall treatment plan is ideal.
Homeopathy is low risk when prescribed according to homeopathic principles, making it generally appropriate for use with babies and during pregnancy. However, it is always best to consult a homeopath about your own situation and always maintain contact with your doctor or specialist.
If you are new to homeopathy we recommend a short complementary consult if you want to order homeopathics from our online store during pregnancy, to make sure what you are ordering is appropriate for your situation.
Always read the label, use only as directed and if symptoms persist stop the homeopathic remedy and contact your healthcare professional.
Homeopathic remedies can be given to any age group, including newborns and can be used during pregnancy. Always check with your homeopath that this is appropriate for your own situation and keep your GP/specialist informed. Always seek medical advice for fever in a child under six months old.
Remedies do not generally interact with other forms of medication and can be used alongside Panadol and other drugs, but if you are in any doubt consult your homeopath or your medical professional.
If you cannot choose between 2 remedies, alternate them rather than give together (see below). This is for those of you who prefer single remedies to combinations.
If you are anxious about giving pilules whole, crush between two clean teaspoons and tap a little into baby’s mouth.
If you find pilules difficult to administer, put 1 pilule in 1/4 glass of water. Stir vigorously and give 1 teaspoon as the dose.
For animals and birds, remedies can be made up as above and if unable to give by mouth, drop on the beak, top of the head or other area where the remedy can contact the skin.
Remedies made up in liquid generally will not last as long as pilules and can be more easily contaminated if the mouth touches the dropper.
Remedies can be subtle in their differences so sometimes it may be a close choice between two remedies. You can either give them separately – try one for a few doses, then the next – or you can alternate them – give them 10 or 15 minutes apart.
- Tip 1 pilule into the lid of the bottle or onto a clean metal teaspoon. Don’t touch with your fingers.
- Crush the pilule to a powder between two clean teaspoons.
- Tip the powder into the mouth.
- Don’t worry if you don’t get it all to go in, as long as you can see the powder is in the mouth.
If giving in pilules isn’t working but that’s all you have …
- You can pop 1 pilule in ¼ glass of water and stir vigorously with a teaspoon to activate the remedy.
- It won’t dissolve and it doesn’t need to. The water is now the remedy.
- You then give 1 teaspoon (or 1/2 teaspoon in babies under 6 months) as your dose and tip the rest away.
I was trained in the UK where, at that time, using a combination remedy was considered a crime by homeopaths! When I set up in practice in 1998 I realised that it took a lot to explain homeopathy and some people just didn’t have the time or the desire to find out how to do single remedy prescribing.
How challenging is it to have a sick child in the middle of the night and have to read through a materia medica (homeopathic guide) to pick a remedy, when you can just give Panadol?!!
I wanted to offer a simple way to access homeopathy for busy families and so I looked at combination remedies offered by companies around the world, and in particular in Germany where they are very popular, and I started to try out some of my own formulations with clients.
Combination remedies are such an easy way for people to start out and from using a combination remedy people get the understanding of how well homeopathy can work. They might progress to single remedy prescribing or they might not, but they may also progress to having a consultation and changing their health and their lives.
The purists undoubtedly say the remedies in the combination negate each other, they won’t work or they may even cause suppression, but in my experience over 20 years, this is not the case at all.
What I believe happens is that the body works with the resonance of the indicated remedy, so it’s usually only one remedy in that combination that works for the individual. The body chooses. This is all just energy. If you put 3 remedies in a bottle they don’t become mixed up, they are still 3 single remedies!!
Combination remedies can be a great way to start out using remedies and they can be a very convenient way of taking a minimum of remedies travelling and for non-homeopathy users to easily pick what to give from your kit.
There’s no shame in using combination remedies and they often produce quick and reliable results, as feedback from customers keeps affirming.
There really is no difference between giving drops or pilules in home use. It is a personal preference based on, often, the age of the child.
Drops can be easier for a baby.
If you want to give to a sleeping baby, a pet or an unconscious wild animal (ie one of those birds that has flown into the window!) you can just rub on the head, on the gums or on the wrists. Any of the pulse spots will do and the remedy will work.
A 25ml bottle of drops and a 10g bottle of pilules contain a similar number of doses.
Potency indicates how many times the remedy has been diluted and succussed (banged) when it has been made by the pharmacy.
For home prescribing use 6x, 6c or 30c – the same frequency of dose as directed for any of these potencies. These potencies are also the most available and should be effective in the majority of cases.
Higher potencies (ie 200c, 1M, 10M) will need less doses and are only sometimes required in acute prescribing. Usually these potencies will be prescribed by your homeopath and are not generally dispensed by a homeopath or pharmacy for home prescribing, although we do have some 200c potencies in our store.
If you are unsure what to buy, go for the 30c as this is what we call “a good mid-range potency” and should help whether you are managing a cold or an emotional upset.
We try to give the least number of doses required to stimulate the body to bring about improvement in symptoms. This might be one dose only – which can often be enough for improvement to take place – or 3 times a day for 3 days, or once a day for a week. Dose is individualised to the person and the situation.
Size of Dose
This is actually fairly irrelevant because homeopathy is about the quality of what you give, rather than quantity, but as a guide:
- 0-6 months – 1 drop
- 6-12 months – 2 drops
- Over 12 months – 4 drops
- 1 pilule for babies and toddlers (pilules can be crushed for babies)
- 1 or 2 pilules older children and adult
Frequency of Dose (How often)
We want to give just enough to stimulate the body to do the job, so if your remedy works brilliantly with the first dose, you don’t need to repeat unless the symptoms appear to be coming back again.
This is my step by step guide if you’re not sure what to do
Please note; products should have their individual instructions on the label.
The information below is a general guide for using remedies during acute illness such as fever, headache, etc.
Step 4 – is going to apply to things which are not very acute, ie not painful or intense, and you are know you are not going to need to hurry them along because they are going to take days or even weeks.
Some of our products, such as Probiotic Kefir for instance, only need to be taken once a day over a period of time.
Please contact us if you are unsure.
You can step into these instructions at the point that is appropriate to the situation you are treating.
For example if your situation is not particularly bad, start at step 4, which is good when you suspect something is brewing, but you’re not really sure.
If your remedy is not working you might need a different remedy or you might need to contact your homeopath or other healthcare provider.
- For very acute situations (ie very unwell and symptoms are strong, mum is anxious!) you could give a dose every 10 minutes for up to five doses, then reduce as per the steps below if things are improving. Always check in with your GP or ED if this is the picture and your remedies are not working quickly. You can give paracetamol or neurofen if you need to.
- For acute symptoms dose hourly for the first day, 2 hourly the second day if improving and 4 hourly on day 3.
- Then continue once or twice a day if you still need to give a remedy.
- For less acute symptoms, give 3 or 4 times a day for 3 days.
You can put the drops or 1 pilule in a child’s drink bottle for school.
If symptoms persist always see your homeopath.
Only change the remedy if the symptoms change and the remedy doesn’t seem to be working anymore.
If you’ve given five doses 10 minutes apart or five doses over a few hours and nothing has happened at all, consider changing your remedy or call your homeopath. Be aware, however, that change can be subtle!
Change can be subtle such as a child falling asleep or seeming a bit brighter or it can be instant with fever reducing, tooth pain or tummy ache resolving.
Sometimes the improvement is very quick, other times it may take hours or a number of days depending on the symptoms you are managing. You will know that something has changed if the remedy is right.
You can read more in our post on this topic here.
If symptoms persist always see your homeopath or visit your ED or GP.
All the remedies dispensed by Elements of Health will have a use by date on them and this is a legal requirement in Australia.
With pilules this is determined by the batch which comes from the manufacturer.
Drops do not generally last long-term due to things like contamination of the dropper by it touching the mouth and often the rubber dropper has a tendency to perish and permeate the remedy over time.
Sometimes contaminated remedies will have what we call “floaters” which is a mould that develops. It’s always good to check old bottles for this.
If you have a lot of remedies with no use by dates, particularly drops which are likely to go over within a couple of years, we would recommend you replace them to be sure they are going to work when you need them to.
Remedies can be made from almost anything on the planet and generally for home prescribing we use remedies made from animals (eg bees), plants (eg Belladonna, Aconite or Monkshead, Pulsatilla, Arnica) and minerals (eg Arsenicum, Mercurius, Silica).
The actual remedy ends up in a liquid form a bit like a herbal medicine, but it’s gone through a special process. This liquid or Medicating Potency as we call it is then added to your carrier. The carrier for your remedy is the sucrose or lactose pilules or tablets which are traditionally used, or to a bottle of drops which contains a small amount of alcohol as a preservative.
At Elements of Health we use sucrose pilules because, while it is sugar, it is a teeny dose to carry your medicine and hopefully you are not going to need many doses!
Keep reading to find out how remedies are made and why they are low risk!
I sometimes get emails about homeopathic remedies such as Belladonna or Aconite, which people may know are made from poisonous plants. We do seem to use a lot of seemingly toxic substances in our medicines, but the way we make our remedies is key in being able to use them without any concerns.
You wouldn’t want to buy or use some of these substances in a herbal form, because yes, some of them are toxic in these material doses, ie as a plant.
However, because of the special way homeopathic remedies are made, Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), the body who looks after our medicines in Australia, views them as low risk when prescribed according to homeopathic principles.
These substances have been used in homeopathic form for over 200 years so we know about their action when prepared in this way and you can be assured that at Elements of Health we comply with minimum potencies (dilution) to make sure your remedies are not going to be a problem for your babies and small children.
If you have any further questions on this, do send us an email!
As you may have heard on the grapevine, some single homeopathic remedies are made from animal material, but we do offer ways around this if you are vegan.
You can read the blog about vegan remedies here if you are interested or concerned and it will give you a good understanding of how, for example, one honey bee (which likely had already passed away) was used as the base for not just all the remedies dispensed from one pharmacy for decades, possibly up to a couple of hundred years, but that one honey bee may have also been the basis for remedies in other pharmacies. No loss of species from homeopathy!!
We know how you feel though, having been very strict vegetarian and then vegan (but not as strict vegan as a Jain!) for more than 20 years, and can provide you with a vibrational remedy made on our potentising machine instead of a pharmacy-made remedy.
When you’re buying, any single remedies which are of animal origin have an option for a vegan version within the Single Remedy Category in the store. There is a small additional fee as these have to be made by hand.
You can be assured that our Combination Remedies do not contain animal material, due to the special way we make them.
- Do not touch the remedies with your hands. Roll pilules into lid of the container and drop under the tongue. Remedies are absorbed in the mouth, so allow to dissolve there if possible. The remedy will still work if this is not possible due to age or condition.
- Crush pilules between 2 clean teaspoons when giving to an infant or baby.
- If you are using drops and the dropper touches the mouth rinse under boiling water before replacing in the bottle.
- Try to take remedies 10 minutes before or after food, drink, smoking, and brushing teeth. This promotes the best remedy action, but in a really acute situation just give the remedy!
- Discard any pilules which are dropped as they may be contaminated.
- Store remedies away from direct light and heat, strong smells (such as essential oils) and electrical appliances. Try not to leave in a hot car or store next to a mobile phone or microwave.
There are many myths about homeopathy and one is that they are affected by EMFs, such as airport x-rays and other scanners.
I always point out that we live in a web of EMFs with wireless and bluetooth in our homes, workplaces and shopping centres and of course on our phones, which we carry with us at all times! Airports and planes are full of these frequencies too, so no different to the rest of our world.
After 35 years of using homeopathics personally, travelling extensively with them and generally handling them badly, I’m convinced that remedies are much more robust than we imagine.
Homeopathics are a form of vibrational medicine and each remedy or combination has its own unique resonant frequency. Some may resonate at the particular frequency of an EMF from something man-made such as a scanner, microwave or smart TV. They are also often x-rayed or scanned in the postal system. Possibly there may be some random frequencies that can knock out the action of a remedy but really unless it is a frequency that is quite specific to matching or negatively affecting your particular remedy, I think it unlikely to be a problem and have not seen it in practice.
Some people ask if they should get their remedies hand scanned at the airport, rather than leaving them in their hand luggage and passing through x-ray. If you hand over your kit so it’s not x-rayed it will likely be swabbed for explosives; at least that’s what they always did before covid.
I tend to advise not handing them over (and this may also depend on what country you are in) and just leaving your kit in your hand luggage to go through the scanner. It won’t matter greatly, and may save some aggravation.
And yes you could wrap it in aluminum foil which some people suggest, although I don’t feel it’s an issue.
If you are travelling anywhere in Europe or the USA it really shouldn’t be an issue as they are familiar with homeopathics. If you are travelling somewhere that you perceive may be an issue we have a letter we can provide to go with any remedies you have purchased from us, advising what they are and how they should be handled.
Sometimes people ask why the remedies are made from sugar or sucrose.
Pure sucrose is the traditional carrier for the homeopathic remedies themselves and it is used globally by all homeopathic pharmacies.
A pilule is a tiny dose and the positive action of the remedy on the immune system is stronger than any potential negative action of the sucrose.
It has been used for decades, possibly more than a century, and when the remedies are “proven” (ie given to healthy people to determine the curative action) it’s undertaken with the sucrose as part of the process, meaning we know the action of the sucrose as part of the remedy.
In the store you can choose whether you want your remedies in sucrose or in an alcohol based mix (the other traditional carrier). This is personal choice as they both work the same. Some products are only available in one or the other depending on what you are buying.
We like to keep it traditional because we know this is how the remedies work best and the information in our homeopathic materia medica for many remedies is based on sucrose as part of the remedy.
Using sucrose as the carrier also gives the product a longer use by than the drops and is much better for things like travel kits and remedies you carry with you in your bag.
Much like pharmacy medicines, a preservative is a necessary part of homeopathic remedies, particularly in warmer climates.
It is also an integral part of the action of the remedy, ie how it works, as our remedies are made much like a herbal medicine, the first stage being preparation in alcohol.
Through dilution and succussion, which is the magic and often misunderstood homeopathic process, the alcohol becomes a part of the action of the remedy.
The alcohol in our remedies is as low as permissible (a mix of 10% grape alcohol and 5% brandy – for taste), but high enough to stop your remedy growing floaties if someone touches the dropper to their mouth and puts it straight back in the bottle.
To maintain the integrity of the product, do ensure that if the dropper touches the mouth it is rinsed in boiling water before returning to the bottle.
The amount of alcohol per dose is quite small, particularly for babies and children.
Dose of a remedy
1 drop for under 6 months of age
2 drops for under 12 months
4 drops for over 12 months
Diluting the Remedy
If you are concerned about giving the drops to a baby too often, you can reduce the alcohol further as follows:
- Put your drops in 1/4 glass of water
- Stir vigorously with a teaspoon (this activates the remedy in the water)
- The water is now your remedy
- Give 1/2 teaspoon (0-12 months) or 1 teaspoon (over 12 months) and repeat for each dose
Most remedies are available in pilules.
Homeopathy is about quality and not quantity; energy and not substance.
Tiny doses to stimulate the body’s own healing ability.
Nothing nasty in a remedy at the potencies we dispense through our store, hence TGA define homeopathics as low risk.
This effectively means that one pilule or one bottle is going to be the same in terms of action, although on a rare occasion this quantity of the sucrose pilules may cause an upset tummy or perhaps a hyper child!
We select the remedy to fit the person and their symptoms, so a randomly selected remedy, while perhaps having an unexpectedly positive outcome (ie things get better), won’t make anything worse or produce symptoms that a child has not had before.
From my perspective, a remedy which is incorrectly selected (or grabbed from a pack or benchtop) bounces off as it doesn’t fit/match the picture of the individual. Bit like a square peg in a round hole.
I get this worried message all too often and while this is no kind of medical emergency, it is a reminder to keep your remedies out of reach of children.
Any information provided does not replace advice from your doctor or homeopath and we advise you to seek medical help and diagnosis as appropriate.
Our kits and remedies contain homeopathic medicines selected for use in minor ailments and injuries only. They are recommended for use with immediate family only and our advice and information is not sufficient to treat extended family or friends.
Our combination remedies are prepared as a single vibrational remedy incorporating the remedies traditionally used for the situation described.
They are not suitable for home treatment of chronic, ongoing or serious conditions or diseases.
Homeopathy is deemed to be low risk by the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
The remedies are effective when used in accordance with the homeopathic indications.
If in doubt as to their appropriateness to a particular situation, consult your health care practitioner.
Use only as directed.
Always read the label or information supplied.
If symptoms persist see your health care practitioner.