How homeopathy cured me
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I'm a natural sceptic so I didn't want to believe in homeopathy.
OPINION: I'm not keen on colour therapy, iridology, crystal therapy, or astral gazing, but I am the last person to criticise anyone who has had positive results from these treatments.
I was unlucky enough to suffer with eczema, asthma and hayfever from about three months old. It didn't take long for me to enter conventional medicine's portals and be prescribed steroid creams and antihistamines.
At 15, I was hospitalised for 2 weeks and "cured". I left with a nice shiny new steroid cream, an anti-histamine and an asthma inhaler.
I stopped taking the anti-histamine and the asthma inhaler about 10 years later and noticed no difference.
My skin was no better. I was grateful to conventional medical science for helping me deal with the symptoms.
The more I learned, the more I thought I should take matters into my own hands.
I must have been in my early 20s when I heard about homeopathy, but there was a long wait to get public treatment, so I paid to go privately.
My first attempt at using a remedy ended badly. I was off work for two weeks, and within the first few days developed blisters filled with what I assumed was plasma.
A doctor prescribed antibiotics, which, after a while, helped with recovery.
I came away from this experience suspicious of homeopathy but convinced that it certainly had some power and the effect was not psychosomatic.
I carried on with my own search into what was the mystery ingredient(s) in my life that was causing my lousy skin problem.
I was over 28 with no sign of let-up so I went to The College of Natural Medicine in Christchurch.
I began my treatment after answering lots of questions about my habits, tastes, ancestor's health, relationships with others, etc, and then walking away with a single tablet to dissolve under my tongue and report in after a week to indicate whether anything had changed.
My skin got slowly worse. I asked if this was normal and was told that the skin is the last thing to come right and toxins would be excreted through the skin.
I went through about six remedies over the course of four months with varying results (sometimes no change) but generally in a downward direction.
I carried on for another six months but by this time I was ready to give up with the treatment as I was suffering so much. But I went back and was given another remedy.
A few days later I started feeling rather odd, a sort of feeling of wellbeing from within. I still looked terrible, as my skin was so damaged but I didn't seem to be making it any worse overnight. In fact, it seemed to be healing.
Two weeks later and I'm feeling a lot better, the most marked difference being the feeling that the texture of my skin was changing from within, losing the dry flakiness and becoming flexible and elastic.
I went back to the homeopath and said I think it's working, and she said is your asthma and hayfever sorted and I said not completely, and she said well, I don't think it's the right remedy.
She tried a few other remedies, but then said she wanted to refer me to another classical homeopath who was affiliated to the college.
It took him two goes to find the right remedy, and I never looked back.
I asked him what bit of information made him choose the particular remedy and he said it was the fact that I liked chicken skin, steak fat and pork crackling.
So that was my final treatment, one tablet, given once. It sorted the underlying problem (I still don't know what that was) and the body did the rest.
Skeptics (like I was) I'm sure will say, but you could have grown out of it, but I've noticed that when my body is under attack from a virus, some old symptoms re-emerge.
Years of living as a "normal" person, gives me the greatest respect for the work of homeopaths, and I'm grateful.
I'm still grateful to conventional medical science and would still be happy with treatment from that quarter if I needed it but I find myself wondering about the hostility to alternative treatments such as homeopathy.
My one worry with writing this article is that I may be doing classical homeopaths a disservice.
In my experience, the homeopaths I have met are professional, caring, intelligent people. This article might result in them getting more flak, so I'll apologise to them, in advance, for that.
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