Our patient has taken the remedy. I have been writing this from the perspective of a practitioner, and I realize that you are reading it, most likely, from the perspective of a family member or friend helping someone through an acute. So rather than do the follow up as if I am talking to a client, I am going to do the follow up as if I am at home with a sick child.
Let’s first review what the symptoms were at the start. Our patient was complaining of the following:
· Loose cough like something stuck in her throat that she can’t cough up, which is worse at night when she lies down.
· Wants company when she wakes at night, wants the window open, doesn’t want any blankets.
· Yellow or green discharge from the nose, which is congested on both sides.
· When she stands up, her nasal passages drain and it makes her cough
· Feels cold but is restless inside and wants to go outdoors.
We gave Pulsatilla 30c in water, 3 doses 15 minutes apart; the dose is prepared by dissolving a pellet in four ounces of water, stirring gently, and giving a tsp or a sip. For subsequent doses, we can use the same solution, but we stir each time.
Here’s what happened over the next 24 hours:
· After the first dose, she fell asleep and took a long nap, so we didn’t even get to give the second one until she woke up.
o This is a positive remedy response. All remedies, regardless of affinity (the body system which they affect the most), cause a response in the nervous system. Sleep is THE most important factor for healing from acute illness, so when the nervous system winds down in this way after a remedy, it means the body is digging into some productive healing work.
· After her nap the cough was really bad and she was nearly gagging, but did not vomit. We gave another round of 3 doses at that time; the cough calmed down and she seemed much brighter and more comfortable.
o This is also an excellent response. When a remedy is given, it shows the vital force, energetically, what is needing to be cured. Sometimes, in this phase, we can see what is called an “aggravation,” where there is a mild intensification of symptoms. Homeopathy Jeremy Sherr describes this as a preview of what disease progression would be without a remedy; with a remedy, it indicates that the vital force is activated. Then we have the improvement in symptoms.
· At bedtime, she went to sleep easily, but then woke up coughing and anxious again. We gave another dose of the remedy and she fell asleep.
o This is what is called “relapse;” symptoms return after improvement. Indication is to redose.
· The rest of the night went smoothly. In the morning, she woke up coughing again and complaining of congestion.
o Her symptoms have responded well to the remedy so far, so we do another round of dosing.
· She is much better for most of the day. By evening, the cough is still significantly improved, but the congestion is worse than ever. Heavy green snot keeps running down her face and she whines and pushes anyone away who tries to help her with a tissue.
o Here’s where it gets a little tricky. This looks like a different symptom picture – is it time to change remedies? NOT YET! As long as there has been improvement with a remedy, stick with it. Give another round of Pulsatilla.
· She’s cranky at bedtime but falls asleep; although she wakes with an occasional cough. In the morning, the cough is the same and the sticky mucus is worse than ever; she says her throat is dry because she couldn’t breathe through her nose all night. She curls up on the couch and doesn’t want to do anything; anytime someone comes in the room she sighs dramatically and forces a cough, but she refuses any offer of aid.
o NOW we can change the remedy. What should we give?
§ Thick, sticky, green discharges.
§ Irritability but desire for attention.
§ Sounds like Kali bichromicum. Kali-bi 30c in water, same protocol.
· After a round of Kali-bi she starts blowing her nose frequently and heavily. She takes a second round of doses after dinner and sleeps well. In the morning, she still has some mucus but it is clear and she is back to her old self. A third round of Kali-bi that morning closes the case; by the following morning she is almost fully recovered.
Congratulations on successfully navigating an acute case; I’ve made this one textbook-simple but you’d be surprised how often the pattern looks somewhat like this.
This is what most of us call a “cold.” Illnesses such as this are a natural and normal part of immune system maintenance, especially in kids.
Homeopathy doesn’t “cure” a cold; it helps the vital force identify the issue and turn on its magical powers to move healing along as fast as is appropriate for the individual. There are times during developmental phases or life transitions when acute illnesses may be longer or deeper just because the person is navigating a major energetic shift; it’s nothing to fear and we don’t want to suppress it. We want to ease it; ease and adaptability of the immune system, the vital force, and the individual themself is the goal.
Remember: Homeopathy doesn’t do anything TO you. It works with you. Your vital force is driving the bus.
I hope this has been an instructive unit. The next posts will have some basic first aid resources to have on hand as you build a home pharmacy; I’ll start with an overview and then spend the next posts filling out the information.
What is most important to YOU to cover in this work? Don’t hesitate to comment on these posts with ways they can be more helpful to you, or with requests for future topics.
Instead of repeating the footnotes every time, I’ve decided to add a link to the post where they are all spelled out. That way, if you would like to print these posts and make a binder for yourself as a home guide, you can do so.