In conventional medical practice, it can sometimes feel as if the doctor sees only a fragment of you: a dermatologist will look at your skin, an orthopaedic surgeon at your foot, a neurologist at your brain, a psychiatrist at your thoughts. One poor patient of mine in my last NHS job, who had waited anxiously to discuss her strange physical symptoms with a neurologist, was interrupted after 8 seconds when she started to describe her symptoms by mentioning her knee. The neurologist said: “This is neurology: we don’t do knees!” My patient was left speechless.
Even with very good and caring GPs, the time constraints mean that, usually, you can tell only one problem at each appointment.
Homeopathy is quite different. In the consultation, we try to piece together a complete picture of you as an individual, covering all the symptoms and difficulties you have at present, along with the particular way those symptoms affect you. If you have a headache, is it better with an ice pack, or when you huddle under warm blankets, or with a breeze blowing in? Do foods affect it? Do you feel better if people look after you or are you better left alone? There may be 200 different remedies which could treat a headache; finding the one which will help you requires a detailed understanding of how your body, mind and emotions work together.
As a medical homeopath, I am also a qualified doctor and as such can understand your illness and any treatments you have had from a conventional perspective. I am therefore able to recognise whether homeopathy or a more conventional approach may be the better option for you, or how to marry the two.
A well-matched homeopathic remedy will stimulate your body’s own healing processes without producing side-effects or long-term problems, as is commonly the case with most conventional treatments. There can sometimes be a brief worsening of symptoms after taking the medicine, but this is generally followed by a good resolution of the symptoms.
The first consultation may last between 60 to 90 minutes. After that, I may be able to choose a remedy immediately, but often, I will need to think about your case further after you leave, to cross-reference various remedy options. I will then post the remedy to you.
I generally recommend that we have a follow-up appointment about 4-6 weeks after the first. This is an opportunity to review your progress. If you have made a very good recovery and think that you do not need a follow-up at this time, I would appreciate a (free!) phone call or email just to let me know how you are doing. If you have any concerns before the follow-up, please email me or phone and leave a message and I will get back to you.
Sometimes, as with psychotherapy, it can take time to really get to know you well-enough to find a remedy that is the best match for you. Previous treatments you have had such as antibiotics or steroids might mask the true complexity of your condition. Therefore, although there are people who improve dramatically after only one remedy, there are others who will require a series of remedies over a period of months.