This article is from the Alternative Medicine Therapies guide.
If you'd like to be treated homeopathically for a chronic illness, it is best to seek out a licensed naturopath, osteopath, or medical doctor who includes homeopathy as a treatment modality. Because there are over 2,000 substances used in homeopathic remedies, it helps to have professional advice.
A homeopathic practitioner should begin an initial visit by taking a very detailed health history. You will probably be asked how your current complaint started, how it has developed, and how it makes you feel physically, mentally, and emotionally. You will also be asked to explain exactly what kinds of symptoms are involved, precisely where your symptoms are located, and what kinds of events or actions, times of day, or types of weather make the problem better or worse. You may even be questioned about what foods you like and don't like.
The answers to these questions help the homeopath determine what kind of problem you have, what kind of person you are, and what remedy to prescribe to encourage your body's natural healing processes. You may be given the recommended remedies or be told where to purchase them.
Some homeopathic remedies are recommended for use every few hours for treating a specific problem; others are used once a day to support resistance to disease or to strengthen the body in general. If a remedy fails to improve your ailment, you may need to move on to another remedy or some other form of treatment.
If you have a minor acute condition, homeopathic remedies are an excellent choice for self-care. Over-the-counter homeopathic remedies have label indications for their use, and there are many effective home-care guides to using such remedies as Arnica montana for bruising injuries, Ignatia amara for the emotional stress of sudden grief or loss, or Nux vomica for overeating or alcohol hangover symptoms.
A unique aspect of homeopathy is that two people with different conditions but similar symptoms might be treated with the same remedy. Homeopathic self-help guides can counsel you on how to choose the best remedy based on your symptoms.
In addition to the specific single-drug remedies, mixtures of homeopathic remedies are sold for common conditions. A flu remedy, hay fever remedy or bladder symptom remedy, for example, might contain four to eight specific agents. Many homeopathic remedies can be found at heath-food stores, drug stores and natural pharmacies.