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Homeopathic Remedies for Allergies and Sensitivities (Food and Chemical)

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Fatigue, confusion, anxiety, dizziness, muscle tension, digestive problems, inflammation of mucous membranes, itching, and other discomforts can occur with allergies and sensitivities because of an exaggerated immune response. Remedies mentioned here, when they fit the individual, may gradually help a person overcome imbalances. A constitutional remedy, chosen by an experienced homeopath to closely suit the individual, is usually the best approach.

For dosage information, please read the information at the end of this section. See also “Using Homeopathy With Professional Guidance” in What Is Homeopathy?

Arsenicum album: This remedy is useful for people who are highly sensitive to many foods and substances, and respond to them by feeling restless, ill, and exhausted. Asthma and digestive disorders (such as vomiting and diarrhea) are common reactions. Burning sensations relieved by warmth, and thirst for frequent small sips of water can also suggest this remedy. A person who needs Arsenicum tends toward strong anxiety, and may have excessive concern over neatness, details, and order.

Calcarea carbonica: This remedy is often helpful to responsible, steady people who become fatigued and overwhelmed. Anxiety may develop, sometimes with fear of heights or claustrophobia. The person usually feels chilly, with clammy hands and feet, and has low stamina. Digestive troubles with gas and heartburn are common, especially after eating wheat or dairy products. Swollen lymph nodes and tonsils, head sweats during sleep, shortness of breath from exertion, back pain, dizziness, nightmares, and strong cravings for sweets are often seen. Individuals who need this remedy are sometimes oversensitive to aspirin.

Calcarea phosphorica: Irritability, headaches, stomach and abdominal pains, and a craving for “junk food” are all indications for this remedy. Stiffness in the neck and back, leg cramps, and aggravation from cold are also likely. The person may seem dissatisfied, with a strong desire for travel or a change of circumstances and a tendency to complain when fatigue and health problems interfere. This remedy is often helpful to restless, whiny children who have growing pains, get headaches from school, and have picky appetites with many food problems.

Carbo vegetabilis: A person who reacts to foods or substances with weakness, faintness, chilliness, and indigestion may be helped by this remedy. Bloating, flatulence, and a frequent need to burp are often seen. Breathing may be difficult and, even when feeling very cold, the person has a strong desire for fresh and moving air. Feeling insecure because of weakness, the person may be cross and demanding toward family members. Problems typically are worse in the evening and from talking, eating, or lying down.

Gelsemium: Allergy reactions with flu-like symptoms—weakness, trembling, aching muscles, droopy-looking eyes, and chills along the spine—may indicate a need for this remedy. Headaches in the back of the head and involving the muscles of the neck are common. A person who needs this remedy may seem ill and weak with a feeling of internal shakiness. Being under pressure to perform (exams, public speaking, etc.) or hearing distressing news often makes the person worse.

Hepar sulphuris calcareum: People who need this remedy are oversensitive to stimuli and substances of many kinds, and can be extremely irritable and touchy, often feeling worse from even slight exposure to cold or drafts. Skin problems, ear infections, or respiratory problems with yellow discharge and offensive sour or cheese-like odors are often seen. Because these people feel so deeply vulnerable, they may develop a fear of going out in public. Discouragement about their health can lead to angry outbursts or gloominess.

Ignatia: This remedy is indicated for sensitive, emotional, defensive, idealistic people with a tendency toward mood swings and cramping pains. Cramps are often felt in the stomach and abdomen or in the neck and back. Headaches sometimes feel like a nail driven into the side of the head. A heavy feeling in the chest is often present, and the person may frequently sigh or yawn. People who need this remedy often have “paradoxical” symptoms (heartburn improved by eating onions, sore throats improved by swallowing, joint inflammations improved by touch, etc.).

Lycopodium: Food allergy problems with heartburn, gas, and rumbling in the abdomen may indicate a need for this remedy. The person feels ravenous hunger yet quickly gets bloated from eating a very small amount. Fatigue or drowsiness develop after eating, but the person also feels weak from missing meals. Problems are typically the worst in late afternoon and evening. The person may have a chronic worried look, a craving for sweets, a preference for warm drinks, and discomfort felt mostly on the right side of the body.

Natrum carbonicum: This remedy can be helpful to people who have trouble digesting and assimilating many foods and have to stay on restricted diets. Indigestion, heartburn, and ulcers can occur if offending foods are eaten. Milk or dairy products can lead to flatulence or sputtery diarrhea that leaves an empty feeling in the stomach. Cravings for potatoes and sweets are common; also milk, but it makes these people sick, so they usually learn to avoid it. They are sensitive to weather changes and temperatures, as well as foods, and (although they make an effort to be cheerful and considerate) often feel weak and want to be alone to rest.

Natrum muriaticum: A person who needs this remedy can react to allergens in many ways—with headaches, mouth sores, hay fever symptoms, respiratory problems, back pain, or fatigue. Headaches may tend to be worse in late morning and early afternoon, and asthma may be worse in the early evening. Staying in the sun too long can also lead to headache or weakness. These people usually seem reserved, disliking consolation when ill or upset, yet often have deep feelings. A craving for salt and very strong thirst may help to confirm the choice of this remedy.

Nux moschata: If a person reacts to chemical or allergen exposure with an overwhelming feeling of sleepiness—or seems dizzy, giddy, or absent-minded—this remedy should be considered. A very dry mouth, dry eyes, a feeling of weight in the chest, and numbness in the extremities are other indications. Joint pains that move from place to place and stubborn constipation are also possible.

Nux vomica: Irritability, cramping pains, and chilliness are typical when this remedy is needed. Oversensitivity to substances can lead to many ailments—headaches, runny nose, tight breathing, heartburn, stomach problems, constipation, back pain, and insomnia. People who need this remedy are often irritable, impatient, easily angered or frustrated, and have a lot of trouble relaxing. They tend to crave stimulants, alcohol, tobacco, sweets, and strong foods, and feel worse from having them. They are also very sensitive to odors, light, and noise.

Petroleum: A person needing this remedy can be extremely sensitive to fumes from traffic or industry, reacting with headaches, chilliness, diarrhea, and nausea with an empty feeling inside. The person may feel confused, disoriented, or anxious when exposed to toxins. Individuals who need this remedy sometimes develop eczema with inflamed and cracking skin, especially on the palms and fingertips.

Phosphorus: People who need this remedy are usually excitable, imaginative, and sensitive to impressions, having strong anxieties and fears. They react to many foods and substances by becoming tired, “spaced-out,” and dizzy, and may have headaches, nosebleeds, respiratory problems, nausea, or diarrhea. The person feels worse from missing meals and better from eating and sleeping well. A strong desire for ice cold drinks, ice cream, and refreshing things can help to confirm the choice of Phosphorus.

Silicea (also called Silica): This remedy can be helpful to individuals who have low stamina, are prone to fatigue, and are very sensitive to substances. Resistance to infection may be low and the person may have frequent colds, sore throats, and swollen lymph nodes. Fine hair and skin, weak or brittle nails, and offensive perspiration (especially on the feet) are often seen. People who need this remedy are usually nervous, shy, refined, and fragile, yet also capable and quietly stubborn internally. A strong desire for sweets, and a tendency to be energized by moderate exercise are other traits that fit this remedy.

Sulphuricum acidum: People with intense sensitivity to fumes and environmental toxins may benefit from this remedy. The person has a frantic, hurried feeling and can be scatterbrained and forgetful. Trembling, cold sweat, and headache may also occur. Deep fatigue and a tendency toward easy bruising or bleeding are other indications for this remedy.

Homeopathy Dosage Directions

Select the remedy that most closely matches the symptoms. In conditions where self-treatment is appropriate, unless otherwise directed by a physician, a lower potency (6X, 6C, 12X, 12C, 30X, or 30C) should be used. In addition, instructions for use are usually printed on the label.

Many homeopathic physicians suggest that remedies be used as follows: Take one dose and wait for a response. If improvement is seen, continue to wait and let the remedy work. If improvement lags significantly or has clearly stopped, another dose may be taken. The frequency of dosage varies with the condition and the individual. Sometimes a dose may be required several times an hour; other times a dose may be indicated several times a day; and in some situations, one dose per day (or less) can be sufficient.

If no response is seen within a reasonable amount of time, select a different remedy.

For more information, including references, see What is Homeopathy? and Understanding Homeopathic Potencies.

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