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Homeopathic Medicines for Sports Injuries - Aching for Homeopathic Medicine

 

(Partially excerpted from Discovering Homeopathy: Medicine for the 21st Century, North Atlantic Books)

A growing number of professional athletes and weekend warriors are spelling relief H-O-M-E-O-P-A-T-H-Y. Although homeopathic medicines have a reputation of helping people who are suffering from chronic diseases, these natural medicines are wonderfully effective in treating common sports injuries.

In fact, using homeopathic medicines for injuries is considerably easier than treating common diseases because treatment for injuries does not require a high degree of individualizing of remedies that is typical in treating diseases. When two people have sprained ankles, they each need a similar homeopathic remedy to heal them, while two people suffering from arthritis generally require different remedies which are individualized to their unique pattern of symptoms.

Homeopathic medicine should be taken in conjunction with, not in replacement of, conventional first aid measures.

The chart of this page summarizes key homeopathic medicines for common injuries. However, for greater detail and further information on the homeopathic treatment of sports injuries, see the three books listed at the bottom of the page.

Single Remedies and Formulas

Homeopathic medicines are available as single remedies or as formulas of two or more remedies mixed together. Formulas are a more user-friendly way to use homeopathic medicines since the indications for their use are extremely clear. The use of several remedies in a formulas provide a more broad spectrum effect not available in a single remedy. Because injuries sometimes involve muscle, nerve, and bone tissue, it sometimes makes sense to use formulas to help to heal the various tissues involved.

Single remedies are more recommended for injuries when you know the correct medicine to give and when you wish to give a higher potency of a remedy than is available in formulas. Formula products usually contain remedies in the 3, 6, or 12th potencies, while people with severe pain may receive more rapid benefit from the 30th potency.

The "x" after the potency number (as in 6x) refers to the number of times in which a medicine is diluted 1:10, while the "c" after the potency number (6c) is diluted 1:100 (it will be easy to remember the difference between "x" and "c" by simply remember their meaning as Roman numerals). Two hundred years of homeopathic clinical experience has found that the higher the potency, the more powerful and faster the medicine acts. However, the higher the potency used, the more accurate the remedy must be for the injured or sick person. Because of this, it is recommended to use the 30th potency when the user is very confident that the remedy used is the correct one. When one is not as confident, the 6th or 12th potency is indicated, or one can consider using a homeopathic formula.

Frequency of Dose


When taking homeopathic medicines it is recommended to take as few doses as necessary but as many as are required when experiencing pain. At first when there is the greatest amount of pain and discomfort, you may need to take the remedy every hour. Usually after four doses, you can reduce the frequency to every other hour, and as the intensity of pain diminishes, taking a dose every four hours is common.

If no improvement is noticeable after one or two days, it is not recommended to take further doses.

External Applications


Although most homeopathic remedies are in pill form for internal consumption, there are a select number of homeopathic medicines which are available in external applications. Some external applications are in ointments, gels, or sprays. Although they have a similar degree of efficacy, each has certain benefits and detriments.

Ointments are made from a petroleum base which doesn't allow the skin to breath as well, but they tend to work well because they are not easily washed or wiped off. Gels and sprays allow the skin the breath more, but they are more easily washed or wiped off. Gels are my personal favorite because they are not as easily washed off.


INDICATION MEDICINE DOSE


Shock and trauma of injury Arnica 6,12,30
30 preferred

Injury to the soft tissue/muscle Arnica 6,12,30
Arnica external
Formula external

Injury to nerves or parts of Hypericum
the body rich with nerves (feet, Hypericum external fingers, back);
injuries with Formula external shooting pains 6,12,30

Sprains/strains Arnica (immediately after injury) 6,12,30
Rhus tox* 6,12,30
Bryonia** 6,12,30
Ledum (for easily sprained ankles) 6,12,30

Arnica external Injury Formula external
Tendonitis Rhus tox* 6,12,30
Bryonia** 6,12,30
Arnica external
Injury Formula external

Severe sprains (wrenched tendons, Rhus tox* 12,30
split ligaments) Bryonia** 12,30
Ruta (if Rhus tox or Bryonia aren't effective) 12,30
Bellis perennis (when cold applications cannot be tolerated) 12,30

Dislocation Arnica 12,30
Hypericum (if shooting pains) 12,30

Injuries to periosteum (bone-covering) Ruta 6,12,30
Arnica external
Injury Formula external

Injuries to knee or elbow Ruta 6,12,30
(includes shin splints) Rhus tox* 6,12,30
Arnica external
Injury Formula external

Fracture Symphytum
(Take Arnica for shock of injury) 6,12,30
Arnica external
Injury Formula external

Head injury (immediately after injury) Arnica 12,30
Old head injury Natrum sulphicum 12,30

Slow repair of fractures Calcarea phos. 6,12

Bruises/Contusions Arnica 6,12,30
(no break in the skin) Arnica external
Injury Formula external

Bleeding Arnica 12,30

Nosebleeds Phosphorus 12,30

Blisters Calendula external

Cuts Calendula external

Lacerations (deep cuts) Hypericum external (1st)
Calendula external (after deep cut begins to heal)
Staphysagria 12,30

* Rhus tox is indicated when the person experiences the "rusty gate" syndrome: there is great pain upon initial motion but some relief on continued motion.

** Bryonia is indicated when the person experiences increased pain and discomfort the more motion they do.


Useful Books


Stephen Cummings, M.D., and Dana Ullman, M.P.H., Everybody's Guide to Homeopathic Medicine, Los Angeles: Jeremy Tarcher, 1991.
Steven Subotnick, D.P.M., Sports and Exercise Injuries: Conventional, Homeopathic and Alternative Treatments, Berkeley: North Atlantic, 1991.
Dana Ullman, M.P.H., Discovering Homeopathy, Berkeley: North Atlantic, 1991.

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