A Guide to Homeopathy in Childbirth
The state of pregnancy is usually a happy and healthy one for most women. However, at times, fluctuating hormone levels, fear of the unknown and other factors such as anaemia, or high blood pressure (to name just two) can make it a confusing and uncertain state to be in. For these women, investing in a homeopathic childbirth kit may prove just the answer. These can be obtained from Homeopathic pharmacies and normally contain about eighteen remedies. The remedies in this kit are all in the 200th potency which means that they are suited to labour where symptoms are often intense. It is recommended that a birth partner become familiar with the remedies contained in this kit so that the mother-to-be is able to concentrate on the labour. I shall attempt here to give an overview of some of these remedies in order to illustrate the benefits of homeopathy before, during and post-labour.
Very often, patients who are pregnant express that they are afraid of the labour process. Some of these women may be first-time mothers who have obviously not experienced labour before. Others may be expecting their second child having had a less-than-satisfactory experience the first time ‘round. Their fears are very real and very intense. For this state, the most suitable remedy is Aconite. Aconite is also useful in very quick labours, where the pains are extreme, violent & terrifying. In general, patients may feel most fearful around midnight, and they dislike touch and noise. They usually feel better in fresh air.
When the labour pains are unbearable and the mother feels over-sensitive and bad-tempered – sometimes violently so – taking Chamomilla can afford relief. The patient may demand help one moment and reject it the next. They may scream frequently during the labour. They may feel and look overheated. They feel better if they are uncovered and feel worse during the evening, in fresh air, in company, or being spoken to or stared at.
Very often, mothers say that during the birth of their child/children they experienced very severe back pain. If this is the case, the remedy Kali Carb may be used to good effect. A nagging pain can be felt in the back, buttocks or thighs. Their backache is relieved by firm pressure. The mother-to-be may feel very irritable but will want company. Kali Carb is useful in posterior presentations where the labour process gets stuck. The worse time is at night or during the early hours of the morning. The mother-to-be feels chilly, so is better for warmth.
If the labour seems to drag on for hours with the mother-to-be getting more and more tired, Kali Phos, given during labour between contractions, will relieve exhaustion so that labour can continue.
Some pregnant women experience sciatica quite severely. Sciatica is a shooting nerve pain which usually moves down one leg and may be caused by the position of the baby. Taking Bellis Perennis usually relieves this pain. Bellis Perennis is also an excellent remedy for the healing of deep tissue so post-birth it will help to relieve bruising and pain and it is particularly useful after caesarean or forceps delivery.
In combination with Bellis Perennis, it is logical to think of taking Arnica for any discomfort experienced post-birth as Arnica is the primary trauma remedy to encourage healing, control bleeding and reduce swelling. Arnica is useful during labour since is can reduce exhaustion in a very long labour where tiredness makes contractions weak or ineffective.
A third ‘trauma’ remedy useful in alternation with Arnica and Bellis Perennis is Calendula. It is available in the form of cream or ointment and may be applied to heal tears or an episiotomy wound. If there is pus present, it is best to take pillules internally.
Very often, hormonal influences come into play during or after labour.
If the mother-to-be becomes weepy, or clingy during labour then Pulsatilla may be needed. Some physical symptoms may include exhaustion, nausea, vomiting, or thirstlessness. Women feel better in the fresh air, moving around, and with sympathy and company. Pulsatilla may also be used to restore hormonal levels post-birth if the above symptoms are experienced.
Another very good post-birth remedy is Sepia. In contrast to the weepiness or clinginess of Pulsatilla, Sepia patients feel irritable and an indifference to those closest to them. They also usually respond badly to sympathy. Physically, it is useful for treating uterine prolapsed where there is a “bearing down” sensation present. It is very helpful to take Sepia if someone has had children close together as it helps restore hormone levels. Those needing Sepia almost always feel better after exercise or eating and worse if motionless or fasting.
The above-mentioned remedies are just nine of the eighteen remedies available in the birthing kit.
Because homeopathy is such a gentle therapy, there is no threat of harming the baby and it is not invasive in the same way conventional medicine can be.
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Tessa Izikovitz (MCPH) practices in Finchley - Tessa studied at The College of Practical Homeopathy .If you are interested in exploring homeopathy or attending student clinics then contact The College of Practical Homeopathy www.collegeofpracticalhomeopathy.com.
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