Your Homeopathic First Aid Kit
Homeopathic remedies complete a first aid kit. They are safe, highly effective tools that can be used for minor ailments or for more serious injuries while waiting for emergency care. Armed with a variety of remedies and a basic understanding of how to use them, you as a first aid provider can offer valuable help.
Choosing the Right Remedy
When selecting a homeopathic remedy, think of symptoms as clues that a body uses to lead us to the remedy it needs. Choose the remedy that best matches this group of symptoms. For example, after an insect bite you might notice that the skin is red, hot, swollen and tender. These are the symptoms you match to the remedy picture. You will likely find that not all the symptoms listed for a given remedy are present in your patient. That’s okay. Just choose the closest fit.
On its package, every remedy should be labeled with a name followed by a number. The name tells you what the remedy is made from. The number indicates its strength. For first aid purposes, I recommend using either 6C or 30C. Do not use higher strength remedies without consulting a knowledgeable practitioner.
One dose is one pellet dissolved under the tongue. For first aid you can repeat a dose every 20 minutes as long as symptoms persist. If you have given 3 doses and have not seen a response, it simply means that the remedy you are using is not the best match, and is therefore not effective. Discontinue the remedy. You can try a second remedy if you have another indicated remedy available. If symptoms persist without improvement, consult a medical professional.
Common First Aid Remedies
Aconite: This remedy is essential for shock after any kind of trauma. It is indicated when the patient feels chilled. Their skin may appear blanched white, and they may be confused. This is a remedy that can be given while waiting for emergency medical help.
Arnica: Generally, arnica is the first choice for bumps, bruises, cuts or scrapes. It relieves pain, decreases swelling and facilitates healing. It also relieves the ache of sore muscles after heavy work or exercise. It is followed well by Ledum, which facilitates healing of bruises. Arnica is also available in a topical cream or gel.
Arsenicum: If you ate the wrong potato salad at the family picnic, you might want a dose of arsenicum – the first choice remedy for ailments from food poisoning. It is indicated for vomiting or diarrhea with a burning sensation. There is often a feeling of restlessness, and dryness with great thirst. Usually only small sips can be taken, as large quantities of water upset the stomach.
Apis: Use apis for stings by bees or other insects. This remedy is indicated when the area feels red, hot and swollen.
Bryonia: Choose bryonia for pain relief when movement makes the pain worse. In your summer first aid kit, it will be useful to treat heat fatigue that is accompanied by a headache and nausea. Again, the patient will want to be still, as moving increases their discomfort.
Cantharis: Use cantharis for burns with redness and blisters.
Hypericum: Hypericum is indicated for deep cuts and/or wounds with sharp shooting nerve pain.
Ledum: Known as the remedy for “puncture” wounds and bruises, this remedy can be used for insect bites, stings, or general bumps and bruises. Some sources suggest taking a dose of ledum proactively if you are going out into mosquito-filled area. It is best indicated when the injured area feels cold and numb and is relieved by a cold compress. Ledum is also a great remedy for healing a black eye.
Rhus tox: Indicated for red, swollen, itchy blisters, this remedy is used to treat poison ivy. It is also used for sprains in which the joint feels hot and hurts most with initial movement but then fades with continued movement.
Ruta: Ruta is used primarily for sprains, strains and pulled tendons. If an injured area continues to feel weak after treatment with arnica, ruta is good next choice.
Urtica Urens: Urtica urens can be used for injuries that burn, itch, sting, and swell into a raised area. This remedy is a common choice for the treatment of sunburn.
Keep your well stocked first aid kit accessible. Play safe, have fun, and enjoy your summer!
Top homeopathic remedies for common ailments:
- Bites: ledum, apis, hypericum
- Bruises: arnica, ledum, ruta
- Burns: cantharis, urtica urens, rhus tox
- Cuts and scrapes: arnica, ledum, hypericum
- Food poisoning: arsenicum
- Heat exhaustion: bryonia
- Poison ivy: urtica urens, rhus tox
- Shock: aconite, arnica
- Sprains, strains: arnica, ledum, rhus tox, ruta
- Stings: apis, ledum
- Sun burn: urtica, rhus tox, cantharis
- Swelling: arnica, ledum