Peeling back the layers
The symptoms of dis-ease in the body build up over time, like layers of the onion. Pathological changes are afoot long before the body gives us signs and symptoms of these subtle imbalances. Symptoms are not causes of ill health, they are messages from the body. To merely treat symptoms of a condition does nothing to address its root cause, only palliate.
Modern medicine in its function is a suppressive form of treatment. Many times it does not look for the cause of a symptom but simply works to control a condition through invasive drugs and procedures. Look at eczema as an example, the body has an imbalance that it is trying to detox out through the skin. The allopathic approach to eczema involves steroid creams to ‘calm’ the skin. In reality these steroids are temporarily pushing the imbalance back into the body. Steroid creams are damaging for long term use, so once they are stopped the eczema will return, sometimes within days, or more gradually over months. The reason for this, I believe, is that the eczema is merely a symptom of a bigger dynamic at work, a dynamic that hasn’t been addressed, only temporarily suppressed. The skin, being the largest organ of detoxification, is attempting to restore balance, taking the symptoms to the surface and away from the more important organs.
Homeopathy seeks to address the root cause of the symptoms being presented. Dis-ease layers build up over time, each layer giving clear markers of imbalance. It often takes the body a long time to get sick, and so it is feasible to expect improvements to also be subtle, gradual and gentle.
The constitutional approach to homeopathy looks for a remedy to match the person on an individual level, taking into account the physical and mental/emotional symptoms. Never has a form of medicine been so unique in its action. The initial appointment with a homeopath can take up to 1.5 hours, this is because we need to gather as much information about you that we can. Through conversation and observation we can begin to work together to understand your present situation/condition and how to improve it. Sometimes before we can find the constitutional remedy of a patient, we need to address some of the layers that can obscure and cloud the picture.
This can be time consuming in complex cases, and takes commitment from both homeopath and patient. Sometimes a homeopath is only sought after years of treatment under modern medicine fails to cure, years of prescription medication can confuse the symptoms given off by the body, these are false symptoms and are just another layer of the onion, addressing these peripheral imbalances can be helpful to clear the picture and lead the way to the next layer.
Occasionally it is possible to experience a temporary worsening of symptoms under homeopathic treatment, whilst you may feel like this is leading you away from health it is important to realise why these aggravations can occur. Firstly, a layer has been treated, giving the body more energy to put into its remaining symptoms, sometimes conditions that had resolved in the past make a fleeting come back, to a homeopath the return of old symptoms is a great sign! This is because the energy of that condition still exists in a layer somewhere, suppressed over time. As a general rule old symptoms tend to self resolve quickly and are an indication that things are going in the right direction.