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Homeopathy for children?

(239 Posts)
fraktious Sun 18-Sep-11 10:40:16

I know this might be a bit woo but does anyone else use homeopathic treatments for common childhood ailments? We have (magic) teething powders and I've laid in arnica in anticipation but I'm not sure what else people typically use homeopathy for.

Our GP is very pro homeopathy and I swear by it for many things, I know that it can be used for a whole range if things but I'm looking for anecdotes/advice on where it does work and where it doesn't. I'm not planning to treat him myself but any advice about when to ask for a homeopathic remedy would be welcome smile

KYarrow Sun 18-Sep-11 12:50:17

I've used homeopathic medicine on my son and it has had definite results! I grew up having homeopathic medicine too so I know its merits. The New Era range of cell salts are also good for children. I highly recommend the New Era teething pains for teething. There is also one for cholic too. I happily use this medicine in conjunction with more conventional medicine if needed. Obviously if my boy was really pooly (temp etc) I would use calpol and seek GP advice. smile

narmada Sun 18-Sep-11 14:01:50

If homeopathic medicines work it is placebo or the natural course of the disease - e.g., you were getting better anyway. There are no herbs in homeopathic remedies. Homeopathy pills are made of sugar and water, nothing else. I wouldn't use them for that reason - they are really expensive and I hate the feeling of being swizzed.

Herbal medicine is a completely different kettle of fish and can actually have active ingredients.

Arnica cream for topical application usually contains actual arnica extract, and so could actually work. Arnica homeopathic drops or tablets don't contain any arnica - arnica is actually poisonous if consumed orally in very large amounts (it can cause gastroenteritis and bleeding of the digestive tract).

narmada Sun 18-Sep-11 14:02:31

lots of actuallys in that.... sorry

nightcat Sun 18-Sep-11 15:09:37

swear by arnica (homeopatic), have also used succesfully tissue salts (Mg for cramps)

narmada Sun 18-Sep-11 22:57:13

What are tissue salts?? Do they contain actual salts?

Great that you had success with the homeopathic 'arnica' but there's no getting away from the fact it's just sugar and water smile.

If my GP said he or she was pro-homeopathy, well.... I would change GPs.

fraktious Mon 19-Sep-11 06:20:46

Well Narmada that's your right, personally I like the fact I'm not constantly offered 10 medicines for every minor ailment and I chose my GP precisely because of his affinity got complementary and alternative medicine.

NotADudeExactly Mon 19-Sep-11 06:41:00

Basically, if you wish to treat minor stuff with homeopathy go ahead. Since it doesn't actually do anything it won't harm your child. You could save money by simply giving tap water, though.

Please don't use it for stuff that actually distresses the child though. It. Doesn't. Work. My parents treated my asthma with homeopathy. It was awful and I can still remember the feeling of not getting any air. It's bloody terrifying! I luckily grew out of it before it killed me. However, you cannot imagine how angry I got when I realized inhalators provided almost instant relief and I was being put through this because my mum and dad believed in "not using chemistry products" (not knowing what the hell chemistry actually is, of course!).

seeker Mon 19-Sep-11 06:44:09

"Obviously if my boy was really pooly (temp etc) I would use calpol and seek GP advice. "

Why would he need any medicine at all if not?

RitaMorgan Mon 19-Sep-11 06:53:11

It's fine to use for things that aren't causing the child any distress and aren't harmful if left untreated (mild cold, cradle cap, runny nose etc). So long as you seek medicine/painkillers out if your child is ill or in pain it won't do any harm.

seeker Mon 19-Sep-11 07:46:51

It's not fine- it adds to the level of general ignorance in the world and teaches children that there's a pill for everything, that every little ache and pain needs treatment.

seeker Mon 19-Sep-11 07:51:18

"Well Narmada that's your right, personally I like the fact I'm not constantly offered 10 medicines for every minor ailment and I chose my GP precisely because of his affinity got complementary and alternative medicine."

who is offered 10'medicines for every minor ailment? And surely homeopathy is just another medicine to be offered?

wonkylegs Mon 19-Sep-11 08:16:33

I second the comment re serious illness - my husband's mother tried to treat his asthma with homeopathy.... It nearly killed him.
I was given loads of 'advice' by well wishers about using homeopathy to treat my rheumatoid arthritis but the fact is if I hadn't treated it aggressively 10 yes ago I would have more irreversible joint damage , the homeopathy if it had worked (not convinced) would have only treated the symptoms not the underlying disease which cause the longterm problems

AKissIsNotAContract Mon 19-Sep-11 08:25:34

I find it shocking that there are GPs who practice homeopathy. It's just sugar and water, and the idea that water has a memory is ridiculous.

TrillianAstra Mon 19-Sep-11 08:47:06

If my GP said he or she was pro-homeopathy, well.... I would change GPs.

I agree.

Homeopathy will not directly harm your child unless you fail to give them real medicine when they need it (there's nothing in it, therefore it can't directly do anything), but here is a breakdown of why using homeopathy and telling people that it works is a harmful practice.

AKissIsNotAContract Mon 19-Sep-11 09:32:15

Great link trillian. The idea of making sure your living energy doesn't have a malaria-shaped hole would be hilarious if it wasn't so bloody dangerous.

mousymouse Mon 19-Sep-11 09:37:21

I also would change gp.
you have to be really careful that you don't deny the child proper medicine when it is warranted.
my childhood asthma was 'treated' with homeopathy. it does not work and I am lucky that I only have minor lung damage due to this 'treatment'.

ChristinedePizan Mon 19-Sep-11 09:39:34

Whenever people talk about treating their children with homeopathy, I always think of this dreadful story.

Homeopathy is not a benign kindly practice, it's bloody dangerous.

fraktious Mon 19-Sep-11 09:54:05

DS is under a paed (non UK, most children see paeds) but our GP has qualifications in child health as well so I could ask him to see DS if I wanted. Our paed is very conventional so I have no doubt anything serious would be picked up and treated appropriately.

And by very pro-homeopathy etc I don't mean that's all he gives. He offers the choice if you want it but this is a country where people with colds go to the doctor are routinely prescribed a decongestant, 2 types of cough medicine, paracetemol, nurofen, throat sweets and a few other things for good measure. Being willing to entertain the idea, let alone advise on a remedy, counts as pro-homeopathy in my book but when I had breast thrush he recommended conventional treatment, so he's definitely not forcing it on anyone.

I was thinking more along the lines of bumps, scrapes and low grade fevers than asthma and I'm open to herbal remedies as well as homeopathy. The arnica we have is actually a cream but the teething powders are apparently homeopathic and they seem to work so whilst I as an adult might be experiencing a placebo effect (unlikely given my deep mistrust of all things which reputedly cure aches/pains/nerves/whatever) I don't know what's going on with DS.

NotADudeExactly Mon 19-Sep-11 09:58:55

Jesus Christ on a bicycle! That's awful, Christine!

I also always used to think that my parents were the only ones stupid enough to treat asthma with homeopathy. Shocked to find two others in one thread.

Yes, apparently this stuff truly is dangerous!

Stoirin Mon 19-Sep-11 10:00:05

It doesn't work. It CANNOT work. For homeopathy to have any effect on anything you would actually have to change the law of physics. How normal intelligent people get taken in by this bollocks never ceases to amaze me. They tell you that the less of a substance there is the more powerful it is, and its most effective when there is no possibility of there being any of the substance at all in the preperation, because of the "memory of water".....and you don't think "what a crock of shit"?
Honestly, if you just think about it for the smallest moment you'll realise what a load of bunkum it is. And if your GP uses it they should be avoided, its anti-scientific, anti-logical, and goes against the doctors ethical code.

HopeForTheBest Mon 19-Sep-11 10:20:03

We have magic pills that stop a runny nose. They are a godsend and I DO NOT CARE how they work, they just do.

When my dad was last visiting, he had an appalling cold with non-stop runny nose (to the point where nose was extremely red and sore). I offered him some of the pills, and he was at the what-the-hell stage so took some. Within about half an hour his nose was so blocked, he actually had to use a decongestant.

He then asked me what it was I'd given him, as he had a strong garlicky-type taste in his mouth.

The pills are Allium cepa D6 (ie onion).

Yes, yes, all anecdotal and no doubt completely caused by placebo effect blah blah blah blah.

HopeForTheBest Mon 19-Sep-11 10:21:08

I also chose our pedeatrician specifically because she offers homeopathic and other alternative treatments too.

TrillianAstra Mon 19-Sep-11 10:32:18

I'm open to herbal remedies as well as homeopathy.

I'm open to herbal remedies because they have something in them. Homeopathy does not. Can't you see the difference?

mousymouse Mon 19-Sep-11 10:36:04

herbal medicines are just that medicines with effects and side effects and acutal active substances.

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