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Counting Sheep? Try Homeopathy

Joette Calabrese, HMC, PHom M

March 7th, 2013  |  64 Comments

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It’s a feeling you’ve probably experienced … the frustration of not being able to sleep. You know you’ve got to get up in a few hours, but sleep still eludes you.

Western medicine is quick to jump in with a sleeping pill promising quick relief. It doesn’t matter why you can’t sleep. Everyone gets pretty much the same medicine.

The beauty of homeopathy is that we take the time to evaluate the individual symptoms pertaining to each person’s sleep problems. This gives us a chance to holistically assess what factors, such as stress levels, may be hindering sleep.

With the use of homeopathy, sleep is reestablished without the props and empty promises of drugs. It is sound, thorough and not chemically induced. Before taking a drug of questionable safety, consider the world’s most effective and natural medicine to put your mind at ease and then hit the sack.

Read through the following descriptions and select the remedy that most closely matches your symptoms.

Nux vomica

Nux vomica 30 is the premier remedy for folks who can’t stay asleep. Its hallmark is wakefulness anytime from 2-4 AM, usually accompanied by thoughts of the day, such as duties and responsibilities.

It is particularly useful for someone who has a sedentary lifestyle, tends to overeat and drink and is frequently irritable. The need for this remedy is often a result of taking medications or occurs after an overindulgence of them. The wakefulness is often accompanied by digestive problems, including constipation, diarrhea or a combination of both.

If taken four times a day for four days and then repeated weekly for a month, Nux will likely relieve the problem. When it does, the remedy should no longer be taken.

The difference between homeopathic remedies and conventional drugs is that the remedies gently stimulate the body’s ability to bring it back to wholeness, not whack it over the head with a sledgehammer!


Coffea cruda

Within the homeopathic laws of healing, we also find the axiom “like cures like.” When homeopathic remedies are made, they are extremely diluted. This allows the toxic properties to be annulled. Hence, something that is stimulating and might keep us awake in the crude form, such as coffee, will do precisely the opposite in the diluted form.

The next remedy to consider is Coffea cruda 30, made from the coffee bean. Coffea cruda is a remarkable remedy that is tailored to someone who simply can’t fall asleep on retiring. This person often feels “stepped up” and is bothered by slight noises.

An indulgence in coffee during the day, even as an early morning habit, can promote this pathology. It would be wise for any insomniac to eliminate coffee altogether, but if that is impossible, Coffea cruda 30 will likely do the trick. Using the same protocol as Nux vomica, Coffea cruda will adjust the sleep only if the “picture” fits.



As in all cases requiring Chamomilla, the individual is fractious and irritable, and these characteristics will prevent a good night’s sleep, as will physical pain. Due to desperation, sleeping medications may have become routine, and Chamomilla can help restore rest.


Arnica montana 6X

Whereas the other remedies listed here can be used in the 30th potency, I’ve found that when Arnica is given in 6x potency, insomnia diminishes.  The person needing Arnica usually feels like the bed is too hard, and as a result, he or she can’t get to sleep. This remedy can be given twice per day, every day, until there is noticeable improvement. Then it can be discontinued and reinstated only if the pathology returns.


Arsenicum album

Arsenicum album is a powerful yet gentle remedy when sleeplessness is caused by anxiety or fear. This person is often driven out of bed from panic or worry or experiences anxiety while asleep. This often afflicts a person who is exacting and particular (think Felix Unger).

Such a person has difficulty falling asleep when overtired, for example after mental or physical exertion. There is often restlessness before bed and waking after midnight. This person will respond well to the protocol above and, as always, should cease taking the remedy when sleep is restored.




Joette laughingI am a homeopath with a worldwide practice working with families and individuals via Zoom. I'm also a teacher and most importantly, a mom who raised my now-adult children depending on homeopathy over the last 31 years. I lived decades of my life with food intolerances, allergies, and chemical sensitivities until I was cured with homeopathy, so I understand pain, anxiety, and suffering. You may feel that your issues are more severe or different than anyone else’s, but I have seen it all in my practice and in my work in India. My opinion is that nothing has come close to the reproducible, safe and effective results that my clients, students and I have achieved with homeopathy.

Call today and learn how homeopathy might just be the missing piece in your health strategy.

Joette is not a physician and the relationship between Joette and her clients is not of prescriber and patient, but as educator and client. It is fully the client's choice whether or not to take advantage of the information Joette presents. Homeopathy doesn't "treat" an illness; it addresses the entire person as a matter of wholeness that is an educational process, not a medical one. Joette believes that the advice and diagnosis of a physician is often in order.

We've provided links for your convenience but we do not receive any remuneration nor affiliation in payment from your purchase.

The Author disclaims all liability for any loss or risk, personal or otherwise incurred as a consequence of use of any material in this article. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


64 thoughts on “Counting Sheep? Try Homeopathy”

  1. Linda says:

    Excellent video. Thanks for helping to educate us.

  2. Cathy Osborn says:

    Love the video! And great visual with the background info. 🙂

  3. Kayla says:

    GREAT info – thank you so much for sharing this! Oh, how I wish I knew this long ago. I took arsenicum album 6x two nights ago, one dose just before I went to bed, and I slept the night through – something I’ve only done once or twice in more than 5 years!

    “. . . cease taking the remedy when sleep is restored.” Evidently just that one dose didn’t stick, since I didn’t take it again last night and I had one of my worst nights ever. (Yes, I’m under great stress right now.) How many nights of good sleep would be needed to say it’s restored? Also, would a 30 dose (x or c) be as good? That’s all my local health store carries.

  4. Beth says:

    Joette, could you clarify these instructions under Nux vomica? When you say “four times a day for four days and then repeated weekly for a month”, do you mean take it four times a day for four days in a row, then repeat for a month, 4 days on and 3 days off? Or do you mean take for 4 days and then one day a week for the next 3 weeks?

  5. Jana Bloom says:

    When I go on the “weekly” for one day, do I still take it four times for that one day? It isn’t clear to me.

    1. admin says:

      Yes, four doses spread out during that one day.

  6. Kelsey says:

    Hm. My comments don’t seem to like to get posted. I’ll try this again. I have a question – I am trying the nux vomica remedy, and started 3 days ago. However, the first day, I only remembered to take the remedy three times, the second day I took it 4 times, but not evenly spaced like I was trying to do, and the third day I only remembered to take it three times once again. My question is, do I need to start over since I haven’t been consistent with the remedies? Today is the fourth day, and I took a dose this morning, but then had a very busy day at work and forgot to take it and it is now almost 4pm. So, I’m not doing very good at the consistency thing, which I think is pretty important with homeopathics, right? Thanks!

    1. admin says:

      Hi Kelsey I wouldn’t worry about keeping up with perfect consistencies in taking remedies. Since I don’t know what you’re suffering from and the degree of suffering, it’s hard for me to know what potency, what frequency and for how long. However, I must say that if you forget to take a remedy, it can sometimes indicate that there is no longer a need to take it, or perhaps not as often. Four times per day might indeed be too much.

      1. Kelsey says:

        Thanks for the response. I’m trying the nux vomica remedy because I have many of the symptoms you list above (waking early in the morning with thoughts of the day, stomach problems first thing in the morning…). I have a heck of a time staying asleep at night, the most annoying part being waking up very early in the morning (even if I went to bed late) and not being able to fall back asleep because anxiety takes over (anxiety over things that, during the day, wouldn’t stress me out). My problem seems to be somewhat tied to hormones, because the problem is always worse at specific times during the month. Anyway, that’s why I was trying the nux vomica remedy. And that’s why I was worried about being consistent throughout the day, since the problem is a nighttime thing, it’s not always top of mind throughout the day (although it certainly affects my energy throughout the day). I had noticed my stomach problems in the morning getting better from just the couple of days of taking the remedy, but I’m still waking up early. I’ll stick with the regiment though, and hopefully it’ll help me sleep through the night!

    2. gail Marie says:

      sounds like me , I too only get 3 doses in 🙂

  7. Joanna Katherine says:

    I tried it and it worked! Nux Vomica has changed my life!

  8. megan says:

    Why do some say take 1 pill and other say take 3 to as much as 6 pills like bottle says. If less is more ???? 1 pill sounds right cause its less. so why?????

  9. Kelsey Jack says:

    I started suffering from severe insomnia my 6th month into pregnancy, I am suspicious of adrenal fatigue/crash and high cortisol. I exercised quite a bit throughout my pregnancy. Looking back on my 6th month of pregnancy my feelings that coincided with my insomnia were nesting, everything had to be tidy and neat before I went to sleep, and everything had to be set right in my mind. When I got in bed I just laid there fully alert. I’m sure part of it was anxiety and happiness, but after not being able to fall asleep upon retiring I would get so frustrated. I was in labor for two days, and I didn’t sleep. Now fast forward, my insomnia has carried over and I’m still suffering immensely even though my baby sleeps through the night. I’m 10 months postpartum. I’ve tried everything and I’m currently on trazadone and bioidentical progesterone.

    I fear being woken up by any sound, or if I hear the monitor, I’m not sure why. I have to sleep with cotton balls in my ears and get hot at night. If by offchance I am able to fall asleep on my own, it’s an “awareness” sleep, very light and unrefreshing sleep, I wake up at midnight and have to take something. I will also wake up at 4:30/5am even on my medicine. It’s obvious my hormones, especially progesterone, but maybe estrogen is crazy low. I’m curious, do I treat my insomnia from how it began, I’m trying to find what the root issue/emotion was/is. It’s tricky with pregnancy because it could have started by way of hormonal issues, nerves or everything combined.

    What is the best way to take remedies together? There are so many remedies that have what fit my symptoms. I am just overwhelmed on where to start. I just ordered your “cure yourself and your family” materials with cell salts, etc. but just overwhelmed in how to make everything fit together correctly.

    I’m looking at coffee cruda (however I’ve noticed a little bit of hyperness taking this before bed), aconite napellus, sepia, nux vomica, asarum europeaum, cocculus, pulsatilla alumina and cell salts, especially kali phos, calc phos and mag phos. How would you recommend taking all of these together? Would I use your rule of fours? I am also wanting to add in cell salts for mineral depletion in the body. Just unsure which remedies, dosing and timing.
    Thank you!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      I’m afraid i can’t take your case here. Homeopathy is a vast subject but the blog, mysimple cd’s and courses will help you to understand. I also work one on one on SKYPe consultations, but I encourage folks to learn as much as they can with my teachings, if possible.

  10. Sandy says:

    Is there a remedy for those who sleep, but they don’t feel it’s a good deep sleep? I have two friends with this. one is post menopausal. I think it’s been going on for about 20 plus years. The other is menopausal. Is sepia good for sleeplessness and insomnia when it started with menopause or periomenapause?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      I wouldn’t use Sepia with the only rationale being a post menopausal state. Instead, you’d want to stack up a few important conditions that line up with a decision to use Sepia. Instead, I’d use a remedy that covers the main condition of light sleep.

  11. Sandy says:

    That makes total sense. Thank you. And how about in the case the person can’t fall asleep the entire night. If they took a remedy before going to bed, should they repeat that remedy say, in an hour? Or should they move on and try a different one that may fit their picture?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      One of my all time favorite homeopathics for not being able to fall asleep at bedtime is Coffea 200. Its pretty rare that if taken nightly that a 2nd dose is needed.

      1. Sandy says:

        I took it once but was up the entire night. I didn’t know if o should re-dose or just try something different. I have friends that this remedy works well in but I saw on the facebook page a few folks saying it kept them up. Is the error just not following through and persisting with it when the picture fits?

  12. Sandy says:

    Okay, and what if the remedy that they took was Coffea 200? And they failed to sleep at all. If the picture fits- persist with it? Do it over more than one night? A few on the Facebook page said it kept them up, and one said that it worked if she took it in the morning and afternoon, and several said it worked for them. But for me, I did not relax at all.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Without fully taking the case, I can’t say what is specific for you, but one dose does not a protocol make. Having said this, if it makes someone worse, its time to move on to another of the remedies mentioned in the article.

  13. Sue says:

    What is the protocol for Coffea 200? Do you take only on the nights you can’t fall asleep or daily like Nux??

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      It can be used either way. If the condition is chronic, the homeopathic is used in the same fashion as to meet the chronic with daily repetition. If its occasional, the homeopathic is used as needed.

      1. Scotty says:

        If it’s a chronic case of insomnia where sleep improves by taking the remedy 3-4x a day for four days, then gets very bad sleep on the three days off of the remedy, should the remedy the person still refrain from taking the remedy until the three days off are finished before doing another four days on?

        1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

          When its a chronic condition, particularly for insomnia, we usually just use twice daily and continue for weeks.

  14. Mira Bryan says:

    Could you clarify the Nux Vomica protocol? 4x/day for 4 days. Then off 3 days or off a week? And by repeated do you mean just repeated for one day or the 4 days again? (4 on, 3 off, 4 onot, 3 off etc). Asked on in the student group but no one knew. Thank you!

    1. Courtney Ingham says:

      It can be taken for those 4 days, given a break for 3 and resumed the next week for 4 consecutive days again.

  15. Helen says:

    This is a great article, thanks Joette! I just want to clarify, when you recommend the protocol, such as the Nux Vomica here, do you recommend succussing it or using dry? Thanks!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      No need to succuss.

  16. Nikki MacMillan says:

    My 3 year old has always and still tosses and turns all night long- starting about 3 hours after he has gone to bed. He rotates like a clock and I can’t imagine he gets any really deep sleep although he will generally stay in a sleeping state. He also sleeps very hot to where the pillow is wet with sweat. None of the remedies seem to fit. Could you suggest one? Thank you!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      I don’t suggest for individual cases on this forum.

  17. Thank you for this. My 2 year old Daughter has struggled with sleep since birth. We have addressed her ferritin levels and gut health, but occasionally she has periods where sleep is difficult for her. Particularly trouble going to sleep and early waking. I am so thankful to have found your website and am hopeful one of these homeopathic remedies will help!

  18. lisa says:

    Thanks, Joette. Out of all the recommendations, I am inclined to try the Nux Vom 30c protocol over the month (4days on 3days off); quick question…. as the blog article indicates taking the remedy for one month, if the person were to feel their condition of sleepless nights ceased before the period of one month, should they stop taking the remedy or go ahead and continue to the end to cover a month?

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      We usually stop when VMB, while being prepared to resume its use if needed.

  19. lisa says:

    That sounds along the line of thinking I had… thanks, Joette! God bless you for all the hours you put into answering our questions…. very generous.

  20. Debi Tonks says:

    Thank you for your insight! My husband is suffering from insomnia brought on by recently introduced medication, so it looks like we’ll be trying the Nux Vomica. I read in another blog post of yours (for shingles) that taking remedies while taking pharmaceutical medicines may make the remedy less effective. Was that just for shingles, or would this be the case here as well? I mainly want to make sure I’m aware of what to watch for as far as effectiveness goes.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      It’s not so much that drugs make homeopathy less effective as much as they make it difficult to read symptoms (a most important aspect of homeopathy) because they’re suppressed by the drug. They can also send the direction of the condition to a deeper state, while the homeopathic is intended to uproot. Having said this we don’t ask people to halt their drugs but use the homeopathics in tandem with the drug until the drugs become superfluous.

  21. Debi Tonks says:

    Thank you for your response! Another question from re-reading the article came to mind:

    With Coffea cruda, does it still typically work with someone with ADHD where caffeine tends to calm them down, or is it flipped? The description of what Coffea treats sounds exactly like what my son goes through each night, but he has ADHD, and I don’t want to accidentally make him more jittery 😉

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Coffea is not what I usually think of for a hyperactive child with ADHD unless there’s anxiety or sleep problems associated with it.

  22. Kathy Stephens says:

    Hi Joette,

    Could you please clarify the protocol for Arsenicum Album? What should be the dose and frequency?

  23. Silvia Reid says:

    Yes, please could you please clarify the protocol for Arsenicun Album?
    Thank you!!

  24. Jeff Blackburn says:

    For what it’s worth, I have great success when I take the cell salt Mag Phos. If there is a bit of anxiety I will take two cell salts together – Mag Phos and Kali Phos.

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      It’s worth plenty Jeff.

  25. nancy nobel says:

    I am trying the nux vomica protocol. I know it has been asked a few times but I never saw a clear answer. I take nux 4 times per day for 4 days in a row. Then take 3 days off. Repeat the 4 days on, 3 days off? Thanks for all your info Joette!! I enjoy learning from you!

  26. nancy nobel says:

    I am taking it for early morning wakefulness accompanied by digestive issues as this article is talking about…..but in the article it states to “taken four times a day for four days and then repeated weekly for a month” I’m not sure what repeated weekly means. 4 days on, 3 days off every week until the insomnia is resolved? Thanks

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Admittedly, it’s poorly written. What I should have said was it should be taken for four days in a row. Then one day only every week for a month. Any day that it’s taken it is done so 4 times on that day.

  27. nancy nobel says:

    I am using nux vomica for early morning wakefulness accompanied by digestive issues. When the article states “taken four times a day for four days and then repeated weekly for a month” I am not sure what repeated weekly means. Take it 4 days on, 3 days off every week until insomnia is resolved?

  28. nancy nobel says:

    Sorry for the repeat comment….it didn’t seem like it went through. Thanks for the clarification!!!!

  29. Faye says:

    Regarding Arsenicum Album, you wrote, “This person will respond well to the protocol above and, as always, should cease taking the remedy when sleep is restored.” Which protocol– the one for Nux Vomica or the one for Arnica? Thanks!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      It’s an overall directive when using homeopathics for sleep.

  30. Gail Marie says:

    can’t decide which sleep aid is for me .
    i urinate before bed then i drop off to sleep maybe 15 mins . & something wakes me. then i urinate again.I don’t know if i think “i’m awake so guess i’ll go to the bathroom.”,maybe sleep 1 or 1 & 1/2 wake again. about every 2 hrs, maybe i sleep 3 just before its time to get up usually around 6 AM.
    I have nun vomica 30C on hand but it doesn’t saying anything about using it for sleep. wonder what you suggest for me

    1. Gail Marie says:

      sooo I took the nun vomica 30 for a month now , 4 , 4Xdaily whoops then 4 days off , should be 3 days off. any way I’m still waking in the night 11- 2 or 3 . I don’t seam to feel anxious but I sure would like to sleep. I think it might be because I get hot , when I go to bed I’m cold so have extra bedding on then i wake again after I cool off .

  31. Gail Marie says:

    I also have Ignatia amara , not sure thats’ for sleep

    1. Gail Marie says:

      i have always had a hard time falling a sleep.
      these days i fall asleep then i’m awake in a few mins , not sure what wakes me . i seem to wake often the first couple hrs then about every 2 hrs for the bathroom . even tho i i empty my bladder before bed . I sleep really sound when i’m a sleep . i might sleep well the last 3 hrs before getting up @ about 6 AM

      1. Copenicus says:

        It sounds like you could have sleep apnea. With the frequent waking and frequent urination.

        Perhaps, as this is now two years later, you have already figured that out.

  32. Tracy says:

    Please could you clarify the protocol for arsenicum album? It is not clear in article. And what potency? Could I use 200? Thank you sooo much for all you share, it has helped me greatly!

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      “It will act in the same fashion as the remedy above” (Arnica)

  33. gail doore says:

    wonder why I haven’t had an answer from you , I still am a wake 2-3 hrs in the night after sleeping some . ive taken 4 containers of the nux vomica

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH, RSHom(Na) says:

      Where’s your question?
      We NEVER continue with a homeopathic medicine if it doesn’t act after a short time of trying.
      Too clarify, there is not just one medicine for insomnia that works for all people all the time. There are probably 50 from which to choose. Just like any medicine, when the 1st one fails to act, it means we move on to other choices. In these short blog articles I focus on the medicines that will act for a large number or people, not the entire population.

  34. Rachel says:

    Mrs. Calabrese,

    For chronic insomnia, do you now favor Nux vomica 30 twice a day or 200 before bed? Thank you!

    ~ Rachel

    1. Joette Calabrese, HMC, CCH says:

      My favor doesn’t change, only the circumstances of the case.

  35. Rachel says:

    That actually helps point me in the right direction, thank you Mrs. Calabrese!

  36. Kimberly says:

    Just wanted to share an observation. I began taking arsenicum album 200 and hepar sulph 200 for an infection. At the same time, an unrelated rash on a different body part also started to improve. Once the infection cleared, I stopped taking the hepar sulph but continued with the the arsenicum album because the rash was still improving. I am now noticing that my sleep procrastination is going away. I have been plagued by sleep procrastination my entire life and nothing has ever helped until now.

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