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A Good Starter Kit

For treating ailments that come on from time to time, it is prudent to keep remedies available at home or with you on vacations. It can be most frustrating when you finally decide on a remedy to find you don't own it. Sometimes it takes the beginner trying a few different remedies to get the right one. Even an expert doesn’t always get the correct remedy the first time. Purchasing a kit in a 3oth potency (30C or 30X) is an affordable way to begin. Kits come with remedies at a fraction of the cost of what you would pay if you were to purchase the remedies individually. Here is a list of the top 31 remedies.

Aconitum napellus Acon

Allium cepa All-c

Antimonium tartaricum Ant-t

Apis mellifica Apis

Arnica montana Arn

Arsenicum album Ars

Belladonna Bell

Bryonia alba Bry

Calcarea phosphorica Calc phos

Cantharis Canth

Carbo vegetabilis Carb veg

Chamomilla Cham

Ferrum phosphoricum Ferr phos

Gelsemium sempervirens Gels

Hepar sulphuris calcareum Hep

Hypericum perforatum Hyp

Ignatia amara Ign

Ipecacuanha Ip

Ledum palustre Led

Magnesia phosphorica Mag phos

Mercurius vivus Merc

Nux vomica Nux-v

Oscillococcinum Oscill

Phosphorus Phos

Podophyllum Podo

Pulsatilla Puls

Rhus tox Rhus-t

Ruta graveolens Ruta

Spongia tosta Spong

Sulphur Sul

Veratrum album Verat

The use of Latin names in homeopathy is used because Latin represents the universal language and was used by scholars in Samuel Hahnemann’s day. It allows for no mistaken identity from language to language and country to country. Since homeopathic preparation is a precise science, not a folk medicine, common names which vary regionally, are not utilized.

Stomach And Gastro-Intestinal Ailments

Gastro-intestinal disorders can sometimes be relieved by simple kitchen cupboard methods.

Indigestion, for example, can be quickly eliminated with a teaspoon or more of baking soda in 4 ounces of water to which the juice of 1/2 lemon is added.

Often raw vinegar can be the catalyst for relief when a splash of it is added to 4 ounces of water.

When using homeopathics it is useful to know that the remedy doesn’t have to be digested to be effective; it just needs to be dissolved in the mouth.

Three Leading Remedies for Gastro-Intestinal Complaints

1.) Arsenicum album

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Exhausted by illness
  • Restless, changing position
  • Anxious about illness and being alone
  • Fears illness could be fatal
  • Very thirsty
  • May be fever
  • Often chilly and craves being under blankets
  • Worse at night
  • Drinking even a little causes vomiting
  • Cramping in abdomen
  • External warmth is soothing
  • Burning in rectum from diarrhea
  • Good for food poisoning

2.) Nux vomica

  • Use when illness brought on by stress or over-indulgence
  • Heartburn
  • Nausea
  • Dry retching
  • Headache
  • Irritability
  • Worse in morning
  • Bloating
  • Gassiness
  • Desires vomiting for relief
  • Urge for bowel movement with little excretion

3.) Sulphur

  • Complete loss of, or excessive, appetite
  • Food tastes too salty
  • Drinks much, eats little
  • Desire for sweets
  • Weak and faint about 11 AM
  • Water fills patient
  • Abdomen sensitive to pressure
  • Internal feeling of rawness or soreness
  • Abdominal movements as of something alive
  • Morning diarrhea drives patient out of bed

Other Remedies to Learn and Consider for Further Study:

1.) Veratrum album

  • Violent and voluminous diarrhea with vomiting, may be simultaneously
  • Watery stools with greenish color
  • Cramps in abdomen relieved by diarrhea
  • Motion aggravates
  • Chilly
  • Very weak
  • Very thirsty for cold water

2.) Aloe

  • Aversion to meat
  • Flatulence after eating
  • Nausea with headache
  • Pain around navel, worse with pressure
  • Abdomen is full and heavy, hot and bloated
  • Weak feeling as if diarrhea will come on
  • Stool passes without effort
  • Constipation pressure in lower abdomen

3.) China

  • Vomiting of undigested food
  • Slow digestion
  • Hungry and longing for food which stays undigested
  • Flatulence
  • Belching of bitter fluid with no relief
  • Worse eating fruit
  • Internal coldness of stomach and abdomen

4.) Phosphorus

  • Much vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Restlessness
  • Thirsty for cold drinks
  • Better to use Arsenicum first unless vomiting triggered by smallest amount of liquid
  • Warm water immediately aggravates
  • Weakness in abdomen
  • Feels hungry
  • Involuntary stools

5.) Pulsatilla

  • Symptoms from poor diet or excess of rich foods
  • Look also for general symptoms of remedy
  • Symptoms not too severe
  • Heartburn
  • Heaviness after eating
  • Coated tongue
  • Cold drinks relieve

6.) Ipecac

  • Extreme nausea possibly with no diarrhea
  • After vomiting, still no relief
  • Not that ill, but maybe a fever and weakness
  • May be caused by excessive eating
  • Vomiting can be almost nonstop
  • Pains in abdomen
  • Lots of gas
  • Green stool

7.) Bryonia

  • Digestive symptoms are aggravated by motion
  • Small amounts of liquid may cause vomiting
  • Pressure on abdomen helps
  • Diarrhea worse after waking
  • Desires to be still

8.) Podophyllum – this remedy is not commonly found in remedy kits and is of immeasurable value during a bout of severe diarrhea. It would be prudent to purchase it separately to keep in your stock.

  • Common for diarrhea
  • Frequent and voluminous diarrhea
  • Completely liquid stools
  • Sometimes with headache
  • Vomiting seldom accompanies the diarrhea

Sore Throats

Sore throats are best treated by giving a dose of the correct remedy every 4-8 hours for 1-3 days until relief is obtained. Gargling with warm salt water is a good way to help keep the throat clean and move towards completion. Strep throat sounds threatening but is often quickly relieved by sound homeopathic treatment (in one to three days). I am not a proponent of antibiotic use and find them to be suppressive and dangerous. If, however, you have already begun, I urge you to continue for the entire duration prescribed. Otherwise, the infection will often return with a vengeance. In my experience, the infections usually return at some time in the future if suppressive methods such as antibiotics are employed. Homeopathics can still be used successfully in conjunction with antibiotic treatment and will minimize in the recurrence of the disease.

Five Remedies for Sore Throat

1.) Belladonna

  • First remedy to consider with sore throat
  • If pain has sudden start with fever and red skin, then likely Belladonna will work
  • Very red throat
  • May be swollen but little or no pus
  • Swallowing is painful … even liquids
  • Throat is dry

2.) Hepar sulph

  • Used when sore throat is accompanied by severe infection
  • Pus is in throat with very swollen tonsils
  • Feeling of something stuck in throat
  • Irritability
  • Chilliness
  • Aggravated by exposure to cold
  • Warm drinks are soothing
  • Pain may extend to the ears

3.) Arsenicum album

  • Chilliness with fever
  • Restlessness
  • Fatigue
  • Burning throat pain
  • Warm drinks help, but cold drinks aggravate

4.) Rhus tox

  • Painful throat helped by warm drinks
  • Worse pain in the morning
  • Pain caused by throat strain
  • Worse after first swallows but easier after more swallowing
  • Very restless but not as tired as for Arsenicum patient
  • Weepy

5.) Gelsemium

  • Comes on slowly over a period of days
  • Chill up the back
  • Desires to be alone
  • Limbs heavy, eyelids droop
  • Body is hot with cold hands and feet

Other Remedies to Learn and Consider for Further Study:

1.) Phytolacca

  • Much aching in the body with fever
  • Sore throat worse with cold drinks
  • Appearance is dark red or purple
  • Swollen glands
  • Pain in ears, especially with swallowing
  • Drawn to swallowing even though it is painful
  • Cold and need covers but still chilled
  • Body aches cause restlessness

2.) Lycopodium

  • Worse on right side and may spread to left
  • Drinks of any temperature relieve
  • Pain into ears
  • Slow onset of pain
  • Not very sick otherwise
  • Desires fresh air
  • Worse in late afternoon

3.) Ferrum phos

  • Tonsils red and swollen; mouth is hot
  • Sore throat of singers

4.) Mercurius

  • With fever and weakness
  • Red, swollen throat with pus
  • Sensitive to temperature, hot or cold
  • Liquids of any temperature aggravates
  • Worse at night
  • Drooling (evidenced by wet pillow or increased swallowing)
  • Puffy tongue
  • May be lots of mucous

5.) Lachesis

  • Worse on left side but may spread to right
  • Warm liquids aggravate, but cold may help
  • Painful swallowing
  • Warm environment aggravates
  • Worse in morning upon waking
  • Sensation of swollen throat

Other Remedies to Consider When Treating Colds and Influenza

1.) Allium cepa

  • Clear, burning nasal discharge
  • Eye tearing
  • Red, burning eyes
  • Worse in warm rooms in evening, better in open air
  • Tickling throat that leads to dry cough that is painful
  • Very thirsty
  • Even temperament

2.) Drosera

  • Dry, croupy coughs
  • Barking, ringing sound in cough
  • Sore throat
  • Cough may be in chest
  • Coughing may lead to heaving or vomiting
  • Needs to support chest during coughing to relieve pain
  • Worse while lying down
  • Eating and drinking aggravate
  • Sometimes may be some mucous

3.) Euphrasia

  • Non-irritating discharge from nose worse in open air or when lying down
  • Tears that burn on skin
  • Loose cough but not too deep
  • Lots of mucous
  • Cough is worse in day, better at night

4.) Ferrum phos

  • Those with predisposition to colds
  • First stage of inflammatory illness
  • Croup
  • Short, painful, tickling cough
  • Hard, dry cough with sore chest
  • Hoarseness
  • Cough better at night

5.) Kali bichromium

  • Consider in later stages of cold
  • Thick, yellow discharge that is stringy
  • So thick that it is hard to blow form nose
  • Crusty discharges in nose
  • Thick, post-nasal drip
  • Sinus headaches and infections in general

6.) Natrum mur

  • Few unique symptoms
  • Use when symptom is lots of clear, white mucous
  • Thick and sticky discharge that can collect in throat
  • Sneezing spells
  • Loss of taste and smell
  • Accompanied by small blisters around the mouth and nose
  • Dry, cracked lips
  • Weepy, sad temperament that rejects attention

7.) Phosphorus

  • Good for a variety of coughs
  • Dry, croupy cough … or loose and deep
  • Accompanied by all kinds and colors of phlegm
  • May have chest pain that is worse with motion
  • Chest pain worse when lying on left side
  • May have tightness in chest
  • Cold air and lying down worsen the cough
  • Triggered during time of falling asleep
  • Liquids aggravate the cough
  • Good for laryngitis and hoarseness
  • Chilly and crave ice-cold drinks
  • Nervous when alone or in the dark; likes company and reassurance

8.) Pulsatilla

  • Accompanied by thick yellow or green mucous
  • Runny nose may alternate with congestion
  • Nose is running in open air and stuffy in warm room
  • Good for dry and loose coughs
  • Cough is dry at night but loose in day
  • Lots of coughing may end in gagging
  • Look for “Pulsatilla” temperament when choosing

9.) Spongia

  • Best for croupy, harsh cough
  • Cough sounds like a saw
  • Cough awakens from sleep
  • Has constriction in throat
  • Drinking warm fluids and eating may relieve


Colds can be left to cure on their own. In fact it’s an opportunity to “clean house” and as long as the loved-one experiences colds infrequently, it’s an opportunity to gain better health on many levels. My clients often report that their children have made physical, emotional and mental leaps after a completed cold. I have noted this in my own children. Unless there is a strong justification for treating colds I generally don’t treat them homeopathically. Instead, I resortto enforced rest, good bone stocks, plenty of water, raw garlic, raw milk and homeopathic cell salts.

Influenza is another concern. It, too, can be left to cure itself, however for many people the flu is a more trying illness and has the potential for greater discomfort and/or danger. Sometimes the flu can be cured with the use of one well-chosen remedy. Other times one following another is a better course. In any event, when there is an epidemic, the community at large begins to represent an entity as a whole and often a remedy that is useful to one member is the best suited for the whole. In other words, if one finds Gelsemium curative during a flu epidemic for one member of the family, it is likely it will be curative for the others. This includes neighbors and friends, too; watch for similar symptoms. In fact, the curative flu remedy can be used prophylactically for those not yet affected. Give a dose of the chosen remedy to those who might contract the flu 1x/week until the threat is eliminated.

Nine Leading Remedies for Colds and Influenza

1.) Aconitum

  • Use when symptoms come on quickly, especially after exposure to cold weather
  • Use for first 24 hours of illness
  • Very ill within a few hours
  • Anxiety
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Thirst
  • Feverish but not delirious
  • Watery, runny nose
  • Strong headache
  • Use when illness has suddenly appeared as cough in early stages, especially croup
  • Cough with sensation of choking, causing panic
  • Dry cough or with some watery mucous

2.) Oscillococcinum

  • Quick onset of influenza or cold
  • Best utilized during cold, damp weather
  • Aches and chilled

3.) Gelsemium

  • Symptoms come on gradually
  • Low energy for several days while experiencing tickling in back of mouth
  • Runny nose with watery and irritating discharge
  • Lots of tiredness and heaviness
  • Chills in back
  • Headache above the neck

4.) Bryonia

  • Common for coughs

Indicated by cold that has moved into the chest

  • Cough is dry and with spasms
  • Worse with deep breathing and after eating and drinking
  • Open air is relieving, as is warm water
  • Cough is painful, resulting in soreness throughout the body
  • Pain from coughing can trigger the instinct to restrain head or chest during coughing
  • Putting pressure on sore areas is relieving
  • Desires to breathe deeply but pain prevents this – short, panting breaths
  • Little mucous, but what there is, is yellow or with some blood
  • Often thirsty and can’t find the right temperature
  • Likely to look sick with dusky complexion
  • Irritable and want to be alone

5.) Nux vomica

  • Good for colds brought on by cold, dry weather
  • Symptoms have slow onset (opposite of Aconite)
  • Dry tickling sensation in nose
  • Later, stuffy nose with watery discharge and sneezing
  • Stuffy at night, runny in the day
  • Eating aggravates symptoms
  • Cough can be worse in morning
  • Warm drinks help coughing
  • Body is chilly and has hard time getting warm even with lots of covers and in warm room
  • Personality is irritable and over-sensitive

6.) Rhus tox

  • Stuffy nose with thick yellow or green mucous
  • Red throat
  • Dry cough
  • Hoarseness
  • Cold room aggravates
  • Worse at night
  • Cough prevents sleep or triggered by sleep, causing awakening
  • Movement is relieving

7.) Eupatorium

  • Coryza, with sneezing
  • Hoarseness and cough with numbness in chest; must support it
  • Soreness of muscles and bones
  • Chronic loose cough
  • Worse at night

8.) Arsenicum

  • Used for head colds and coughs
  • Lots of watery, nasal running that burns
  • Nose is runny but feels stuffed
  • Lots of sneezing that does not bring relief
  • Mucous becomes thick and yellow over time
  • Dull headache in forehead
  • Good for all kinds of coughs: throat or chest, loose or dry
  • Worse at night (midnight to 3 AM)
  • Cold air aggravates
  • Cough is better with warm drinks
  • Sometimes has wheezing and burning chest pain
  • Very chilled but can be relieved more easily than Nux Vomica patient
  • Restless temperament with anxiety
  • Even though ill, sensitive to messy areas

9.) Belladonna

  • Symptoms come on suddenly
  • Important to take early in illness
  • High fever
  • Red, dry face
  • Hot skin
  • Pounding head with visible pulse in head and neck
  • In early stages, easily aggravated
  • Sensitive to light
  • Mentally dull from illness
  • Delirious and anxious about imaginary things
  • Differs from Aconite, in that patients are not as sharp mentally
  • Dilated pupils and dry skin
  • Thin, watery nasal discharge
  • Dry, hot throat
  • Raw, sore throat with bad earache
  • Coughing in upper chest or throat
  • Painful cough
  • Croupy, barking cough that is worse at night


Fever is not always a cause for a remedy. In fact it is often better left to complete itself because it is a valuable cure. Fever “cooks off” a viral or bacterial infection more effectively than any external means. When we reduce a fever via medications it keeps the body from healing properly. The body has the additional burden of processing the unnatural drug. Although advised by medical doctors for years, aspirin is a particularly dangerous drug when given during fever. It is only recently that doctors have shied away from this practice. Now Ibuprofen is prescribed, and again we are learning of the toll this practice takes on our families.

Throughout history, homeopathy has maintained the same position: let a fever run its course, augment the nutrition and fluids and make the person comfortable. This is a rather sweeping statement and circumstances will determine the strength of this guideline. Yet there are occasions when it may be valuable to treat fever. When a high fever, of approximately 103-106° continues for days without interruption, the concern generally is not for fever but for dehydration. To minimize dehydration, coat the palms of the hands and bottoms of feet with olive oil and insist on fluids. Homemade popsicles are considered fluids and are more accepted by children. Dehydration can be dangerous, and if it goes too far, may require immediate hospitalization for treatment with an IV. In any case, long lasting high fevers should be treated homeopathically as well as painful or spasmodic coughs with accompanying fevers.

If you give the chosen remedy and the patient falls asleep, consider this a good sign. The best healing is done during sleep. If in the morning the fever and its accompanying symptoms are gone, you have chosen the correct remedy. If the same symptoms return, repeat the same remedy. If this does not result in increased health then it is time to try another remedy. A useful sign is to see vitality returned to a languid sufferer and peace restored to an agitated one. When a crying child who is clinging and feverish stops crying yet the fever and clinging remain, consider this a move in the right direction. Do not repeat the remedy until a positive direction ceases. The mental or psychological presentations are often our most accurate indications of pathology.

Homeopathy requires the art of observation and hones skills of interpretation. Finding the right remedy is a crucial step in healing someone, but what to do next can be perplexing if these rules are not adhered to.

Three Leading Remedies for Fever

1.) Belladonna

  • Best remedy to try first
  • Give during early stages
  • Most commonly given for fever
  • Red face
  • Hot skin
  • Glassy eyes and dilated pupils
  • Restless and agitated
  • Can be a bit incoherent
  • Nervous excitability

2.) Nux vomica

  • Extremely chilled – worsened by moving or removing blankets
  • Symptoms can be triggered by overindulgences
  • Can be accompanied by digestive symptoms or heaviness in head
  • Can be worse in morning and in the open air

3.) Pulsatilla

  • Give when fever is the only symptom
  • For persons who have classic Pulsatilla emotion symptoms – weepy, clingy, craving affection … changeable moods, whiny-type irritability
  • Do not like external heat and do not like to be covered
  • Triggered by overeating and worse at night
  • Often not thirsty

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