WHAT IS HOMEOPATHY?
In Homeopathy, objective and subjective symptoms are not of much consequence, as it is a medical discipline which attributes origin of the symptoms to mental conditions of the mind. It is a cardinal maxim which describes “Healthy mind in a healthy body.”, and from this observation one can easily derive the conclusion that, remain in a healthy frame, health of mind and body cannot be denied. It is the mind which governs the body, controls its various functions, affects its various states of its metabolic effects. If the body is sound and healthy, the mind will also remain sound and healthy. Conversely, if the mind itself is diseased, it will have adverse effects on the body. So, in order to enjoy a disease-free, healthy and sound span of life, both mind and body must work in unison otherwise desired balance, between mind and body will be disturbed, thus giving rise to certain symptoms which trigger many symptoms which, in turn, cause many disorders to surface.
In Homeopathy, it is not that merely a disease or mass of symptoms are treated. In fact, it is the man, as a whole, that is treated. The reason being that it is not only the body which is not at ease, rather it is also the whole mental frame of the individual which is also not at ease. So, effort should be directed towards treating the disorders through mind. There is an old belief that our dietary patterns govern functioning of out mental facilities and functions. Certain types of foods agitate various functions of the body, thus also affecting the mind. So, there must be a suitable balance and complete affinity among the trio, mind, body and food. We have mentioned ‘Food’ because in diabetes, food is singled out as the prime cause for diabetic conditions and resultant complications.
Remember, when treating a patient, we are not treating his disease but treating the man as a whole. When there is pain in some part of the body, it is not only the body or that particular organ which is painful, in fact, it is the entire body which is affected thereby.
Symptoms: Homeopathy is a branch of medical science which is based on symptoms, though merely noting down symptoms should not be the sole aim of the doctor. Certain symptoms are felt and described by the patient, certain symptoms are felt by the patient but he is unable to spell out or describe the same and, finally a few symptoms do not fall under these two categories and the physician should have the ability and competence to observe, discern and classify such unmanifested symptoms(Latent symptoms).
HOW TO TAKE A CASE:
Case taking is both a tedious, arduous, but an interesting job. While relating his symptoms the patient must be clear in his mind, true, honest, forthright and non-secretive and must not conceal his any symptom from his doctor. The doctor should allow the patient the freedom of uninterrupted speech, and the patient must never gain an impression that the doctor:
1. did not give him sufficient time and opportunity to speak out his mind or.
2. did not give him a patient hearing or
3. (The doctor) was in an unusual haste and was inattentive, insensitive or adopted a casual approach.
4. was not sympathetic and finally.
5. was lying more on his capacity to pay than to heed to his averments, so on and so forth,
6. put him certain unpalatable and offensive questions which he (the doctor) could have easily avoided or he was taken for a ride.
Anyone of the aforesaid allegations, so to say, will suffice to torpedo a confidence building exercise and a viable healthy doctor-patient relationship which are so essential for a smooth mutual understanding.
HOW TO ELICIT INFORMATION (SYMPTOMS)
The doctor must ensure that his efforts, to elicit cogent and relevant information in his symptoms and history, should always be viewed by the patient as ‘friendly and sympathetic.’ The doctor is not like a lawyer or a policeman, he is like a sympathizer and, as such, his probing questions should never offend his patient. Following points should from basis for preparing case history of a patient.
1. “The patient should be allowed to tell his own story, stating what he feels and the particular symptoms he is most anxious to get rid of.”
2. “He (The doctor) lets you (Patient) have your say” (Dr. Clarke)
3. “If the doctor cannot see much more than the patient can tell him, he is not much of a doctor.” Dr. J.H. Clarke.
4. “But, the patient’s story provides not only the foundation, but also the outline which the imagination of the physician must fill in. it is on this power of correctly filling in the lines and the colors of a case that success in the art of case-taking of the physician largely depends.) (Dr.J.H.Clarke)
FOR THE PHYSICIAN
When the patients has finished his story, then comes the turn of the physician who should record, bearing in mind that following points on which be should focus his attention by recording from the patient.
(1) His past history and (2)(His) family history, (3) The cause (s) of his (patients) trouble, if ascertainable (4) Times of aggravation and amelioration (5) His desires and aversions (6) His state of mind and mental (7) and also examine him physically. (8) All other points, incidental to the main symptom, should also be taken into consideration and finally (9) Totality of the symptoms (Please read below for details). Then, the doctor should prepare a summarized repertory of the patients symptoms (10) Preservation of the record.
Totality of symptoms: Dr. J.H.Clarke further points out that to the totality of symptoms, as explained by Dr. Hahnemann “that this totality –that is the sum total of the sensations and observable changes in the organism, constitutes the concrete problem in every case, with which we have to deal, no matter what name the academicals may give to it.”
“Disease is an invisible thing” a Hahnemann puts it “and this vital fact must never be forgetten that Disease Is the Derangement of the invisible vital force.” And to further his concept of a disease Dr.Clarke goes on to say, basing his concept of a modern simile (that is the symptoms constitute a moving picture like the figures on the screen of a cinema)as under. “The visible and tangible part of the human body is the screen, the appearances and sensations of the diseased vital force are the “Symptoms” and are analogous to the moving figures, but the operators producing the hidden from the audience. All the same, it is by looking on the screen that you can read the story of the changes in the invisible life-force in away (which) you could not do by going behind the screen.” Hence “the totality of the symptoms constitutes the disease as out senses apprehend it. The academic name (which) we give to it, is a secondary matter”.
Hahnemann, when being asked by one his patients as to what his diseases was, and what he was going to give me, shot back that “The name of your disease is no concern of mine, and the name of the medicine I give is no cercern of yours.” “In fact, in a nutshall “the totality of the signs, pains and sensations is , for practical purpose, the concrete problem, and the less we trouble about the film and the light, the more clearly shall we be able to follow the story and discern out actual task” (Dr.J.H.Clarke).
The foregoing opinions, of established authorities, are meant to guide the patient and the physican alike. The patient must disclose his symptoms clearly and without holding back any fact and the physician is also not expected to draw hasty conclusions, without taking into consideration all the relevant factors and points. The patient is like a client and the physician is his legal advisor. If the patient is unable to disclose all the facts, the legal advisor won’t be able to prepare & present a well prepared and flawless case. Both, thus, must supplement each other of course, the ability of the physician lies in extracting all the points & facts, without offending his patient, which have evaded disclosure by the patient.
Our body, unless abused beyond measure, will continue to serve us and discharge its all the functions properly. But what makes the body function? The simple reply is that it is the vital force (which some prefer to call as autoimmune system) within the body. When this vital force is weakened or diseased, consequent upon some physical problem, the body either stops to function or malfunctions. Homeopathic medicines try to revive and regenerate this vital force to sustain the body-functions and also fight again invasions by foreigh bodies/ infective diseases. When this vital force is returned to its normal former rhythrn, all the body functions re-start functioning as heretofore.
An example will clarify the said point. For instance a person is having acute/chronic constipation which is only a symptom but not a disease. Constipation could be caused by various factors. The homeopathic medicines will remove the basic cause (s), such as dietary problems, weak peristaltic action of intestines, rectum and anus. When such causes are removed, affected organs will resume normal functioning, the problem of constipation will be automatically solved. In a way, by homeopathic medicines, vital force of digestive (excretory) organs has been revived. Instead of giving some laxative or purgative, which can temporarily provide relief but cannot cure (because, in the latter case, we have failed to touch the root cause).
WHAT IS HOMEOPATHY?