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Homeopathic remedies are non-toxic and safe for use in babies and children (1) and research has shown that homeopathic remedies can be effective in children with respiratory tract infections (2), Otitis media (build up of fluid in the ear which can lead to infection) (3) and sinusitis (4).

Homeopathy is a system of medicine which is based on treating the individual with highly diluted substances given in mainly tablet form, which triggers the body’s natural system of healing. In children, the most appropriate medicine is matched to the illness according to the symptoms and how the child is feeling in themselves.

Homeopathic remedies can be used at home in acute conditions, but recurrent coughs and infections should been seen by a registered qualified homeopath.

Remedies commonly used in childhood illnesses include:

Belladonna: indicated where the symptoms have come on suddenly and there is heat, throbbing and pain, irritability, and symptoms worse from jarring. Children can be obstinate and may bite or hit.

Gelsemium: the number one flu remedy, with symptoms slow to come on, where there is much heaviness and drooping, fatigue, clammy skin, flushes of hot and cold, dizziness and congestion.

Pulsatilla: has blocked painful sinuses, sticky mucus, feels better in the fresh air and has a changeable, clingy mood, tearful during a fever and wanting to be carried.

Bryonia: the symptoms are slow to come on, there is much dryness and pains are worse from even the slightest movement. Firm pressure on the affected area is helpful. They are irritable and want to be left alone. Children may reject what they just asked for.

* Any ongoing health concerns should be discussed with a doctor

References:

1. Dantas F Rampes H, 2000. Do homeopathic medicines provoke adverse effects? A systematic review. BR Homeopathic Journal 89 (Supl): 535-8

2. de Lange de Klerk, ESM, Blommers, J, Kuik, DJ, et al., “Effect of Homoeopathic Medicines on Daily Burden of Symptoms in Children with Recurrent Upper Respiratory Tract Infections,” BMJ, November 19, 1994;309:1329-1332.; Steinsbekk, A, Fønnebø, V, Lewith, G, and Bentzen, N. Homeopathic care for the prevention of upper respiratory tract infections in children: A pragmatic, randomised, controlled trial comparing individualised homeopathic care and waiting-list controls. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, Volume 13, Issue 4 , December 2005, Pages 231-238.

3.Jacobs J, Springer DA, Crothers D. Homeopathic treatment of acute otitis media in children: a preliminary randomized placebo-controlled trial. Pediatr Infect Dis J 2001; 20: 177–183/ Frei H, Thurneysen A. Homeopathy in acute otitis media in children: treatment effect or spontaneous resolution? Br Homeopath J 2001; 90: 180–182/ Friese K-H, Kruse S, Ludtke R, Moeller H “Homeopathic treatment of otitis media in children: comparisons with conventional therapy”. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther. 1997; 35: 296-301.

4. Adler M. Efficacy, safety of a fixed-combination homeopathic therapy for sinusitis. Adv Ther 1999; 16: 103–111.

5. Beasley R, Clayton T, Crane J, von Mutius, E, Lai, CKW, Montefort, S, Stewart, A. Association between paracetamol use in infancy and childhood, and risk of asthma, rhinoconjunctivitis, and eczema in children aged 6–7 years: analysis from Phase Three of the ISAAC programme. The Lancet2008;372:1039-1048

6. http://www.mhra.gov.uk/NewsCentre/Pressreleases/CON014446