Homeopathy Papers

Questions Patients Ask-19

Questions patients ask about homeopathy and natural healing

Going Up In Potency


If a patient does well with a potency and should take it for a longer period of time (let’s say 2 months), how do I cope with the “perishable”-problem?

The bottle is not “perishable”.  The only issue you have is possible mold growth; so, you can add some vodka or brandy to your RSB (remedy solution bottle–or, simply stated, water bottle with a few remedy pellets in it) to prevent that from happening.  You don’t have to add too much. Probably any amount at all will prevent mold from growing.

But you write, “If a patient does well with a potency and should take it for a long period of time, let’s say 2 months…” let me be quick to point out that you may be doing well on a potency today but you shouldn’t assume that because of that, the potency is like some sort of “simillimum” that should work forever.  Potencies wear off!  There is a reason for that.  Chronic disease has a tendency to hang on and not let go!  It will fight you every step of the way!  Your 6C three times a day may work great for one week, and then the disease is back!  That is a very typical scenario.  It doesn’t mean you have the wrong remedy, it just means it’s time to plus your 6C bottle to 7C, or 8C or 9C, or buy the 7C, etc. and then maybe a week or 2 later, your 7C stops working and you need the 8 or 9C.  You have to expect this.  Don’t be surprised and disappointed when it happens.   As I’ve said many times, chronic disease is like crooked teeth that need braces–the wires keep having to be tightened by the dentist on a regular basis because the teeth don’t want to move!  

In the beginning, when your disease is acute, your immune system fights against it tooth and nail! If you give a remedy at this time, you will be very successful!  But if you start treatment during the chronic stage, you’ll find that your immune system has basically given up on that disease and instead, has actually accepted it and allowed it to move in!  It ain’t goin’ nowhere without a fight!

So, you should anticipate that your potency that’s working so great today may not be working so great tomorrow; just don’t be shocked when your remedy stops working, be prepared for it. Potencies may have to be raised many times before your chronic disease finally gives up and says, “Alright, I’m leaving!”

Is it advisable to “plus” the potency one degree in the new bottle in order not to fall back to a lower degree?

You only need to plus one degree if your RSB is down to one dose at the bottom, or, if your potency has stopped working.  And one degree may not be enough; you’ll find that out by trial and error.


Can You Make Remedies Out of Odd Things?

Hi Elaine!

I know it’s been some time since you wrote your article on how to make your own remedy, but I was wondering if you might be able to answer a couple questions for me: first of all, could you please tell me how one could make a homeopathic remedy from something that does not dissolve in water? For example, lets say someone had an allergy to latex, would it be possible to create a homeopathic of that?

You would take something made of latex, let’s say latex gloves, and let them sit in a disposable cup of water overnight, then make a remedy out of the water as described in my article, “How To Make Your Own Remedy”.  Also, the English pharmacies often carry such odd remedies as Latex 30C, you should check — Helios Pharmacy and Ainsworths pharmacy in England, check their websites.

Or lets say someone wanted their hair and nails to grow better–could they make a homeopathic from hair and nails?

No, that’s a constitutional problem, also a nutritional problem.  I believe a good remedy for that would be Silica 6X 3 or 4 times a day.  Nat-mur 6X might be good for the hair; but also, hair loss is often a sign of under-active thyroid.  In other words, what you give is dependent on what’s wrong so you might want to investigate that.


Isopathy vs. Homeopathy?

Also, would you be able to please clarify the difference between an isopathic and homeopathic remedy?

Homeopathy means similar remedy, the way lemons and oranges are similar; but, isopathy means the remedy is exactly the same; for example, if I get stung by a bee and take Apis–that’s isopathy. Apis is the honey bee.  If I get poison ivy and take Rhus tox, that’s isopathy.  Rhus toxicodendron is poison ivy.  I would not get hung up on that if I were you!  Sometimes, the first remedy you should be thinking of in a case is the isopathic remedy!  “OMG, the water I drank made me sick!”  Make a remedy out of the water, it should be your first thought!  As you know, I wrote an article called “How To Make Your Own Remedy”.

How To Make Your Own Remedy

If your home-made remedy doesn’t work, you can move on to your “ailments from bad water” remedies, like Zingiber and Arsenicum.  However, if there are clear remedy keynotes in your case, go with the remedy that matches the keynotes; like, for example, “worse least motion”–Bryonia.


Palliation vs. Constitutional Prescribing, What’s the Difference?

How can you tell the difference between a remedy that’s relieving symptoms vs. one that’s your constitutional remedy?

A “constitutional” remedy should give you energy, lift your spirits, restore your appetite, improve your sleep and enable you to face the obstacles in the road that lie ahead without falling apart.  A remedy that’s only removing symptoms (palliating) might stop pain or itching but otherwise leaves you unchanged.  I hasten to add that there is definitely a place for palliation!  To someone with a headache, palliation (stopping the headache) is the greatest thing in the world!

Your constitutional remedy is the one you need when there is nothing wrong with you: you’re not sick, you’re not injured, you’re just you.  When you’re sick, you shouldn’t even be thinking about your constitutional remedy!  You should be taking the case of your illness: Sensation, Location, Modalities, Concomitants, Etiology.  Even Kent says so.  The acute comes first, and don’t mix up acute and constitutional symptoms, he says.

Though don’t get me wrong, sometimes, even though you’re “sick”, it’s just possible that the most compelling aspect of your case may be your constitutional picture!  Maybe the “disease” is indistinct and lacks characteristic symptoms; but, the homeopath may discern, “He talks so fast, he doesn’t let anyone else in, he monopolizes the conversation, just like Lachesis!”  Or he might observe, “He’s got wild hair, he smells like he doesn’t bathe, his suit is wrinkled, the heels of his shoes are worn down; and he’s lecturing ME on what the treatment should be!  It must be Sulphur!”  So in that case you would surely give the constitutional remedy and expect that it would cure the pathology as well. You would also give the constitutional remedy when all the patient’s got, in terms of a “disease”, are a bunch of test results and nothing more.


Why Do I Need a Remedy Kit?  I Already Have a bunch of Remedies in a shoe box!

Do I have to take the remedy now?  Can I take it tomorrow, after the blood test?

You know, if you don’t take the remedy within the window of opportunity that opens up for you, you may never have a chance to take that remedy again–because cases change!  They ebb and flow, they meander like a body of water, they don’t stay still.  So, Belladonna now; but, what later? Gelsemium?  If your homeopath says, “Take Belladonna,” he means Belladonna is what he sees NOW.  This is why people need a remedy kit at home, so they don’t have to wait until the next day to go out and buy the remedy and therefore take it a day late; and then when it doesn’t work, the homeopath gets blamed!  The moral is that you can’t be properly cared for if you don’t have a Remedy Kit at home, that’s all there is to it.  I got mine at www.a2zhomeopathy.com  It’s a 30C Emergency Kit; but, my forward-thinking clients have also taken the trouble to buy the 200C kit as well.  You know why?  Potency really makes a difference.  I know it’s hard to believe that you can have an acute case that doesn’t respond to the 30C at all, but that same remedy given in 200C might work perfectly!  

What if you decided to save money by buying the 30C kit only, how many cases would you miss curing?  I have learned that there are certain frequently-used remedies that I should have not only in 30C, but in 200, 1M and even 10M!  Common remedies like Aconite, Arnica, Pyrogen, Rhus tox, Bryonia, Arsenicum, Belladonna, etc.  You’ll learn.


Remedy Reactions Explained

Hi Elaine,

I took Sepia 200C on Friday morning.  The good news is, I’m not feeling so tired in the evening now, however, I’m feeling more emotional and had a argument with hubby on Saturday and since going through PMS again, since morning feeling discomfort in thighs and feels like unable to stand during daily activities, don’t know if I can take anything for this.

You can order Dr. Christopher’s herbal combination for females at herbsfirst.com.  It will help with hormonal problems without interfering with Sepia.  Read this page and tell me if you think it suits your needs:

Christopher’s Female Tonic Formula

Don’t know when should I take the second dose…but definitely it helped the fatigue.

You know, healing with homeopathy is not a straight line of improvement like an arrow.  There are a lot of hills and valleys.  You get better here, and worse there.  It’s because the “disturbance”, on its way out, is bumping into things on its way.  Think of your body as a pinball machine. The disturbance is the ball.  The ball starts out at the top (your head, the “mentals”) and makes its way down. On its way, it bumps into things and sets them off as it goes–bumpers and targets–bouncing off one side then another before finally exiting for good at the bottom.  So, you’re feeling better at the “top” because the “disturbance” is gone from there, but now you’re more emotional, arguing with husband, pain in thighs… This is the “disturbance” bouncing around on its way out!  All you can do is just apologize to everyone and say, “Believe it or not, I’m getting better,” and just try to wait this out.

Now, if the improvement you’ve made in terms of less fatigue relapses, that is the time to redose. Succuss 5 times before each dose.


How Do You Make A Remedy Out of a Plant?

What book do you recommend on how to learn to make homeopathic medicines from fresh or dried herbs?

It’s very simple, you gather up your fresh plant, you mash it up with a mortar and pestle and then put the plant in a jar of wine, and let it sit for a few days so that the wine completely takes up the properties of the plant.  You can shake the jar from time to time.  Then you strain the wine off and that is your mother tincture.  Then, you drop one drop of mother tincture into 99 drops of water, succuss 40 times, and that’s a 1C potency.  One drop of 1C into 99 drops of water, succuss 40 times, and that’s a 2C.  One drop of 2C into 99 drops of water, succuss 40 times, and that’s the 3C.  And so on.

Or shall I just succuss it 40 times add a little alcohol and put it on blank sugar pills?

There’s no advantage to buying blank sugar pellets, the liquid stock bottle is just as much a remedy as the pellets are.


When Do Herbs Go Bad?

Elaine, I never know when my herbal supplements may have gone bad and should be thrown out!

I know what you mean!  I got some information from www.HerbsFirst.com on this very topic, this is what it said:

“I had a customer call to order some Western Botanicals Colon Cleanse because she just used the last capsule from the bottle that she bought 15 years ago!  She stated that the last capsule worked as well as the first capsule did when she had bought them fifteen years ago!  I have had people ask if their capsulized herbs were still good after the expiration date and I always said yes, and that I wouldn’t hesitate to use capsulized herbs that were ten years old.  Now we know that they are even good after 15 years and I would say beyond that!
“How can the herbs be good after that long?  Oxidation is what makes the herbs lose potency.  Since they are encapsulated (in capsules) there is very little oxygen present to allow the herbs to oxidize. Capsulized herbs are a good way to store herbs for times of need. I always have a variety of formulas on hand because you want to have them when you need them!  So hold on to those out dated bottles, they are still good!

Herbal extracts that are in an alcohol base also have a much longer shelf life beyond what the label says. This is true as long as it is in alcohol based and stored under good circumstances such as in a cool basement, or in a home cupboard without huge fluctuations in temperature.

Herbal extracts in glycerine have a much shorter shelf life. I have used them a year or two after the date, but not much more than that. Ointments have a two year life if refrigerated. They are oils and oils go rancid, so be sure to refrigerate them if it isn’t something that you can use up fairly quickly.

Bulk herbs will lose potency over time. It is best to know how you are going to use your bulk herbs and what the time frame is.  Two years would be an average time to use bulk herbs at their highest potency.  If you have them beyond that time I would either capsulize them or make an extract/tincture out of them.


Disease Simillimum

Elaine, everyone who knows me says I am the very soul of Nux vomica!  So why am I taking Phosphorus for my colitis?

Because you have a Phosphorus disease.

Oh.  That makes sense.  Thanks.


Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.

Elaine takes online cases! Write to her at [email protected]

Visit her website: https://elaineLewis.hpathy.com

About the author

Elaine Lewis

Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.
Elaine is a passionate homeopath, helping people offline as well as online. Contact her at [email protected]
Elaine is a graduate of Robin Murphy's Hahnemann Academy of North America and author of many articles on homeopathy including her monthly feature in the Hpathy ezine, "The Quiz". Visit her website at:
https://elainelewis.hpathy.com/ and TheSilhouettes.org


  • DEAR DR,

    • I’ve never said 30. It’s always been 40. Show me the article where I said 30 so I can correct it. I learned 40 from Robin Murphy. I’m sure there are many different opinions about this.

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