Homeopathy Papers

Tidbits – Part 14 – Difficult Children!

Written by Elaine Lewis

Homeopathic remedies for uncontrollable kids.

In my practice, I have heard and seen just about everything!  Children hitting, kicking and throwing things at their parents, their siblings…attacking, choking, scratching their younger brother or sister or classmates… throwing tantrums in public, running away, running out into traffic…. I feel so bad for all the families who can’t lead normal lives because of this.  I’m sure you know what my position is–stop doing things that cause brain damage in children!  Stop vaccinating (the mercury and aluminum and other neuro-toxins they contain cause brain damage to one degree or another), stop medicating with toxic drugs; find a holistic MD; stop feeding your kids junk food (white sugar and white flour are very bad for the brain)…  It’s not normal for children to behave this way.  See my article, “Everything You’re Doing Is Wrong!”

Tidbits Part 11: Everything You’re Doing Is Wrong!

Let’s look at some homeopathic remedies that might be able to help.



Almost any child or baby can go into a Chamomilla state.  Teething seems to set it off, ear infections…whatever the reason, the child is in pain or discomfort.  The response in the Chamomilla child is to scream and shriek inconsolably and unendingly! 

I made a visit once to my friend Shobi’s house, her little one had some sort of virus and she brought him to me in her arms.  He was not nestled contentedly on her shoulder as Pulsatilla would be; rather, he was screaming, arching his back, bending over backwards stiffly, threatening to fall on the floor head-first–a real handful, in other words!  I said, “That’s Chamomilla!” 

It’s an angry crying, you feel no sympathy for the Chamomilla child, you just wish they would stop!  We gave Chamomilla 30C and the baby calmed down right away.  When you think of Chamomilla, think of easily-upset children, flailing about, demanding one thing and another and then throwing it down, screaming/crying, easily frustrated, demanding attention, demanding to be carried, and generally making the parents feel desperate!


Tarentula Hispanica

I have to tell you, the common symptoms of bad behavior aren’t going to help you in these cases, aren’t going to help you find the remedy.  I’m not talking about Tarentula Hispanica kids yet, I mean all these kids in general.  All these kids hit.  They all throw tantrums.  They’re defiant.  They demand your constant attention, are easily frustrated, break things, throw things, scream, have short attention spans and crave sweets.

Another typical complaint you’ll hear is about clothing.  The seams bother them, their socks bother them, they may only be able to wear one thing–over and over again.  They can be equally as fussy about food–the food can’t touch the other food, the texture has to be smooth, and so on. 

None of this information is going to help you find a remedy, unfortunately.  You have to take a complete case, and then look at what is left after you clear away all the common symptoms of these children that I have just enumerated.

Tarentula children can be very destructive and hyperactive; but, how can you tell it’s Tarentula?  In the last Tarentula case I took, the case was solved by observing that the child only flew into a rage if there was an audience!  (“When there are no observers, there is no hysteria.”–Murphy’s Materia Medica.)  She had a fear of spiders, which was the first clue I had; she was calmed by music but aggravated by loud music and loud noises in general.  This speaks to the sensitive hearing that spider remedies have (sensitive to noise).  Also she was chilly–typical of Tarentula but peculiar in children as children tend to be warm-blooded, making chilliness a good confirmatory symptom for Tarentula.  

Essentially, Tarentula children are the kids from hell!  Tarentula will hit another child for absolutely no reason and is jealous of any attention paid to a sibling.  They’re not affectionate, even with their parents and grandparents. They’re aggressive, violent, biting, scratching, destructive and impossible to be with.  

They’re hyperactive too, very speedy.  A Tarentula lady once said in her questionnaire that she was very proud of herself because she knitted very fast.  Tarentula people will become exasperated if you’re moving too slow!  They won’t hesitate to hurry you up.  

The kids order the adults around, barking orders at them; but barking is an interesting word because they’re afraid of dogs and the dark too.  You may think of Stramonium but then you notice that the child loves to sing and dance; in fact, music, singing and dancing may be the only thing that makes the child happy!  The child may insist on dancing naked; but, it’s not Hyoscyamus, as Hyoscyamus can be very affectionate, almost too affectionate with strangers; but, Tarentula is not affectionate at all.  They are rude, demanding and contrary! 

Also, look for loud speech, hasty speech and interrupting.  Another thing I’ve noticed:  poor spatial perception!  They might stand too close, sit too close, walk too close behind.

Dyskinetic movements, jerky movements, jerky dancing–though they love to dance because they love music.  Their jerkiness may manifest in sudden unexpected jumping- up movements, where, if they’re too close to you, could result in injury. 

Also, look for lying, deceit, making things up and constant interjections into conversations about how beautiful they are, how great they are, how they’re the best at knitting, how the counselor thinks they’re the best camper in swimming and baseball and so on.  Here’s what Dr. Jawahar Shah had to say about Tarentula children:

“This picture is typical of Tarentula hispanica; a child who is intelligent and witty yet very sly, crafty, revengeful and malicious in her acts.  Tarentula patients enjoy giving pain and discomfort to others and derive a lot of pleasure out of it.”


Behavioural and Psychiatric Problems of Children



Very demanding, like Tarentula.  In fact, you may be back and forth thinking, “Is this Tarentula or is this Lachesis?”  The mother may complain that the child insists that mom pay attention only to her, and to no one else– constantly!  The mother might say, “I can’t even attend to the cat, my child gets jealous and insists that I pay attention only to her!  She’s possessive!  If I try to talk to someone else, she’ll drag me away!”  

They’re bossy with other kids and won’t share their toys.  Lachesis kids talk non-stop and repeat themselves over and over again; plus, they can be very loud.  Talking, touching, interrupting, monopolizing the conversation, not letting you talk or finish your sentences, constantly in your face, must be the center of attention, must be the first and the best at all times and will do whatever it takes to get there; a parent could go crazy with a child like this!  They turn red with anger and never admit to being wrong.  Yeesh!



Lyssin (also known as Hydrophobinum) is homeopathic rabies.  There was a case of mine, a child with uncontrollable anger, yelling, throwing, banging things, kicking, poking, hitting… all the usual bad behaviors….  How did I know it was Lyssin?  When the child was 1 year old, he was bitten by a dog and given 8 rabies shots!  OMG!  How many times have I said, “Etiology is so important!”  We had a very clear etiology here–dog bite and rabies shots!  Whenever you see violent behavior and a dog bite in the history, think of Lyssin. 

Something to look for in Lyssin cases: anger, raging, swearing, followed by non-stop apologizing; fear of water, bathing, dogs, the dark; also, dog-like behavior such as barking and growling.  None of this was reported in the above case but the etiology (the cause) was apparent and sufficient.



We might as well get to Stramonium because that’s what everyone is thinking anyway, am I right?  It’s the first thought people have whenever violent behavior is mentioned.  But again, “violence” is a common theme in these cases, you can’t prescribe Stramonium just because of that.  But there is no doubt that Stramonium children have been known to attack, bite, spit, pinch, push, hit, rage, glare, kick, throw things, make threats and engage in malicious behavior (but not known to apologize like Lyssin).  What does a Stramonium case characteristically have? 

There is usually the combination of terror along with violence; think about nightmares, night terrors–waking up and recognizing no one, acting like he sees wild animals coming towards him; fear of bathing and showering and getting the head wet, fear of being alone, fear of being pursued with a desire to escape, run away, fear of dogs, fear of water. 

We have 4 rabies remedies–Belladonna, Stramonium, Hyoscyamus and Lyssin; you’re going to see a lot of over-lap in these remedies; consequently, you’re going to be looking for what separates them from each other.  Stramonium is known for extreme fear of the dark, fear of being alone, and night terrors; there may be more than the usual fear of scary movies or children’s stories like “Snow White and the 7 Dwarfs” or “The Wizard of Oz”; also, you may see forcible stuttering of the first syllable of a word.  Non-stop talking, loud speech, nonsense speech can also be present.



Being a rabies remedy, Belladonna is just as likely to be loud, talking nonsensically, defiant, kicking, spitting, raging, screaming, hitting, throwing things, pulling hair (mostly other people’s) and biting as the rest of the rabies remedies.  So how do you know when it’s Belladonna?  Look for an etiology involving high fever, perhaps a tendency to get repeated high fevers, perhaps he’s better mentally only during high fever!  Perhaps the case started with a high fever or a fever that was suppressed with fever-lowering drugs. 

Belladonna is our great fever remedy in children.  Here’s the picture:  high fever that comes on suddenly, red face, bright glassy eyes with dilated pupils, no perspiration, no thirst, an intense heat radiating from the body but the feet, and perhaps the hands as well, are cold.  The Belladonna acute is so intense and urgent that the parents will be frantically trying to find some medicine that will help! 

Since we’re always so quick to rush in with aspirin and Tylenol and cut the legs out from under these fevers instead of letting them do their job (burning up germs and viruses that are present), a permanent Belladonna mental state may be the price that one pays. 

Other characteristics of Belladonna include: desire for lemons or lemonade, ultra-sensitivity to noise and light and being jarred (bumped), and like Stramonium, there is the delusion of wild animals, imaginary things, and the need to run away, escape.  However, Stramonium is more likely to look for someone to cling to while Belladonna simply feels the need to escape. 

Spits in the face of other persons.  I had a case once where we knew the child had entered a Belladonna state when he started spitting at people. 

And listen to this people because this is important:  mentally ill people like this might cycle through remedy types; that is, go from one crazy remedy picture to another; for example, from Belladonna to Stramonium to Anacardium, etc. and back again, and you just have to be there with the change-of-remedy when it happens!  I once had a patient where we knew he had gone into Belladonna when his eyes turned blue!  With another patient, we knew he had gone into Belladonna when he started spitting.  And you might want to order your high potencies now because you don’t want to be caught flat-footed if your child’s Belladonna 30C stops working!  Keep the same potency for as long as it works, don’t be changing potencies arbitrarily, though, or the remedy will stop working. 

All remedies should be in water with 5 succussions before each dose.  A dose is a sip.  But also keep in mind that mentally ill patients may refuse to take the remedy, so, you may have to give it sneakily, poured over ice cream, for example.  Give it in a food or drink he normally drinks or eats up right way, not something he puts down and goes back to again and again.  All those trips back to the glass or bowl count as more doses, something you may not want to happen.

Listen, I’ve written an article, “What To Feed Your Kids…” because these kids are all addicted to sweets, and this is part of the problem!  Click below:

Tidbits 47–What To Feed Your Kids (and your adults who eat like kids) So They Don’t Wind Up Sick (Or Stupid!)



This is the last of our rabies remedies, very similar to Belladonna, Stramonium and Lyssin; but, Hyoscyamus is quite unmistakable in its silly inappropriate laughter, inappropriate touching, lewd remarks and references, obnoxious, disgusting, gross behaviors like urinating in public and running around naked (though I’ve seen Tarentula do this too), invading people’s personal space, making faces and engaging in overall shameless, annoying behavior.  Again, talking loud and talking non-stop may also be present. 

Hyoscyamus is very jealous and you might see this state come to the fore when a younger sibling is born.  Look out because the newborn will not be safe around Hyoscyamus!



Hyperactive, loud, malicious, mad at the world, demanding, intolerant to contradiction, easily bored, vengeful, willfully destructive, belligerent, blames others, angry, violent, raging, tendency to hit.  Completely indifferent to punishment.  Stubborn, disobedient, defensive, hates everybody and everything; BUT, they can be very sweet when they want something!!!! 

Here are some peculiar characteristics of Tuberculinum: they have an aversion to furry animals like dogs and cats, they actually hate cats and may be allergic to them as well.  They LOVE milk!!!!!  They love smoked meats like bacon and salami; they sweat during sleep, they’re worse at the sea (unlike Medorrhinum, another hyperactive remedy, which is better at the sea). 

And speaking of which….



This is a remedy that goes to extremes.  The child feels anxious and hurried.  His grades could be A’s or F’s; or A’s and F’s.  He’s brilliant one minute and clueless the next.  His behavior is erratic, hurtling from one extreme to another, you can never depend on the Medorrhinum person to do anything he says he’s going to do. 

He can be violent, self-centered, cold and disconnected to family members.  He can even be cruel to animals; but, can also, just as easily, have a great love and attachment for the family pet.

Just as some are self-centered, still others are shy and introverted.  He often complains that he has a “wild feeling” in his head.  Robin Murphy calls Medorrhinum children “wild child”:  Tantrums, kicking and hitting the parents, fighting with other children, they simply have no self-control. 

So, what is characteristic about Medorrhinum?  Everything is better for them at the sea.  They may ask constantly to go to the ocean. 

There is a great love of oranges, orange juice, love of tart fruit like green bananas and green apples, a peculiar sensation that someone is behind them or beside them, a fear of monsters in the dark, an amelioration in the evening and night, a tendency to bite the nails; worse damp weather, may have asthma or eczema from infancy or have asthma and eczema together; they love cold drinks and love to chew on ice; they love fatty food, the fat of meat; the children have hot feet, go around without shoes, uncover the feet at night in bed, they like to sleep on their abdomen or in the knee-chest position.



Cina is wormwood.  There’s the suggestion that the reason these children are so disobedient, restless, violent, oppositional, unfocused, mean, rude, uncooperative and stubborn is because they have worms.  How can you tell the remedy is Cina?  The child may be boring his finger into his ears, nose or anus because of itching.  He may grind his teeth at night (but so does Tuberculinum) and a peculiar symptom is that they have an aversion to being looked at.  Look for canine appetite, tantrums whenever you tell him “No”, which might consist of the child pulling his own hair out in anger, and a desire to be carried.



This is the scorpion.  This remedy is known for cold and malicious behavior with no remorse whatsoever!  They bite, hit and choke.  Wrestling with and punching other children, no respect for anyone else’s personal space, they can’t keep their hands to themselves.  No regard for the feelings of others, no sympathy.  A peculiar trait of scorpion is that after hitting or choking another child, they may hide in a closet or similar place.



Kids who go from good to bad and back again.  One minute a saint, the next minute hitting, making terroristic threats or carrying out some malicious act, often involving cruelty to animals or younger siblings including pushing them down the stairs.  There’s an overwhelming impulse to swear and curse in this remedy.  These kids may tell you that there is a voice inside of them telling them to do bad things.  In more serious cases of Anacardium, they literally hear voices. 

There is a tendency to low self-esteem and you will often hear them saying things like, “I’m stupid!”  This is a low blood sugar remedy and Anacardium children simply MUST eat, and heaven help you if you don’t give them their food exactly when they want it!  Cina has this too.  As long as Anacardium is eating, he’s fine, no anger, no issues.


P.S. Maria asked me about head-banging.  In the Repertory, you can find head-banging here:

“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, face, his”
“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, head, his”
“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, himself”
“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, knocking his head against wall”
“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, reprimanded, when”
“Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, strikes her head with her hands, her body, and others”

Someone asked me about badly behaved senior citizens, do these remedies apply to them too?  Yes!!!

Good luck, everyone!!!


 Elaine Lewis, D.Hom., C.Hom.

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

Visit her website: 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


  • Thanks again for another excellent column! Excellent descriptions with clear distinctions between remedies.

  • Dear Elaine the way you impart knowledge is unique. It’s an excellent article really!!!! Thank u

  • Thanks for excellent selection and detailed description of each medicine.
    There is one more effective medicine frequently indicated for children- MAGNESIA CARBONICA. This has given excellent result is children smelling sour and disposed to boils.

  • Dear respected Elaine,
    many many thanks for such knowledge enriching article with such a simple language that the subject is understood in very first reading!
    Expecting one such article in each issue other than Tidbits and Quiz which are equally simple and knowledge enriching.
    Thank you.


  • like any animal in danger, these children under the attack of vaccines, modern allopathic medicine and processed artificial foods, they come out kicking, biting, snarling in defense of the attack on their systems. very well presented article

  • Excellent article. I have added your children’s portraits to Frans Kusse’s in my reference library. They are delightfully rendered and the points of differentiation are clear. I very much like the differentiation of remedies in specific conditions. They help us to understand the MM better. If you have more of these, please do not hesitate to share! Thank you.

  • Thanks for valuable information. For us this is like a getting on a boat in big sea where we don’t how to swim. Thanks a lot. And I also read your article “everything you’re doing is wrong”. And I will follow your guidelines to serve humanity and as well my family.

  • I have known adults who behave nearly as bad as some of the descriptions for children in your article. Would these remedies be suggested for seniors? For instance, 96, beginning stages of dementia, mostly evening when exhausted, but negative to the point of picking fights and blaming, fear of punishment, and the occasional temper tantrum.

    Thank you.

  • Connie, some of these remedies are definitely for dementia. With so many difficult children, we forget that nowadays there are more and more difficult seniors than ever before! For the senior citizen you mentioned, you can give his case to a homeopath, much as one would give a toddler’s case–you can answer for the patient.

  • You have given very good description of different remedies. Please add a few more. Thanks so much

  • What about when the child hits his own head against the couch, or with his hands, when he is told he cannot do something, ie, dont do that.

  • Hi Maria, I haven’t looked at this article in years and I made some changes to it, added some more information you might want to see; but, as for head-banging, it’s in the Repertory under:

    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, face, his”
    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, head, his”
    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, himself”
    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, knocking his head against wall”
    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, reprimanded, when”
    “Mind: striking, hitting, behavior, strikes her head with her hands, her body, and others”

    I hope that helps.

  • Your description of Lachesis hit the nail on the head. What potency would you give the child of two, and would you follow up higher and higher?

    Thank you so much!

    • So, you’re sure it’s Lachesis? Cuz it’s kinda hard to know at just age 2. Two-year-olds, they say, are hard to handle anyway; but, I think I might give a 30C and just wait and see if anything happens. You might want to see my article “What to Expect After A Remedy” and also, “Questions Patients Ask” and “FAQ”, all of which are on my website: https://ElaineLewis.hpathy.com. Also, you might want to check out my “Food Fight!” section, and scroll down to “What to Feed Your Kids…”.

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