My cough treatment
Self-healing of suppressed respiratory disease
I treated myself and recovered from serious respiratory symptoms. The problem looks like a passing storm, but it had roots in childhood suppression. The process of treatment and recovery are a valuable aspect of my education as a homeopath. If I had not treated myself, I doubt that I would be as healthy as I am today.
Is self-healing wise?
I wrote a post about how ideally one could decide how to treat something like a sore throat. Unfortunately, when I have a high temperature and I am moaning in bed, such ideal behavior is thrown to the winds. I treated my own cough very successfully, yet I am a homeopath and I have good tools to treat myself. I live in Japan where I do not know other homeopaths. So, I had no other choice, or so I thought at the time. Now, I realize that I know many great homeopaths around the world who I could have called to take my case. That might have been the better choice.
Self-care was a good choice
If you read this post, you will see that I changed my remedy every day. If I were a homeopath treating a case like mine, I would have treated over the phone and talked to the patient every day. The remedies that I used are very common and a 50 remedy kit would contain all of them. Given what I know now, self-care was a good choice. Today I am even better prepared to take care of myself.
Swollen cheeks are not normal
If you look at my old photo, you can see that my cheeks were very swollen. Before the case that I will report here, I reduced this fat face look using homeopathy. I have never been "fat", but the glands in my cheeks (the parotoid glands), as well as the glands in my neck, have been swollen since childhood. Excessive use of broad-spectrum antibiotics, penicillin caused this swelling. (Today doctors are more wary of broad-spectrum antibiotics. Instead of killing everything, they try to eliminate only the offending pathogen.) The treatment described below is a continuation of my childhood chronic condition. I was treating a high fever, sore throat, and violent coughing.
Usually, I assume my problems are self-limiting and I do not treat them. A year before I had been sick for a full three months with a similar cough and fever. A year before that, I had such a high fever that I was delirious. I did not mind getting sick, but recovery took months in both cases. This was not fun. So, I jumped on my case as soon as a symptom of a cold appeared. Actually, it was not just a normal cold. I was chilly, had a low-grade fever, coughing, muscles were aching and worse from moving. These symptoms are taught in homeopathy 101. Jumping out of my normal lazy pattern, I took Rhus-tox 30c.
Better tools for self-healing
This change in behavior has some background. I had taken a course in the first dictionary of homeopathic symptoms. It is called the Boennhausen repertory. A repertory is like a dictionary of symptoms that are documented through homeopathic testing and clinical usage. This first dictionary of homeopathic symptoms had been meticulously edited by George Dimitriadis. I normally do all of my cases with a computer. But at that time, there was no computer version of this repertory.
Research in bed was good enough
I knew Rhus-tox symptoms, so I just took it without research. No research conflicts with my normal inclination. Rhus-tox took care of the muscle aches, but my fever rose. I withdrew to bed grabbing my copy of the Boenninghausen repertory. So, I lay in bed looking through this dictionary.
Most such repertories are very heavy books. Luckily this repertory was very light. I could not have even held those professional repertories above my head. This dictionary has a very special theoretical background. It is a professional repertory but because of some rather complex ideas behind it, it is very simple to use. Because there are few symptoms to choose from and they are extremely reliable, very few symptoms will lead to the curative remedy. As a result, the Boenninghausen repertory was really the perfect repertory for the situation that I was in. Bed.
(These days I use a much more reliable approach to use this remedy dictionary. I feel even better about self-treatment in these tough situations.)
The self-healing process
Finding the curative remedy without self-awareness
The cough became deeper and I felt like weeping. “I am alone with this cough. I can’t sleep. I need someone to help me but no one comes.” My husband was offering to help me, but he does not understand how to calculate symptoms and I could not teach him while I was ill. These mental symptoms are again homeopathy 101 symptoms of Pulsatilla. But, I was not aware of my “mood.” If you had asked me then, I would have said I am desperate. I could not have used those mental symptoms to identify Pulsatilla because I was too sick to be aware of how I felt.
Symptoms become more threatening
The Boenninghausen repertory led me to Pulsatilla without using those mental symptoms. The violence of the cough decreased, I was not getting well. Instead, the pain in my chest was going deeper into my lungs. Many would call the doctor at that point. Luckily, by repertorizing a few symptoms, I was led to Phosphorus. Phosphorus is a well-known remedy for respiratory symptoms that are going from the throat into the lungs. I was too sick to think about that common knowledge.
Next day total recovery
I took Phosphorus and the next day I was totally well. The next day, if you looked at me, you would not know that I was one step away from pneumonia.
The dynamics of healing
Why I got worse before I got better
Why would I take such a risk? No one over 65 years of age wants pneumonia. The fact is, I have had a sore throat for as long as I can remember. Since childhood when my mom, a registered nurse, gave me regular shots of the "wonder drug" of the day (the 1950's). Penicillin is a broad range, a powerful antibiotic. My childhood respiratory diseases had been suppressed by the wonder drug. Whenever there is serious suppression of a disease, the suppressed symptoms need to be expressed. That is, I had to feel the "almost pneumonia symptoms" before I could get better. My body had to remember the symptoms that I had been fighting since childhood. The key is, I did not really develop pneumonia. So, although the symptoms looked bad, actually, I was not in danger. This incomplete expression of old suppressed symptoms is typical.
Recovery from childhood disease
So many years later, I was finally recovering from childhood diseases that I had never been allowed to have. I was not cured by penicillin, as my mother and doctor thought at that time, I was storing the problem in my swollen cheeks. I was also, getting easily fatigued and just did not feel very good.
Despite two incidents of respiratory disease, actually, I was getting a little stronger each time. Each incidence happened while I was self-treating for chronic conditions. Each time I got sick, because I did not treat the respiratory condition, it took months for me to recover. Also, the respiratory childhood disease kept trying to resurface. When I finally had the tools to self-healing these suppressed symptoms, my health improved dramatically.