Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Real-Life Examples of First-Aid Treatment with Arnica

Arnica Montana is homeopathy's most well-known remedy, and for good reason. It is a most-excellent remedy for first-aid of a variety of different conditions. I've blogged previously about many uses for Arnica, but this time I wanted to share some real-life examples of Arnica being used to treat my family.

Arnica is the first-aid remedy that gets used most often in our household. While we can easily go weeks without needing any at all, there are also weeks like last week when every member of our household benefited from the amazing healing properties of homeopathic Arnica. It was a week that had me feeling grateful for Arnica, for sure!

Hypersensitivities Call For Modified Treatment

From a homeopathic perspective, all four members of my family are hypersensitive. People who are hypersensitive can be identified as those who exhibit any of the following:
  • sensitivities to noises, lights, and/or odors,
  • food sensitivities,
  • sensitivities to environmental influences such as detergents and lotions, and
  • sensitivities to conventional medicines and/or anesthesia.

Because of our hypersensitivities, we all have a propensity to having aggravations (overreactions) from homeopathic remedies. So, whereas a person with normal sensitivity could take multiple dry pellets of homeopathic Arnica in a first-aid situation, my family does better with smaller doses, lower potencies, and more-conservative dosing. Thus, the incidents described below are describing how we dose with Arnica given our hypersensitivities. I've also included some guidance for dosing without hypersensitivities in each of these examples. 

Disclaimer: The uses of homeopathic remedies described in this article are provided for educational use only. 
 

Scooter Injury

I was in the house one late afternoon when I heard a loud wailing outside. I ran out to find my daughter, who had been riding her new scooter in our driveway, crying hard and holding her leg. A quick examination showed a horizontal bruise forming across her shin, where her leg had landed hard against her scooter. Arnica is renowned for its ability to prompt healing of bumps and bruises, so it was the remedy of choice to use. Because I know that my daughter is prone to overreacting to even minor injuries, I started her first-aid treatment with only an application of homemade Arnica lotion.

Then I watched how my daughter progressed for the next 30 minutes. She was limping badly, and wincing when she put weight on the injured leg, so I could tell this injury could benefit from more than just Arnica lotion. Upon examining the injury again, a definite lump was forming over the horizontal bruise, and it was very tender. This prompted me to take her first-aid to the next step by giving my daughter an olfactory dose of Arnica 30x from a wet solution, which I keep on-hand in the kitchen cupboard for just such instances. (I make my wet solution of Arnica by dissolving one Arnica pellet in half a cup of water and then adding several Tablespoons of vodka to act as a preservative. The vodka makes this wet solution shelf-stable for months.) My daughter's olfactory dose of Arnica was administered by having her inhale one large sniff of the liquid solution through her nose.

(If my daughter was not hypersensitive, I would have given her one dry pellet of Arnica 30x or 30c by mouth upon my first examination, instead of using only Arnica lotion at that time.)

My daughter continued to limp on her leg that evening, but was in noticeably less pain. Before bed, I applied Arnica ointment, preferring it over lotion because it is thick and would be able to work overnight on the injury. When my daughter woke the next morning, there was no longer any pain, swelling, or bruising! As the day wore on, a small amount of bruising started to return to the injury, so some more Arnica lotion was applied. Nothing else was needed because the injury was no longer causing any pain. This injury healed rapidly and with much less pain because of the use homeopathic Arnica.

 

Landing Hard on the Head

My children, my mother, and I visited White Sands National Monument last week. While my son was sliding down a very steep sand dune, he lost control of his sled saucer and flipped over, landing hard on his head. He was crying and holding his head, saying it hurt on both sides. My son had already crash-landed on the dunes several times with no tears or crying, so I knew this was more serious since he was very upset.

Arnica excels at treating head injuries and is a great remedy for use when there could be a concussion, so I quickly got my first-aid kit from the car (where it had been kept cool with an ice pack). I administered one pellet of Arnica 6c by mouth to my son, and allowed him to suck on it for about 30 seconds before asking him to spit it out. (If my son was not hypersensitive, I would have used a higher potency, such as Arnica 30x or 30c, and I would have allowed him to finish the pellet rather than having him spit it out.)

After his dose of Arnica, my son quickly settled down and stopped crying. Within a few minutes, he was feeling well enough to climb another sand dune and continue playing. I checked in with him a few more times that afternoon and evening, and he reported that his head felt fine and there was no pain, so no more Arnica was needed after that first dose.

Smacked in the Face With a Bike Pump

I needed to pump up a wheelbarrow tire, and my daughter was helping by getting the bike pump. As I was about to pump up the tire, my daughter let go of the bike pump and it fell, with the handle hitting me squarely on the bridge of the nose. It hurt so bad I thought surely there must be blood (but there wasn't). After I made an (overly loud) exclamation of pain, I asked my daughter to get the Arnica lotion. I applied the lotion right away. By the next day, while there was still a small amount of pain if I pressed on the area, there was absolutely no bruising. Arnica really feels like a magical elixir sometimes, as I had feared I would have a large bruise on my face, and instead there was no visible trace of the injury.

(If I was not hypersensitive, I would have taken a pellet of Arnica 30x or 30c by mouth instead of just applying Arnica lotion.)

 

Overworking in the Garage

My husband was working hard at installing some new ceiling shelves in our garage. He was feeling rather fatigued near the end of his work, and we know from past experience that he tends to get very sore after such weekend exertions. I administered one Arnica 6c pellet by mouth when he was almost done working, and asked him to spit it out after about 30 seconds. (If my husband was not hypersensitive, I would have used a higher potency, such as Arnica 30x or 30c, and I would have allowed him to finish the pellet rather than having him spit it out.) Additionally, once my husband was done showering, he applied Arnica lotion to the areas that were feeling fatigued.

By the next day, my husband was feeling only mild-to-moderate soreness, instead of the strong soreness he tends to experience without using Arnica.


An Indispensable Remedy

Homeopathic Arnica is a wonderful first-aid remedy that soothed our injuries and overworked muscles. Certainly, we could have gotten by without using Arnica, but the healing process would have been longer and more painful. With Arnica, healing was quick and nearly painless. I hope these examples have helped you in understanding better how to use Arnica in your own family.

Do you use homeopathic Arnica? Do you have any success stories to share? 

 

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or licensed healthcare professional. I am a homeopathic practitioner whose services are considered complementary and alternative by the state of New Mexico. The uses of homeopathic remedies described herein are provided for educational use only.  

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7 comments :

a. borealis said...

I love this. I fell hard on a concrete floor the week before last, landing my right buttcheek. (I had a sleeping almost-3 year old on my back, so add 30-ish pounds to my own 150.)(My 5 yo tripped behind me right as I was taking a step backward.) It was such a shock and so painful that I just sat there for a bit and stared. As soon as I got home I applied Arnica ointment to it. I also took Arnica by tincture, forgetting all about the Arnica pellets in the hubbub of the evening. Ditto on the next day. I was afraid that my rear and entire frame would be affected for days by such a fall, but I found that it healed very quickly. It was tender to rough handling for a couple of days, but the bruising was minimal and I never had any issues with my hip or frame. I was surprised. I credit the Arnica, absolutely. And it is amazing the healing that can happen in the night.

Tara said...

Hi Sarah, I was under the impression that even hypersensitive individuals could use Arnica in an acute situation at full strength, so that's what I've done (though I am likely just misinformed, so I'm glad you wrote about this). What troubles could be introduced by giving Arnica full-strength to the hypersensitive person? Also, how do you determine whether to do the olfactory dose versus the 30-seconds-in-mouth-then-spit-it-out dose?

My little one was spinning round and round and crashed into the door frame last week and immediately had a big bruise and raised bump (not a hard lump, more like the swelling from the broken blood vessel) on the head. I only have Hyland's soft pellets on hand (the instand-dissolve lactose tablets) in 30x potency, so that's what I used. Is this harmful for a hypersensitive person?

Sarah Smith said...

Hi Tara,
Even many hypersensitive people can use Arnica full-strength just as you've described. But, there are varying levels of hypersensitivity. My family falls into the far end of being very hypersensitive. As long as you are using Arnica full-strength and noticing no ill effects, then it is no problem.

In my family, I observed one instance where a full 6c pellet caused my son to actually have an aggravation, where he got worse before he got better. In that instance, he was already crying in pain, but then after Arnica he actually started screaming for a few minutes, and then things calmed down and he was able to benefit from the Arnica. So, since I have seen aggravation, I play it safe and use smaller, more-conservative doses.

I use olfactory doses of the 30x for injuries that seem a bit more intense. (Since x potencies are roughly half the strength of C potencies, a 30x would be roughly an equivalent to 15c, so that would be a higher potency than the 6c.) But, I don't carry a wet solution with me, either, so if I am away from home I will use the 30-second-spit-it-out with the 6c potency that is in my emergency kit. I also carry a 200c in my kit, which would be used for a very severe injury (such as an actual sprain as opposed to a bump or bruise).

Tara said...

Hi again, Sarah. Thank you for replying. I'm needing to buy some more arnica, so that I can keep some at home and some in my purse. As I said, I have the 30x Hyland's soft pellets. When buying more, which brand/potency would you recommend? I'm thinking the 6c, maybe? Or might that be too weak for some instances of injury?

Sarah Smith said...

I actually like to have a few different potencies of Arnica on-hand, so I can use the higher potencies for more severe injuries. I like to have 6c, 30x (or 30c), as well as 200c. I like both Hyland's and Boiron.

Jammie said...

My daughter was in a bad car accident. CAT scan shows no injury, but obviously she is injured and can barely get out of bed. She was hit from the rear by another car at 75 mph. She is 19 and petite. I have arnica 30C on hand and read that it may be helpful for her injuries. How often can one take Arnica?

Sarah Smith said...

Will all homeopathic remedies, the frequency of the doses depends on how strong the ailment is and how long the improvement lasts from each dose. As long as the improvement lasts, don't repeat the dose; rather, wait and watch until there is a regression in the symptoms.