Like many parents I’ve talked to, my first introduction to homeopathy was when my youngest daughter started having teething troubles. She would wake up screaming in pain. Tylenol didn’t seem to help with the pain; she and I would be up most of the night. All I wanted was to see her (and I) get some much needed relief and sleep. I then decided to try Boiron’s Camilia. One dose didn’t seem to do much, but by the third dose she had calmed down and was able to get back to sleep. The next night, she woke up screaming again. This time, armed with Camilia, I was again able to get her back to sleep within 45 minutes instead of the usual hellish night of no sleep.
Camilia works, but most mothers who have used it agree that it is expensive. Soon after my experience with Camilia, I started seeing a classical homeopath for constitutional treatment. I bought the book “Homeopathy for Children” at my homeopath’s clinic. It is a very useful and basic book about how to use homeopathy for everyday health complaints. It had a very good, comprehensive section about treating teething with homeopathic remedies.
After reading the children’s book, I discovered that my baby fit the remedy picture of a Chamomilla baby while she was teething. Babies needing Chamomilla are extremely irritable when they are teething. The pain can be so unbearable that they can get extremely angry and strike out. They can be extremely whiny and nothing will satisfy them. One characteristic thing about my child that made me know that she needed Chamomilla was that Chamomilla babies are quiet as long as they are being carried. My husband and I spent many nights pacing the floor carrying our daughter in our arms! Other characteristics which would make one think of giving Chamomilla are the pains are worse at night, there may be loose stools, and the cheek that the tooth is coming in on can be hot and red while the other cheek will be pale.
Chamomilla is by far the most common teething remedy, but it does not work for all children. Aconite, for example, is another common teething remedy. Teething babies who need Aconite have extreme pain with a lot of anxiety and restlessness, and often have inflamed gums. It’s a good second choice if Chamomilla seems indicated but doesn’t work.
Ignatia is another common homeopathic teething remedy. Unlike angry Chamomilla children, the Ignatia children are more weepy and sympathetic when teething. The Ignatia child may sigh, tremble, single body parts may quiver or jerk, and they may wake from sleep with piercing cries.
Kreosote is the indicated remedy if your baby’s gums are severely inflamed and red with a spongy consistency. Teething for these babies is extremely painful, and they will be extremely agitated and wakeful.
Mercurius Vivus is indicated for teething babies who are drooling excessively accompanied by offensive bad breath. The pain is worse at night.
Podophyllum is indicated when the baby’s teething troubles are accompanied by noisy, explosive diarrhea.
Dosage for single homeopathic remedies: One dose can be enough if the teething isn’t too severe. For more severe teething, one dose can be given every half hour for up to 3 doses. If 3 doses doesn’t bring relief, you have chosen the wrong remedy.
Using single homeopathic remedies as opposed to combination remedies (such as Camilia) will save you money. I also find that single remedies can be more effective because in general, single remedy potencies are stronger than the potency of combination remedies, plus you are being more exact with your prescribing by just giving one remedy. Combination remedies contain many different homeopathic remedies in a low potency. Most combination remedies contain enough different types of low potency remedies that the odds are good that one of the the ingredients will help your child.
For those of you who find single remedy selection confusing, I recommend Hyland’s Teething Tablets. I have talked to many satisfied parents who have used Hyland’s Teething Tablets for their children. When using these tablets with very young babies, it is best to put a few of the tablets in a dropper bottle filled with filtered or spring water, then put a few drops of the watery solution into the baby’s mouth.
Some children have a lot of trouble with teething. If your child’s teeth are very slow to come in or are decaying soon after coming in, it is best to consult your local classical homeopath so that your baby can have constitutional homeopathic treatment. Contact the clinic for more information about constitutional homeopathic treatment.
By Sonya McLeod
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