Natural Support for Lyme disease
What we can do? How can you prevent Lyme disease? What if you get Lyme disease? And what options are available for long-standing chronic Lyme disease? The standard medical treatment for Lyme is antibiotics. However, this may not work for everyone. Read on for ideas on prevention, acute treatment and natural treatments. The body knows how to heal itself with a little help.
Natural Lyme prevention
A natural way to immunize against Lyme would be to take the homeopathic Lyme disease remedy. The protocol is to take 2-3 doses of the Lyme remedy, also known as the Borrelia remedy, in a 200c potency. It is good to do this in the spring, spreading the doses out over a couple of weeks or more.
Lemongrass essential oil is suggested to deter ticks. You can make a spray with water and use a bit of the oil to put on socks, shoes, pants and sleeves. It is safe to put directly on the skin since the oil is diluted.
If you find a tick that is attached, pull the tick out safely. DO NOT use petroleum jelly, a hot match, nail polish, or other products to force the tick out of the skin. This can make things worse and the chances of leaving the head of the tick in the skin are much higher. It also stresses the tick, which may mean greater discharge of toxic materials into the skin. Remove attached ticks with tweezers gently to avoid crushing the tick’s body. Grasp the tick firmly and as close as possible to the person or animal’s skin. With a steady motion, pull the tick’s body away from the skin. Do not be alarmed if the tick’s mouthparts remain in the skin. (Watch this Video by tick expert Kateryn Rochon)
Homeopathically it is good to give a dose of Ledum palustre 200c while removing the tick. I will discuss the use of Ledum in homeopathic protocols later on.
Cleanse the area with an antiseptic or lavender essential oil. You can put a drop of lavender oil at the site right away. It is antibacterial and antiseptic yet will not suppress any symptoms. You can also mix the lavender with coconut oil or other carrier oil to dilute the essential oil so it will not affect sensitive skin.
Calendula helps the skin to repair and heal without scarring. There are some calendula wax-based or cream formulas available that would be good to apply after the lavender oil has set in. Another option is to use a Bentonite clay poultice to draw out anything left in the wound. You can add some lavender oil to the Bentonite poultice.
Recovery from Lyme with Western medicine
Going to the doctor will result in tests and antibiotics. There are cases where there is no response or an incomplete response to antibiotics. In these cases either oral or intravenous antibiotics are continued for months at a time. Some patients ultimately respond well to this aggressive treatment, others do not, or they may suffer extensive side effects from prolonged antibiotic use.
For many with a strong immune system and vitality, the recovery is quick and effective. However, cases in which the symptoms return after months of an apparent cure, or never completely go away with standard or aggressive treatment, there can be serious suffering and health deterioration. Patients in this category are said to suffer from chronic Lyme, or post-treatment Lyme disease. This is not recognized by all medical systems and treatment is therefore often unavailable.
There are also problems that can arise with only using antibiotics as a treatment. All bacteria create biofilms in the body. Similar to a house or roof, they build a stable place to exist. When under assault by the immune system or antibiotics, they form spherical shapes and can thus hibernate in a comatose state like a seed. They then constantly monitor the environment waiting for the opportunity to ‘wake up.’ They are more difficult to remove from the body when in this state. It is also well known that it is not advisable to take antibiotics over a long term. This can disrupt the delicate balance of the body’s microbiome and lead to problems with basic body functions such as digestion and assimilation. It is possible therefore that using only allopathic treatments can suppress symptoms that come back later, and residual effects can be carried for years.
If you do not recover from antibiotic treatment, or have relapses requiring stronger antibiotics, this suggests there is an issue with your immune system response. Although antibiotics can help the body to remove bacteria, without the body’s own adaptive response and immune system response doing that work there is little chance of a full recovery. There are other treatments that can naturally stimulate the body’s immune and adaptive responses. They can help wake up the awareness of the bacteria causing the imbalance, and then the body can remove it gently and completely in most cases.
The Herx reaction
A Herxheimer reaction refers to the release of endotoxins where bacteria die off during antibiotic treatment faster than the body can remove the toxins. Symptoms can include fever, muscle pain, and overall increased Lyme symptoms. This reaction can produce symptoms more severe than the disease itself, and so care must be taken to help the body clear the toxins or to reduce the intensity of the antibiotic reaction. If the issue is blocked lymph nodes for example, then to do an intensive antibiotic course before addressing the lymph drainage would perhaps do more harm than good.
Using Homeopathy to support Lyme recovery
It is always better to treat the current and complete symptom picture of each individual, although there are many homeopathic protocols that may help for Lyme infections. Keep in mind it is possible to combine natural approaches along with antibiotic use, depending on what you feel most comfortable doing. However, it would be good to have the advice of a professional homeopath since antibiotics can complicate the body’s response to the natural treatments.
After the tick bite
If it is the first or second day of the bite, use Belladonna 30c or 200k to wake up the vital force and help rally the immune system to act. Indications are if there is any fever, redness, pain or red swelling. Also take Ledum 200c or 200k. Use only the Ledum if the bite has been there for a while, since the Belladonna is no longer useful once the acute phase has passed. The Ledum is excellent for insect bites and reduces inflammation and itching, redness with swelling, and throbbing pain.
In the case that the person is freaking out and worried they might die after the tick bite, you can easily calm then down from fear with Aconite 30c or 200k. Give them one right away, and another dose shortly after if they still need it.
The best course of action with homeopathics is to individualize the treatment if at all possible. With the help of a homeopath it is good to use the person's core or global remedy to help the body heal completely and fully. This addresses the previous issues that lowered their immune system response and increased their susceptibility to contracting the Lyme disease. This is best done with a professional homeopath, who will determine the complete set of symptoms and then match that to a remedy picture.
A homeopath will explore much more than just the physical symptoms and this unusual approach is only one principle that sets them apart from a general practitioner's methods. After finding a core remedy or specific protocol, a homeopath can suggest the dosage, potency and duration of the chosen remedy. They can also suggest when to switch remedies, or if adding other remedies would be helpful. This makes healing a collaborative process between you and your homeopath, allowing for the best possible outcome.
After the initial protocol or core remedy, it is possible to use other remedies for particular symptoms as they appear during the healing process.
When someone is irrationally afraid of Lyme disease, consider Syphilinum. Their fear will often lead to a profound aversion to dirt or to touching dirty things. Lyme is similar to the Syphilis bacteria. There is an acute phase, dormant phase, and a progressive chronic phase where it gets worse with time. As mentioned above, an acute state of panic and fear of death can also be helped with Aconite. Homeopathy can definitely help with the feelings of despair, depression or even suicidal thoughts that may result from chronic Lyme disease.
Pharmaceutical clean up
In the case where antibiotics or other medications have been used, it can be good to do a drug detox for the system. Sometimes this is required before using natural protocols so the remedies can act fully to initiate the body’s response. This is mostly indicated in sensitive or very fatigued persons, although it can still be helpful for most people. There are various protocols that can help the body detox.
Food and Diet
Whole food supplements can also boost the immune system and help with fatigue. They can be used along with the homeopathic protocols and/or antibiotic treatment. Spirulina contains essential amino acids, iron, protein, B vitamins, and vitamins C, D and E and supports the body, boosts the immune system and helps with recovery from fatigue. Bee pollen is also a potent whole food supplement. It contains beta-carotene, lycopene, zeaxanthin, the complete B and E complexes, vitamins C and D as well as protein and trace minerals including iodine, magnesium, and selenium. It is known as the most complete single food on earth.
Organic alfalfa is one of the most mineral-rich foods with optimal levels of magnesium, calcium, potassium, and trace minerals such as selenium, copper, sulfur, and zinc. These minerals are in balance naturally and promote proper absorption. I prefer these natural whole food supplements to taking specific or multi vitamins that can be synthetic, unbalanced or difficult for the body to absorb and use.
It is important to rebuild the physical structures that were affected such as the collagen tissues, where the bacteria get most of their nutrients to survive. To rebuild the affected structures you can use homeopathic supports, nutritional whole food supplements and herbs, as well as a strong whole food diet. The areas mainly affected will show up in the symptoms that are expressed in each individual. It might be in the brain as neurological diseases, the joints as arthritis, or the heart as heart disease. There will most certainly be a nutrient deficiency.
Quinton’s Plasma is a good tonic to restore nutrients in the more serious cases that have lead to long-term fatigue. Mycoplasmas scavenge B vitamins, so taking whole food supplements can be helpful along with eating different whole foods that contain the range of B vitamins. If they have disrupted the GI tract, this can cause bowel permeability. Taking Aloe Vera gel for a short time can help repair the mucosa. It may also help to change your diet temporarily, reducing foods that cause any inflammation or irritation. Homeopathic intestinal flora remedies can also help with recovery in this department.
After using antibiotics, it is important to repopulate the digestive tract with healthy bacteria again. You can consume raw or unpasteurized fermented foods that still have living beneficial bacteria. There are many probiotic foods as well such as plain yogurt and kefir. Also important are foods that offer prebiotics such as onions and under-ripe bananas. These contain the food that the healthy bacteria need to survive and grow once they are inside the digestive tract again. For a more intensive recovery, the Genestra HMF probiotics are human-sourced proprietary strains that adhere better to the gut lining and more efficiently colonize the intestinal tract. Most probiotics just pass through the intestines and so continued use is required. Many of the Genestra strains will actually repopulate the internal flora for the longer term.
Homeopathic Tissue Salts can be very useful in a wide variety of functional disorders and physical symptoms. They are based on the 12 essential minerals the body needs to repair and maintain itself, and they help to regulate and restore these minerals and their functions. There are other homeopathic supports that can be used as well and if often depends on the homeopath's familiarity with each system.
Other methods to consider alongside conventional medication include following the GAPS diet, osteopathy, cranial-sacral therapy and Traditional Chinese tuina massage and bone setting. It is not recommended to have acupuncture during homeopathic treatment as both methods are energetically based and may counter act each other.
There is a natural way to support Lyme disease, and to recover our lives and rediscover our potential!
I offer support for Lyme disease all over the world via Skype or, at my office in Montreal, Quebec. Ask about a free 15-minute consultation. It is possible to work with the use of antibiotics, medications and other treatment protocols or to use a totally natural approach.
How does holistic treatment support healthy living? Why try homeopathy? Having a life long study in the principles of nature and healthy living, Lauren Trimble DHom, Nd is happy to share her knowledge and experience. The art of retuning the body’s natural healing capacity & developing consciousness in a compassionate and gentle way is the gift that homeopathy brings to her current holistic practice. If you enjoyed this article find out more at Birdsong.
Homeopathy and Sustainability
Homeopathy is the only healing practice we currently have that offers long term sustainability. There are healing practices like shamanism or energy healing, but as one of the complete medical systems, only homeopathy offers a Green solution to our ever increasing environmental concerns. More and more people want to make changes in their diet, their consumer choices, their personal care and cleaning products, yet it is also possible to make choices that supports and promotes sustainability in health care.
Part of sustainability’s Triple Bottom Line includes addressing the needs of the Planet. The extraction of non-renewable resources should be minimized and extraction of renewable resources should not exceed the rate at which they are renewed. The absorptive capacity of the environment to assimilate wastes should not be exceeded. Homeopathy does not degrade our environment or health.
“Homeopathy is ideally placed to be part of the solution, rather than part of the problem. Homeopathy is one of the greenest medical modalities. It has a very small, sustainable footprint, it doesn’t pollute, it’s not tested on animals and the experience of taking a homeopathic remedy often awakens us, at a profound level, to the inter-connectedness of all living things and helps us to recognize suppression both on an individual scale and on a global scale.” Mary Aspinwall.
1. It takes very little of the original undiluted substance to make a homeopathic remedy. For example, one honey bee can make enough Apis remedy to help thousands of people. It is the transformation of the medicine from the material form (matter) to energetic signal (information) that makes this possible. Using homeopathy therefore has a very small footprint on the environment and on other living creatures.
2. Except in experiments or clinical testing that copy the modern scientific model so they can be published in research journals animal testing is never used in homeopathy. Neither are remedies tested on unhealthy or vulnerable people. (Don't get me started on the huge medical research industry in Quebec that depends on impoverished and sometimes desperate people to be paid 'volunteers' in pharmaceutical clinical trials and tests.) Remedies are 'tested' on healthy people who are willing to participate in the homeopathic proving process and this method is the original source of the double blind study method.
3. Because so little source material is used and the process is one of dilution and dynamization there is no danger of polluting the earth’s water supplies or oceans during the production of homeopathic remedies.
4. The remedies do not contain any toxic material or matter that can be eliminated as waste from the human body. Unlike pharmaceuticals and herbs that can end up in the water supply or the soil, and even in the plants and animals we might later eat, homeopathic remedies do not pollute.
5. The process of homeopathy involves the case taking session and then the research and contemplation done by the homeopath. Rarely do tests or expensive machines improve the remedy selection process and therefore the healing process of the individual. All that is needed is the time to sit with the person and listen, and the highly skilled training of the homeopath. There is little need for expensive facilities, and there is rarely any medical waste needing to be disposed of.
The more we understand that homeopathy offers us a sustainable and green healthcare, the sooner we can shift our choices in that direction. Otherwise it may be by necessity alone that it becomes the medicine of the future.
A classical musician concerned about a solo singing performance the next day came to see me for a last minute acute case. He had been sick the past five days with a cold and the symptoms of serious congestion, coughing, difficulty sleeping and fatigue. He had been taking several homeopath remedies on his own to get through the phases of the cold quicker but was getting nervous about how his throat and vocal cords would be by the next day. For a choral gig he would not be so worried, however since this was an important concert for his advancing solo career he was worried about his voice!
He had a long history of congestion and ENT issues as well as taking cortical steroids and Benadryl for about ten years during school and the early part of his career to manage his mucus and inflammation. This approach actually made things worse over time as well as creating a dependency to using them. A colleague recommended that he try homeopathy and he was amazed at the quick action of Sinusalia for sinus relief. Wanting to try a more gentle and natural approach to his health issues rather than pharmaceuticals and drug dependency, he saw a MICH method trained Homeopath and was able to get off these medications within a very short time. Over the next couple of years he has been steadily been improving the ENT issues as well as food sensitivities and allergies and related digestive system issues. Most of the digestion and food related issues have cleared up and the ENT was also improving.
He noticed that this acute situation was a return to earlier symptoms and feelings and due to the importance of this performance he decided to get my opinion rather than to continue to self subscribe for the acute cold. We did a session, which included the physical symptoms, and some imagination and sensation based exploration. Once I was able to see some repeated themes and sensations I was able to start to move to the next phase of focusing him on filling them out more.
Some of the themes that repeated were:
Royalty & castle: To him the community of singers has sensations of royalty, it glows, glitters, there is colourful light, honour and stability, magic. It is a glittering kingdom of which he feels honoured to be part of. When he has a performance it is as if he is rejoining royalty. And he was concerned about not causing a riot, mucking things up, disturbing the people who live in the castle, the townsfolk. He saw the castle as self contained, high above, in the heavens, shining, beside the sea on a large pile of rocks. He also felt that the community was whole, it had no holes in it, was viscous and dense, the wholeness was nurturing the kingdom versus how he saw that outside the kingdom was like a patchwork quilt, full of holes as if eaten by moths, without communication and not taken care of.
When I asked about his Performance he responded that it was sad when things are cut down from their full potential, the light dimmed, it needs to be fully lit, like a sea creature of some kind, the light goes on for miles. Communication was important to him in this way: I would prefer to be heard, that they accept what I say rather than be understood. To fail is for momentum to end, illusion to be revealed, as if I am deceiving others, about who I am. This linked to betrayal, if I am in the less than ideal practice room, it will be exposing parts of my voice that don't need to be shown. Instead of being generous, loving and alive, it is static and dead.
Sharp or dull: Clarity sharpens, like a blade, so things are less dull. He did not like when the connection is dulled, as above in not being heard, and when phlegm dampens/constricts the sound of his voice. There are these fine, bright edges that create the shimmer. Lost shimmer equals a dullness in his voice.
Sea creatures: He explored the image of a sticky worm constricting his voice, with stringy bits. Then it was as if he was missing the meat/substance (that he equated with humanity), and there was the light only (that corresponded to purity and warmth). He had an interesting way of seeing his phlegm as he cleared it out. For him it was like giving it a chance to leave the nest, it was done with care, as if they were tadpoles or young fish. He realized that if it is in the way he no longer has as much love for it, yet he has to be respectful towards it. Once it is immobile, he no longer favours it. "If I can show it the path to go, great beautiful, if it is dead, I can't do this. I can't reason, reassure, take care of it, or work to keep it alive." He had the image of barnacles that can get in the way of painting a boat. He also had the image that his phlegm was as if he could shuck open his nose and leave just the shell, that would be great. The nose felt alive yet the chest felt like it was drying out, as if it was sediment or dry sand.
Small separate vs large whole: The image of looking for seashells on a beach, which were valuable and beautiful, and the beach he related to freedom. Or the image of caviar eggs stuck together, one comes out in each chunk of phlegm. Also the patchwork or the wholeness of the kingdom mentioned above.
Water: His mental images were in sea colours, and the sensation was that what he was looking at spends time on the beach but also deep underwater.
I could start to see these themes emerging as we spoke. I was totally lost however, and I had to just sit in the discomfort of knowing that I would not know what he was talking about right away. I looked over the notes and picked out some key themes and asked him to fill them out further. I was curious about the shells and sand realizing as we talked that castles are made out of sand and that water has blinding light when reflecting the sun. I was hoping to find a link with the sea creatures and physical matter with this need for shiny, shimmering light. He continued to describe images related to the sea and maybe a sea creature like an oyster or clam. I looked at my Material Medica as I was starting to feel a Calcarea Carbonica remedy, yet it did not cover the light or castles. I found that by adding phosphorus it would include the shimmering light and the need for the social connection he got from the kingdom/community of singers and that it also covered many of his physical symptoms.
Calcium as a remedy has a need for structure, protection, security and this equates in their being responsible, grounded, steady minded, etc. Anything that stresses them will stress their structure. They often feel feeble and not up to a task. In remedy making it is sourced from Calcarea, the snow white portion of the inner oyster shell. Phosphorus on the other hand enjoys activity, energy transfer of relationships, is sensitive, has a high need for attention, love, consolation, support and they are highly social. Here anything that stresses them will stress their social situation and social connections. Phosphorus is about bringing light, spreading the word, communication. On the physical level it helps irritated, inflamed degenerated mucous membranes, irritated and inflamed serous membranes, destroyed bone, especially in the lower jaw. In the chest the combination of these two minerals as the remedy Calc-phos helps with recurring infections, nose colds that go to the chest, lingering tickling coughs, pneumonia, chronic bronchitis, and asthma. It also helps with inflammation and degeneration of the mucous membranes, the stomach and bowels. For a clinical use it is good for convalescence from severe acute diseases, lungs, and regenerative function of nervous tissue. It is also helpful for emotional states of feeling rejected or feeling unloved and for the fears of illness that can cause anxiety.
Sand is basically Silicea minus the crushed up sea shells and he had been taking a low potency regularly for the past months to help clear out lingering mucus from his ongoing mucus in his chest. I decided to give him the Calc-phos at 30c and Silicea at 30c instead of the lower potency to take alternately that night and if needed in the morning. Both were for the first aid acute situation to get him congestion free as fast as was possible for his body to do overnight.
Things can change quickly in an acute situation. He contacted me the next morning in a panic. Now he was definitely not sure of his ability to sing and was considering cancelling last minute, a choice that he felt could jeopardize his future opportunities with this particular music organization. I had found the right remedy for his particular experience of his main complaint, the congested phlegm. I was considering after the last session that after this busy week of a concert and auditions he could try the Calc-phos cell salt as a constitutional to take daily for a few months to see if he could rebuild the inner structures of his nose and throat after having chronic issues in his ENT region for so long! However, because the congestion had been relieved overnight, that also changed the inner shape of his throat and cords and he was panicking about not being able to adjust to the related vocal changes at such last minute. There was also a sticky mucus now on his vocal cords so he was cracking on the high notes as he was practicing. I did another acute emergency case taking adding in whatever new symptoms he was experiencing.
He expressed how he felt about making this cancellation phone call. The Calc has the feeling about not being up to the task, but this was more, it was a much heavier sense than just a duty to perform. It was also about his mentor that he looks up to and the importance he places on his blossoming solo career. I have worked with singers and remembered reading that Aurum is good for classical musicians and leaders of orchestras (according to Peter Chappel in his book Emotional Healing with Homeopathy, Treating the Effects of Trauma). I decided to look at the Materia Medica for Aurum and there was the need to take responsibility and withstand very high pressure, to perform even in adverse conditions, even the need to be highly responsible in every circumstance. There was the strong need to maintain his career, to hold on to achievement and praise, to keep up social and others' expectations of him. He imagines he has lost the affection of his friends and this makes him sad, even unto tears. This singer had mentioned before that he was able to perform great feats when he sang that were impossible. This was also in there, one must perform tasks which are impossible or much beyond his capacity. I had not remembered that Aurum addresses the nose and congestion. There can be a boring at the root of the nose, severe sinusitis, headaches at the inner angle of the right eye and at the root of the nose, and nasal obstruction. Clinically it can help with sinuses, anxiety, headache, and sinusitis.
Aurum is made from gold, and is not usually a first aid remedy for something like a cold. However, in this intense live or die moment, it did the job. Thinking back to the description of castles and royalty and how much importance he placed on the ability to perform at such a high caliber and the remark that he is usually sick when working with this music organization, it was also there in his first case taking, and neither of us saw such intensity of the situation until the following morning. He was very emotional and anxious when he took the Aurum and immediately calmed down. He was able to focus and he continued to warm up and steadily his voice improved. He let me know that within an hour he regained his confidence and was singing they way he had in rehearsals for the upcoming performance. And that he was able to continue to explore a new level of singing that was freer and more passionate than ever before.
He did not have to make that terrible call and two days later he let me know that he performed magnificently and was given high praise. Homeopathy had saved the day, and without it he was sure he would have been in agony with a sinus infection for several weeks. He was also going to take the cell salts to see how that changes his ENT region over the coming months. With the hep of homeopathy he could enjoy the golden glow of success.
How does homeopathy support healthy living? Why try homeopathy? The art of retuning the body’s natural healing capacity in a compassionate and gentle way is the gift that homeopathy brings to Lauren Trimble's natural and holistic method. If you enjoyed this article find out more at Birdsong.
Homeopath and Holistic Practitioner.