Homeopathy for Highly Sensitive People
by Ronald Steriti, NMD, PhD
Some people are very sensitive. Such people often have to take care to make certain that their environment is calm. Unpleasant circumstances can often have a disruptive effect that lasts for hours or days. Other people often do not understand the extent of their sensitivity. In this article we will discuss many of the different types of sensitive people and their characteristics from the perspective of classical homeopathy and naturopathic medicine.
Attributes and Characteristics of Highly Sensitive People
Physically, HSP’s may have low tolerance to noise, glaring lights, strong odors, clutter and/or chaos. They tend to have more body awareness of themselves and know intuitively when the environment they are in is not working for them. Work and career is particularly challenging for HSP’s. They are often overlooked for promotions even though they are usually the most conscientious employees. They are excellent project oriented employees because they are responsible and thorough in their work.
Emotionally, Highly Sensitive People are seen as shy, introverted and socially inhibited. Sensitive people learn early in life to mask their wonderful attributes of sensitivity, intuition and creativity. Psychologically, HSP’s compensate either by protecting themselves by being alone too much, or, by over-stimulating themselves into stress by trying to be ‘normal’. Socially, they may feel like misfits. Actually they enjoy their own company. They are totally comfortable being alone. Spiritually, sensitive people have more capacity for inner searching. This is one of their greatest blessings.
Relationships can be difficult. They are confronted in relationships with their unresolved personal issues. They can however provide the other person with the benefits of their intuitive insights. Culturally, HSP’s do not fit the tough, stoic and outgoing ideals of modern society and the entertainment media. Childhood wounds have a more devastating effect on HSP’s. It is important for them to heal from any past situation because they cannot just forget it and go on in denial.
Nutritionally, HSP’s may need more simplicity in their diet. They are vitally aware of the effects of food on their body health and their emotional stability.
Homeopathy for Highly Sensitive People
A Homeopathic Repertory is an organized list of symptoms and the homeopathic remedies which have been found to be helpful for people experiencing these symptoms. During a homeopathic interview a homeopath asks the patient a variety of questions to determine the specific homeopathic remedy that matches the entire picture of the patient including both the mental and physical symptoms present. The following is a list of a few of the more common homeopathic remedies which have some of the traits of highly sensitive people.
There is a great deal of information on treating highly sensitive people with homeopathy. A brief look in Kent’s Repertory of the Homeopathic Materia Medica (written in 1897 and still used today) shows an entire section on sensitivity with over twenty entries including many for the characteristics of highly sensitive people. For instance, highly sensitive people often have low tolerance to noise, glaring lights, and strong odors. The following are some of the entries from Kent’s Repertory:
Mind; SENSITIVE; noise; to the slightest; to voices; to water splashing
Mind; SENSITIVE; light
Mind; WILDNESS; bright light, odors, etc.
Head Pain; GENERAL; odors, from strong
Nose; SMELL; acute; sensitive to the odor of; strong odors
Stomach; AVERSION to; eggs; to the odor of
Stomach; NAUSEA; from odors; oranges; tobacco
Stomach; VOMITING; General; odor of food
Generalities; CONVULSIONS; odors, from strong
Generalities; FAINTNESS; odors, from
Common Homeopathic Remedies for Highly Sensitive People
The causticum patient is serious, intense and sensitive. Often they will cry from hearing bad news or from seeing unfortunate people or animals. Causticum children may burst into tears from the slightest provocation. Causticum adults often become social activists with a distinct intolerance for injustice.
The typical nux vomica patient is well described by the “type A personality”. They are impatient, competitive and ambitious. They are irritable and impatient and particularly hate waiting in lines or in traffic. They also tend to be highly sensitive to light, noise, odors and other stimulants.
Phosphorous people are very open and bright people. They love company, and sometimes get anxious when alone. Phosphorous children tend to be very gullible due to their trusting nature. Often they are easily taken advantage of due to their lack of boundaries.
The homeopathic use of coffee is for the type of state that occurs when people drink excessive amounts of it. They are nervous, restless, and over-sensitive. Homeopathic coffee is useful for people with insomnia from racing thoughts.
What is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy was founded in 1796 by Samuel Hahnemann, a German medical doctor. After taking a dose of Cinchona bark (which is used to make quinine) he experienced chills and fevers similar to the ones characteristic of malaria. Hahnemann concludes that the reason this herb was beneficial was because it caused symptoms similar to those of the disease it was treating.
Homeopathic remedies are made by successively diluting and vigorously shaking the original substance. These dilute remedies are then given to healthy volunteers who record their reactions (a proving). These reactions are recorded and used to choose the appropriate remedy during a homeopathic interview. As such, homeopathy is a form of medicine that bases it’s therapeutics on direct human observation and personal experience. Because the remedies are highly diluted the homeopathics work on an energetic level and are not known to cause side effects common with drugs.
Commonly when people say that they are sensitive people tend to think about chemical sensitivity. There are many people that are sensitive to a variety of environmental chemicals such as perfumes, gasoline fumes, food additives, tobacco smoke, automobile exhaust, glue, soap, dyes, etc. Clinically these people often have a history of chemical exposures that have overloaded their Phase I and II detoxification pathways. This type of sensitivity is due to a physical agent and responds to nutritional support of the detoxification pathways with the appropriate vitamins, minerals, amino acids and herbs.
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