Learn to use polycrest remedies for your self and your family for everything from injuries to overindulging during the holidays. The best way to get started using remedies at home is to buy a Helios general 18 remedy 30c kit, an affordable and practical way to keep yourself healthy naturally. What is in this kit?
Kit Remedy list
Aconite: A mental/emotional shock due to a fright or injury.
Also for the beginning stages of an acute illness, such an earache, sore throat, urinary tract infection, fever or any other illness that comes on suddenly with great intensity. Symptoms begin after a short exposure to cold or after experiences of sudden fright, anger, or shock.
Apis: Bee stings, insect bites, and hives. Also for any type of acute inflammation that is characterized by stinging and burning, redness and swelling, and aggravation from heat – such as sore throats, hives, conjunctivitis, and eye styes.
Arnica: After any injury. Especially important in concussion or stroke. Main remedy for bruising due to impacts or falls, and this includes emotional bruising as in bullying. It is also a good remedy for shock due to injury. Take like a pain killer.
Arsenicum Album: Food poisoning and diarrhea. Symptoms along with feeling very weak, restless, and fearful. This is also a useful remedy for fevers where there is a lot of restlessness or anxiety, or for colds with a burning nasal discharge, restlessness and fearfulness.
Belladonna: Useful at the beginning of many acute illnesses, such as fevers, headaches, influenza, earaches, teething problems, swollen glands, and sore throats/tonsillitis. Infections. This remedy is needed if the illness has a sudden, intense onset. The person may also be very aggressive and may try to bite or strike out. The affected part will be red, hot, and the pain is throbbing.
Bryonia: For strains, sprains, and injuries to the ligaments or tendons. With this remedy, the pain is always worsened by motion. Also useful for a number of acute illnesses, where the person is worse by any kind of movement. Coughs that respond to Bryonia are dry and painful. The fevers come on slowly and the there is a thirst for water.
Cantharis: Bladder infections. With burning pain and an intolerable urge to urinate, but the person is only able to pass a few drops of urine at a time. Also used for burns, when there is violent burning pain and blisters.
Chamomilla: Teething. Many types of painful conditions including teething, fevers, diarrhea, colic, and earaches. People needing Chamomilla are usually very irritable because they are in a lot of pain. They are highly sensitive to the pain and are very angry, quarrelsome and snappish.
Gelsemium: The flu. Also stage fright, exam nerves, and fear of public speaking. People needing Gelsemium are very weak with lack of energy, headaches with lots of heaviness and drowsiness. It is also useful for fevers with lots of drowsiness and drooping eyelids.
Hypericum: Nerve pain. Injuries caused by a puncture wound, with shooting pain. For puncture wounds without shooting pain, use Ledum. This remedy is also useful for nerve pain after dental work. For injuries to the tips of fingers and toes or the base of spine, other nerve rich areas.
Ignatia: For grief, sadness from a loss. Funerals. Also good for sensitivity to smoke in the air. Strong odors that make you feel weak and unwell.
Ledum: Animal bites and deep puncture wounds. Prevents infection. If the infection has progressed and there is shooting pain, use Hypericum. It is also a useful remedy for insect stings and bites when the wound is cold to the touch, unlike Apis where the wound is very hot. This remedy is also useful for old bruises that Arnica has failed to completely remove.
Nux Vomica: Hangovers, over doing it. Helpful for digestive problems after overindulging in food, drugs or drink. It is also a useful remedy for nausea during pregnancy. Take like TUMS.
Pulsatilla: A variety of complaints including earaches, eye complaints, colds, flus, fevers, and digestive complaints. Tend to be very weepy and emotional, and crave sympathy and attention. Better in the open air, worse in a hot environment, and have no thirst.
Rhus Toxicodendron: For strains and sprains of muscles and tendons. Rhus tox injuries are worse when first beginning to move, then the injury is much improved from continued motion and worse when keeping still. Respiratory complaints that are worse from cold and damp. Restless and find it hard to keep still. Also for hives and itching skin eruptions in the form of blisters that are red, inflamed, and ooze pus or fluid. An excellent remedy for poison ivy or poison oak.
Ruta: Injuries to the cartilages, tendons, outer covering of bones and ligaments. Has a special affinity for injuries to the knees, elbows, and wrists. Also useful for injuries to the eye due to over-use or strain.
Silicea: Helps expel any foreign objects such as a splinter. Imperfect assimilation and consequent defective nutrition.
Homeopathic Remedy Dosage suggestion for First Aid and Acute stituations
Dissolve 1-2 pellets of the remedy under the tongue. Take dry, half an hour away from food or drink. Give every half hour for three doses. If the problem does not improve at all, you have probably selected the wrong remedy. If the problem improves but still persists, continue giving the remedy 3 times per day for a few more days until recovery is complete.
DIY first aid homeopathy workshops with Lauren Trimble Homeopathy are available when scheduled and are a great way to learn about using homeopathy and to use specific remedies in the kit. Use the contact page to ask about workshops or access to the introductory DIY video that is available anytime. Ask for more details about the kit and workshops.
Most of us can get all the vitamins and minerals we need by eating a balanced diet however, due to aggressive farming methods and use of synthetic fertilizers, the food produced in many countries today is deficient in nutrients, especially in minerals. We have known for decades that depleted soils equal diet deficiencies and that most important are the lacking minerals needed to make proper use of vitamins. This is why taking daily vitamins/mineral pills became so popular, it was seen as a way to supplement this lack in our foods.
Luckily since the 80’s we have started to understand the importance of organic foods and whole foods again. There is a better opportunity now to have nourishing food when we make smarter food choices. Organically grown foods and wild or grass fed meats are more closely balanced with the exact combinations of required nutrients. Foraging natural, fresh, wild foods has the optimal balance. The body is complex and needs a wide variety of vitamins and nutrients to ensure proper growth and to maintain proper system functions. Every function of each cell in all of the organs, muscles and tissues requires the exact combination of vitamins and mineral nutrients in order to function in healthy form.
Our bodies cannot truly process refined and altered foods. If a food is processed so that elements are removed or added in, then the body has a harder time to digest, assimilate and use it. A whole food is already perfectly designed with a balanced combination of nutrients to nourish some part of the body in a specific way. (A whole food would be an egg, a blueberry or bone broth, as opposed to an egg white, extracted anthocyanins or collagen removed from the bone broth.)
Just as each whole food is naturally designed with the perfect combination of vitamins, nutrients, micro nutrients, when you take a vitamin or mineral supplement this balance is altered. An example is taking a Calcium pill. The body cannot make use of this mineral unless it can also find Magnesium and Vitamin K stored in excess the body. These beneficial combinations are found naturally in foods, but not always in vitamin pills. It is also important to understand that the majority of supplements made today are synthetic and are made to mimic the way natural nutrients act in our bodies, so the body can have difficulty recognizing and assimilating them in order to put them to good use.
Homeopaths understand that whole, organic foods are the best way to get all the vitamins and minerals you need and rarely suggest taking pills or synthetic supplements. When whole foods are not enough, you can supplement with whole ‘Super’ foods such as organic powdered greens, wheat grass, barley grass and sprouts, and basic green foods such as kale, spinach etc. Start the powdered greens 1/4 tsp per day for 3/4 days and then 1/2 tsp. The maintenance amount is 1 tsp/10 grams per day. Other super foods/whole foods that are great immune builders include Royal Jelly from bees, and Stinging nettle tea. Broths such as miso and bone broth are good as well. Miso stimulates digestion so it is good to have a 1/2 hour before a meal. Kelp, Alfalfa, Beet root, and other whole food dried herbs can be helpful as well. If you are vegetarian or vegan, there are choices that are alternatives to meat and dairy whole foods.
If feel you need to supplement with a pill, make sure you know why you need it and how to balance it correctly, and always choose a well designed, balanced product made from natural whole food sources that are organic preferably. Avoid synthetic choices, they may be cheaper on the shelf but they may cause more problems than the ones you are hoping to solve.
When there may be problems in the uptake or assimilation of certain minerals or vitamins and the body cannot use what is being provided by whole foods or natural supplements, homeopathy can be an effective solution. In this case it doesn’t matter how much you try to supplement with a pill, the body is not going to be able to use that material and will need to either eliminate it or accumulate it in the body somewhere. If we use an example again, Calcium is taken to keep bones strong and reduce the risk of osteoporosis, however it is also notorious for creating other problems. It increases the risk for heart attack and stroke since it is believed that without enough vitamin D to help absorb it, the extra Calcium can settle in the arteries instead of the bones and form plaques that threaten the heart and brain. Excess Calcium can also cause muscle pain, mood disorders, abdominal pain and kidney stones as well as other abnormal Calcium deposits.
By looking at the reason for poor assimilation and use of Calcium and providing a natural solution for that imbalance, the body can again start to use the Calcium provide in whole foods in a proper combination and avoid the risks of using Calcium supplements. This is the same for all the various vitamins, minerals and trace minerals needed for the body to perform optimally. Ask your homeopath for more information on how remedies or cell salts may be the better choice to a daily multi or specific vitamin.
We consume oils all the time and yet we pay the very little attention to what oils we are eating, and how they may impact our long term health. Removing unhealthy, rancid and heavily processed oils is one of the most important healthy habits you can make in your diet to avoid diseases such as cancers, heart disease and intestinal disorders and to reduce fatigue, inflammation and free radicals! Understanding what oils are unhealthy and what oils are safe to eat will help to reduce those risks. Adjusting your habits at home, at the grocery store and when eating out will go a long way to making the change you may be longing for in your overall health!
Avoid eating rancid oils!Unsaturated oils such as canola, olive, peanut, or vegetable oil don’t last on the shelf as long as you think since they are incredibly sensitive to heat, light and oxygen and actually go rancid in a very short time. You may not notice the off taste and it may not make you feel sick, however the increasing levels of free radicals can elevate the risk of developing diseases such as cancer and heart disease in the long term. Flavoured oils containing low-acid vegetables such as garlic or herbs and spices can cause botulism due to the rotting vegetables when they turn. Throw these old oils out!
The length of time an oil lasts depends whether it is unopened and sealed off from oxygen, how it is stored and what kind of oil it is. You can see this list for specific times www.eatbydate.com/other/condiments/how-long-does-oil-last. Most oils do not last longer than two years, even unopened. An open oil not kept in the fridge may only last 3 months. You can tell it has gone off since the oil may taste bitter, stale or “off” and there is often that noticeable rancid smell. Check the expiry dates, store oils properly either in the fridge or a cool pantry, and do the smell test. Good oils can be expensive so avoid buying large amounts if you know you won’t eat it before it expires. It will be too tempting to use it even if it is old and as I mentioned, bad oil can lead to health complications later on.
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Do you have a hard time going number 2? According to the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases, constipation is one of the most common digestive problems and affects up to 13% of people in the US. It is defined as having hard, dry bowel movements or only going fewer than three times a week. I know I am typically constipated according to this definition as I don't go every day. However, when I do go it is a easy and all is fairly normal, but that was not always the case. This is in part due to my constitution and partly because of some of the factors listed below.
Common factors that contribute to increased constipation:
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Heat waves are part of summer, however when they are extreme they can seriously affect our health. The people most at risk are the elderly, children, people with chronic diseases especially heart and lung issues, and people on certain medications. However anyone that is sensitive to heat can feel consequences even if it is only irritability and a loss of energy.
The concern is with Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke. Heat Exhaustion is when your body gets too hot and can’t cool down by sweating due to dehydration. Symptoms are heavy sweating, rapid pulse, dizziness, fatigue, muscle cramps, nausea, headache and cool, moist skin with goose bumps. Heatstroke is when the body temperature rises to 104 degrees Fahrenheit or higher and at this temperature the brain, heart, kidneys and muscles may be damaged leading to serious complications, and without cooling or emergency intervention the person may die. Symptoms include altered mental state or behavior, nausea and vomiting, flushed skin, rapid breathing and racing heart rate.
How can homeopathy help with the extreme heat?
Homeopathy can be a very helpful intervention in cases of both heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Be sure to assess if you or the other person needs immediate emergency medical care first. Remember that homeopathy can offer a safe complement to emergency medicine. Then using the matching symptoms one of the following remedies can be selected.
A good remedy for high heat when the face gets flushed and red. Look for dilated pupils, a throbbing headache, radiating heat with little or no sweat and sudden spikes in temperature. There may also be violent shooting pains in head, which come and go suddenly, dizziness and restlessness. The heat is in the hot face, the hot temper and hot flushes although the hands or feet may be cool. It is easy to confuse Belladonna and Glonoine since they both have a hot head and glassy, staring eyes but in Belladonna you see the dilated pupils and the face will typically be red.
This is another great remedy for heat when you see staring, glassy eyes, pupils contracted, pulse barely perceptible or so quick it can’t be calculated, congestion and throbbing, loss of speech, face pale, cold sweat, body cold and head hot to the touch. This remedy is for effects of sun- stroke and hyperemia (excess if blood) of the brain from excess of heat. Generally worse in the sun.
Here you will see heat in the whole body, contracted pupils, a full pulse. There will be a lot of anxiety and restlessness. Often after lying with head exposed to the direct rays of sun. There is faintness and dizziness. Aconite is good for when the temperatures change rapidly, so feels unwell after exposure to a sudden cold wind or sudden exposure to hot weather, since this causes a shock to the body.
Another shock remedy, this is useful in sunstroke with a high body temperature and drowsiness, sleepy or a comatose state, and oddly a lack of thirst, refuses water.
A great remedy for sun headaches, faintness and dizziness. Hot flashes, hot sweats, hot heavy headaches and the fatigue that follows heat, this remedy is very cooling when there is a lot of heat.
There is great thirst for water, feels better with rest and being quiet. There will be a feeling of dryness, mucous membranes seem dry and throbbing, bursting headache. There is irritability, mostly due to pain with any movement because of lack of fluids/moisture.
Ferrum-phos cell salt:
When there is redness, heat, headache, minor fatigue or low fever in the first stages of irritation or illness from too much heat or sun. The result is a feeling of physical weakness, fatigue and you don’t feel right but it is not extreme. This remedy can be of general use for a speedy recovery from feeling unwell after a day in the sun!
To help choose a remedy, or for more information on how to take a homeopathic remedy you can talk to a homeopath or visit a shop with a homeopathic consultant. Many homeopaths offer a half hour or acute session reduced rate for issues like heat stroke or sun complaints such as sunburns, dehydration or headaches!
This past year has seen many devastating fire regions that have created added challenges to health and welfare. I still remember the shocking news in June of the fires in Portugal. They were so fast and converged together that 65 people lost their lives, many in their cars on the roadways trying to escape! So rarely do forest fires take so many people’s lives. In Greenland, a huge landmass mostly covered with ice and permafrost, they had unusual and unprecedented fires of melted peat bogs. In the United States it was considered to be the most expensive firefighting year to date. Some of the largest fires were the Lodgepole Complex Fire in Montana during July as well as the La Tuna Fire in Los Angeles in September although the damage to homes was relatively low. Overall California’s fires were disastrous and the most recent December fires forced many to evacuate and destroyed over 1,300 structures. The state will have an economic toll of over $180 billion dollars.
In my home province of British Columbia the fires this year set records with the largest area burnt in a single fire season, the most number of evacuees, and the single largest fire ever recorded in the province. Over 39,000 people were evacuated from their homes and 30,000 cattle were at risk. Not to mention many household pets that were left at home and could not be rescued due to roadblocks. Over 300 buildings including homes, barns and commercial structures were destroyed. So many people have to start all over and rebuild their lives.
I was home in Vancouver in August and the sky appeared like a vision of an apocolypse. There was an orange dusky tinge to the night sky and the moon was blood red. I was standing waiting for my taxi looking up and thinking, “Whoa, that is not normal, what in the world is going on?” For the next week I could not see the blue sky although there was not a single cloud up there, daylight was like it was dusk or dawn but all day and the sun was bright orange while the moon was bright red. The air of course was filled with particulates and smoke and although I did have difficulty breathing, I did not try to exert myself and yet I noticed I was more tired than normal. What I really noticed during this month long visit was how this normally Temperate Rainforest Region is much hotter and dryer than it was 20 years ago. All of August there was no rain, it was extremely hot and the sun was intense. I had several sunburns, something I hardly get where I live in sunny, hot Montreal!
These intense natural disasters have many ways of impacting human health and homeopathy can help whether it is for the physical symptoms from smoke inhalation or the emotional issues related to shock and loss of home and livelihood.
1. Reduced air quality and smoke related issues
When the smoke from burning wood is heavy in the air, symptoms can include watery eyes, burning eyes, sore or scratchy throats, inflamed sinuses, headaches, coughs and difficulty breathing. The very young, the elderly, pregant women, and anyone with allergies or an already compromised respiratory system are at greater risk. Urban areas often feel worse effects of forest fires although the smoke has come from hundreds of miles away. The air in cities is already often polluted during hot, dry times. There less oportunity to improve air quality by large areas of plants and trees, breezes and winds, and fresh air from rural areas.
Natural things you can do to help relieve symptoms
Use a bulb syringe or netipot to irrigate your sinuses. This clears out excess mucus and particulates like smoke or dust, and adds moisture to the nasal cavities to keep them from drying up, bleeding or feeling irritated. A warm saline solution is used and is safe and easy to do, just be sure the temperature is never hotter than body temperature. You can follow this up with a Sesame Oil Nasal Spray.
The eyes can be rinsed as well. You can buy a herbal eyewash or make one with Calendula (marigold), Hydrastis (goldenseal), Chamomile, and or Euphrasia (eyebright). Simply make an infusion by adding a handful of one or more of these herbs, fresh or dried, to a half litre of freshly boiled distilled water. Cover and let steep. When it is still warm, strain and use the water on the eyes.
Reduce the amount of contaminants you bring in the house. Keep the windows and doors closed and as soon as you come indoors change your clothes and take a quick shower to wash the exposed areas such as the face and hair. The same can be done after walking the dog, hose them down or brush them with a damp cloth. Vacuuming can stir up particles so wait until the air quality improves and you can open the doors and windows for fresh air again. Air fresheners are extremely toxic as they emit over 350 different chemicals and allergens including benzene, formaldehyde, styrene, and phthalates. Try using a water/vinegar spray with a few drops of an essential oil instead.
Homeopathic remedies to support forest fire symptoms
Ignatia: When there is smoke exposure with depression, grief or disappointments. Has a headache that feels as if a nail was being driven into the side of the head. The pain feels better by lying on the painful side. Any strong smells make things worse. May crave cigarettes to make things better.
Arsenicum: Smoke exposure with extreme anxiety and restlessness. The eyes are burning and tearing. Nose has a burning discharge. Cough is dry. The symptoms are worse at night and when lying down. There is a lot of worry, restlessness and anxiety about the future. Concerns about financial losses or theft.
Euphrasia: Smoke exposure with only physical symptoms. Simply notes that the eyes run and burn and the nose runs but there is no burning or pain. Eyelids can be red, swollen and sensitive. There can be a slight cough with tearing eyes.
Kali bichromicum: When there is a more serious smoke exposure with irritated sinus, lungs. The nose is blocked and any discharge is ropy or stringy and tends to be sticky. Sinuses are sore, raw and painful. Painful coughs with a sore chest.
Natrum arsenicosum: For very sensitive persons. Can be useful if other indicated remedies have not helped. Eyes are dry and painful. Sinuses are blocked and painful.
Racking cough, lungs feel full of smoke. Headaches.
Bryonia: Worse with any motion with dryness of respiratory system. Headache is worse with motion, better with pressure. Dry and painful coughs. Symptoms are worse at night or with motion. Cranky, wants to be quiet, still and left alone.
Silica: Useful for detoxing and expelling foreign particles. Nose is dry and blocked, no smell or taste. Sinuses are blocked and painful. Dry cough with irritation. Sensation of something stuck at the back of the throat.
Carbo Vegetabilis: Shortness of breath, oxygen starved. Wants to be fanned, or craves fresh air. Feels very weak and may collapse. Severe wheezing. Loss of consciousness or fainting.
2. Shock, grief and loss related to forest fires
Natural disasters like wildfires are difficult to prepare for emotionally. We can set up a system or list of things to do to be prepared, but when a life is lost, animals are left behind, or a home is destroyed the feelings can be overwhelming and hard to recover from. Often roads and highways are shut down and people are forced to evacuate when forest fires get close to residential communities.
Shock is usually the initial acute response to loss
Whether the loss was sudden and unpredicted or we knew it is coming, we can experience a state of shock when it happens. The person feels stunned, numb as well as an increased sensitivity. There can be fear, agitation and even panic, and this can lead the person to do things that are not usual or even possibly dangerous. This is an acute, intense and sudden state and usually subsides quickly after the event. When it doesn’t, or the person is in an extreme state of shock that poses a danger to themselves or others, giving a remedy can be helpful.
Aconite: Here we have a limbic, non-rational state where the person feels shaky, fearful and stunned after a sudden fright or strong emotions. There is great fear, anxiety and worry and they can be very restless and moving around, even shouting, screaming or wailing. There can be panic attacks, or they may be inclined to run away and escape, everything is done irrationally and in great fear.
Gelsemium: This is the opposite of aconite and there is instead of a flailing panic a stoic response. They try to control themselves and avoid the feelings they have, and there is also a weakness and numbness as if they are paralyzed. They will not cry and feel drained of energy, and their mind may go blank. Here the danger is more that they try to avoid anything that reminds them of the situation or their fear.
A period of instability and adjustment
During this time there can be extreme emotions and moods shift dramatically and quickly. This is an intense and unstable period and can seem to as inappropriate behaviours, such as laughing in a moment that is somber and serious, or not replying when spoken to. The most common first aid remedy given for grief or loss is Ignatia and it fits this state very well.
Ignatia: The person is experiencing rapidly changing and intensely emotional states. There can be a bout of tears and distress and then suddenly they are silent and withdrawn. They may sigh a lot and also have a sensation of a lump in their throat. It is a good remedy when grief is “stuck” and lasts excessively or it produces symptoms such as weeping that is silent and controlled or that is brief, irregular and dramatic. There is a sense of being shattered from the loss of something or someone that they had invested a great deal of their emotions.
The feeling of Loss
This can be profound for some and was once described in medical terms as a “forsaken feeling.” There are several remedies that can be a good fit depending on how the person experiences loss and how they react to it.
Ignatia: Same as above. Give this remedy if the grief is “stuck” and lasts longer than what the person considers to be normal or necessary.
Pulsatilla: Here the loss includes feelings of abandonment. It is not just about feeling alone, they feel as if they have been left alone by the loss, that they have lost an anchor of support. They wish to seek comfort and sympathy and are emotional, weepy and distressed. They can seem needy because of the intense feeling of abandonment and want to be hugged or held. There is also a sense of instability as their moods can shift radically.
Natrum Muriaticum: This person does not seek out help but prefers to be left alone to deal with their experience. They don’t want to be fussed over and consolation makes them feel worse. They may have irritable outbursts over small matters and will not cry unless alone and even then the tears may not come. Sleep may be affected as they start to think about past events, old wounds and hurts and dwell on them. There can be depression and tremendous grief after losing a significant person in their life.
Phosphoric Acid: There is a great exhaustion and debility since the traumatic event. They can feel isolated from loved ones due to discord, or being physically distant and not being able to have communication with them as much as they would like so homesickness can be involved. They can have insomnia from worry and anxiety about their loved ones and can have difficulty in their thoughts or finding the right word, as if the pathways in their brain are not connecting properly. There is a sense of being emotionally crushed that shows up as lethargy, despair, apathy and they can seem almost lifeless.
If the angry phase develops
Anger is a complex emotion and can vary in intensity, reaction and causation. The remedies below may help the anger to express itself in more healthy ways and allow the purpose of that anger to become clearer.
Magnesium Carbonicum or Magnesium Muriaticum: There can be rapid flare-ups of anger that disappear quickly. The person feels intensely sensitive and lonely. The sensation is similar to being an orphan or a child whose parents were separated or divorced. Magnesium Carbonicum is when the symbol of anger is masculine and Magnesium Muriaticum when that symbol is feminine in nature.
Staphysagria: Here there are strong feelings of injustice and poor treatment, perhaps of how the deceased was treated in their final days. There is anger and indignation and lots of very intense emotions. They might say it is not fair what happened to them. There is often a lot of pride, and so feeling easily offended or that others are being rude. Or it is the opposite state and the anger is suppressed and controlled, and they refuse to show it due to their strong sense of dignity and pride.
Colocynthis: Also angry and indignant, the person has a very strong opinion of what is right and wrong. They do not like to be contradicted and are sensitive to slights or humiliation. They will try to retain their emotions, will feel unfortunate and discontented, often complaining quite often. They are restless and have a lot of physical pains and maybe even cramps.
Heading to the airport at 2:15am to catch a 6am international flight is one way to start an interesting adventure. Partly due to the excitement and partly to be alert when I arrived at the airport, I did not sleep that last night in Montreal. I was appeased by the very large spider inhabiting the top of one of the check-in kiosks on the way through the entrance to the baggage check. For me seeing a spider is usually a good sign I am doing something right. Nicole Préault who has been on many previous missions was there early but I arrived at 3am due to the infamous Montreal road construction that rerouted my taxi through the city rather than around it on the highways. My being late was not such an issue however and as we waited in the baggage check-in line we realized the Delta staff were all very late and only arrived a bit before 4am.
Our green HTSF t-shirts garnered attention and we started some conversations while waiting in line, and at least we were at the front of the line as it grew longer and longer over that early hour. It was certainly refreshing to run into a couple of women who already knew what homeopathy is, having used it before and who were interested in learning more about our volunteer medical mission and where we were going. Nicole explained what TSF (Terre Sans Frontière) does and how they are different than organizations like Doctors Without Borders since HTSF (Homéopathes de Terre Sans Frontière) works directly for the local people rather than just with local doctors and other professionals. She also explained that it is also possible for us to provide training to non-medical volunteers who can then use the homeopathic remedies when we are not in Honduras during missions.
When asked what we do exactly, we responded that we volunteer giving first line health care directly to the rural people. I had learned that the most common health issues in Honduras are often diabetes and heart disease. Nicole who has been many times before explained that we can also see issues related to violence, including domestic violence. Our new acquaintance seemed confused as to how homeopathy may help in this case and we explained that, as well as for physical traumas from violence, we can also help with emotional issues such as grief and loss, trauma related to sexual abuse, and problems of alcoholism. Homeopathy can be a one stop for all that ails you, which is why it is so advantageous for this kind of humanitarian medical mission. ...
Read the rest of this post and more about this mission on the main blog.
Homeopathy is a system of medicine that heals by “energy” rather than chemicals.
Sugar pills, pellets, and water are used as carriers to transfer energetic information to the body to stimulate a healing response.
While sugar pills are a convenient and delicious way to do this, a mild and temporary worsening of symptoms (an aggravation) may occur if given when not needed, too frequently, or to a person who is highly sensitive to homeopathic remedies. This aggravation is not harmful and settles when you stop giving the remedy.
Aggravations in sensitive people are avoided by giving smaller than normal doses, something that is easily done if the pill is first dissolved in water. The most surprising thing is that its energetic effects are not halved or quartered when this is done – as would be expected with a conventional, chemical medicine – but just ‘softened’ so it is less likely to aggravate; and it still works just as well for those who are not over-sensitive.
Another benefit of turning your pills into liquids is that their potency can be altered before each dose, by succussion, so that each dose works at a slightly deeper level than the previous dose. (Succussion is hitting the base of the bottle on the palm of your hand firmly. This potentises the remedy slightly so that each dose works at a slightly different level and so is less likely to aggravate.)
In addition, because each pill can be turned into literally hundreds of liquid doses it is an easy way to extend the life of your remedies while saving a little money.
So how exactly do you do it? Here are the instructions:
Using a Cup to Turn Your Pill (Pellet) into a Liquid Remedy
Choose the remedy that most closely matches your symptoms.
Drop one pill of the remedy into approximately ¼ cup of water and gently stir until dissolved.
Before each dose, briskly agitate the liquid with a spoon for 5 seconds. This mimics succussion and potentises the remedy slightly so that it works more deeply and is less likely to aggravate (ie., temporarily worsen the symptoms).
Dose according to the intensity of your symptoms, either as advised in How Often Should I Take a Dose of My Remedy, or by your homeopath. A dose is generally one small sip, or a teaspoon amount from the cup. Babies or small animals can be given a smaller amount but this is not essential – they will do just as well with a teaspoon dose if it is not too much liquid for them.
Keep the remedy away from light by covering it with a saucer between doses. Your remedy will be fine to use in this manner for one or two days – plenty of time to treat an acute complaint.
Using a Bottle to Turn Your Pill (Pellet) into a Liquid Remedy
Fill a 20-30ml dropper bottle two thirds full of water. (The remaining air space provides room for the remedy to be agitated during succussion.)
Label the bottle with the remedy name, potency, and date of preparation.
Drop one pill into the bottle and gently “swish” to dissolve. It is now ready to use.
Succuss the bottle five times before each dose.
Dose according to the intensity of your symptoms, either as advised in How Often Should I Take a Dose of My Remedy or by your homeopath. One dose is 5-7 drops, or about a ¼ of a dropper. Again, the amount is not critical, and babies or small animals can be given less.
1. Because the bottle does not contain a preservative to stop the growth of mould and bacteria, store your remedy in the refrigerator and replace it at monthly intervals. If you would like to use your liquid remedies for much longer, brandy can be added – its alcohol content will act as a preservative. Just add 1/3 of brandy to 2/3 of water. Your liquid remedies are now safe to be stored at room temperature for twelve months or more.
2. Homeopathic pills (pillules, gobules, pellets) are made from sucrose or lactose and will dissolve fully in the water. If you have purchased homeopathic tablets instead of pills, binding and bulking material mixed with the sucrose or lactose will not dissolve but settle as a powder at the bottom of the cup or bottle. This is perfectly safe – just ignore it and use the liquid.
Appreciating the homeopathic process
So, you have decided to try homeopathy after being referred by a friend or reading an amazing article that convinced you it might work. You are ready to book an appointment with a homeopath about your issue of say chronic anxiety and the more immediate problem of burn out and fatigue rather than taking medications, asking for stress leave, risking the flow of your career, and maybe upsetting your relationships in the process. With curiosity and an open mind, hopefully anyways, you would like to see what homeopathy can do instead.
No longer a parts based system, but a whole human being approachThe first thing to remember is that homeopathy is going to be very different than seeing a conventional doctor or a GP. Get out of that mindset that you can only bring one problem or issue to each visit. While a doctor may address you as segmented parts containing diseases and symptoms to fix, a homeopath is going to want to spend more time going over all the symptoms around your issue. They see you as a whole that needs some fine tuning, not a nervous system or a gallbladder that needs to be repaired, removed or replaced.
Also a doctor usually works with the short-term results, so if the symptoms can be altered or reduced quickly, then the person is considered better and all is well. The homeopath is looking at your long-term health, and so giving medications that alter or suppress a symptom without first looking into the original underlying reason for the anxiety or the fatigue is considered a risky short cut. A short cut that can lead to side effects from medications, a need for long term medicine use, or further health complications down the road. The better approach is to address the whole person, and to see that the treatment leads to the best possible long-term outcome for that person. The concept of wholeness is further explained in this article by Judyann McNamara, What is True Healing.
Chronic illnesses may be a reality but the idea that we have to feel worse over time is just not true. We can feel better and be healthier, and adapting and adjusting as we go is something homeopathy has the capacity to help us with.
A collaborative and self-responsible relationship of healthAnother major mindset that needs to change is the relationship between the patient and the practitioner. Going to the doctor we have become used to presenting our problem, being questioned briefly, being examined, getting some tests done, and then we go home and wait for the prescription or referral to a specialist. This is easy from the patient's point of view, yet it is also passive. You don't have to do anything other than show up, and then continue to show up for follow up appointments when they are scheduled. A homeopath will want to see you for the initial consultation, and maybe a second time to clarify their direction in selecting a remedy or support. Then, once you are given the suggestion, they would like you to stay in touch! They actually prefer if you give them feed back on how you are doing and what is happening.
This is the only way the homeopath can know what to do next, or what to do in the case you are struggling with the healing process. Your process and experience are going to be different from another person's, even if you came in with the same issue of chronic anxiety and burnout, so to follow a predefined protocol or therapy is not the optimal for each individual. The homeopath understands how significant the process back to health is for you, and by collaborating with you and following your needs, they can offer the best possible support and tools for you.
This is difficult to accept perhaps, but a homeopath wants to work with you, to hear from you and to know how you are doing.
Self rated health outcomes over generic test resultsUnlike conventional medicine where it is the test result that directs the treatment process, homeopaths prefer to use the self rated health scores of each person. Researchers have found that Self Rated Health tests show the best indicators of overall morbidity (rate of disease) and mortality rates. How many times have you wanted to go to the doctor but you don't because you already know what they will say, "Your test results are inconclusive so I have to conclude that there is nothing wrong with you!" This is an unfortunate development of the current medical system and why the hospitals and clinics are seeing so many patients with pathological diseases such as coronary artery disease, cancer, or arthritis. If they had been able to seek treatment when they first felt something was off ... maybe the functional changes in their body systems could have been avoided and they would have been able to adapt and stay healthier, and avoided the need for medications and for painful, expensive and complex treatments later on.
A homeopath is going to work with you at any stage of the disease process, and the earlier the better for everyone. They trust that you know your own state of health and that you also know when you need support and tools for regaining your health. Think about a space ship that at the start of journey is only a fraction off its course to Saturn, many years later and it has little chance of even seeing Saturn! The earlier the course is corrected, the better chance the ship has to reach its destination.
This leads to self responsibility in health. Sounds daunting perhaps, but think about it. You are the one responsible for your health and healing. Not a doctor, or GP, or a blood test, or a specialist. You. Feels good somehow doesn't it to consider it this way?
An open, accepting space to tell it how it isSince the homeopath is looking at the whole of you, you can pretty much talk about any odd, seemingly unconnected, unusual thing that you want or feel like bringing up. It is distracting to the doctor, they want to stay on point and to keep things symptom related to the part being discussed. Homeopaths on the other hand have been trained to sit in discomfort, to be ok with feeling confused as to the what the patient is describing, and to not judge the person for whatever they may have experienced. It is all part of the homeopathic system of case taking. There is also a fundamental trust that everyone has the ability to heal already within them, even if at the moment it is latent. You are not coming to be fixed, but for tools and support, basically a get-unstuck-agent that will put you back on the road to good health and help you on your path.
Unlike a doctor that takes charge of the treatment process, a homeopath is merely the one to objectively fit together the presenting symptoms to see how they express the whole, like seeing a large unfinished jigsaw puzzle. Then they pattern match what they see in that puzzle image to what remedy or other suggestion can help you the most.
And get it out of your mind that a remedy is going to take over the healing for you. It is just a tool that helps stimulate the body to heal itself, as the body would be able to do naturally before it got stuck, and does all the time when we are healthy. We don't pay attention while we feel great, but what is happening to bring about that great feeling? It is essentially the countless natural and internal processes at work keeping us alive and whole. The body is an amazing phenomenon if we stop to ponder it!
What can you do to get the most out of homeopathy?
The global or whole person action of homeopathy means that when we take a remedy or support we may suddenly feel inspired to eat better, to go to the gym, to buy that house we always dreamed of, or to drop the procrastination that is holding us back, to reach out to friends, or to see our loved ones with greater appreciation. Remember, it is the whole of you that has the potential to improve! And the main complaint that brought you to see a homeopath, the anxiety and burnout, that too improves. And if it does not completely disappear, you can see it differently and discover ways to improve it, whereas before it was stuck, and there was only one possible, off course outcome. I encourage you to get the most of what homeopathy can offer! And to appreciate the journey back to health.
In cases with trans-generational trauma, the original, unresolved trauma is carried over from previous generations to the current one. For those coping with this type of trauma it can be confusing to address and understand since the symptoms they are experiencing are not based in their own life history or experiences. I would like to present some of the reasons homeopathy can be a helpful tool for this kind of trauma and to explore one homeopathic remedy with symptoms that link to trans-generational trauma in a very fascinating and beautiful way.
To read more ... go to CleverH magazine.
POSTED BY AUTHORS OF CLEVER H. ⋅ 30/09/2017 ⋅
One of the amazing and yet difficult to accept tenets of homeopathic remedies is that they do not expire! Many master homeopaths state they can last indefinitely. For example modern homeopaths have found that the original remedy collection of the founder of Homeopathy Samuel Hahnemann is still functional. He died in 1843. This means that homeopathic remedies are sustainable, economical and practical for modern times.
According to Hyland's official website, "In the US, the FDA has exempted homeopathic manufacturers from putting expiration dates on their product labels. While nothing lasts indefinitely, homeopathic medicines are safe to use when stored under normal conditions (away from moisture and excessive heat or cold)." Many country's government health regulators have required that expiry dates and posology be placed on homeopathic labels, and the unfortunate thing with this is that many remedies still perfectly usable are thrown out.
Herbs, pharmaceuticals and other chemical based medications usually do not last longer than five years. Some herbal tinctures in alcohol can last a bit longer. Since homeopathic remedies are energetic in nature rather than chemical they can last indefinitely. For any remedy the key is the correct production method, the proper storage and how they are used and administered. The disposal of contaminated remedies does not need to be regulated as it does for expired pharmaceuticals.
There are many laboratories around the world producing homeopathic remedies of high quality and high standards. Although the early homeopaths did produce their own remedies nowadays it is best left to professionals with proper equipment to ensure good quality and consistency. It is important the ingredients they use, especially the alcohol, are of the best quality and that they are stored in glass. Some Indian manufacturers are unfortunately not following these standards and their remedies may not last over the long term, granted they may still last decades. Remedies in liquid made with the proper proportion of alcohol will not deteriorate over time and will not loose their potency. The only loss may occur with evaporation so make sure the lid is on tight! For remedies in granule form, they are considered to be safe for long-term storage in glass when properly sealed.
It is very important that remedies need to be stored in a cool, dry place, away from any excessive heat or moisture. A bathroom, because of its moist environment, is never a good place to store remedies. It is important to store and open them away from strong odours such as camphor or essential oils. This can contaminate the remedy and it may lose its charge. It is also important to replace the lid or cap tightly as this maintains the remedy from moisture and odours. The energetic nature of remedies means that the resonance of the remedy will seep into the container. It is important to store glass and even plastic container right next to other containers holding different remedies. Usually a cardboard or paper 'wall' is enough. The container will also retain the charge of the remedy so it cannot be used to store different remedies in the future or to be used for other purposes. Strong heat such as in a dishwasher will cleanse the glass if it was only used for a short time. If remedies seem discoloured or mouldy they have become contaminated and need to be replaced.
When taking a remedy it is very important that hands or lips do not touch the inside of the remedy bottle, dropper or lid as this can cause contamination of contents. Homeopathic laboratories do not use preservatives for remedies so touching them can contaminate them with bacteria, mould or other microorganisms. Any spilled remedy or granule can contaminate the rest of the contents so don't try to put them back into the bottle! A single granule of a remedy costs around 7 cents, it is best to just throw it out.
It is not necessary to dispose of remedies the way over the counter and prescription medications need to be taken back to the pharmacy for safe disposal. Rather than needing to be burned in a specially licensed incinerator, once a remedy is exposed to air, water or strong smells, the potency fades and disappears. The granule is made of sucrose or lactose and it will simply dissolve. Remedy contents will not pollute the water and later show up in tap water as pharmaceutical medications often do. This is in part why homeopathy is the green medicine of the future, remedies are not harmful to the environment, either in the manufacturing process or the disposal process. Old bottles and containers when recycled or thrown out will also slowly lose their charge as the signal of the remedy fades.
Often laboratories will donate their 'expired' remedies to non-profit groups or give them to students. If you have an old box of remedies simply check the quality, the lids should be tight, they should not have dried up, and the granules should be white and clean in appearance. If you wish to donate old remedies, contact a local homeopath or local homeopathic organization and they can likely put them to good use.
Some of the world's homeopathic manufacturers include:
Boiron in France
Homeodel in Quebec
Hahnemann laboratories in California
Ainsworths in London
Helios in the UK
Dr. Reckeweg in Germany
Lords Homoeopathic in India
Allen Laboratories Ltd. in India
Hyland's in California
I had the chance to talk about what I do on an American radio station. It was great to answer Michael's questions and to explore what it is like to see a homeopath.
From the webpage, Homeopathy Awareness, part of the School of Homeopathy in the UK website.
How widespread is the use of homeopathy?
Homeopathy forms a large and important part of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM), a market which is forecast to grow at a rate of 23% every year.
Homeopathy is used by 15% of UK citizens (around 9 million people)2 and trusted by 27% of German, 40% of French and 62% of Indian citizens.
In 2004, the World Health Organization stated that homeopathy was the second most used medical system worldwide.
It has been estimated that around 450 million people use and trust homeopathy worldwide, every year. That’s a lot of people making homeopathy their healthcare choice.
What is homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a system of natural healthcare that has been in worldwide use for over 200 years.
Homeopathy treats each person as a unique individual with the aim of stimulating their own healing ability. A homeopath selects the most appropriate medicine based on the individual’s specific symptoms and personal level of health.
It is based on the principle of ‘like cures like’ – a substance taken in small amounts can cure the same symptoms it causes when taken in large amounts.
Homeopathy is mainly taken in tablet form and can be used to treat both acute and chronic conditions in old and young including babies and pregnant women. It can be safely used alongside conventional medicine.
What makes people want to try homeopathy?
Most people in the UK are brought up with conventional medicine. When they have tried everything that this has to offer and are no better, or are worse, or cannot tolerate the drugs and treatments, they look around for some other way to get better.
Qualitative research suggests that patients greatly value the therapeutic relationship with their homeopath, the length of consultations and the ‘whole person’ approach; being listened to and treated as an individual. Homeopathy is entirely patient-centred in its approach and patients greatly appreciate this.
There are currently 3,000 registered homeopaths in the UK7, 400 homeopaths who are also qualified doctors, 60 homeopathic vets, 4 NHS funded homeopathic hospitals, several registers and 20 homeopathic schools. People who train in homeopathy tend to be in their 30s and 40s, are highly educated and moving into their second career. Registered homeopaths have undertaken rigorous academic and clinical training, are insured and adhere to a Code of Ethics.
Does homeopathy help people to improve their health?
Yes, it does, particularly with regard to chronic, long term conditions.
For example: an observational study at the NHS funded Bristol Homeopathic Hospital included over 6,500 consecutive patients with over 23,000 attendances in a six year period;8 70% of follow up patients reported improved health, 50% reported major improvement. The largest improvements were reported in childhood eczema or asthma, and in inflammatory bowel disease, irritable bowel syndrome, menopausal problems and migraines.
Another example: in 2008 a study in Germany followed over 3,500 chronically ill adults and children receiving routine homeopathic care from GPs over an eight year period.9 At the start, 97% of participants were diagnosed with a chronic complaint with 95% declaring previous conventional treatment for their condition. The study found that, “patients who seek homeopathic treatment are likely to improve considerably” and that health benefits were steady and long term.
There are more studies of this nature, especially from France, Germany and Switzerland, all countries where homeopathy is widely used.
What sort of people use homeopathy?
Since its development over 200 years ago homeopathy has benefited millions of people, young and old, from all walks of life, in countries all over the world.
Research shows that 79% of the UK population are open to the idea of homeopathy and 15% of the population regularly use it.
Most people prefer to follow up on a recommendation from someone they know and trust. Research suggests that more people would use homeopathy if they knew more about it.
The thing that unites most of these people is that they have already tried everything that conventional medicine has to offer, yet continue to suffer.
For more questions and answers, go to their Homeopathy Awareness page.
Many people can have difficulty going when in a bathroom if other people are nearby. This is not uncommon. However paruresis, also known as shy bladder syndrome, is when shyness, embarrassment, or fear of being judged for not being able to urinate develops into a phobia or irrational fear.
There can be a spectrum of what is ok or not ok. One person is ok when there are empty spaces and there are large dividers between the urinals, but if there are no dividers or someone is right next to him than he can’t go. Or someone can go if they use a closed stall and don’t consider this as a problem. At the other extreme a person can only go when they are at home and no one else is in the house, or only if they use a catheter. Some people have learned to use a catheter during a long airplane trip, as there was no other way that they could take a 14-hour flight without intense discomfort and pain.
Why do people develop paruresis?
Why does someone have this? Good question! Certainly there is sensitivity, and a heightened awareness of one’s surroundings. Keep in mind that virtually no one can go when their body has shifted into the fight or flight mode. This is part of the biological design of mammals. When we are running away from a tiger the last thing we are going to do is stop and take a leak, we are just going to keep running like mad. Or we may freeze and every non-vital function is going to be put on hold as long as we are gripped by fear. This includes digestion, rational thought processes, and also the sphincters that are related to urination. For a person with paruresis, absolutely nothing they think or will to happen in that moment will loosen those sphincters! Not until the uncertainty passes and they can relax again.
The main issues about shy bladder tend to be one of or a combination of the following:
Stigma and shame
Unfortunately being teased or laughed at for this particular phobia is common. Many people think that they are the only person on the planet who has this thing, and that everyone else can go easily whenever they need to. Some will think, “Am I crazy. I don’t understand this.” Often they are too ashamed to ask for help and to reach out to friends or professional support. The result is that people with paruresis are often very isolated and don't seek help. Then the phobia can easily become the centre of their life.
Social life and isolation
You can see how much this might affect a person's life in terms of relationships, friendships, socializing, work, and career. There is a preoccupation with what you drink, especially before you leave the house, with where you are, and what options are available for using a bathroom. Every day is taken up with these kinds of thoughts. You change your habits and social behaviour in order to compensate. It is no longer easy to plan on going to a friend’s house, a party, or the theatre. The longer it goes on, the more the person can forget how it was before they were phobic and not realize how much the phobia is affecting their life and their choices. After time a person is controlled by his or her own fear and shame rather than being able to be spontaneous and social.
What can you do to get better?
Look up the definition for paruresis online understanding that around 7% of the population has this phobia. Google the International Paruresis Association in the United States and check out their workshops, support literature, forum and see if there is a support group in your city. Connect with other people with shy bladder, read books, consider doing the graduated exposure therapy practice in local malls. If there is nothing offered locally it is possible to start your own group setting up practice meetings and workshops. It is important to understand the cycle of anxiety and how that works.
Homeopathy and phobias
How homeopathy is different?
Homeopathy is based on the principles of individualization, minimum dose and like cures like, and it uses a truly holistic approach. The aim of homeopathy is not to treat phobia, or shy bladder, or any disease diagnosis, but to explore the root source of symptoms and individual susceptibilities. Homeopaths don't separate the mind and the body into various parts and systems that are treated independently of each other. They see that all aspects of any person are dynamically interconnected and directly influence each other. Liver, nervous system, anger, ego, soul, any symptoms the person focuses on are considered during a homeopathic session.
What is the expected process?
The most common response to a well individuated remedy is a nearly immediate reduction of anxiety. We can start to feel whole, the root of the anxiety is addressed and we are able to start the healing process. Healing is not that different than being able to go to the bathroom, we can't heal when we never relax and we are anxious all the time! The rest of the process may take time, depending on each individual person, there is no way to know in advance. However, as the response to a core remedy is global, the results can be wide reaching and often unexpected! And no matter how challenging the process, it is certainly worth the investment if we can regain our life and joy of living.
10 GOOD REASONS TO USE HOMEOPATHY
1. NATURAL ACTION
Homeopathy works by stimulating the body's own natural defence mechanism to promote health and to resist infection and susceptibility to disease. Although gentle, the results can be powerful and long lasting.
2. HEALTH & WELL-BEING
Homeopathy improves health generally, rather than merely alleviating localized symptoms. It treats the whole individual, acting on the mental and emotional levels as well as the physical level, providing a balance in overall health and an increased sense of well-being and quality of life.
3. EFFECTIVE MEDICINE
When used correctly, homeopathy can be an extremely effective system of medicine, providing long-lasting relief from many acute and chronic conditions and illnesses.
4. NO HARMFUL SIDE EFFECTS
Homeopathic treatment offers a gentle and non-invasive approach to health, producing no toxic side effects, no dependency or addiction, and no withdrawal.
5. COST EFFECTIVE
Homeopathic medicines are surprisingly inexpensive to purchase, especially when compared to over-the-counter and prescription drugs.
6. FAST-ACTING FIRST-AID RELIEF
Homeopathy can be safely used at home or on the road to provide rapid relief for minor problems such as bruises, simple burns, sprains, insect bites, gastric upsets, etc. However more serious or long-lasting complaints should be treated by a qualified homeopath.
7. NOT TESTED ON ANIMALS
Homeopathic medicines are tested only on healthy humans in order to determine the range of action of each remedy.
8. COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINE
Homeopathic medicines can be used independently or along with conventional drugs and other therapies (with the full knowledge of your other healthcare providers). It can often alleviate unpleasant side effects of conventional treatments (e.g., chemotherapy).
Homeopathy has no adverse impact on the environment. There is not waste of energy or natural resources in the manufacturing process and no pollution of the water supply, oceans, or dump sites when used. In fact, homeopathy is the ultimate Green Medicine!
10. MEDICINE OF THE FUTURE
Homeopathy is the second most widely-used system of medicine in the world. It is available in most countries and is gaining in popularity as an alternative to conventional medicine.
From the Canadian Society of Homeopaths at www.csoh.ca
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