This is made from the soft white substance between the hard layers of the
oyster shell and patients who need it as a medicine have an inability to assimilate lime. It is, perhaps, most commonly useful in childhood, but can be needed at any age. The Calcarea child is pale, soft, fat and flabby looking, although quite often the neck and body are scraggy. These children are late in teething, late in walking, and in some cases, late in talking. The hands are chilly and often have a damp and boneless feeling on taking hold of them.
The Calcarea child sweats profusely round the head at night and soaks the
pillow. Mentally they are also often slow and the doctor is told that their
lives run on a minor key all the time. They are sorry for themselves and rather hopeless. If they can be induced to speak of their difficulties at all they go over and over the same story and can bore their family and friends by their constant repetition. They are very sensitive to criticism. If their school teachers tell them that they always get things wrong, that they are stupid and don’t try, they go home bathed in tears; no loud sobbing, but tears just trickling down their faces. If not well, they are apt to become particularly spineless. They tend to be worriers about their family, neighbours, and just anything.They can be uncertain sleepers and wake in a fright, imagining figures round the bed, or wake from some kind of alarming nightmare.
I gave Calcarea carbonica 10M to a little girl of ten years with most of these
symptoms. She was doing badly at school and was always being blamed by
her mistresses and friends for her slowness, her badness at games and her
forgetfulness in class. I saw her again a year later. She had skipped a class and was second in the term’s examinations and she has done very well ever since. She is now twenty-four years old, a secretary in a very good and responsible job, but if she begins to sleep badly or get unduly worried over her family and friends I send her Calcarea carbonica 10M in answer to an 80S by letter or telephone.
I want to add one other case of Calc. carb. A woman of 44 years came to
my surgery every month for a year until I got really worried about this and
felt that she should be more closely questioned and perhaps investigated. I got her out of the waiting room and shook hands with her as she came into my room. I was given the coldest, dampest, limpest hand imaginable. I then settled down to getting a fuller history. She told me she never felt really well and had one great worry and dread. She felt she was going insane-she made all her friends very angry by mentioning this but felt she had to. I gave her Calc. carb, 10M. I saw her again after several months. She had not felt so well for years, she said, and she looked entirely different. I sent her on her way.
This I consider as one of the great adolescent remedies. The patients are often in their teens, fair or dark, usually with blue eyes and long lashes. They have a fairly active skin, not very fine, usually pale or almost sallow, what Dr. Borland used to describe as like suet pudding, not the train oil of N carum
muriaiicum, It is often reported that they were fat and flabby when very
young but now are above average height and have long legs rather than long backs. They have damp hands and feet and if you touch their faces they are cold and clammy. Mentally they are difficult to differentiate from Phosphorus and Silica. .
Calc. phos. is mentally tired and gives numerous signs of it. They have weak
memories, an inability to concentrate, and indisposition to work and disappointingly poor school reports. When tired the reaction is one of irritability, a sort of fretful peevishness and you think of Chamomilla. You can feel it there even if the patient does not show it. They have certain fears and dreads particularly in the evening.
The Calc. phos. patient is choosy about food, particularly when shocked and
anxious. Their appetites vary. They like salt, but prefer it as salty food;
bacon, ham, kippers and salt beef rather than salt itself. They can easily get
a disordered stomach causing pain and diarrhoea and are apt to be upset by
ice cream and fruit. They often have the Calc. weakness and trembling, and
can get a lot of rheumatism in their legs and feet which sometimes goes hand in hand with a sudden collapse when apparently getting on well. They are better for warmth and rest.
They have a real aggravation from talking which is a characteristic of this
type of adolescent. They do not want to have to stop and speak to people
but like to wander round looking at things and to go where they like. They are very restless. They are apt to get into a state of distress about everything. They can become resentful that they have been sent to the wrong school,resentful over family; that they have made wrong friends. A dose of Calc. phos. at this stage can often clear this discontent and perhaps help them to tackle work instead of resorting to drugs.
It is one of the best teenage headache remedies; for headaches brought on
by intense mental application, or from exposure to cold as from driving in a
car in the wind. The first is better for bathing the head in cold water. All
headaches are worse for jar and pressure. If a headache is starting, the patient cannot wear a tight hat or it quickly makes it worse. Then it is also worse for physical exertion, worse for mental effort and worse at night. With the headache, if you happen to feel the patient’s head it is cold and clammy.
A rare symptom which I have met a number of times is that these patients
with headaches feel that ice is lying at the back of the occiput and at the same time complain of heat and smarting at the root of the hair. They are apt to get coryza in a cold room and are then better for warmth.
This is a mixture of Calcium and Sulphur and can be more like one or other of these remedies. It is one of the best of the acne remedies because of its value in pushing infection from deeper layers up to the surface, and it hurries the healing of skin complaints as a result. The patient is sensitive to both heat and cold. Actual pains are better for heat and are very sensitive to cold air and draughts. The Calc. sulph. patient takes cold easily, but on the other hand in hot weather some complaints are worse, such as the headache and the croupy choking cough. There are complaints from over-straining, overlifting, with pains in bones and pulsating sensations which are worse standing. Symptoms are worse walking fast and getting overheated; worse warmth of bed. The Calc. sulph. patient is irritable and easily angered, and often displays anxiety about his future or his health and is worse in the open air. He has difficulty getting to sleep because of his vivid and alarming imagination which is very active just when he ought to be getting off.
The patient despairs of recovering in the heat. He is apt to be discontented
at all times. He has general weakness, his memory is poor and he stumbles
over words. The patient also very often lacks physical strength and has very
cold feet. He sits and meditates over possible misfortune, and does not want to talk. While thinking he looses the thread of what he meant to say.
Besides acne, this patient may have eruptions on his scalp, a crusty eczema
and pimples, and his hair falls out. The headaches are very often periodical,
in the morning or in the afternoon and evening, better in the open air, worse
for noise and motion. The patient is apt to get a cough, choking and rattly,
with considerable hoarseness and a lot of phlegm, better for throwing off the
clothes and in the open air, which distinguishes it from Hepar sulph., as the
latter has extreme sensitiveness to cold.
This is a great rheumatic remedy when it fits. There are stitching pains in
the knee and the legs are tender to touch.
A young boy I used to see a lot of was a perfect mixture of Sulphur and
Calcarea. He was very prone to eczema and had it all up the backs of his legs and onto his buttocks; he was fat and flabby like the Calc. child, sweating profusely on his head, and he was always very much better for a dose of Calc. sulph. Now over twenty and learning Hotel Management he thought he was getting the skin trouble again from the heat of the kitchen, but after a dose of Calc. sulph. this has all subsided.
Author: M. G. BLACKIE, M.D., F.F.HOM.
Source: The British Homoeopathic Journal, January 1975.