Dr B S Suvarna
B.A, D.I.Hom[Lond.], M.I.H, PhD, PGDPC (Psychotherapy & Counselling, USA)
MAMTHA HOMOEO CLINIC
Karnataka State, India
Migraine is a form of recurrent head ache which affects both sexes . It has been estimated that up to five percent of the population suffer from it . There are various different types , classical migraine usually affects one side of the head , is preceded by an aura and is characterized by throbbing nausea , occasionally vomiting and photophobia ( the pain is worse in the light) . There is usually a family history and people with migraine are characteristically , hard working and obsession. Attacks can be triggered off by over work or emotional tension . Migraine appears to be a disease of the blood vessels of the brain . In the initial stages (the aura) , the blood vessels constrict , restricting the blood flow to the brain and then dilate , causing the throbbing pain and eye symptoms . The head ache may last a few hours , but in a variant called cluster migraine . The head ache may occur daily for up to three months and is often associated with watery red eyes . Common migraine is not so severe as the two previous types and is often confused with a simple head ache , abdominal migraine is rare but occurs relatively frequently , especially in children . It presents with stomach pain, nausea and occasionally vomiting
- hereditary predisposition
- personality characteristics
- stress and emotional tension
- allergy to certain food i.e., chocolate , alcohol , cheese and possibly others
- taking the contraceptive pills can bring on migraine
- it may affect women at the time of their menstrual period
- aura- a feeling that the attack is going to occur possibly with disturbances of vision [flashing bright lights] funny smells or nausea
- nausea and tingling of the face and both hands which may become very cold
- confusion and dizziness with poor concentration
- head aches at the front of the head over the eye on one or both sides or at the back of the head and neck , the head ache is throbbing
- vomiting and photophobia [aversion from light]
PREVENTION AND SELF HELP
- keep a diary of your head aches and try to identify their frequency and any trigger factors , including food , menstrual period or stressful situations
- review your diet and cut out known causes of migraine , such as chocolate , wine or cheese.
- put your self on a short three day purifying fast [eating only raw fruit and vegetables]
- cut out coffee and strong tea
- start exercising and take up a relaxation technique
- once you have developed a head ache , lie down in a dark room and practice deep breathing and relaxation exercises
- visit your doctor and make sure the diagnosis is right . migraine sufferers these are danger foods –chocolate , alcohol
HOMOEOPATHY MEDICINES :
Many remedies exist for migraine and a proper consultation is necessary to identify the right one , as a first aid measure try –arnica for constant pain
Natrum mur—-for a throbbing , burning headache
Nux vomica —–for nausea and vomiting
Iris ver——-for watery painful eyes
Sangunaria ——right sided headache
Spigelia —–left sided head ache
Dizziness can be both a very minor and not uncommon symptom or if persisting , it may be the harbinger of serious disease . it is there fore important to have a proper medical examination if the symptoms persist , the spinning sensation and feeling of faintness may be accompanied by nausea and actual vomiting . If there is a loss of balance and staggering (vertigo), it is important to seek medical help . occasionally dizziness may be accompanied by ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
1] any thing as simple as rising too quickly from a chair or bed to being frightened or having a shock will cause dizziness
2] acute food poisoning which is often associated with nausea
3] anaemia and poor circulation to the brain
4] dizziness may be associated with motion sickness while traveling in boats , aeroplane, etc.
5] very hot climates and high altitudes will produce fainting attacks in the vulnerable
PREVENTION AND SELF HELP:
1] during an attack sit or lie down on the floor or bed untie and loosen tight clothing open windows to reduce the temperature
2] If the attacks are simple fainting attacks check your level of stress and introduce a relaxation exercise especially diaphragmatic breathing into your daily routine
3] make sure you are not hyperventilating as this can cause dizziness and fainting just on its own
4] check your level of fitness and join a yoga or aerobics club
5] persistent dizziness and fainting should always be properly investigated
6] the use of a hot drink brandy or smelling salts immediately after an attack is not particularly helpful
7] many alternative practitioners believe that dizziness can be a sign of low blood pressure and low blood sugar . Neither of these conditions is thought to exist by American and UK based conventional doctors .
Epilepsy is a condition of the central nervous system affecting the brain which leads to recurrent fits or seizures that are associated with loss of consciousness . The nerve cells in the brain send messages to one another through small electric impulses that can be picked up by an EEG machine that produces an electro-encephalogram . In epilepsy , disturbances of electrical discharge occur both during and between attacks . Epilepsy does not affect the mental state and although there may some psychological disturbance as a result of long standing disease , sufferers feel quite normal between attacks .
GRAND MAL :
This is a characterized by a few seconds warning or aura which may be a noise or visual disturbance , followed by loss of consciousness falling to the ground and the fit which can affect both sides of the body . it involves stiffening and rhythmic clenching of the hands and shaking of the body . the tongue may be bitten during an attack and saliva may dribble from the mouth , following an attack , the patient usually falls asleep and may appear confused and drowsy when woken up , often there is loss of memory .
PETIT MAL :
This occurs in children and during adolescence . It is not accompanied by seizures but presents with momentary loss of consciousness , which can be confused with day dreaming occasionally , the eye lids may blink and flutter
TEMPORAL LOBE EPILEPSY :
There may be an aura as in grand mal , but usually there is major fits . the subject experiences feelings of unreality or deja-vu . He may act strangely not know where he is , complain of sounds and smells and not be able to recognize people . he rarely loses consciousness or falls to the ground .
JACKONIAN FIT :
This is what is called local fits , and affects one part of the body only . usually the hands or face . there is no loss of consciousness . this sort of fit is usually caused by an injury or injection of the brain that stimulates an abnormal electrical discharge .
In most cases of epilepsy , no specific cause is found , it does have a hereditary tendency and may occur following a head injury or brain tumor . in all cases it is associated with an abnormal electric discharge that can spread throughout the brain . Epilepsy may occur as the result of a birth injury , drug abuse or excessive alcohol intake or stress and emotional tension
PREVENTION AND SELF HELP :
If you have epilepsy , always carry a card stating this and ensure you take your medication regularly . avoid taking stimulant drugs , excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine . if you observe some one having a fit , lie them down on their side loosen clothing around the neck , remove objects that can be broken (such as spectacles) and make sure there is enough space to allow them to stretch with out harming themselves . keep the airway free , pit a pillow under the head , do not open the mouth , remove false teeth or try to give a drink , once the fit is over allow them to sleep and cover with a blanket
Living with the disease means accepting it , not denying it , but do not let it control your life , avoid working with machinery or on tall buildings , bridges etc., avoid rooms with flickering fluorescent lights or VDU screens . and strobe lights
All people with epilepsy are not allowed to drive a car unless the fits are well controlled (no fits for two years 0 and they pass a special driving test . sports is not prohibited , but avoid solitary mountain sports , swimming is permissible , but it is best to ensure you swim when some one else is present . join your national epilepsy association .
HELPFUL THERAPIES :
Alternatives treatment have little to offer as a cure or means to control the epileptic fit and it is important that you seek medical advise and take all the medication prescribed , however certain therapies are help full in reducing the frequency of attacks and some have been known to help to control the severity of the attack . Follow a whole food diet and avoid stimulants . develop a relaxation program and learn how to meditate , avoid trigger factors and take chamomile tea at night help relaxation
In this disease a patient suddenly falls down and becomes unconscious , he has violent breathing , froths from the mouth , and has convulsions and cramps in the whole body .
Homoeopathic medicines :
Ignatia ——when the disease is due to humiliation , grief , fear , disappointment
Causticum ——tension in chest and abdomen precedes attack ; during attack the head is drawn on one side . Involuntary urination , head ache and debility after the attack . often the tongue is bitten . attacks occur about new moon , if the disease is due to the suppression of eczema or any skin disease , causticum will cure it
Cuprum metalicum—– often the attack is sudden , with a shrick and sudden falling down , with out any premonitory signs . during attack involuntary discharge of urine , chest and head covered with perspiration
Calcarea carb —-suits fat person , attacks about full moon
Silicea —— attacks mostly occur during sleep . There are records of three patients who had attacks while sleeping only during the day or night , silicea 200 , 1000, and CM at long intervals cured the patients and they never had an attack for the last 10-12 years .
Artemisia Q ——-when the disease is due to worms or during dentition or due to injury to heat or due to some grief, fear or mortification . two drops in water or fruit juice 3-4 times daily will avert repeated attacks .
Argentum nitricum ——- epilepsy due to over smoking , 200 potency every week .
Sepia ——- when the attack occurs once in a week or once in two or three weeks . time of attacks is mostly morning head turns to left .
Sulphur , terentula , cicuta Q , may be used according to symptoms .
Neuralgia is a term for pain arising from a nerve that is being irritated or trapped , usually between bones (sciatica is a term of neuralgia ) . the pain may be felt all along the course of the nerve and not just at the point under pressure . the pain may be constant and not just at the point under pressure . the pain may be constant or intermittent as in trigeminal neuralgia affecting the trigeminal nerve of the face . as neuralgia is a symptom , there are many different causes .
[POST HERPETIC NEURALGIA ]
is the pain that follows an attack of shingles , where the nerve has been irritated and inflamed by the herpes zoster virus . it can be of a very distressing kind but usually lasts only a few weeks , the pain is felt along the course of the nerve affected .
TRIGEMINAL NEURALGIA :
Is a condition affecting the trigeminal nerve and produces a lancing , severe pain in the face and over the eye . it is often triggered by eating , smoking or a cold wind
BONY NEURALGIA ;
Arises from a trapped nerve , either as a result of an old fracture , that has not healed or a collapsed vertebra in the lumbar region of the spine or in the neck .
PREVENTION AND SELF HELP :
It is important to obtain a correct diagnosis and a visit to a doctor or osteopath / chiropractor who will carry out a full examination with X-rays , if necessary is essential , home treatments include pain killers and using hot water bottles on the affected area to relieve pain , reducing muscle tension through breathing and relaxation exercises will also help .
HOMOEOPATHIC MEDICINES :
Gelsemium —-jerking , cramps , electric current like pain , eye lids fall , ptosis . Patient has head ache of the neuralgic type , there is severe orbital neuralgia , occurring frequently and accompanied by heaviness and drooping of the upper eyelids and great muscular weakness .
Spigelia——–this remedy should be studied when the left side of the face is especially involved , the face is pale , the pains are shooting in character and involve the eye in particular , the pains are apt to begin in the morning in the base of the head
Bryonia alba ——this is indicated in trigeminal neuralgia of the left side , the pain is acute , the motion necessary to speak or eat aggravates it to such an extent as to provoke a free flow of tears . there is severe pain in the right side of the head face and jaws which is worse in the morning
Kalmia latifolia ——should be studied in rheumatic subjects who are distressed with neuralgia of the facial nerve . there are sharp , shooting and twitching pains , commencing in the neck , going to the top of the head
Arsenicum album——-is used in exhausted subjects who suffer from neuralgia of the fifth nerve , there are acute violent attacks of tearing , burning pain , occurring every five minutes both day and night , in the second branch of the trigeminus . it is usefull in chronic lumbo- abdominal neuralgia
Natrum muriaticum —–the patient suffer from facial neuralgia .
A stroke is the result of a cerebrosvascular accident damage to blood vessels in the brain commonly as a result of an embolus (clot) or haemorrhage , it results in a sudden loss of movement on one side of the body affecting the face , arm or leg or all three . It is a condition affecting the elderly and it is unusual before the age of 50 . Strokes can be fatal but usually leave the individual paralysed , depending on which side the strokes occurs will determine whether speech is affected . Recovery of both speech and movement can happen for anything up to one year after the stroke .
An embolus or clot occurs as a result of atheroslerosis when it is dislodged and travels to brain causing blockage of the blood supply which leads to death of the brain tissue . a thrombosis may also build up on the walls of a cerebral artery , so blocking blood supply to part of the brain .
HAEMORRHAGE : [the rupture of blood vessels in the brain]
Often occurs in younger people and is accompanied by severe head aches . occasionally the haemorrhage is due to malformation of the walls of the blood vessels – high blood pressure is a common associated factor
Minor episodes of dizziness and vertigo where the blood supply to the brain is briefly interrupted . if paralysis occurs , it is usually only temporary
1]. Dizziness , confusion , loss of consciousness and memory
2] paralysis of one side of the body
3] loss of control of bladder and occasionally the bowels
4] loss of speech or the ability to put the right name to objects .
Treatment should be by a doctor and will almost always require the patient to be sent to hospital . Do not attempt to treat the patient your self . If high blood pressure exists ,it is important to ensure that medication is taken regularly
Alternative therapies do have a place in aiding recovery and helping the individual live with the disability . the focus of treatment is on proper rehabilitation and under expert supervision –massage , aromatherapy , hydrotherapy , yoga and postural re-education help . A diet to help reduce weight is important , if you are overweight , herbs and vitamins may help to restore a sense of well being . it is not uncommon and understandably so that people often get depressed following a stroke and much help can be given by sensitive support , advise and counseling . some people whose speech is badly affected will learn to paint to play a musical instrument to help with self expression , massage with gentle aromatherapy oils (lavender , almond oil ) will soothe and relieve discomfort in the paralysed side . a stroke victim under goes occupational therapy to help improve co-ordination and muscle control . medical treatment consists of care of the body , physiotherapy and active rehabilitation , some times X-rays are taken to explore the degree of atheroma in the arteries of the neck and bypass operations can be performed to prevent further recurrences
HOMOEOPATHIC MEDICINES :
Gelsemium —when there is an absence of thirst in high fever , prostration
Belladonna —–when there is high fever , severe head ache , red face , red eyes .
Glonine —–it is chief remedy if the fever is high , should be repeated 1-2 hourly
Natrum mur —–in chronic cases , when there is fever and head ache etc., from 11 am to 5 am .
Paralysis is a symptom that arises as a result of many different conditions , particularly affecting the nerves and muscular systems , the causes of paralysis are diverse as is explained below .
Injury often the result of road traffic , accidents , sporting injuries or war wounds where the spinal cord is compressed or severed , leading usually to total loss of movement below the site of injury. Which may include loss of control of bladder , bowels and sexual function , there is usually a phase of shock to the system after which partial recovery can occur muscle wasting and contractions 9tightening of the ligaments) will occur , if proper attention is not given.
BIRTH INJURIES :
Cerebral palsy is often the result of lack of oxygen to the brain at the time of delivery and may lead to loss of movement and co-ordination of the muscles , with involuntary writhing movements of arm and face . mental function is not affected and with proper care and rehabilitation , people can be helped to live a creative and fulfilled life .
Infection folio: is caused by a virus that attacks the nerve cells supplying the muscles , which lead to total paralysis . much less common now because of effective immunization , it is one of the causes of paralysis that can be prevented , although recovery can occur , as with other conditions , the focus of treatment is on rehabilitation and recovery
NERVOUS DISORDERS :
Stokes and multiple sclerosis will also cause paralysis which can be transient or permanent . Hysterical paralysis (loss of the use of one limb or voice )is not uncommon and can occur after attacks of hyperventilation , there is usually a major element of stress or emotional tension present .
MUSCULAR DISORDERS :
These include the muscular dystrophies and motor neuron disease which have a hereditary predisposition and which affect the muscles of the body causing them to waste and loose their power , the muscles involved in swallowing and respiration are also affected which leads to severe distress and eventual death .
USEFUL THERAPIES :
All forms of paralysis should be seen by a doctor but much good work can be achieved through alternative therapies .
Yoga , tai-chi , improve muscle power and co-ordination . massage , breathing and relaxation exercises decrease muscle tension and induce relaxation .whole food diet , vitamin and mineral supplements improve diet and increase over all level of well being
HOMOEOPATHIC MEDICINES :
Causticum ——head remedy , has cured many cases , right sided hemiplegia , paralysis of vocal cords , worse in dry cold winds , better in damp weather
Gelsemium ——jerking , cramps , electric current – like pain , eye lids fall .ptosis
Oleander ——-painless paralysis
Lathyrus ——staggering , paralysis of legs
Conium ——-in paralysis of old persons , heavy legs Aurum met —–high blood pressure , general paralysis , anguish