09:22 (GMT+2), Thu, 15 September 2011
More than 2 500 years ago, Hippocrates first recognised the basic principles of homeopathy. It's a system of medicine based on "the law of similars" or as the founder of modern homeopathy, Dr Samuel Hahnemann, referred to it as "like should be cured by like." Basically, this means that any substance that can harm the body can also cure it, by using diluted quantities of the homeopathic remedies that are derived from plant, animal and mineral substances. Unlike orthodox medicine, homeopathy treats the individual in a holistic manner and not just the presenting symptoms.
Living and loving's resident midwife and pregnancy advisor, Sister Lilian, mentions the following homeopathic remedies in her book Babycare Companion (2004) that are useful in treating PND:
- Ignatia and Pulsatilla: These help women over the third-day blues and other mild forms of postnatal depression and weepiness.
- Sepia: This is for profound depression and should be taken if the mother feels an aversion to her baby and her husband. It's also indicated if she loses interest in everything going on around her.
- Cimicifuga: This should be taken by a woman with postnatal depression who seems intent on harming her child.
These remedies can be obtained from a homeopath, although Sister Lilian says there is self-help from the combination remedy Rescue Emotion, as well as the tissue salts Kali phos and Nat mur, which can be taken to avoid the soft causes/triggers of PND. "In my experience, these are far more important factors than hormonal or chemical imbalances. In fact, imbalances often result from these triggers, which the medical model doesn't often take into account," says Sister Lilian.
By Mariam Akabor
Ayurvedic medicinebirth, baby, essential oils, aromatherapy, postnatal depression