Hepar Sulph? Think Cheese
I’ve seen a lot of questions about this remedy recently, so that makes it a good choice for our focus this week. Commonly found in Homeopathic first aid kits; It is helpful in many little but keenly felt acute problems.
‘Croup’, followed by ‘Abcesses’ and then “cheesy, soury smelling, profuse discharges’ are the things that come to my mind when thinking of Hepar Sulph. A remedies that can be used in issues that may make some feel quite queezy.
Hepar Sulph doesn‘t do well with the cold.
Hepar Sulph is a remedy that suits situations where the person who needs it is Chilly and oversensitive to most everything but particularly to cold. It makes all their symptoms worse. They hate winter and even in summer they sleep with pyjamas and 3 blankets and (although they may not admit it) sometimes even a beanie on their head.
The settled Cough
The Cough that needs this remedy is well settled in; not a beginning cough. More to do with bronchitis and conditions where infection is already present with a cough that is moist, rattily, wheezy, choking. They hawk their mucus of which they produce much and must bend their head back in order to get a good breath. Take their cough outside in the cold air and it gets much worse, the only way they may bare it is by covering their mouth and nose with a scarf so as to not directly breathe in the cold air. But even just undressing/ uncovering, cooling off can greatly worsen their cough or any of their symptoms for that matter.
One of the trio in Croup
That brings me to mention Croup. Hepar Sulph is one of a trio of remedies that works well in this.
- The first one is Aconite; always given at the sudden onset. Called for if there is a high fever, skin dry, much restlessness and distress. Cough and loud breathing during inspiration. Every breath out ends with a hoarse hacking cough.
- Hepar sulph: If there is a rattling, choking cough, with much mucus, becoming worse often towards the morning. They tend to be chilly. Cough can be worse from cold drafts or cold room – better warm moist air (steaming in the shower).
- Spongia: The cough is dry and hissing like. Or it sounds like a saw driven through a plank, each cough corresponds to ‘the thrust of the saw’.
Hepar Sulph; the queezy bit
Hepar Sulph situations are recognizable due to the profuseness of discharges. Whether they are; sweat, pus, mucus, stools or any discharges possible; there is often a lot of it and it keeps coming.
The odor and look of that discharge may remind you of old cheese; sour. And the consistency is thick and yellow a bit like cottage cheese sometimes and can be bloody with it too. I’m sorry its not for the faint hearted. However in order to recognize when Hepar Sulph may be the answer to your problem; you will need to be aware of these details. And its surprising how often these situations arise.
So in this context we can see boils and abscesses. Hepar Sulph is a great one for tooth abscesses in the gum for instance. In a low potency (eg 6C) Hepar Sulph may support suppuration of discharges (bursts an abscess) and in a high potency(eg 200) it may prevent that and aid absorption. And I have used it when a vaccination site has become infected and created an abscess (on an animal). On the skin every little wound festers and infects easily, the skin looks unhealthy too and is often sweaty.
Sensitive and irritable
Hepar Sulph situations always contain some form of over sensitiveness; to cold, to touch to noise and to pain. The pains felt are splinter like, sticking and sharp they may actually even faint from pain quite easily.
Also in mind and emotion these people are easily irritated. They can be dissatisfied, dejected and sad, ferocious and malicious; even if not justified by the situation. Or may be quarrelsome and just love to contradict you. Thus overall a bit of an abrasive behaviour. They are hasty in their gestures, speech, eating and drinking. Anguish is felt in the evening and at night and they are fearful of thunderstorms and feel fear in open air and may have dreams of fire and dead people.
They are overall worse for cold; air, drafts, wind, parts becoming cold, the least uncovering, touch, noise and exertion. And feel better for heat, warm wraps, wrapping head or wearing hat, moist conditions and damp weather.
When to use Hepar Sulph?
Anywhere where you may recognize this general description of Hepar Sulph you may use the remedy.
In homeopathy we don’t prescribe for a specific condition but always make our remedy choice based on the peculiar symptoms a person has that matches the peculiar picture of the remedy, no matter what the diagnosis is.
Now some people are literally like this permanently. Its just their personality and how they are, which may indicate this could be a great overall remedy for them.
However others may be placid, gentle and patient people usually…….. until they get sick and then they change their behaviour and physical symptoms to this Hepar Sulph ‘picture’. That is peculiar to them and stands out in the situation. If we recognize this as we observe them it can be just the info we need to find the perfect remedy.
Lets look at an example
For instance pleasant easy going son Johnny develops the flu. He starts complaining how cold he feels and wants a hat on even inside, he starts squabbling with his sister continuous and reacts overly aggressive when he doesn’t get his way. His throat may develop sharp sticking pains and eventually he may also get a very productive cough with much yellow mucus. If we would try to just prescribe on ‘flu’ it would be difficult to find a remedy as there are so many that could be indicated. But if we look at how Johnny has changed with this event, how he is in himself this would give us strong indications for Hepar Sulph.
Its like looking in the mirror to find someone that matches your description. Just looking at the hair color is not going to be sufficient. Not everything about the remedy is going to fit perfectly but what ever symptoms a person develops in the broad sense of the word, must be found in the remedy picture too.
I like looking at the remedies as if they were people as it helps me to remember their traits. Not that I remember all of them completely but I know how to find what I am looking for. That’s what I am trained to do; as a Homeopath.
If you want to read more detail about Hepar Sulph this is a great place to go to