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Taking the case of a child is nowhere near the same as taking the case-history of an adult patient in the homeopathic practice.

 

Whilst an adult consultation sees most case-relevant information extrapolated from directed questions about the health history and presenting symptomatology of the patient, the details about the state of well-being of a child requires the inclusion of information shared by parents of the little patient, and observed by the practitioner within the therapeutic space.

 

The parent, most engaged with the child throughout the daily routine, will probably be able to aid in ‘drawing up’ the patient history, but the homeopaths own observation during the consultation will be paramount in the analysis and must complement what the parent is able to describe of the child´s symptomatology. Yet, much care has to be given with even a parents’ description. Are the statements reliable, or are there restrictions? According to Imhäuser [1] such care must particularly be given where parents must give an account of the character traits of their child, and his or her mental capacities.

 

For the homeopath therefore, observation requires a skillful perceiving and recognizing of most subtle nuances in behavior and comportment, in appearance and presentation of the child patient, and, in a way, of the parent.

 

Children’s mental states, as they may be noticeable in the homeopathic consultation [1]:

 

 

The affection needy child:

The child snuggles up to Mum and keeps body contact, holds hand.

Ignatia, Phosphorus, Pulsatilla.

 

 

The shy / coy child:

Seeks protection by keeping body contact with Mum, may cry silently.

Puls., Carc., Phos., Silicea. Calc. Phos.

 

 

The rejecting child:

Dislikes that Mum talks about his or her condition, does not like to be looked at. Wants to be left alone.

Nat. mur., Ant. Crud., Magn., carb..

 

 

The fidgety / restless child:

Does not sit still, walks about, touches everything, sits on Mums lap, gets down, back up, then wants to get down again and so on…

Aconite, Agar., Ars. Alb., Calc. hypophos., Calc. phos., Cham., Kal. brom, Zincum.

 

 

The fearful / anxious child:

Restless due to fear, cries, cannot be calmed.

Aconite,  Ars. alb., Bell., Cham., Lycop., Nux vom..

 

 

The cheeky / naughty child:

Hits at Mum or practitioner

Bry., Cham., Cina, Ign., Lycop., Nux vom.

 

 

The approachable, kind child:

Is interested in the proceedings of the consultation, participates, answers questions

This child is NOT Acon., Ars., Cham., Nux vom. or Lycop.

 

 

The passive child:

Cares not about what is going on around him/her. Lacks interest.

Calc.carb will wake this child.

 

 

 

The following questions may be helpful in the appraisal of a child’s case [1]:

 

  • How was the child’s birth? How well or not did the child take the birth?
  • How was the child’s development following birth?
  • Was the child vaccines? Which jabs did it get?
  • Did the child have any infections or illnesses?
  • Is the child intolerant to medicine, food etc.?
  • Has the child had recurrent ailments?
  • What is the child’s normal constitution? Is it a quiet, restless or cranky child?
  • Does the child want warmth or cold?
  • How is the child’s sleep?
  • How does the child eat? Cravings, rejections, intolerances?
  • Is there a tendency to constipation or diarrhea?
  • At what times of the day are symptoms better / worse?

 

 

 

Reference:

[1] Imhäuser, H. (1970) Homöopathie in der Kinderheilkunde, 3 edn., Heidelberg: Haug Verlag.

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