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Children's Constitutional Types

Homeopathic remedies will provide an effective, natural support for children of various constitutional types.
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The following are based on Dr. Paul Hercus' Descriptions from his book The Homeopathic Treatment of Children:

"I decided to focus on eight remedies -- Calcarea carbonica, Lycopodium, Medorrhinum, Natrum muriaticum, Phosphorus, Pulsatilla, Sulphur, and Tuberculinum -- rather than a more extensive or exhaustive selection on the basis of a simple discovery: these eight remedies make up the constitutional similimum for nearly eighty percent of an average pediatric practice [italics mine]... There are at least another thirty remedies that are also deep-acting constitutional remedies in pediatric populations, but all are much less commonly employed that the ones listed here."

What Is A Constitutional Remedy?
Complete The Constitutional Suvey Online Here!

A constitutional remedy is a homeopathic remedy that represents the overall pattern of an individual on the mental, emotional and physical states.  This includes attitudes, fears, beliefs and past traumas as well as physical characteristics such as sleep, body thermals, perspiration, food likes and dislikes, digestion, bowels, urination, etc. In Classical Homeopathy, the constitutional remedy is the one that most closely approximates the person's total picture. To determine this constitutional remedy we look at sensations, symptoms, any pathology and how the person looks and behaves in health, responds to their environment, as well as their temperament, strengths and weaknesses.  The homeopathic remedy helps to improve a person's experience in life.

The following information is quoted or paraphrased from two sources:

  • Coulter, Catherine R., Portraits of Homeopathic Medicines, Psychophysical Analysis of Selected         Constitutional Types (Vols. 1 and 2). St. Louis: Quality Medical Publishing, 1998.

  • Herscu, Paul, The Homeopathic Treatment of Children, Pediatric Constitutional Types. Berkely:        North Atlantic Books, 1991.


Calcarea Carbonica Children's Constitutional Type

Break in pieces a clean, somewhat thick oyster shell, take one grain of the softer, snow-white calcareous substance found between the outer and the inner shell. This is prepared in all the degrees of potencies... in the manner directed as to the preparation of dry medicinal substances for homeopathic use.

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
In the infant, we find a large, round head due to the late closure of the fontanelles.

The infant may be born with a presistent cradle cap that is moist, tending to crust over. A history commonly told by a parent is that the child now being treated for asthma or chronic sinusitis had this type of eruption as an infant and that the respiratory symptoms came only after the rash was treated and disappeared. It is also common to give the remedy and then to find that the child develops skin disorders as the respiratory symptoms disappear. This response to the remedy should be viewed as positive and should not be interfered with.

The head perspires upon the least exertion and during sleep.

(b) Ears:
The ears are a constant source of illness for the Calcarea carbonica child. The mother commonly reports how an earache began following a bout of bronchitis, tonsillitis, or even a cold, and how quickly the infection found its way to the ears. The discharge tends to be thick, yellow, and very smelly. Ear problems are aggravated by cold wind. These children like to keep their hats on.  The history of fluid in the ears may lead to a chronic hearing loss. Fluid buildup in the eustachian tube in often noted in allergic children who breathe through their mouths and develop one respiratory infection after another.

(c) Nose:
Even in good health these children often have runny noses.

(d) Face:
Typically, the Calcarea carbonica baby has a round face. The skin has the appearance of a great deal of underlying fat.

(e) Mouth;
The oral mucosa is very sensitive to damage in Calcarea carbonica. The child develops canker sores and aphthous ulcers readily with any small puncture of the inner lip or mild trauma to the area.

Dentition tends to be late.

(f) Throat and Neck:
Calcarea carbonica children develop sore throats easily. With these sore throats one is always able to palpate many swollen glands.

(g) Chest;
The chest takes the brunt of the allergies and respiratory infections by producing coughs which have the peculiarity of being dry at night but loose with easy expectoration in the morning.

(h) Food Cravings and Aversions:
Calcarea carbonica youngsters love all the carbohydrates: sweets, ice cream, pasta, bread, and potatoes. They also crave salt and fish. Eggs are the big favorite and serve as a very strong keynote for this remedy. They tend to crave cool or cold water and foods.

They dislike meat in general and fat in particular. They dislike slimy foods. Many do not like or tolerate mild at all.

(i) Stomach;
Children tend to have slow digestion.

Babies tend toward chronic vomiting. Clinically, Calcarea carbonica is to be thought of for babies who nurse and then within five minutes of unsuccessful burping, regurgitate the undigested milk.

While some children may be picky eaters, most wake up hungry and demand to be nursed or to have breakfast.

(j) Abdomen:
These children often have large abdomens that pouch out, a distinctive big belly. The abdomen is soft and has poor tone, thereby leading to the easy development of umbilical hernias.

(k) Rectum:
Constipation is the chief complaint for many of these children, and the stool tends to be large and bulky.

Diarrhea is common with celiac disease or lactose intolerance, and also accompanies many acute ailments such as otitis media, bronchitis, and difficult dentition.

(l) Urogenital:
Boys tend to develop hydroceles. Rashes and eruptions around the genitals caused by the action of strong urine may also occur.

Recurrent vaginitis caused by yeast occurs mostly in obese infant girls. The vaginal discharge is thick and milky yellow, resembling thick breast milk.

(m) Back;
Calcarea carbonica is one of the main remedies for bone problems such as rickets. Although rickets is no longer seen very much in more affluent parts of the world, what is prevalent is a calcium imbalance that shows up as a weakness of the back and/or scoliosis or a more serious spinal anomaly, spina bifida.

(n) Extremities:
Some babies are slow learning to walk and have weak ankles that turn easily. This weakness also affects the long bones and nails; they may grow slowly or break easily.

Another common keynote is the ease with which the hands and feet perspire, even when cold.

(o) Skin:

This remedy type has a propensity for eczema. Many infants are born with it or a heavy cradle cap.

They often develop Candida rashes that are bright red and have a sharp line of demarcation. Rashes may return to the allergic or asthmatic child a few months after the remedy is initially prescribed. The respiratory symptoms disappear but the parents may insist on treatment for the nasty diaper rash the child now has. Do not be coerced! The rash is the body's way of overcoming an imbalance. The eruptive state should absolutely not be interfered with, as the rash will disappear but the respiratory symptoms will surely return. Many a successful case has been destroyed by trying to get rid of a rash.

The other main skin symptom found in some Calcarea carbonica children is warts, usually on the hands.

Something unique to be observed in infants and toddlers is that they often scratch their faces, especially when they eat something to which they are allergic or when they are tired.

Sleep (Herscu):
Calcarea carbonica babies like to be rocked. This is, also, by far, the most common remedy for night terrors.

The children occasionally become overheated in bed. They perspire quite profusely, especially the infants. Perspiration is greatest during dentition and other acute conditions.

A good point in differentiating Calcarea carbonica from some other remedies is that the child wakes up refreshed and in a good mood and is usually the first one up.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Calcarea carbonica is by far the most common remedy for epilepsy, especially if it occurs during dentition.

(b) Calcarea carbonica children show poor assimilation of calcium as well as malfunctions of the thyroid gland, which lead to slow mental and physical development. Illness for these children may begin when either system is stressed, as may be the case during dentition, growth spurts, learning to walk, and bone injuries.

(c) Many symptoms may develop when metabolism changes, such as dentition or learning to walk. The hair, nails, and bones often grow poorly and the glands enlarge and harden easily. Children may become anemic and chilly as they age, and characteristically perspire even though they are cool.

(d) In general, they are aggravated by dentition, exertion, cold and wet weather, a change of weather from warm to cold, and the beverage milk. They are helped by warm, dry air, and love the summertime.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):
One finds in Calcarea carbonica cases a child who is delayed in developing mental as well as physical skills. This is a deliberate, even willful, slowing of development on the part of the child in order to assimilate and understand new information more carefully. There are often problems with memory.

Academically, two types of children need this remedy. Due to mental strain, the first type does not try hard enough in school. The second type of Calcarea carbonica child is brilliant. These children work hard, plod along, and often receive the best grades. Such children need structure and as a result may appear slow. Their learning ability is such that they need to learn step by step. Material is therefore learned solidly and will not soon be forgotten. Slowness of comprehension may be observed, and instructions may have to be repeated two or three times. Parents will report that their child is very bright but has his or her own speed of assimilating new information. These reports are exactly the case. The child may be the most intelligent in the class, but information must come in slowly and systematically.

Calcarea carbonica children discover early in life that they are slower than others their age. To avoid ridicule they may become quiet and withdrawn, children who tend to play by themselves. This can lead to a sense of self-reliance that is illustrated by the child who can be left for an hour to play alone while his mother cleans the house. During illnesses these children become quiet and withdrawn.

The child is cautious and refuses anything new for a length of time until he can assimilate the new information and then structure and categorize it in his mind.

Extra time is also needed to finish tasks the child has begun. Whenever the mother of four-year-old Alan came along and asked him to do something, he would say yes, but continue to plod along, working on his current project. Alan's mother was angered, thinking that he was deliberately disobeying her. In actuality, he simply needed to finish his task before moving on to another. Structure and scheduling are very important for these children.

An inability to change their minds quickly is characteristic of Calcarea carbonica toddlers. They are self-willed and desire to do things at their own pace. When a parent or sibling interferes with the choice made, tantrum-like behavior can be the child's response, and she can remain steadfast in her outrage and frustration unless distracted with another offering as a substitute for, say, a desired object. Often the child will become engrossed in examining the new object and is satisfied.

Obstinacy is a major clue to the remedy. For many children needing Calcarea carbonica, it seems easier to use all their energy to obstinately get what they want and be done with it than to have "unfinished business" weighing on their mind. Obstinacy is one of the main personality characteristics of the child. It is unfortunate that most parents are unaware of this kind of mental structuring and persist forcefully with their own agendas and schedules for the child. Responses of irritability, crying fits, and tantrums seem disproportionate to the magnitude of the request asked of the child, and come as a complete surprise to the parents.

The nature of the tantrum is also telling. Often these children are unable or refuse to stop their tantrums. Long after other remedy types realize that they will not get what they want and surrender, the Calcarea carbonica child is still kicking and pounding the floor with his fists.

At times obstinacy may be observed in other ways. Fifteen-month-old Barry seemed unable to walk, not from physical inability but simply because he did not wish to. Four days after the remedy was given, Barry coincidentally began to walk with ease and was no longer so stubborn. This delay in walking is classic behavior for the Calcarea carbonica child. What parents say about these children is that they do not try new things easily, but when they do make such an attempt they often show perfect mastery.

Obstinacy is a sign of the basically strong character of the child. The children look directly at the doctor with a strong, serious stare. They are independent by nature.

In an unfamiliar environment, a doctor's office for instance, these children may give in to their natural curiosity and begin to investigate and categorize things. They go about the office touching everything, pulling books off the shelves, and trying to open doors.

The Calcarea carbonica child is independent, has a mind of her own and "sticks up" for herself. This individuality combined with slowness often leads to an ability for deep and lengthy concentration, even in the very young.

The fears are many in this child. Most have fears of the dark and of shadows. These children often want to sleep with a light on because they are susceptible to nightmares in the dark. They fear spiders and insects. They also have a fear of being alone in the dark. They may not wish to go to bed alone, as their fear of ghosts and monsters mandate that a parent tuck them in. Fears are generated by frightening experiences, bad news, scary stories, masks, etc. They are overly sensitive and vulnerable to these experiences. Many chronic fearful behaviors may have their etiology traced to specific frights.

Calcarea carbonica  children are apprehensive when they do not know the plans, or if plans are changed unexpectedly. Because of their apprehension about the future and the need to finish tasks, they do not like breaks or changes in routines. They also want to know everything that might happen in a new situation. They virtually interrogate their parents with questions, trying to flesh out their understanding of unfamiliar places, activities, or guests. In a new classroom or in any new group, the child appears nervous, often to a degree inappropriate to his tender years.

Many Calcarea carbonica children become clingy during illnesses.

The hereafter is a major topic of interest to these children. They ask many questions about God, about heaven and hell, about death and ghosts: about all things that are unknowable. One child asked a series of questions when his aunt died that are typical of the Calcarea carbonica mind. He wanted to know where his aunt had gone after she died. What did it mean to die? Why did she die? How did it happen? Why were all the people crying over her? And why was Uncle not crying? The reason these children seem to get stuck on such weighty questions is that they must categorize this information mentally -- as they must categorize everything -- yet these issues are not readily sorted out or labeled, so they struggle with them.

The Child (Coulter):
Calcarea carbonica is the child's constitutional remedy par excellence. Many children start out life as  Calcarea before they are transformed into other constitutional types by their circumstances and experiences; and most children call for it at some point during their early years.

The child looks fit, with golden curls which later straighten out and become darker, a chubby face, and bright pink cheeks. Yet he lacks energy. The head is large and moist, the torso pear-shaped or pot-bellied. There is a tendency to swollen tonsils and enlarged cervical, mesenteric, axillary and sub-mandibular glands. During winter months these children have an unending series of colds, earaches, and attacks of bronchitis. Their bone development may be poor, irregular formation of the long bones, or poorly developed teeth, and the typical high narrow dental arch indicating a need for future orthodontic work.

Altogether, the picture is one of imperfect calcium metabolism. The potentized lime encourages the healthy growth of bones, teeth, and nerves by promoting the proper assimilation and utilization of calcium and other nutrients.

The infant is frequently a "floppy baby:" soft, fat, lymphatic and muscularly weak, in whom everything operates in low gear. This can be seen physically in delayed fontanelle closure and late or difficult dentition, in slowness to lose his cradle cap, to develop motor skills (especially to walk), and to acquire bladder and bowel control.

Calcarea's slowness in talking may be self-imposed. The knowledge is there, but he simply does not want to be hurried into talking. Sometimes the hitherto inarticulate youngster will start to speak in complete phrases, showing that the words were only waiting to be brought out.

In school the child might be "slow," sometimes in all subjects, sometimes in only one; for instance, he likes math (there is something secure in the predictability of numbers) but is poor in reading. If he does succeed, it is by spending a disproportionate amount of time on his word -- far more than other children. Or he may give up easily; he has too little energy for the effort of concentrating or lacks the drive to complete a distasteful task.

This is one of the first medicines to be considered for children who are bright and intelligent but who do not perform up to capacity. Either they dislike the teacher or the mental effort, or they balk at the confinement of rules and regulations.

Calcarea can be recognized in the child who is remarkably self-sufficient. In the physician's office the infant will look around fearlessly, or stare fixedly at some one object or person. If laid down, he will play contentedly with his fingers or toes. The toddler goes his own way, climbing imperturbably over furniture and the knees of adults, exploring the different rooms, placidly but not unimaginatively entertaining himself while his parents talk with the doctor. The older child is capable of occupying himself quietly for hours at a time but tends to keep his enthusiasms to himself. He disappears  into his room to work on some project about which others will hear when he has finished it. But if he loses momentum, he may have trouble getting started again.

He is an autonomous little entity who can grow into an original and independent adult. Both at home and in school, he observed clearly and responds sensitively and appropriately when encouraged to develop at his own placid and deliberate pace -- but within a structured environment. Calcarea, in his own circuitous way, will often come up with a novel contribution, an original twist, revealing that he has understood what is going on, even if taking time to digest it. He is the proverbial tortoise, the plodder who may beat the sprinting hare to the finish line.

The "shadow" side of Calcarea, surprisingly enough, is the terribly difficult and badly behaved child. What is the vulnerable child's principal defense against the adults who surround and govern him? He is slower than they are, less articulate, physically weaker, more dependent -- what can he do to get his own way? One technique is to throw tantrums.

An even-tempered child can also resort to that other technique for getting his way -- obstinacy. Calcarea mulishly insists or he digs in his heels. He will not eat his dinner or get dressed and is impervious to coaxing. If pressured at school, he puts up a quiet but stubborn resistance.

The Calcarea child's sensitivity is expressed in his various fears: of being alone, of the dark, of going to bed. He is subject to "night terrors," waking up screaming.

In these children the effects of frightening experiences can be felt for a long time. One was thrown into convulsions by having a mouse jump out of a drawer at her and was subject to them for years afterwards. Another's four-year history of petit-mal seizures began with the sight of a snake swallowing a frog. Both cases were cured by repeated doses of Calcarea in high potency. Often the child cannot sleep from the lingering impression of some frightening event seen on television, read in a book, or simply overheard in conversation.

Calcarea also cannot handle violence at one remove; even the sight of maimed persons in cartoons, or a book that describes harsh and violent treatment will upset him.

The child is oversensitive to small upsetting incidents of everyday life that offend his sense of justice and propriety. With his solid principles and sound heart, he cannot understand what motivates others to behave irrationally or gratuitously mean. These are the Charlie Browns (hero of the Peanuts cartoon strip) of the world: lovable but slow, unworldly, and hence a bit victimized.

Sensitivity to criticism is another aspect of this child's vulnerability. To the teacher or parent he might seem to take it very well, but at a deeper level he has been affected. He is not immediately devastated and does not burst into fits of indignation or self-justification. He is a slow reactor. But the adult's lack of initiative and fear of failure are later seen to stem directly from such early childhood criticism. The child's manner is not to cry, cling, or seek sympathy but rather to withdraw, bruised and silent, and refuse to try again in the future.

This remedy, however, can strengthen the child's ability to function in a stressful or inimical environment. It inculcates in the indolent one the ability to persevere, in the insecure one a sense of accomplishment, in a fearful one a readiness to venture and to dare. It also helps a child to take criticism without being hurt, ridicule without being devastated, and enables the excessively vulnerable one better to accept the injustices of life. For some children, then, the remedy acts as a shield against the harshness of the world, while for others it provides an irritant to nudge them out of their fears or sensitivities and encourage them to confront challenges, the better to prepare them for adulthood.


Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
The scalp develops eczema quite easily, Lycopodium being the main remedy for eruptions appearing on or behind the ears.

(b) Headaches:
Headaches are common to adolescents who crave sugar. If they miss a meal or are late for one, they develop a headache that subsides as soon as they eat.

(c) Ears:
The ears are frequently affected. The child often develops painful cracks behind the ears, as if the ears were trying to detach themselves from the scalp.

The Lycopodium child may also develop middle ear infections. The otitis media tends to be on the right side and often causes the tympanic membrane to rupture and the ear to discharge thick yellow pus that has a strong odor. The common combination of right-sided otitis media with cracks behind the ears will almost always be cured by the remedy Lycopodium.

(d) Nose:
The nose is affected in almost all Lycopodium children. Infants, toddlers, and young adults almost all have obstructed nasal passages. The babies will not be able to nurse properly because they cannot breathe through the nose. Infants must pull off the breast, breathe through the mouth, cry, and then try to nurse again. The mother of such an infant may show the doctor the bulb syringe that she carries around in the diaper bag with which she suctions out the baby's nostrils.

A case of snuffles in infants or children is cured most frequently by the remedy Lycopodium. The nasal obstruction is much worse at night when the child lies down and is aggravated in the morning due to mucus accumulating overnight. The nose may be completely dry and the snuffles described only as "sniffing," but which drive the parents to distraction. They ask the child to blow the nose but no mucus comes out. This chronic, dry snuffling is even more infuriating for parents who compare this child to another of theirs who needs the remedy Calcarea carbonica. This other child "sniffs and blows and mucus pours effortlessly out the nose," so they cannot understand why the Lycopodium child sniffs and sniffs and rubs the nose, but reports that "there is nothing there."

(e) Face:
The face may be quite distinctive, especially in children with malabsorptive syndromes. Those with such conditions tend to lose weight from the head area and upper torso, so that the skin hangs a little more loosely there and begins to wrinkle. What is often seen in the infant who sits on the mother's lap looking right at the prescriber with an anxious look on the face, eyes full of apprehension and the forehead lined with wrinkles proportionate to the anxiety felt.

Babies may be jaundiced at birth and may never lose a yellowish tinge around the nose and cheeks.

(f) Mouth:
A condition found here is the speedy yellowing of teeth, even in children who brush their teeth regularly.

(g) Throat and Neck:

Recurrent sore throats and tonsillitis plague this group. Perhaps eighty percent of those who complain of sore throats that begin on the right side and that are ameliorated by warm drinks, benefit from a dose of Lycopodium. This is especially true if one confirms the time modality that the child worsens upon awakening and during the late afternoon. It is very unusual for a child to desire warm drinks in general, but Lycopodium leads the list in that respect, as it ameliorates the pain in the throat.

Swollen, tender cervical glands develop that coincide with the above modalities of right-sidedness and aggravation in the morning and around four o'clock in the afternoon.

(h) Mononucleosis:
Lycopodium should be one of the first remedies considered for the treatment of mononucleosis. The right side of the throat will be the most affected, and the glands will be more swollen on the right. Offensive-smelling pus produced from the throat and obstructed nasal passages is also present. The child becomes very chilly, weak, and tired. Pains develop in the abdomen and nausea and vomiting follow.

The abdominal pain is ameliorated by bending over and by eating. As the infection progresses, the child begins to lose weight. The skin begins to look translucent with a greenish hue and the face becomes ashen with dark circles under the eyes. One should also think of Lycopodium if the child has a history of frequent upper respiratory tract infections, an obstructed nose, and stomachaches ever since an episode of mononucleosis.

(i) Lower Respiratory System:
The Lycopodium child is susceptible to colds and flu that descent easily into the bronchi, leading to bronchitis or pneumonia.

(j) Food Cravings and Aversions:
By far the most enjoyable foods for Lycopodium children to ear are sweets. This overwhelming desire in a child is a forecast of blood sugar problems in the future. Tendencies toward hypoglycemia or diabetes are also heralded by intense hunger and irritability upon awakening and by headaches that come on after missing a meal and are dissipated by eating.

Some of the following foods they simply dislike; other wreck havoc on their digestive systems, causing gas and colic: beans, onions, fat, oysters, and cabbage.

(k) Stomach:
The stomach and abdomen are the most symptomatically rich areas of the Lycopodium body. The children are often described by the parents as having a sensitive stomach. The Lycopodium child develops stomachaches during all illnesses, from colds to flu to asthma. Children needing Lycopodium feel anxiety in the stomach more than any other remedy type discussed in this book. The stomach becomes affected by frequent stomachaches, nausea, and vomiting with the slightest degree of stress. These children say that they develop such symptoms before any test or performance.

(l) Appetite:
The infant has a huge appetite and screams when it is hungry. The baby may wake up during the night to nurse with a big appetite every hour or two. Lycopodium babies may be voracious nursers and often hiccough after nursing. In the child or teenager, the appetite verges on the voracious.

(m) Rectum:
The child tends to be constipated.

(n) Urogenital System;
There is a great propensity toward birth anomalies involving the urogenital tract. These anomalies include structural problems of the kidneys or ureter, hypospadias or epistadias (where the urethral meatus is not in the proper location), and urethral stricture.

Boys are commonly bed-wetters and/or have to urinate more frequently in the evening. Lycopodium is the most frequently prescribed remedy for infant boys born with undescended testicles. Boys also develop right-sided inguinal hernias.

Premenstrually, the adolescent experiences an increase in her appetite, especially for sweets, as well as an increase in constipation and irritability. The menstrual flow is accompanied by pains that begin in the right lower abdomen and extend to the inner thigh.

(o) Extremities:

A Lycopodium prescription should be considered for rheumatic pains and arthritis in the childhood years when it is worse on the right side. The pains are ameliorated by motion and heat and are aggravated by rest.

A common observation made about Lycopodium children is the restless motion of the legs. In the interview one notices that the legs are in constant motion, going in circles from the knees down.

The keynote of dry, cracked skin covering the heels is observed in teenaged girls.

(p) Skin:
The child is often plagued by eczema from birth. The feet, fingers, and scalp (especially behind the ears) are the most affected areas.

Moles and freckles easily appear on these children.

Lycopodium is often the remedy for the child who develops neurodermatitis. The itching forms vesicles, which may cover a small or large portion of the body. These same children may develop a tendency for hives that is aggravated by anxiety and by eating foods to which they are sensitive.

Sleep (Herscu):
They frequently need the lights on and may need to sleep with others in the room. The children sleep on their right side or on their abdomens. They remain covered, well cocooned under their blankets, even in the summertime.

They awake unrefreshed in an irritable mood and do not bounce out of bed. As well as being ill-tempered, the characteristic strong hunger directly after rising makes Lycopodium the first child to arrive in the kitchen.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Complaints are right-sided or begin on the right side and spread to the left.

(b) Aggravation in the morning and from four to eight o'clock in the evening, especially when both time modalities are present, constitute guiding symptoms noted in any disease state as well as in times of a general drop in energy.

(c) They are often chilly and like to wear hats, and may sleep with their socks on and the windows closed. This is unusual as most children are warm-blooded.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):
Two distinct types of behaviour can be observed in Lycopodium children. In one type, fear and apprehension affect every aspect of the child's life. In the other, the child is bossy to the point of being dictatorial and strives to control those close by, be they parents, siblings, or friends. While these two types may be found in different individuals, they also represent a continuum that may be expressed in one person -- fear and a lack of self confidence followed by the emergence of a desire for power.

Fear is an essential factor in the development of the Lycopodium psyche. Even the babies are apprehensive. Infants need to be near the mother or on a parent's lap, as they become especially afraid when alone and when around strangers. Fear is immediately observable in the facial expression, set off by the distrustful look in the eyes and often a mild frown.

Whereas most children go through a "stranger anxiety" phase at some time within the first couple of years, Lycopodium babies develop this from birth and experience it throughout most of their childhood. Such a strong fear of strangers may often be conjoined with a fear of being alone. The child keeps track of the parents' whereabouts throughout the day. Fear of being alone is greatly accentuated in the dark.

The child may also develop a fear or aversion to new things, not due to stubbornness, as found in Calcarea carbonica, but because he fears the new thing itself. The parent states that in new places and situations and in crowds, the child will be fearful and timid at first. Once the situation is better understood by the child, he becomes more comfortable. The Calcarea carbonica child is obstinate and unyielding, while the Lycopodium child is fearful and anxious. Even though similar behavior is noted in their dislike of new things, the root causes are radically different for each of these remedy types.

The fear of new situations in Lycopodium is intimately bound to a prominent fear of failure. This pattern grows more and more pronounced as such children mature into adulthood.

For the most part, the fear of failure is felt only before an upcoming event, not during it. They anticipate that something will go wrong, something bad will happen, or that they will be ridiculed in some way. However, once they begin the activity, the fear diminishes and they accomplish the task with ease. It should be noted that this fear is not merely a fear of failure; rather, it is a fear of failing in public. She does not mind trying new things if she is alone, but does not wish to do them in front of others, especially her peers.

This sensitivity to ridicule has a specific flavor. For example, a Natrum muriaticum child can be destroyed emotionally by ridicule. But each constitutional remedy type is affected by the same stresses in different ways. The Lycopodium child will not be so easily crushed emotionally. However, he is sensitive to social ranking and will not wish to lose status. He fears that he will get up in front of the class, make an error, and look foolish.

As a corollary to this concern about what others think, one finds that the Lycopodium child may compromise easily, dress neatly, and maintain a tidy appearance in general. They are preoccupied with their looks. These children may be sloppy in their rooms and messy in the bathroom but they groom themselves well.

Apprehension and anxiety are often felt by Lycopodium children in the stomach and abdomen. They develop frequent stomachaches, nausea, vomiting, and loose stools or diarrhea. I remember a teenager who, along with all the Lycopodium modalities of sore throats, food desires, and skin problems, also described herself as having had a "weak stomach" her entire life. She was a very good student who maintained a high grade average. Her scholastic abilities, however, did not lessen the anxiety she experienced before every test. Whenever she studied for any test she would develop stomachaches so intense she would eventually vomit.

Parents describe their Lycopodium child as a "considerate little girl," or say that she is "nice." Others volunteer that the child does all the right things, and yet it is as if the child has little charisma; as if she lacked personality. In trying to maintain her social rank, she has adbicated anything that sets her apart from others.

A hallmark of the combined lack of self-confidence and insecurity is seen in the child's indecisiveness. In the office, the child often answers in a timid voice that lacks any expression of self-assurance.

To restate the characteristics of the Lycopodium psychology mentioned thus far, we may safely say that the children fear being alone and being around new people and situations. They rarely develop a strong sense of self and remain plagued by a feeling of powerlessness. Since they feel that the parents will take care of them in difficult situations, Lycopodium children try to stay very near them.

Since one never knows how a stranger will react, they are to be avoided. He wants to only be around family members, the ones who can be controlled and will not put up a fuss. A more conscious decision is then made to have only people around who they can control, since this is the first real feeling of power that they have felt.

Because the feeling of power allays insecurities, it becomes addictive to Lycopodium children. In one case, the child whined constantly and ordered his mother around. "Get me this book." "Turn on the television." "Give me that toy." The homeopathic prescription was confirmed by the fact that the same child was also fearful and would not play by himself, always following the mother about the house instead. It is a peculiar combination: a domineering yet needy, fearful person. When these characteristics are found together, it will most often point to Lycopodium.

Lycopodium children grow irritable if not obeyed or if not obeyed quickly enough. The child becomes critical and faultfinding, chastising siblings, and even parents, for doing this or that wrong. What the demanding child says is only part of it. It is the tone in which these commands are spoken and the attitude that it reveals that promp one to first think of Lycopodium. The child speaks irritably to the parent. The child, not the adult, controls the relationship. While eliciting a case history from seven-year-old Janice, the ease with which the girl corrected her mother's responses (in a tone of voice somewhere between good-natured and condescending) helped to confirm the Lycopodium diagnosis.

The "love of power" syndrome will also manifest in the manner in which the child plays. A Lycopodium child with this trait often prefers to play with younger children so that he will be dominant. When the child is forced to play with older children, he tends to be a follower, quieter and more compliant to what others wish. This again shows a painful awareness of social standing and the fear of making mistakes.

In later stages of Lycopodium psychopathology, this love of power leads to a strong intolerance of contradiction. The child is not able to handle the slightest degree of criticism or correction from others, yet with ease he picks on and finds fault with other children and family members, especially those deemed weaker. Many teenaged Lycopodium girls become hypercritical and faultfinding.

Dyslexia (Herscu):
In Lycopodium there can be problems in integrating the left and right sides of the brain. Infants commonly have difficulty mastering the sucking reflex. They likewise have difficulty developing a coordinated pattern of crawling ("cross-crawling") and learn to walk later than their siblings. They are prone to dyslexia, both as children and as adults. Indeed, dyslexia often first indicates a need for this medicine. They make mistakes in reading and writing, inverting or leaving letters out or using the wrong words; and in arithmetic, adding up columns of numbers incorrectly.

Frustration with these disabilities naturally causes apprehension, either at school or when doing homework. In order to avoid being laughed at by their peers or receiving a poor grade from the teacher, the child needing Lycopodium procrastinates instead of doing assignments. This is not laziness. The extent to which such children are "lazy" reflects the degree to which they fear failure and lack self-confidence.

A peculiar behavior pattern may develop in these children: they hurriedly write their work but cannot bear to read what they have just written. This is seen particularly in those who have a history of making many mistakes. Reviewing the work means having to come to terms with the mistakes made, a task that is anathema to the Lycopodium psyche as it deflates the ego as well as makes the child fear a loss of status.

There are some hyperactive children who respond beautifully to the remedy Lycopodium and who exhibit many of the traits discussed here.


Medorrhinum - Children's Constitutional Type

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Head:
The scalp lacks oils in an inverse proportion to that which the face produces, resulting in dry hair and a dandruffy, flaking scalp.

(b) Eyes:
Infants may develop conjunctivitis ["inflammation of the mucous membrane covering the anterior surface of the eyeball and lining the eyelids," Yasgur] or blepharitis [inflammation of the eyelids] with much swelling and redness. The pus that is exuded is thick, green, and excoriates the entire area of the eye.

Older children may report these eye inflammations as something that occurred in the past, or complain of low-level chronic blepharitis as the chief complaint. The sensations that they mention -- eyelashes falling out and a sensation of sand in the eyes -- are similar to Sulphur.

(c) Ears:
Some Medorrhinum children have frequent colds. If these colds are repeatedly treated with antibiotics, sequelae develop in the ears. The most common sequela is a great amount of fluid in the middle ear that causes impaired hearing. If the eardrum ruptures, one finds that the fluid pours out of the ear for a long time, not soon resolving as it does in children of other types.

(d) Nose:
Since the immune system in Medorrhinum children is damaged from birth, problems such as eczema, asthma, and hay fever abound. The infant or child will catch colds very easily and it may seem as if he always has mucus either running from or stuffing up the nose. The parents remember that from the first few months of life the child sneezed often and developed crusts surrounding the outside of the nostrils and was plagued by thick, yellow-green mucus that had to be suctioned out of the nose. This condition may be quite intractable and obstinate, not yielding to orthodox treatment or the more common homeopathic remedies. The state of the nose should be considered a major confirmatory clue in the diagnosis of Medorrhinum.

(e) Mouth:
Occasionally a child complains of tiny blisters in the mouth that recur, especially after drinking citrus juice.

(f) Face:
The faces of these children are often graced with very distinctive features. The skin may be pale or gray toned. Medorrhinum is especially indicated if the child has a greenish, shiny look to the skin. The skin looks as if it were polished with wax. This is due to the excess oil produced by overzealous sebaceous glands.

The amount of facial hair is minimal. This may be noted as a thinness of the beard of teenaged boys. What may be observed in many Medorrhinum children is pencil-thin, narrow eyebrows.

Occasionally, the face bears a keynote of this remedy and of this inherited Medorrhinum tendency in general: spider hemangiomas. The reddish-blue, spidery-looking spots made up of dilated capillaries under the surface of the skin can be seen in infants as well as children and adults.

Younger children develop fever blisters easily, especially on and around the lips.

(g) Throat and Neck:
The child tends to get colds that lead to a postnasal drip with copious, thick mucus. The child hawks or coughs up phlem, almost choking on it at times. Often there is a raw pain in the throat and the tonsils are painfully swollen.

(h) Lower Respiratory System:
The Medorrhinum child is susceptible to chest colds and/or asthma from birth.

The asthma, described as "tightness," may be felt high up in the chest as opposed to lower in the chest, where most other asthmatics describe the location of this sensation. The cough that accompanies the asthma as well as shortness of breath are both ameliorated by lying down, especially on the abdomen. Some children exhibit the keynote that when they begin to cough, they throw themselves onto the bed and bury their heads in the pillows. They either lie in the knee-to-chest position, on their knees at the side of the bed with the abdomen and head pressed on the bed, or on the abdomen. The remedy Medorrhinum may at times be prescribed on these signs alone.

Chronic chest colds also plague the Medorrhinum child. There is a deep, rattling cough. No matter how hard they try, they cannot dislodge the mucus. The constant cough is severe and seems to tear the throat apart. It may be ameliorated by lying on the abdomen.

A one-year-old girl was brought in for chronic upper respiratory infections. The worst complaint for the mother was the child's incessant wet cough. She carried the sleeping child into the office and put her down on the floor and the child promptly rolled up into the knee-to-chest position, burying her face in the carpet and thrusting her seat up into the air. This was the first clue to the remedy which was given to the great benefit of the tiny patient.

(i) Food Cravings and Aversions:
The food cravings are quite unique. The strongest cravings are for salt, fat, sweets, and unripe fruit, especially the sour, tart, or green varieties. Many times the favorite is citrus: oranges, grapefruit, and even lemons. Babies often like juice in general and orange juice in particular. They can eat many pieces of citrus fruit at one sitting: "As many as there are in the house," tells one mother.

These children strongly dislike any foods that tend to be slimy, as well as onions, beans, and peas.

They have a great thirst for cold drinks and especially love to chew on ice.

(j) Stomach:
Medorrhinum is one of the main remedies for the infantile condition commonly known as failure to thrive. Although the child has a large appetite, due to the vomiting and diarrhea that constantly arise he will be slow to develop. Mothers notice that after the baby nurses he vomits not only milk but also yellow mucus along with the milk.

In older children, they eat but do not gain weight as they should. After the remedy is given the children usually begin to quickly put on weight and height. Many Medorrhinum teenagers complain of bloated, distended abdomens after eating.

(k) Rectum:
The infants usually have a characteristic fiery red rash around the genitals and anus. This is such an intense and persistent eruption that it is remembered  by the parent and reported even when the child is seen much later in life after the rash has disappeared. The parents report that they went from one doctor to another, yet no matter what treatment was tried, the rash would not go away.

The child may have diarrhea from birth along with the other symptoms of failure to thrive previously described. This diarrhea in infants is yellow-green, excoriates the anus and surrounding area, and has an offensive odor.

Many children have chronic constipation from birth. The child strains and strains, only to pass very hard, round pellets.

(l) Urogenital System:
Medorrhinum children are plagued by bed wetting. The urine is acid with a very strong odor, and may cause or exacerbate the fiery red rash just described.

Boys may develop an acute phimosis (inflammation of the foreskin of the penis). They may also have rashes and warts on the penis. In an infant or young child such a history reveals that a parent or grandparent at one time had contracted gonorrhea. Many boys awaken with erections and, if in the same bed, like to rub against the parents or siblings.

Girls may develop a variety of vaginal infections very early. Even infant girls may develop a vaginal discharge. Older girls may likewise develop vaginitis and, what is more unusual in sexually inactive girls, pelvic inflammatory disease.

The menstrual flow in adolescents is also often affected. The cycle tends to be irregular. The blood may be dark and clotted, and gives off an offensive odor. The flow may arrive with ovarian pains so intense that the girl doubles over with them. An acccurate keynote, if one can ask and confirm it, is that the adolescent feels chilly before the flow, especially in the breast area. Also before the flow, girls may become sad, weepy, and occasionally suicidal.

Both sexes engage in early sexual experimentation, and both tend to masturbate as children.

(m) Extremities:
Two clues to the prescription of Medorrhinum are persistent, nervous up and down movements of the child's feet, and uncommon warmth of the feet. The child wants her shoes and socks off and often walks barefoot through the house, even in the wintertime or on cold cement. In the evening these two characteristics combine and fidgety, hot feet can be seen protruding from the covers during sleep.

Older children may complain of pain and swelling of the soles and ankles. Medorrhinum should be the first remedy considered for painful soles, making the child favor the sides or edges of the feet as a walking surface.

Teens may complain of a painful stiffness in the joints, an arthritis that often begins in the ankles or knees. Arthritis is aggravated at night, in damp weather, and ameliorated by motion. What stands out most in Medorrhinum cases is the degree of swelling of the joints, most especially of the ankles. This swelling is a good guiding symptom for the remedy.

Some children describe a feeling as if their joints are tightening up and that they must "pop" them to loosen them up and get relief.

Another common keynote of Medorrhinum is that children bite their nails to the quick.

(n) Skin:
The skin of Medorrhinum children is susceptible to growths such as moles and warts.

The infants often have very bad rashes in the genital area. Medorrhinum should be one of the first remedies considered for infants who have eczema from birth, especially if the eczema alternates with bouts of asthma. The alternation of eczema and asthma or eczema and allergies is very consistent with this remedy type. Also consistent is the ease with which the eczema is suppressed by strong medications and thereafter the child develops respiratory problems or bone disease in response.

The child may develop neurodermatitis and hives from drinking citrus juice or eating strawberries.

Medorrhinum should be among the first remedies contemplated for lipomas or fat cysts.

Quite a few Medorrhinum children have vitiligo, consisting of large, circular patches of pale discoloration on the face and abdomen. After the remedy is given, one may find the patches becoming pigmented and fading away.

The skin may appear oily all over the body, especially on the face.

It is peculiar, but these children also tend to get many insect bites and allergic reactions to these bites.

Sleep (Herscu):
The Medorrhinum child tends to be a "night person," finding it difficult to fall asleep until late at night. Their sleep is restless, with much tossing and turning. Most especially commented upon is the thrashing of the legs throughout the night.

The child is very hot and will often sleep naked and uncovered, especially the feet.

Even though their sleep is restless, they favor sleeping on the abdomen or in the knee-to-chest position with the buttocks in the air.

Many Medorrhinum children have nightmares. Being chased, bitten by animals, etc., are common themes.

The child may either wake up with much frantic energy, or wake up tired and unrefreshed.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) The remedy Medorrhinum is frequently prescribed after the case has been treated first with another remedy. A common scenario follows: After prescribing the first correct and well-chosen non-Medorrhinum remedy, the child does very well. Yet after a time the case stalls. Simultaneously, a few Medorrhinum keynotes arise. Medorrhinum is prescribed and the child progresses nicely again. The original prescription may have matched the case perfectly. It is as if there were a genetic flaw that undermined the child's vital defenses and made them too weak to react properly to the well-chosen remedy in order to reestablish homeostasis.

(b) Medorrhinum should be considered for children who appear stunted in physical, emotional, or mental development.

(c) A detailed family history is of the utmost importance. The Medorrhinum child's family history may contain diseases common to this remedy type: gonorrhea, asthma, arthritis, angina, and heart disease. The family tree may begin with diseases of the skin, which progress from there to the respiratory tract, then to the bones and joints, and then to the heart, either in one person or across a family lineage.

(d) These are hot-blooded children who like the cool, open air and dislike heat.

(e) All their discharges are offensive smelling, acrid, and profuse.

(f) Health complaints are ameliorated by lying on the abdomen, especially respiratory symptoms.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):
Medorrhinum children are among those who are frequently ill from birth, carrying as they do a genetically determined constitutional weakness. There is a general unability to shake acute illnesses quickly or totally.

The Medorrhinum child has a number of distinctive characteristics in the psychological and mental spheres. Extreme extroversion or extreme introversion may be reported, although the former is much more common. Most children of this type are very extroverted and vital.

For some, this vitality is amplified to the point of irritating those around them. They usually play hard and enthusiastically. This "open" type of Medorrhinum can easily approach total strangers and begin a conversation on almost any subject. They enjoy socializing and usually have many friends.

A directness, at times extreme, may first offer a clue to the probability of a Medorrhinum layer existing in the child. An older patient in a wheelchair and wearing an eye patch was waiting in the reception area. A Medorrhinum child, Howard, burst into the office, and before his huffing mother could catch up, he lunged at the patient and yelled, "Hey, what do you have under that thing?" and tore the patch off the astonished man's face!

This overly-exuberant nature often leads to early experimentation with drugs and other experience-altering substances such as model airplane glue fumes, cough medicine, pain killers, and even car exhaust.

There is a great deal of sexual acting out at an early age as well. With some embarrassment, parents report of their young children such behaviours as erections, kissing and playing erotically with both adults and other children, masturbating, and repeatedly being found naked with young neighbor children. I once treated a six-year-old girl who showed violent tendencies in general and who liked to "pick" at her vagina all the time. The child would coerce her mother to dress her in the tightest possible clothes and underwear.

Evidence of greater than normal vitality may be observed in their hurried behaviour. The parents confirm that the child does everything quickly, always seeming to be in a big rush. Like many symptoms of this remedy, the exact opposite may be true: there may be periodic swings toward total, incapacitating inertia.

Such energy may over time lead to a true hyperactive state. At school they may become restless to the point of wildness. Hyperactive Medorrhinum children cannot concentrate very well, especially when tired. They are messy by nature and may be confused with hyperactive Sulphur children because of this.

Another negative attribute commonly found in these children is meanness and cruelty; coupled with high energy, it can lead to frequent quarrels, screaming matches, and out-and-out fighting, especially when the child is contradicted or reprimanded. When this happens, the child wants his own way even more and seems to develop superhuman strength. In this state, he can fight everyone around him, even parents and bigger, stronger siblings with great tenacity. The child becomes implacable, throwing things and striking their parents, siblings, and friends without remorse.

Parents state that during these "mean" times, the child can become totally out of control, where meaningful discipline or punishments are impossible. The situation can quickly degenerate into a struggle for control in which the parents have to physically overpower the child in order to stop a tantrum or other violent behaviour. The child may even wait for his chance and take reprisals against the parents. This meanness can help to differentiate Medorrhinum from other remedies sharing similar physical symptoms, and a prescription has, time and time again, ameliorated fits of anger, brought more emotional balance, and helped whatever physical complaint brought the child to the homeopath in the first place.

An episodic cruelty or rudeness, the fitful, changeable nature of the child, when times of great aggressiveness alternate with times of introversion and playful coyness, most often indicates a need for this remedy. The parents report extreme polarity of behavior, swinging from very sweet and charming to very nasty and destructive, without apparent cause. Self-destructive tendencies born of hot tempers and mindless fitfulness, and without thought of the pain it might impose on the child himself, are characteristics of this remedy. One troubled teenager, who suddenly became angry, punched his fist into a door, breaking three bones in his hand.

These fitful children may become very obstinate and bossy. Parents bemoan the constant struggle to determine who is in control, even in the case of a three-year-old. The child yells, "I want this!" while tugging at the doctor's stethoscope and screams and carries on until the object is handed over. The parents assert that it is no use to try and reason with the child once his mind is made up. They have found that attempts to discipline the child in this state only have a deleterious or negligible effect.

Another was to guage the depth of the obstinacy is to see how long children hold grudges. The length of time can be amazing, even in small children. They blurt out angrily, "I'm gonna get him back." These little ones remember everyone else's perceived transgressions and desire to mete out appropriate retribution while forgetting their own substantial meanness and trespasses against others.

Medorrhinum children exhibit temper tantrums that are often rooted in a great intolerance of contradiction. Explosive violence and other generally antisocial behavior is reported upon the slightest contradiction.

The child may nag and confront a parent until getting an emotional rise out of him or her. It is as if she wants, needs, and almost longs for a reprimand and punishment. I remember nine-year-old Sally, who would provoke a fight whenever possible. If her mother told her not to make noise at the theater, it was guaranteed that she would yell so her mother would be moved to swat her. It was as if the contact that she made with her parent in that fashion was desirable. As soon as a parent became angry with her, she would become cooperative and sweet. Loving attention by a parent may go unheeded or even be rejected by such a child.

In addition to behaving violently themselves, these children like to observe violence as well. They love to watch scary or violent movies with lots of blood and gore.

Medorrhinum children are often caught lying. Lying often begins with the relatively innocuous and common excuse, "It's not my fault."

In the office a careful listener will frequently hear this type of lying: the parents describe a negative trait, like temper tantrums or cursing, and the child will exclaim over and over with the utmost conviction, "No I don't! No I don't!" in response to every point. If the doctor finally turns to the child and asks, "What didn't happen?" the child will say "That didn't happen lately" or "That didn't happen on Thursday like Mom said." This lying by omission in children can evolve into an adult behavior.

Another form of lying by omission is noted in children who do not wish to have anything "bad" said about them. No one does, but their reactions speak loudly of the remedy itself. They scream, "No! No! Stop!" at the parents as they describe ordinary symptoms to the doctor. Others hide behind the parent's chair or behind a plant and yell, "I'm not telling!" in answer to any question asked of them.

Some lying is evoked by jealousy of siblings. Since some children appear not to comprehend parental love, they may measure love by getting equal shares of objects, toys, and food. I know a boy who wanted a duplicate of everything that his brother had. He would steal and hide his brother's toy because he did not one also. He would even hide his own toys and blame his brother for stealing them just to get him into trouble. He seemed not to know of affection at all, desiring only the outer manifestations, the physical trappings of love.

There is a thoughtless selfishness. Behavior can reflect a complete disregard for the wishes of others. This is also manifested as manipulativeness. The child may tattle on other siblings so that he will receive more attention, even lying to get a sibling into trouble.

The child needing Medorrhinum may have one of two main problems in the ability to think clearly. The first problem is an inborn mental and physical dwarfing, as though from a minor chromosomal defect. The second is only a functional problem with the ability to concentrate.

The former difficulties include a memory weak from babyhood on, especially for conceptual thought. They are usually poor spellers and forget the meaning of words. The child is easily confused by more abstract information. They can have difficulty expressing themselves clearly.

Anomalies in gross or fine motor skills abound. A child may not be able to use scissors or demonstrate good penmanship. He may also walk with a jerky gait.

For the second type of child, the short attention span often leads doctors to diagnose an attention deficit disorder. Parents are often told that the child requires Ritalin. This type of child begins to lose the thread of conversations. In teenagers, confusion is seen most commonly in school-related learning. Their fragile concentration is easily broken by any noise. Dyslexia, mistakes in speech, and poor recall are not due to mental dullness so much as to confusion. As memory declines over time, abstract theoretical knowledge is easily lost. While the child may forget what was heard or read, she can still remember concepts that have visual, experiential clues. There can be a chronic mental disconnectedness symptomatic of both the remedy and the inherited susceptibility, the slow dissipation of attention that takes place over a period of years and is replaced by growing confusion.

Many children who require the remedy Medorrhinum are pseudoambidextrous. It is not that they are equally able to use either hand as a true ambidextrous person can, but rather that they do not have a dominant hand. Because of this, they may switch hands during activities and never quite master a skill with either one.

Initially, the Medorrhinum child who is a slow learner is perfectionistic, spending a long time trying to fashion letters correctly. As the confused state worsens over months and years, the child begins to procrastinate and to hate being pushed to read, write, or do homework.

There is a subgroup of Medorrhinum children that is shy and timid. An inferiority complex is observed in their demeanor during the interview. They can become mentally dull and develop increased anxiety about upcoming events, especially those revolving around school projects. This is due to decreased confidence in his own mental capabilities. In general, they are either intermittently or consistently bashful and introverted. The boys of this subgroup are softhearted and sensitive to an extreme degree.

The mother may state that the child has been psychologically tested and found to have very low self-esteem. These unfortunates have no confidence or pride in themselves.

As these children grow up they become increasingly more introverted. Many become depressed. In their depression they begin to act out, just as more extroverted Medorrhinum children do. They start to take drugs and smoke cigarettes. This taking of drugs is not done with the relish and enjoyment found in their outgoing counterparts, but instead with a sense of despondency. They become gloomy, feeling that all around them is blackness and depression.

In such a severe emotional condition, some girls may develop anorexic or bulimic behavior. There is one major clue that will make one consider Medorrhinum over other remedies for anorexia: the adolescent may not eat for days, starving herself so that she emaciates, but when she finally forces herself to eat, she will eat mainly fruit. This is a major indication for the remedy.

She blames herself for anything that goes wrong in her life as a way of justifying her self-destructive behavior. This self-blame can lead to more extreme self-destructive behavior. Some girls even begin to physically punish themselves, cutting their arms with razors. The two most common stressors that make the girl more vulnerable to suicidal impulses are drug use and premenstrual tension.

One final comment on eating disorders: while homeopathic remedies can be very effective in helping to rebuild the body as well as the mind, they should never be the sole treatment. A homeopath's success rate with these disorders will rise dramatically if treatment is combined with family-centered counseling and skill-oriented therapies that work on developing new methods of relating to food.

A common fear of Medorrhinum children is the fear of being alone, especially in the dark. The reason behind this fear is really a deeper fear of an unseen "presence," something eerie in the house lurking in the dark. Fear of large bodies of water is the other well-known fear of this remedy type. This fear is related to the fear of eerie, unseen things; something under the water may come up and snatch them. On the other hand, a love of bathing in the ocean is also sometimes characteristic of this remedy.

Another fear that about one in five Medorrhinum children has is the fear of closed-in places. Any time the child wrestles and becomes pinned down, he aggressively punches his way out, completely losing all reason in doing so.

One final note on the mind: if the doctor is very attentive to his or her own feelings about and reactions to the patient, this alone may provide a strong clue as to whether or not this remedy is needed. Some of these children elicit a feeling of disgust in others. It is not that they do or say anything that could be considered repulsive; it is just a general feeling in the observer of something repellent that seems to exude from the child.

Medorrhinum (Coulter):
Even if Medorrhinum starts out to behave moderately and methodically, somehow his actions take on a non-systematic, exuberant coloration. He takes the second step before the first, hurling himself into any chosen endeavor: "When my mind is on a particular point, I act as if it were the only thing in the world, sometimes to my own detriment," an adult patient admits.

Exuberance, enthusiasm, even excess, can be positive traits, encouraging high productivity and nourishing talent. But when unmanageable or misdirected, as seen most clearly in hyperactive children with uncontrolled exuberance, they become serious handicaps. Medorrhinum is one of the most effective remedies for the unruly or undisciplined youngster who is constantly touching things, breaking them, tripping over himself, and rashly lurching to do everything hastily -- as likely to hurt himself as others.

Such behaviour actually reflects a deeper stratum of the Medorrhinum makeup -- the general way in which he processes knowledge and experience. He must act out a situation before it is credible, or even comprehensible, to him; knowledge is born of action, or must first be experienced in action. The child does not learn from being told that the stove is hot but must burn himself more than once before anticipating the consequences of his actions.

Another idiosyncratic Medorrhinum symptom is a deranged sense of time. Time seems to move too slowly. This contributes to his impatience. He is always in a great hurry. Yet, while rushing to accomplish everything that is on his agenda, he is a procrastinator. A methodical approach tries his patience (at best, never a distinguishing feature). He puts everything off until the last moment and must then operate in haste and under pressure.

The hurried quality is often exhibited in Medorrhinum's very speech. He talks hastily, eruptively, in a compulsive rush of words, at times in garbled phrases, beginning in mid thought, repeating himself frequently as if fearful of being misunderstood. Thus even in speech habits, this nosode's overall pattern is encountered -- an internal welling up that finds urgent release in an eruptive and exuberant form.

Medorrhinum may perform in spurts of haste because he fears that otherwise he will not only lose his thread of thought but also his rush of inspiration. In fact, when the energy-generating pressure, or the focus supplying intensity are missing, the individual might be unable to collect his thoughts, have difficulty concentrating his mind on abstract subjects, and may be even hard put to express himself, at a loss for words or breaking off in the midst of a sentence.

As mentioned previously, Medorrhinum is usually prescribed as an intercurrent remedy when well-selected remedies, that match the case very well, fail to act. The following cases will help to illustrate this.

The case of a brain-damaged boy of six is an example. The condition had commenced at the age of eight months when he suddenly stopped breathing and had to be rushed to the emergency room. His life was saved, but the brain had been impaired, and soon afterwards the parents noticed signs of inadequate mental development. When first seen by the homeopath he was mentally retarded, living isolated in his own autistic world, emitting peculiar noises, talking disconnectedly and off topic, and with a two-year old's sense of responsibility for his behavior and actions. He attended a special school where he learned little and could not relate to his peers.

He was primarily Sulphur, which he received regularly during years of homeopathic treatment. His progress in developing mental strength was heartening, and, at length, although still in school for the learning disabled, he was able to take his place as a well-functioning member of his class and family. Certain intellectual disabilities remained, especially in mathematics, and his reading skills were below age level. In many other developmental areas, however, he was well within the normal range of normality. Although he still went off on a tangent occasionally, he could carry on thoughtful conversations most of the time and displayed a well-developed moral sense. He was as controlled and responsible as any other teenager.

But his progress was not uniform. Especially in the early stages of treatment he occasionally relapsed and seemed to lose ground. As is typical of such cases, his behavior degenerated, he would make loud noises, and retreated into his autistic world. When Sulphur, and Calcarea carbonica, Lycopodium, Natrum muriaticum, or Baryta carbonica, which are generally the most useful remedies for treating mental retardation (also the less severe dyslexia's, etc.), failed to act, he was given a dose of Medorrhinum 10M or 50M, and the case once again jumped forward; furthermore, he now responded to the indicated remedy. This illustrates what might be called the nosode's "tugboat role" of assisting other remedies to do their work.

Another case was a ten-year-old boy with nocturnal enuresis [bed wetting]. Sulphur, Calcarea carbonica, Natrum muriaticum, and Pulsatilla had helped only marginally, so the physician resolved to address a probable underlying level. Although Tuberculinum is the classic nosode for this condition, the boy's study habits provided the guiding symptoms to the curative Medorrhinum. He was a notorious procrastinator, putting off all the weekend homework until Sunday night, then working in haste until very late. He generally succeeded in completing the assignments on time and, despite the unnecessary pressure, or possibly due to it, got good grades.

A final case was a twelve-year-old girl suffering from asthma. While Natrum sulphuricum, a prime remedy for children's asthma, had helped in the past, its effect did not hold; the same was true for Sulphur, Psorinum, and Arsenicum. There were several suggestive symptoms, but above all, in severe asthma attacks she breathed better from lying draped over a chair with her head down -- an interesting variant of Medorrhinum's time-honored symptom: better in the knee-chest position. In fact, a patient's preferred lying or sleeping position can be crucial for choosing a remedy.

Medorhinum 200X was prescribed every week for a month, then less frequently in ascending potencies. Over the course of a year it was the girl's principal asthma remedy and proved wonderfully curative.

The obvious question is whether the nosodes should not have been administered at the start. Did it break through some impediment to cure and help resolve the case because its way had been paved by the earlier remedies or was it the simillimum from the start? Since every case is unique, one can only speculate. But Medorrhinum, like any nosode, often acts especially well when held in reserve, and is then brought out with a dramatic flourish.

Natrum Muriaticum - Children's Constitutional Type

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
Skin eruptions often develop around the margins of the hairline and behind the ears, which ooze a thin watery fluid that coagulates to a slightly yellow-tinged scab.

Often Natrum muriaticum children will not wear hats, except when they are out in the full sun. Without a hat in this case, the child is destined for a headache, heat prostration, or sunstroke.

(b) Headaches:
Headaches are a frequent complaint of the Natrum muriaticum child. The headaches may begin, as do migraines, with a visual loss on the contra lateral side. They may occur from reading too much or any kind of eye strain, from exposure to the sun and before the menses.

The Natrum muriaticum headache is aggravated by exertion, sharp noise, and bright light. They are often accompanied by a thirst for cold drinks and a desire for cold compresses to be applied to the head. The child becomes nauseated and loses any appetite for food. The face becomes pale and the afflicted person desires to be alone and to lie down flat with cold and pressure against the head.

(c) Eyes:
One can see great sensitivity in the eyes of Natrum muriaticum children. The child may develop dark circles under the eyes, as well as Denny's lines: the creases under the lower eyelids that typify allergies.

They can be quite photophobic and need to wear sunglasses. The photophobia is of graded severity; some have extreme sensitivity to light, while others develop headaches when in the sun. Others just prefer the shade, but all squint in bright light.

The Natrum muriaticum type tends to develop myopia at an early age.

(d) Nose:
The nose is frequently troubled. Natrum muriaticum children often have many allergies, developing hay fever-like symptoms from dust, molds, and pollen. There may also be allergic reactions to foods. The allergies may lead to sinus infections and sinus headaches, especially during a change in weather.

(e) Face:
Adolescent girls can develop a distinctive rash along the jaw line that becomes worse before the menses. Acne and rashes on the face tend to be centered on the forehead. Hives may also be a chief complaint. They may develop from each and every exposure to the sun or may occur only during the first three or four weeks of summer sunshine. The lips are often dry or cracked and frequently develop a fissure in the centre. With colds and fevers, blisters or herpatic sores develop that recur around the lips.

(f) Mouth:
The mouth may feel dry and sore and the tongue may be geographically mapped. With the dry mouth there is thirst for ice-cold drinks, which are consumed by the glassful.

(g) Asthma:
Asthma begins with a dry, hollow cough that is described as sounding like a dog's bark. This is accompanied by shortness of breath that is aggravated by exertion, allergies, evening time, and summer and fall weather in general.

Asthma in this remedy type is often triggered by emotional causes. It is uncanny how often a Natrum muriaticum picture develops in cases where the child must suppress sadness. In one case, a girl would have an asthma attack whenever her divorced mother would come to pick her up for the weekend. The asthma first began when the parents first filed for divorce.

The child may develop allergic coughs that do not progress all the way to asthma. Eight-year-old Frank coughed daily for two years. No reason could be found for the cough by his pediatrician. It was a little cough caused by a tickle in the throat, according to Frank. It was found upon questioning that the cough had started soon after the boy's best friend had moved away. This was a terrible blow for him, although he told no one how he felt. The remedy Natrum muriaticum stopped the cough for good.

(h) Food Cravings and Aversions:
Natrum muriaticum children have strong desires for salt and sweets. They may intensely dislike milk, fat and slimy foods. They dislike dishes that are prepared from many food elements, such as casseroles. One patient called them with disgust, "mixed-up foods."

Many Natrum muriaticum children are lactose intolerant, evidenced by indigestion or a respiratory allergy to milk.

They have a strong thirst for cold drinks and may often be found drinking copious amounts with meals.

(i) Stomach:
A large number of children complain of recurrent stomachaches or abdominal cramps.

A frequent complaint is motion sickness, especially during any long drive. These are the children who cannot be spun around in games due to nausea, and who find no pleasure in riding fast or whirling rides at carnivals.

(j) Abdomen:
Clinically, one finds that the abdominal area cramps easily in the Natrum muriaticum child. The symptoms fit an irritable bowel syndrome very well. The abdomen becomes hard to the touch, cramps up, and is accompanied by severe pain as if the colon were being grasped and squeezed by a tight fist. Those afflicted are compelled to double up with this acute attack.

(k) Rectum:
There is a tendency toward constipation. The stools are dry and the child strains and may cramp before passing a hard stool. This makes the child not want to go to the bathroom, and so habitual constipation develops. With such a history, these children develop many tiny anal fissures as well.

Young children can suffer from chronic diarrhea. The diarrhea occurs first thing in the morning, is odorless, and may be projectile. It is aggravated by the ingestion of milk or wheat and is accompanied by much flatus and cutting pains in the lower abdomen.

(l) Urogenital System:
Boys: The shy child, especially the adolescent boy, will find it difficult to urinate in a public rest room. Bed-wetting is also often reported.

Girls: Nondescript vaginitis in a young girl is not uncommon. The premenstrual syndrom plays a big role for Natrum muriaticum adolescents. Before the menses, sadness and irritability prevail. The actual menses may be painful, with backaches that get better while lying flat on the back on a hard surface. Abdominal pains that come with the menses extend down the thighs to the knees. Localized uterine pain is aggravated by the slightest jarring motion and is lessened with heat, as with the application of a heating pad directly to the lower abdomen.

(m) Extremities:
The toddler may be small and may be slow to walk and talk, learning to walk at seventeen months or later. When they finally do walk, they may turn an ankle frequently.

Clinically, a syndrome that should often bring the remedy Natrum muriaticium to mind is frequent or easily induced tendinitis. The most commonly affected tendons are those of the left shoulder, the knees, the ankles (especially the Achilles tendon, from the heel to the calf), and the fingers. The pains that accompany these inflammations are often sharp and will be amelioriated by cold and pressure.

Rheumatoid arthritis has also been successfully amelioriated by the administration of Natrum muriaticum. The onset may follow grief and may progress through all the joints very quickly. Besides the frighteningly rapid spread of the arthritis, there is usually an abundance of sharp, stitching pains in all the affected joints.

Many Natrum muriaticum children develop very stiff neck muscles. They frequently bite their nails.

(n) Skin:
The skin is often dry, cracked, and predisposed to the development of eczematous rashes. People who have eczema on their hands, elbows, ankles, hairline, or behind the ears; and which is red, raw, cracked and weepy, frequently benefit from a dose of Natrum muriaticum. The eczema itches intensely, especially when the child eats a food that she is allergic to or when she becomes hot.

There often may be a problem with hair loss. In alopecia [loss of hair in patches] cases, the scalp around the hairless patch is dry and flaky and itches a great deal. Alopecia or morphea ["a skin desease marked by the presence of indurated patches of a whitish or yellowish white color surrounded by a pinkish or purplish border," Yasgur's Homeopathic Dictionary] following an emotionally stressful situation may be aided by this remedy.

Natrum muriaticum children often have warts. Hives aggravated by exposure to the sun is another complaint found within this remedy type.

Except during sleep, when sweating can be profuse, the Natrum muriaticum child tends to show scanty or uneven perspiration. It is common for the child to become quite hot while running or playing, yet perspire only lightly, even in the summertime.

(o) Psoriasis:
Psoriasis develops readily on the Natrum muriaticum body. Often there is a specific emotional etiology such as grief that brings on the lesions. Scenarios commonly observed by the doctor include examples such as a girl of ten developing psoriasis after her parents sought a divorce, and a boy of the same age developing this condition after moving away from his friends to a new city.

The psoriasis may be unusual in several respects. It may be extremely painful, burning with each new outbreak, or it may be the rarer form of pustular psoriasis. In general, exacerbation from new grief or emotional trauma is the rule. Pustular psoriasis may have a very rapid spread accompanied by strong chills and headaches. Lastly, the lesion, while it remains curable, may behave paradoxically to all other types of psoriasis lesions. It is characteristic for this disease that the ultraviolet light of the sun ameliorates the rash. In Natrum muriaticum, however, the opposite may be found: the rash becomes aggravated by the sun's rays and the lesions grow on skin surfaces that have been exposed to the sun.

After the child has had the disease for several years, especially if strong medications have been used, this last modality is lost and the rash then becomes ameliorated by exposure to sunlight. This should make the prescriber view the case more cautiously, as the lesion is now less likely to be cured completely. With this change, one understands that the homeostatic mechanism of the individual is no longer concerned with the rash. In a few words, the body is in the process of giving up on the rash and learning to live with it rather than to fight and attempt to vanquish it.

Sleep (Herscu):
The sleep of Natrum muriaticum children is often troubled. Many find it hard to fall asleep in the first place and sometimes lie awake in their beds for several hours before succumbing. Some stay awake to recapitulate the social and emotional encounters of the day. It is as if the emotions that were repressed during the actual exchanges can finally be experienced in their full magnitude.

They usually sleep on the left side or on the back. They can talk and walk in their sleep.

Enuresis in little boys who are shy and fine skinned and who dislike being looked at will often respond to the remedy Natrum muriaticum. It is interesting that the enuresis of this remedy type is marked by the fact that the child, though ostensibly asleep, finds some kind of receptacle in which to urinate. Some children walk up to a plant in the room and urinate into the pot, while other find a sink or wastebasket.

Many Natrum muriaticum children experience anxiety-fraught dreams. They dream of being chased, of disasters, of robbers, that the school has moved and they cannot find it, that they have been abandoned, etc.

Their sleep, even when thus disturbed, is mostly refreshing.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Warm-blooded for the most part, Natrum muriaticum children dislike heat and stuffy rooms.

(b) They prefer the shade and dislike and are aggravated by direct sunshine.

(c) Many children are thin, pale, weak, and anemic.

(d) There is a general aggravation time from three to six o'clock in the afternoon.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):
"Youth is wasted on the young" is a saying that adults, observing young ones at play, often repeat. How sad, then, to find a child who has the seriousness and the heavy burden of the aged upon his young shoulders. And yet this is exactly what one finds in a Natrum muriaticum child.

As a group, Natrum muriaticum children are very well behaved and obedient. During the interview they are reserved and shy. The doctor may find several different behaviours. One child sits up straight with her legs crossed, her hands folded, and all her muscles tensed. Another child, perhaps an adolescent, exhibits how physical distancing can be manifested by slouching with his legs up on the seat, putting those legs and his entire body between the doctor's intrusive questions and himself. Yet another child sprawls on the floor behind the parent's chair, apparently relaxed while reading a book. While this may seem to show a nonchalant attitude, the Natrum muriaticum child acts this way to avoid emotional communication with the doctor. Teenagers may respond grudgingly with monosyllabic yes or no answers, a thin veneer that does not hide the facial expression that conveys another message: "I do not want to be here. I was brought here against my will by my parents. I was brought in for my headaches; why am I being grilled about my friends, my fears, my schoolwork?"

Occasionally it is felt by all in the room that a child is baring his or her soul to the interviewer. Suddenly the mood in the room changes and a very intimate bond begins to form; all joking disappears and the child begins to reveal what becomes the central focus of the case -- the true sensitive, grieved, emotional state.

The first thing that strikes one about a Natrum muriaticum child is how well-groomed he or she is. At an early age, clean clothes, coordinated outfits, and mediculously combed hair are the rule.

Almost all Natrum muriaticum children tend toward perfectionism, which may manifest at a very tender age. They like their rooms neat, their beds made, and their books and toys put away.

They may seem possessive by not letting their friends or siblings touch their special objects, but this is not out of true possessiveness; rather, it is out of the desire to keep their things clean, in order, and unbroken. These children never lose any items of personal value and will categorize, organize, and clean them with enjoyment and great care.

They become depressed or hysterical if they do not receive good grades on exams or report cards. They cry or tear up the offending page if they make a mistake while writing or coloring. They often work on homework assignments until they are absolutely sure there are no mistakes. If they do make a mistake, say on a math problem, they often do not ask for help because they think that they are "bad" people for having made the mistake.

They are very concerned with others' opinions about them. They feel strong emotions and are offended easily, so if they are laughed at or ridiculed in any way, it reinforces the negative self-image that dwells inside.

This degraded self-image mingled with social insecurities is the basis for many obsessive, perfectionistic behaviours. One way to escape the ridicules of childhood is to appear invulnerable or perfect. This "siege mentality" creates great anxiety in the child as he strives to achieve the unachievable -- perfection.

Natrum muriaticum youngsters are very sensitive. They become embarrassed easily. Many do not try anything new if they fear they might fail. This resistance may range from that of a child who refuses to play due to poor physical coordination to the shyness of a child who will not try to make new friends.

It is this tendency toward self-recrimination that pushes these children to perfect any endeavors they take on. Theirs is an inner drive to achieve, the likes of which few other remedy types possess. They may choose music, the visual arts, or sports -- it does not really matter what the vehicle of creative expression is. What is consistent is that they excel at whatever they choose.

This drive to succeed is born out of the child's dissatisfaction with her own performance or creation. The dissatisfaction leads her to push her abilities even further toward perfection, always criticizing any finished piece or performance, never hearing the compliments or applause. They become very sensitive to the slightest criticism.

The overly conscientious nature of Natrum muriaticum may cause anxiety attacks in the youth. One adolescent, Peter, had severe stomachaches and headaches whenever he became anxious about his mathematics class. He had panic attacks before exams from the fear that he would not receive good grades. His fears were not based on reality, as he was an excellent student and his parents had never pushed him to perform.

Natrum muriaticum children experience emotions very profoundly, and are especially predisposed to sadness. A death in the family, separation or divorce, or siblings and friends moving away can all trigger this disposition. Whenever a child develops disease after a severe depression or when depression accompanies an illness, Natrum muriaticum should be considered.

Above all else, Natrum muriaticum at any age is a loner. When relating to others, they like to interact on a one-to-one basis, hating and fearing larger groups. Because they push others away in fear and hypersensitivity, others begin to think of them as aloof and seemingly too serious for such young people.

Their emotionally sensitive and reactive nature combined with great shyness makes the youngster seem closed and emotionless; this could not be further from the truth. Intense and deeply felt emotions pour out onto the pages of diaries, in songs, and the canvases of paintings. Children of this type are shy with people and often have a natural love for and become very close to animals.

They seek any activity that allows them a refuge from ridicule and an opportunity to vent their emotions. The fantasy world waiting for them in books is one reason why they are often voracious readers.

In the alcololic family they often cast themselves as the heroic savior: "It is my responsibility, my fault alone." It is incredible and sometimes tragic that one finds such guilt and remorse in a child of perhaps seven years.

Grudges against and hatred of certain family members may develop, especially after being ridiculed. When hurt, they reexperience indignities, injustices and humiliation over and over again, burning with each fresh revelation and fuming as every nuance of the conflict slaps them in the face.

If they are scolded or if the parents are harsh with them, it may bring on torrents of tears. They are so sensitive to reprimand that they may weep if merely looked at the "wrong way." The child weeps easily and exhibits an aversion to being held, having a desire to be alone rather than consoled. Sometimes, when hearing something sad and moreover when having to tell someone else disheartening news, a smile inappropriately and helplessly comes to the lips. This is very characteristic of this remedy type.

These children have a negative reaction to consolation. They may actually desire consolation from their parents, but they never ask for it. "No one must know that I am needy, that I feel insecure." Attempts to console them precipitate an even greater sadness, making a bad situation worse. With acute disease this close-mouthedness may be absolutely maddening to the attending adults. The child may moan, cry, and groan but not say what is disturbing him.

The picture is sulky. Natrum muriaticum children tend to cling to a certain belief about themselves, such as that every negative event or consequence must be their fault.

A fear of evil or that something awful will happen is common. Anxiety about parents who do not arrive home on time is symptomatic of this type. Typically, there is a partial compensation for this fear in the form of an attempt to control events.

Fears may haunt them: fear of the dark, of being alone, of thunderstorms, of snakes, spiders, insects with large mandibles; fear that the cat will die; or fear that there is something around the corner. They have a great fear of robbers, of being kidnaped. Other fears may include fear of speaking in public, of heights, and of closed in spaces.

Childhood and Family Relations (Coulter):
Natrum muriaticum's grievances often stem from family relations. More often and more graphically than any other type, he exhibits the consequences of a poor relationship with one or both parents which breeds resentment and/or guilt. A classic situation is the child whose emotional problems started when the mother took a job outside the home. But when she is home, he is neither affectionate nor outwardly happy, and, in general, is not easy to have around. The other children in the family are not affected in the same way, accepting the situation and enjoying their mother when she is home. Only Natrum muriaticum so deeply resents her betrayal, and is so sensitive to her rejection or neglect, that he cannot demonstrate the need for her affection. Thus, although these grievances against the parent are sometimes legitimate, he can also be accused of making excessive demands.

The polar opposite, however, is also true. Natrum muriaticum often has a superabundance of sympathy and devotion to his parents and an extra-close relationship with them.

Some of these children feel ill at ease when touched. They do not reach out for physical closeness and have trouble expressing affection. This "don't touch me" syndrome contributes to the young Natrum muriaticum's difficult relationship with his parents. The testily independent child pushes not only any show of affection but also guidance. He rejects it when it is proffered and is angry when consoled. Thus the lessening of emotional rapport between parent and child that frequently occurs in adolescence with reduced physical contact may commence earlier in Natrum muriaticum. He projects a "leave me alone" attitude, and the parents leave him alone.

Yet, it is part of the nature's complexity and perversity to suffer inordinately from deprival of parental affection even when rejecting it. He thereby creates a "no win" situation for his parents and himself.

The "difficult" Natrum muriaticum child may originally have been well-behaved and affectionate but has turned moody and unhappy because of real or imagined parental inattention to his needs. The physician can often recognize him by his determined avoidance of eye contact, reluctance to answer questions, and resentful expression as he looks down at the floor. A prescription of the medicine in high potency, however, can cause extraordinary changes: the child is now willing to look the physician in the eye, has an open instead of a forced smile, and is described by the parents as having a "lighter" nature generally.

At times Natrum muriaticum's pathology stems from early sibling rivalry. The previously bright and happy child starts behaving badly or slackens in speech and intellectual development when he senses that his younger siblings are receiving parental preference. In fact, slow learning to talk is a strong indication for this remedy and a concrete reflection of the type's general inability to express emotion easily.

Other constitutional types in similar circumstances may feel equally jealous and resentful. They will fight for attention, argue, or intrigue; or they will learn to share or to yield; but ultimately they succeed in dealing with the situation. No so Natrum muriaticum. He may confront it by being ultracooperative, obedient and responsible. The child is so sensitive to disapproval, so longing for approbation, so fearful of parental rejection if he does not please, that he will not even tell his parents that he is afraid of the dark and would like a night light, or that he wet his pants in school and would like to change them; and a mere glance from an adult will elicit the desired behaviour. Indeed, when a parent or teacher describes a child as overconscientious, extremely anxious to avoid giving trouble, and "extra" or "unnaturally" good, the first remedy to consider is the potentized salt.

He is deeply affected by quarrels and subliminal hostility and can become actively ill as a result. For this reason, Natrum muriaticum is the remedy most frequently administered to children and adolescents who have undergone the trauma of parental divorce.

A final observation is that a child will be passionately attached to his pet, lavishing on it all the affection he cannot give to humans.

The remedy can disperse the patient's tormenting idées fixes and soften his unbending pillar-or-salt personality, permitting greater subtlety of understanding and opinion; it helps him be less vulnerable, less defensive, and less inclined to self-condemnation.

Every homeopathic constitutional remedy performs psychotherapy while working on the physical level, but in the introverted, repressed, morbidly sensitive or traumatized Natrum muriaticum this unblocking of emotions to allow the "vital force" to flow freely in the body is especially striking. After one dose, or several, of homeopathic sodium chloride, individuals suffering from long-standing dejection or severe mood swings, or who are weighted down with cares, find themselves lighter, more accepting, less judgmental of others -- more hopeful and open to the joyful aspects of life. This remedy can cut through the tangle of depression, insecurity, feelings of unworthiness and excessive self-absorption, making the patient master of himself.


Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
The heads of Phosphorus children share three similarities with those of Calcarea carbonica: the head may often be covered with fine, silky, shiny hair; baldness occurs in certain areas when the child is experiencing serious illness such as pneumonia or bronchitis; and finally, the child may perspire profusely from the scalp

(b) Headaches:
These children tend to develop headaches, even to the point of migrains. They may be heralded by many visual changes such as photophobia, flickers, or floating spots.

The headaches are commonly preceded or accompanied by hunger; the child describes an empty feeling in the chest or stomach area. If the child, especially a teenager, misses a meal or eats too much sugar, he will probably develop a headache.

The other common type of Phosphorus headache occurs due to a sensitivity to the environment. This headache may be set off by strong odors such as perfumes, car exhausts, and tobacco smoke.

Amelioration of a headache by cold compresses applied to the head is a big clue to this remedy. During severe headaches of all kinds there may characteristically be nausea and vomiting.

(c) Eyes:
The eyes of infants and children are bright and wide open, shining with a glimmer and brilliance all their own. Phosphorus types have long eyelashes, even from birth. Another feature that may be observed is blue-tinged rings of discoloration around the eyes of a pale-faced child.

While Arnica should be the first remedy considered for subconjunctival hemorrhages in infants and children, Phosphorus should be especially considered if the bleeding recurs often, whenever the children strain during coughing or blowing the nose.

Paralysis of the optic nerve causing gradual blindness is also a complaint that should make one think of Phosphorus. The paralysis may be due to an unexplained degeneration of the nerve or may occur after a brain tumor causes papilledema with loss of visual fields. The child may have in this case many visual distortions such as "floaters."

Finally, the child may complain of eczema or seborrheic dermatitis on the eyebrows, both of which are exfoliative.

(d) Ears:
The ears are not often affected in these children. Phosphorus should come to mind for both infants and children who have had an ear infection with a bloody discharge.

(e) Nose:
The nose is frequently problematic in Phosphorus children and adolescents. Many of these children have a history of nosebleeds. The blood is bright red and profuse

It is common to elicit the fact that the child develops many colds each winter that begin in the nose.

(f) Face:
The Phosphorus face of both infants and older children is often particularly beautiful, with fine features and fine skin. The skin may be almost transparent and pallid at rest, but will flush full of color with embarrassment or excitement.

Children with allergies develop allergic "shiners": dark, often puffy, circles under the eyes.

The lips tend to become red, dry, and cracked, especially in wintertime.

(g) Mouth;
The mouth favors the development of frequent canker sores.

The tongue is long and thin. The shape of the teeth is similar to the shape of the typical Phosphorus body: long and thin.

The gums may show a tendency to bleed easily.

(h) Throat and Neck:
When Phosphorus children develop sore throats (which they do often), they are inevitably accompanied by hoarseness. The throat feels raw, dry, and burning, and the child will especially favor cold drinks for relief. Children tend to develop laryngitis with these infections.

(i) Lower Respiratory System:
The chest is one of the most affected parts of the body in this remedy type. It is noted that, from an early age, any cold quickly drops into the chest to cause a cough, bronchitis, or pneumonia, even in infants.

Since the cough can be quite painful, one may observe the child trying to hold her breath because every time she inhales, she coughs. Sufferers often hold their chests when they cough because coughing causes pain to the rib cage.

(j) Pneumonia:
Phosphorus is one of the main remedies to be considered for pneumonia in infants. An X-ray often confirms that the pneumonia is mostly in the lower lungs.

During these attacks there is also a burning sensation located anywhere in the chest. A strong concomitant feature that will help find the correct remedy is the great craving for ice-cold drinks during these attacks predominant among Phosphorus individuals, young and old alike.

(k) Asthma:
In Phosphorus, asthma is often related to allergies that are prone to be worse in the spring and fall. Other asthma attacks are set off by upper respiratory tract infections that drop into the chest, leading to the spasms. The chest tightens, feeling as if a weight were placed on the sternum. Curiously, with allergic asthmas the sternum may itch as well as feel tight.

(l) Food Cravings and Aversions:
Phosphorus children crave ice-cold foods such as ice cream, cold milk, and often just plain ice cubes. They desire chocolate, and refreshing snacks such as cucumbers. They also love sour foods such as pickles and lemons. Many of these children also love bubble gum.

They dislike eggs and bread.

This is one of the most thirst-prone remedy types in the entire materia medica, drinking many glasses of liquid a day and even waking up at night to drink. Most of the drinks will be cold to ice-cold.

(m) Stomach:
In general, the child has a good appetite. Being acutely sensitive to the blood sugar level, any time the child abstains from eating he or she will develop hypoglycemic symptoms: dizziness may ensue, a headache may develop, or mild irritability may be noted.

The stomach is one of the weakest areas of the Phosphorus constitution. With any acute infection such as influenza the child develops nausea and/or vomiting, retching at the slightest provocation. Such digestive tract problems may also occur from anxiety or stress. The keynote Phosphorus symptom of vomiting is further confirmed if it is aggravated by anything warm and ameliorated by anything cold; in fact, the colder the better. The afflicted youngster will drink ice-cold drinks or eat ice cream for relief, but as soon as the drink warms up in the stomach (in about fifteen minutes) the nausea returns.

(n) Hypoglycemia:
Children who miss meals or fast for holidays may become not only nauseous but also weak, trembly, and susceptible to headaches. Because of a rapid metabolism, the Phosphorus child seems hypoglycemic and needs to eat often. Many of these children will not be able to fall asleep because of hunger, while others will wake up in the middle of the night for want of food. They will be the first one to the breakfast table and will relish the morning meal after having "starved" the night through.

(o) Abdomen;
Many pains are experienced in the lower abdominal area. These pains aften coincide with stress, fear, anxiety, or even just excitement. As with nausea, such problems will be ameliorated by any ice-cold drink.

(p) Rectum:
The Phosphorus child tends to develop diarrhea quite easily. In infants, watch for recurring diarrhea that may accompany any illness and may last for a long time after the illness is resolved.

(q) Urogenital System:
Sometimes the child may lose bladder control when excited while awake during the day as well as when asleep at night in bed.

Quite often in teenaged girls the menstrual flow will be very heavy and consist of a bright red flow throughout the entire period. The flow may be so heavy that the adolescent becomes anemic, pale, and, quite commonly, dizzy while menstruating.

(r) Extremities:
The remedy Phosphorus has cured types of arthritis that are aggravated by first motion and by cold, and are ameliorated by continued motion.

The child tends to acquire plantar warts on either foot. The hands and feet perspire profusely any time the child is anxious or excited.

(s) Skin:
While the skin is not often affected, Phosphorus types sometimes produce the driest skin and flakiest eruptions of all the major remedies. This can range from simple dandruff to extensive ichthyosis, in which the whole skin flakes off constantly and resembles fish scales.

The child will perspire profusely.

Sleep (Herscu):
The children do not like to go to sleep alone. In the dark they fear that the room or the closet has monsters or ghosts, and every changing light and shadow pattern gives them a start. They have strong imaginations. For this reason they often report that they sleep with a light on.

is one of the most common remedies given to the child who, even though eight or ten years old, still sneaks into bed with his or her parents. It is not uncommon to have a thirteen-year-old Phosphorus girl still wanting to be tucked in at night.

The sleep position is often characteristic in Phosphorus children -- either on the right side or on the abdomen.

They tend to talk in their sleep, and many will sleepwalk. Sleep may be restless, as they have many nightmares.

Phosphorus infants and children usually wake up refreshed, though perhaps hungry.

Vertigo (Herscu):
Tall, thin children frequently complain of orthostatic hypotension -- low blood pressure -- when they rise quickly from a reclining position. They feel light-headed and dizzy, as if their feet do not touch the ground.

Older girls may also feel this way when they menstruate heavily.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Phosphorus children are generally tall, thin, and beautiful. They usually have fine-textured skin and refined features.

(b) The Phosphorus remedy type is vulnerable to bleeding problems and hemorrhages of any sort.

(c) Both the mental and physical conditions of Phosphorus children tend to be aggravated by lying on the left side, and at dusk and twilight. Amelioration is from lying on the right side, drinking cold water or eating cold food, by consolation, being rubbed, and sleep.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):
As a group, Phosphorus children are the most enjoyable to treat. They tend to be very communicative, excitable, and expressive. They are generally good-natured and happy from birth. They are warmhearted and like to be picked up and hugged. The children have good manners, so their parents do not hesitate to bring them to public places.

It is the nature of the Phosphorus child to be extroverted. The child is very impressionable as well as warm, outgoing and affectionate; qualities that attract others like iron filings to a magnet.

The Phosphorus child appears bright, answering questions quickly and asking many questions of her own. She extemporizes on anything, often straying from the topic at hand. It is common for the child to simultaneously answer a question and begin a new statement on a separate, though perhaps related, topic.

As a doctor, one can experience the child's openness and observe the ease with which she floats through the world, able to establish rapport easily with just about anyone. The child is very accepting and does not hold grudges. When ill, if not seriously so, the child tends to remain outgoing physically as well as verbally.

It is remarkable how specifically the child will express a desire to be rubbed, tucked in, or sung to. Young Sam, pointing to his forehead, approached me and said, "Paul it hurts here" in a most pathetic tone, reminiscent of high drama. With Phosphorus, health problems are clearly expressed, and thus the parents can greatly empathize with their child.

These bright children are often group leaders when playing games. The affection that the child emits toward others unconsciously draws them closer.

Phosphorus children love being the centre of attention. In one example, all the other children were riding bicycles and having fun. Leon was too young to know how to ride but began to cry foul play, protesting that he was not getting his fair share of the riding. He mounted a bicycle and began to ride and fall, ride and fall, over and over again until he could indeed ride the bicycle! This particular event illustrates another aspect of the Phosphorus personality: they strongly prefer not to be considered "just average."

When praise is earned in situations like these, the recipient relishes the achievements and the glory, enjoying it for all it is worth.

Phosphorus children are very enthusiastic about new environments, people, or activities. They love going to shopping malls, game arcades, and playgrounds. At times the excitement makes them almost uncontrollable. They love to play with all the toys, video machines, and games.

Phosphorus children may be quite restless from sheer excitement. Parents tell the doctor that their child "can't keep still for one minute" and cannot focus on a task long enough to finish it. Although the child is delightful, he or she fidgets all the time.

The children try to bargain with their parents. Statements such as, "I ate all my food, give me a toy," or "I did good in school, let's go to the arcade," if offered in a pleasant manner, are typical pleas of the Phosphorus child.

The child may get up many times during the night to ask for water or go to the bathroom, or anything else that gains an audience with the parents.

The child usually spends all his allowance as soon as he gets it. The parents tell the doctor that the child buys as if there is a fire in his pants pocket; he must spend every penny. If he uses his money on a toy and has a quarter left over, he will buy candy with the remainder.

Excitability is also heightened by upcoming events. Before a team game, a recital, or other event the Phosphorus child becomes anxious and may even become physically ill from anticipation.

The children may, in excitement and/or in sympathy, give away favorite toys and other possessions. This generous giving away of personal possessions is a reflection of the sensitive and giving nature of Phosphorus. The child is deeply caring, taking responsibility for siblings or animals that are in need.

Some Phosphorus children develop the lack of mental focus for which this remedy type is well known. This may be observed in the short attention span and easy distractibility of the child.

Another major aspect of the Phosphorus child is shyness, particularly during the initial interview, blushing easily, looking down at the floor, answering in a timid whisper, and looking to the parents before every response. As the interview continues, one notes that the shyness quickly fades and excitement builds within the child. Once I was treating a family over lunch. One of the three children of the group was nine-year-old Liz. At the beginning of the interview she was very shy, whispering and looking to her father for answers and not ever looking at her questioner. By the second half of the interview she was answering questions herself and beginning to pick at my food. As I watched this girl unfold and finally win my affection as well as my french fries, all I or anyone else present wished to do was hug her. This instant feeling of affection quite often helps me identify and prescribe Phosphorus.

Phosphorus children change moods and cry easily. They need affection and consolation and can cry easily and openly in front of others. They recover more quickly than some other remedy types.

The Phosphorus child becomes terribly fearful with the slightest provocation. As a parent gives an account of the child's fears, one often sees the actual terror consume the child. The eyes open wide while the mother sketches the child's reaction to a thunderstorm, as if the hapless child is reliving the experience.

The strongest and most common fears are of the dark, being alone, ghosts, and thunderstorms. These are similar to the fears of the Natrum muriaticum child. The major difference regarding the shared fears between these two remedy types is that the Phosphorus cannot help but talk about the fears with dramatic expressions that pull the listener right into the experience, whereas the Natrum muriaticum child will largely keep his fears to himself. The former is open, the later closed.

Many of the Phosphorus fears can be distilled down to the single fear that something "bad" will happen. This is experienced as a general foreboding that encompasses many facets of the child's life. The poor Phosphorus child is often left with an overactive imagination with which to fantasize what this threat might be.

If pushed further, this wild imagination makes the child fear the future. When asked what he was afraid of, twelve-year-old Paul said he feared AIDS. Having heard that it killed people and not knowing how one contracted the disease, he became anxious over the prospect of dying from it. Besides the irrationality of assuming he would contract such a disease, the fear of death in one so young is quite unusual and peculiar to this remedy type.

Fears may affect the stomach. Nausea, stomachaches, vomiting, ulcers, or diarrhea may develop with these fears as they become somaticized.

The Eternal Child (Coulter):
Whether actively seeking it or inadvertently attracting it, Phosphorus from an early age manages to capture notice. He is appealing in both looks and manner, and even passers-by exclaim, "What an attractive child!" "Just look at those eyes!" The cry is instinctive, as they gaze with open admiration at a child whose alertness, grace, charm, and bubbling good spirits compel attention.

Phosphorus can be impatient, desiring gratification at the very moment and, if thwarted, throwing impressive tantrums. But he is easily appeased and snaps out of his anger whenever he pleases. He does not allow sadness to last and does not bear resentment. Like a jack-in-the-box he pops up smiling even after being reprimanded. The sensitive nature feels the disgrace but covers it up, all the sooner to reenter others' good graces.

As concerns his studies the young Phosphorus loves anything that captures his imagination, such as having stories told or read to him, but dislikes anything requiring sustained application, anything that is not "fun." At the same time he wants to be the best in everything without really working for it. Whatever he is trying to accomplish, he must "get it" the first time. If unsuccessful or thwarted in his  attempt, he may react hysterically, stamping, shouting, or throwing down his tools in frustration. Because he is quick and absorbs things easily, he often does manage to be a good, but not an excellent, student without studying too hard.

Phosphorus children are seldom mean and do not bully others. They are not necessarily angels, but they gain the upper hand in a diverting, not a disagreeable, way. When they must weasel out of a tricky situation, they look you directly in the eye while fabricating a complete untruth. With their ready imagination, they are adept at twisting the facts or concocting spur-of-the-moment explanations why they didn't do their homework or their chores. In contrast with the Natrum muriaticum child who looks guilty even when he is not, and who always gets caught in the slightest fib, you feel that the Phosphorus child must be telling the truth with those wide eyes gazing straight at you. But by no means! The more innocent Phosphorus looks, the guiltier he usually is.

Their mischievousness comes out in teasing, playing jokes on others, or tricking their elders. Children less than a year old and still unable to walk, may crawl away to hide in a closet; while others are searching and shouting their names in concern, they sit concealed, gurgling with pleasure at their own cleverness.

They are popular without necessarilly being leaders; they are just friendly, vital, and enthusiastic. Friends and strangers alike respond to his expansive charm, and many a dreary life has been brightened by the antics of a lively Phosphorus.

All this excitement and stimulation may undermine his health, however, and the adolescent begins to suffer from headaches, insomnia, and nervousness; or more subtly, he loses his emotional stability and mental cohesion. The younger child may even fall ill from anticipation or excitement: of such happy events as Christmas, participating in a school play, or a birthday party. Or he remains sleepless and overwrought long after an event.

The constitutional type is recognized in the patient who is likable and attractive and displays the warm and extroverted manner of one who wants to be liked and can make himself liked; who has developed and put to good use his wonderfully positive approach to people and life. He may possess a brighter luminescence but will always evince that special Phosphorus sympathy and responsiveness that ranks compassion before justice and generosity before truth.

Yet he may also suffer from a tendency to emotional excess, lack of restraint, confusion of fantasy with reality, and uncertainty about his own identity. His imagination outweighs his understanding, his unstability overrules his judgment; he believes only what he wants to believe, is governed by caprice and cannot see beyond himself. So that for all his promise and fine talents his life falls short of its potential.

Pulsatilla - Children's Constitutional Type

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
Girls may develop schooltime headaches accompanied by digestive upsets, aggravated by eating too much ice cream, meat or fats; by watching television, reading, or becoming overheated in a warm room.

Teenaged girls may complain of headaches associated with the menses. The pain will be felt on one side or temple and be congestive in nature; the adolescent feels a constant throbbing. The hot head is relieved by cold packs, pressure, and sitting up. Aggravation is from quick motion and stooping. The face becomes red during the congestive headache and the eyes feel engorged, as if there is pressure pushing them outward.

Pulsatilla children sometimes have headaches that are associated with upper respiratory tract infections such as sinusitis. The headache may be aggravated by lying down and ameliorated by outdoor activity. Parents state that the child always takes the hat off, even in the coldest weather.

(b) Eyes:
The eyes are frequently affected by various problems in the Pulsatilla child. During any disease, especially of the upper respiratory tract, the child may develop either conjunctivitis, dacryocystitis ["inflammation of the lacrimal sac of the eye," Yasgur's Homeopathic Dictionary], or marginal belpharitis ["inflammation of the hair follicles and sebaceous glands along the margins of the eyelids," Yasgur]. The eyes become inflamed, even in the newborn. Children rub their eyes continuously, which they say burn and itch, especially at night, with the sensation that there is sand in the eyes.

Colds can settle in the eyes and produce a thick, purulent, yellow-green, bland discharge. Agglutination of the eyelids during the night is common. When the child awakens in the morning, the lids must be moistened with water to loosen the dry, crusty mucus away.

Some children develop styes that recur over and over again. All Pulsatilla eye symptoms are aggravated in a warm room or by warm bathing, and are tremendously amiliorated by cold air, bathing the eye in cold water, or applying cold compresses. Even small babies will push away a warm cloth if it approaches the troubled eye. The temperature modality is very important to ask about because the answer will help to differentiate Pulsatilla from other homeopathic medicines that alleviate eye problems.

(c) Ears:
Pulsatilla cures many ear symptoms as well. It is one of the prime remedies for otitis media. The external ear may be red, hot, and swollen. Severe throbbing pains in the ears become worse at night and with the warmth of bed, and feel better outdoors and with cool applications.

(d) Nose:
The nose is involved in almost every upper respiratory tract infection. Pulsatilla children develop repeated colds accompanied by much sneezing and which are aggravated at night. Six-year-old Sally was typical in her infection, which began with frequent sneezing. Her conjunctiva became red and her eyes began to itch. Her lips dried out quickly and began to crack and bleed over the next few days. She then started to have sharp, pressing pains in the ears accompanied by a high fever. During the inflammation she also developed vaginitis and became lethargic, wanting to be held much of the time by her mother. Pulsatilla prevented this girl from developing any further infections and stopped her cycle of upper respiratory tract breakdowns.

(e) Hay Fever:
Pulsatilla is one of the most useful remedies for curing hay fever. It begins with itching of the upper palate, causing those afflicted to make clucking sounds with their tongues while trying to scratch the upper palate. The eyes then begin to itch and lacrimate greatly. The nose also itches, discharging a clear, bland mucus. All hay fever symptoms are aggravated out of doors on hot days, at night, and by the change of seasons. The attacks are ameliorated by cool days and by splashing cold water on the face.

(f) Face:

With fevers the face becomes flushed. Occasionally only one cheek becomes flushed while the other becomes pale.

While quite rare in these times of antibiotic use, one may find a patient with mumps in which the face is very flushed and the inflammation has metastasized to the breasts or testes and is accompanied by much swelling and pain.

(g) Mouth:
A dry mouth yet lack of thirst is a classic keynote for Pulsatilla.

The breath can be quite foul when the children get up in the morning, even in the very young. While examining Pulsatilla children, one can often see a thin, white or lacy coating on the tongue just as they open their mouths.

(h) Lower Respiratory System:
The chest is the site of many problems for the Pulsatilla child, both acute and chronic. There may be a history of bronchitis or pneumonia.

Bronchitis or croup may begin with a dry, raw throat. This may develop after or along with a rash that is suppressed by ointments and does not fully develop. The cough is caused by a dry tickle in the throat, which is worse when the child lies down at night or becomes warm or overheated. The cough usually subsides when the child walks in the cool, open air; or sits up.

A keynote of Pulsatilla, as well as of Calcarea carbonica, is the common complaint of a dry cough throughout the entire day and night and a loose, wet cough only upon awakening, accompanied by much expectoration at that time.

The Pulsatilla child is often very allergic to the environment, developing asthma from any bark dust or pollen in the air. At first the child only manifests hay fever. Eventually, the hay fever stops and the child progresses to asthma.

(i) Food Cravings and Aversions:
It is interesting to note that many of the foods Pulsatilla children crave aggravate problems of their digestive tracts. They desire cheese, ice cream, eggs, butter, pastry and cakes, peanut butter and sweets. They are aggravated by pastry, ice cream, lemons and very sour foods, fats, and meat (especially pork). Many of these foods cause vomiting, diarrhea, and headaches. They are averse to eating milk, bread, fats, warm foods, and fatty meats.

A commonly confirmed keynote is that the child is quite thirstless, even though he may have a fever or a very dry mouth.

(j) Stomach:
The stomach is troubled as often as the respiratory tract in the Pulsatilla child. Gastroenteritis is accompanied by severe abdominal cramps.

The stomach of Pulsatilla digests both food and emotional interactions slowly. Any time there is a strong emotional stress, the child develops stomachaches, nausea and/or vomiting, similar in this regard to Phosphorus. The child may also develop ulcers in the stomach from strong emotions that remain unresolved.

The stomach is easily upset by eating rich foods, and unfortunately, by foods Pulsatilla children enjoy immensely, such as ice cream, cake, and cheese. One parent described her daughter's sensitive stomach as "Post-Halloween-Birthday-Easter-Christmas-Syndrome."

One last distinctive digestive symptom, often observed in Pulsatilla infants, is that most will hiccough after they eat.

(k) Abdomen:
Infants with colic often respond well to the remedy Pulsatilla. The abdomen distends and there is audible rumbling and gurgling.

(l) Rectum:
The infant may develop diarrhea or the diarrhea may alternate with constipation, conforming to the adage "No two stools alike." While this is a bit of an exaggeration, what one does find is that there is no predictability as to what type of stool will emerge next.

Very often a homeopath will observe symptoms and prescribe Pulsatilla only to find that it does not work -- but that Calcarea carbonica will. Likewise, many times Calcarea carbonica will not work and Pulsatilla will; as usual, the general symptoms lead and must prevail in the selection of the remedy, as the local symptoms often overlap between remedies.

(m) Urogenital System:
Pulsatilla is a key remedy to consider for children who develop increased frequency of urination and/or bet-wetting that is aggravated by lying down, recurrent cystitis [inflammation of the bladder], and for those who may have a history of kidney infections.

Little Mary developed a bladder infection two weeks after her sister Susan was born. When it started, she became very droopy and weak and began to cry more than usual. She then developed a fever along with more regressive behaviour. The next day she had increased urinary frequency accompanied by blood in the urine. The case was clearly Pulsatilla, as illustrated by the regression, the sibling rivalry, and the clinginess. Her mother reported that even when the child urinated more frequentlly, her thirst decreased instead of increased. This modality, contrary to what would seem to make sense physiologically, pointed especially to Pulsatilla as an effective remedy, which it proved to be.

Even at an early age, girls may develop a thick, creamy, offensive smelling vaginal discharge. This is often associated with an upper respiratory tract infection.

Many Pulsatilla conditions tend to develop more fully during puberty or at the menarche. Along with the emotional changes that first emerge during this time are some specific menstrual problems that are commonly seen.

The first year's menses can be irregular for girls of all types, with cycles commencing from every twenty-odd days to every six months as the hormonal system "gets into gear." For Pulsatilla, however, this irregularity is particularly pronounced and may last for several years.

Before the menses, girls become weepy and morose. Everything seems to be fine when suddenly the thought arises in them that there is no purpose in living.

The menses are accompanied by much pain, causing the girls to double over, toss and turn in bed, or pace the floor. A special keynote is that the pain may be aggravated by hot applications and ameliorated by cold ones; an unusual finding, as most girls report amelioration of menstrual pain by heat.

(n) Extremities:
The most common Pulsatilla symptom in the extremities is the warmth found there. The children want to walk around barefoot even in the wintertime. They often stick their feet out of the covers at night.

Pulsatilla may be used to treat juvenile rheumatoid arthritis with wandering joint pains that are aggravated in the morning, by warmth, and by lying in bed. The pains are ameliorated by motion and by cool air. The joints are swollen, red, and hot. Nodules develop during the early stages of the disease. Of course, the mental picture must also be consistent with Pulsatilla before it is assumed to be the correct remedy.

(o) Skin;
Pulsatilla babies have a characteristic feature of the skin: it takes on a purplish, marbled, mottled appearance most of the time, especially in a cool room. This remedy type also develops large hives, especially from strong emotional stresses, but also from aggravating foods.

Pulsatilla is a valuable remedy in many childhood exanthems such as measles, chickenpox, and roseola. The rash will commonly be accompanied by otitis media, conjunctivitis, or bronchitis. All skin problems are aggravated by warmth (especially at night in bed) and by contact with wool. These problems are ameliorated in cool, open air.

Sleep (Herscu):

Sleep offers many keynotes to the remedy. One finds that Pulsatilla babies need to be rocked and nursed in order to fall asleep. Every time the infant awakens, it cries for the mother who must rock, caress, or nurse the child back to sleep. Finally the baby falls asleep, but as the mother puts the child down again, the crying begins anew.

Older children may have difficulty falling asleep. Fourteen-year-old Anna started to weep as she described her nights: she worried for hours if she had studied enough for the next day's test; would she do well, and would her parents think less of her if she did not? The thoughts keeping these children up are rooted in the fear of losing the love of their parents.

When the child becomes old enough to walk, waking up and finding the way to the parents' bed will be common. Likewise, when a parent announces bedtime and time to be tucked in, the child often resists because sleep separates him or her from the parent. Such children pretend that they need a glass of water, need to urinate, need yet another bedtime story, or that they are scared.

They generally fall asleep on their backs, possibly with their hands above their heads, or on the abdomen. They dislike covering  up and will kick off the covers.

High fevers may accompany any acute disease and, during sleep, the children may become slightly delirious, dreaming and talking of black cats or large dark animals, or just of ominous, amorphous dark shapes.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Pulsatilla youngsters are warm-blooded children who dress lightly even in the wintertime, and hate to wear hats.

(b) Pulsatilla weaknesses are aggravated by becoming overheated. Problems become more evident from the time of puberty.

(c) Symptoms tend to change often; they may be experienced only on one side of the body, may wander from place to place or change in character from time to time.

(d) Pains and illnesses are ameliorated by cool applications, being carried or gently rocked, in the open air, and by weeping.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):

At a glance, one can see the Pulsatilla youngster's gentle, clingy, fearful nature. The first characteristic noticed about these children is how close they sit to their parents in the doctor's office. In a waiting room full of toys and other distractions, the Pulsatilla child chooses the chair closest to the parent and then leans toward the mother or father. The sicker the child is, the closer she leans -- until she finally sits on or lies across her parent's lap.

The child must remain close to the parent. If a Pulsatilla toddler is on the floor at the parent's feet and the parent stands up to get a glass of water, the child begins to cry. Parental cuddling and rocking almost always manages to staunch the flow of tears, which begins again as soon as the mother tries to put the child down. The mother's story is that she goes through this sort of thing all day long. She is unable to shop, cook, or do housework because she has to hold the child in order to prevent continuous crying.

During the interview, timidity and bashfulness are very evident. The child may blush, appear anxious before every answer, look at the mother or father to see if they have answered correctly -- the "right" answer, or promptly head for the parent's lap and not respond at all.

In a new classroom or playground situation, Pulsatilla children will want to be liked but often lack the initiative to begin a dialogue or interaction themselves. They tend to bashfully wait until a Phosphorus or Sulphur comes along and scoops them up into the fun -- a follower, not a leader. According to the parents, at home where the child is relaxed, he "yaks away" with family members all day long.

The only time Pulsatilla children are not talkative at home is when they have taken offense at something and are upset. Similarly, if a coach is unfair to a child and will not let her play, she often mopes about pouting and cries. The ability to challenge unfair practices does not belong to the Pulsatilla child.

The Pulsatilla child is affectionate, yielding, and submissive -- producing whatever behaviour it takes to win the attention and security so craved.

The child likes to be neat and tidy; the hair is combed perfectly, as it is in Natrum muriaticum. The mother reports that her Pulsatilla child is easy to handle, mild, and quickly persuaded to do his chores. He helps around the house, makes his bed, and cleans his room. In contrast, the Natrum muriaticum child cannot help but clean his room; the desire comes from within. In Pulsatilla children, it is an action for which they seek an emotional reward. They want the parents to praise them again and again. "Is this how you want it?" "Watch me dance." "How do you like the triangle I drew?" They need constant attention and affection, without which they wilt into feelings of worthlessness.

The fear of abandonment can become very strong as the children grow up. This can take several forms, such as feigning illness to get attention. What I find amazing is the fact that if they feel that no one is paying attention to them, they may actually produce a fever. Another very common manifestation of this insecurity is the refusal to go to bed alone. Occasionally one finds a Pulsatilla child of very strict parents sitting during the interview with hands folded, perfectly dressed and not moving in the slightest. This unusual behaviour in a child is indicative of the intense desire for acceptance by the parents and the equally intense fear of alienating them.

One major shock that frequently pushes this fear into an acute state is the birth of a sibling. The child may become extremely jealous of the newborn. Every time the parent wants to change the baby's diapers, the Pulsatilla asks for something from the parent: "Can you draw me a cat?" "I want a drink." They become selfish and possessive about their parents' attention and their toys and material possessions. The child becomes manipulative; learning early how to "turn on the tears" to satisfy a constant desire for attention.

Due to this jealousy, irritability and anger develop, which promote aggression against the younger sibling. The child, however, maintains her typical Pulsatilla sweetness with others.

Other Pulsatilla children may become obstinate in order to secure the desired attention. This is particularly true of hyperactive boys, a phenomenon that only angers most parents further. The boy demands attention so strongly and for so long that the parent finally become annoyed and pushes him away, and may even hit the "pestering" child. This causes the child to feel even more abandoned and misunderstood.

Another peculiarity often noticed within the first two months of a sibling being born, is that the child will develop "real" physical illnesses, usually of the respiratory variety. An older child or an adult Pulsatilla may present with a health history revealing that the asthma from which they have suffered for so many years began soon after the birth of a sibling.

Regression is particularly acute in Pulsatilla children when they experience a major stress, such as the birth of a sibling. There is a resistance to growth and the attainment of maturity: they will wet the bed after being "dry" for years. Another child will begin to suck a thumb or exhibit basic babylike behaviours.

The reaction to intense grief in the Pulsatilla adolescent may render them inarticulate. They just sit in their rooms or mope around the house. They respond monosyllabically: "Is something wrong?" the parents ask. "No." "What happened?" "Nothing." Self-pity engulfs them. This very deep, morose state can be especially dangerous for a Pulsatilla teenager. One must be careful here that the child does not entertain thoughts of suicide.

School is a big cause of stress for Pulsatilla children. They become sad and forlorn when an older sibling goes away to school. Even so, when it comes time for them to go to school, they are afraid. When left off at school in the morning by a parent, the children cry nonstop for the first few days. This is followed by a period of shyness after which the teacher receives near complete compliance. If, however, a parent is late to pick her up after school, she fears that she has been forgotten and begins to cry.

Although she may not be the most popular child in the class, the Pulsatilla's friends will be close to her. If favorites change, the child feels emotionally destroyed. If for some reason she believes a friend has slighted her, she will arrive home with a tearstained face and near hysterics.

Emotions flow freely in the Pulsatilla child, especially in the form of sadness and tears, which are expressed openly and with ease. Equally striking is the ease with which these children, boys and girls alike, talk about their weeping. "I cry because my feelings are hurt," said Alan without hesitation or inhibition, as though weeping were a natural language with which he communicated. It is interesting to find weeping in older boys, given that our society has such strong mores prohibiting it.

The tears that so easily flow help the child both physically and emotionally. The sympathy and consolation that he receives from displaying sadness re-establishes the bonds of love so critical to his emotional survival.

These children are very sensitive to pain, and cry continuously when hurt until an adult picks them up. Eight-year-old Betty was seen for recurrent earaches and sinus infections. When ill she would cry dramatically, running to her father to be picked up. While the otitis media symptoms did not give any special clues to the remedy, the intense sensitivity to pain -- expressed in the form of needing consolation -- pointed to Pulsatilla. After the remedy was given, Betty's next earache was her last.

Six-year-old Tommy had gastroenteritis accompanied by vomiting, stomach cramps, and diarrhea. The symptoms of the case weighed equally between Sulphur and Pulsatilla. The symptom that sent the verdict to Pulsatilla was that Tommy was ultrasensitive to the pain. He had to be held and rocked to ameliorate the hurt. If his mother left the room while his stomach was hurting, he would yell for her until she returned.

It seems that the emotions rule this child. When upset, she becomes irresolute and unable to make any decision, trivial or important. When she goes to a restaurant, she cannot decide what she wants to eat, and the parents must make the choice for her. She cannot make up her mind what to wear, may change her clothing several times or ask the mother to pick something out for her.

This irresoluteness, when pronounced in a boy, may make him seem effeminate and softer than his peers. He gives in on most issues if there are differing or louder opinions. The other boys at school may pick on him. When teased at school he, more often than not, will burst into tears, which only eggs on the taunting children more.

Ten-year-old Nathan was seen for recurrent diarrhea. When probed about his feelings, his mother volunteered that he wept easily. Asked if this was true, Nathan burst into tears, becoming uncontrollable with loud, racking sobs. It was easy to see that he had been told he was too old for this type of behaviour, because he tried to cover his mouth so that no one would see him crying hysterically. "It is because my sister hurts my feelings on purpose, calling me a sissy," he finally managed to say.

What a dilemma in which the Pulsatilla boy finds himself, placed in our society and having to stifle these natural inclinations in order to conform to a sex role. The basic psychology is that the children act as they do from an insecure nature, the fear of abandonment, indecisiveness, and easy, strong emotionality.

Pulsatilla (Coulter):

Almost all Pulsatilla children have a sweet manner, observable in their facial features, smiles and gestures, of soft and pleasing voice. In many cases there is a corresponding sweetness of heart. Delicacy of feeling, consideration of others, and a gentleness that restrains her from making any comment likely to wound another's sensibilities all reflect Pulsatilla's essential sweetness.

The type is encountered in the "good," obliging child who seeks approval and affection. She is not prone to argue, nor does she anger easily, being basically unaggressive. She helps out in the home and is eager to be "mother's little helper" in return for love and caresses.

The child also knows how to demonstrate affection. She comes up with hugs and kisses, climbs in your lap, cuddles there and sits quitely without wriggling and squirming. In her need to be physically close to those she loved, she instinctively assumes a sweet, acceptible manner.

She also possesses strong peacemaking instincts. Both child and adult are inherently conciliatory and will avoid a quarrel whenever possible. If a rupture does occur, Pulsatilla will bend over backward to restore harmony and even shoulder the blame, since she relies on others' moods to be happy. Her apologies are sincere and she yearns to be forgiven so as not to suffer withdrawl of the affection she craves.

Another prominent Pulsatilla characteristic is dependence. In the young this dependence is manifested in actual clinging: the child hangs on to her mother's skirt in public. Even at home she may not venture two steps away from the mother. And she cries when her mother has to leave her. Carried to the extreme (when ill) she may be virtually glued to her mother.

Pulsatilla boys may appear girlish in their behaviour: fearful of the dark or of being left alone, whining and crying easily. Although they usually outgrow this stage, they may retain a certain softness throughout life. These attributes, of course, are not always clearcut.

A five-year-old boy came to the physician for chronic earaches. He was a rambunctious, husky little fellow with nothing of Pulsatilla in his looks or outward manner -- these boys being usually fair, slender and gentle. So we are surprised to hear from the mother that he defended the very young children at the playground, being known as their "guardian angel" and performing these duties between turns at bat or during pauses in games of kick-ball. If any youngster was teased or mistreated, tears would well up in the boy's eyes and, though he would not fight (Pulsatilla children avoid physical skirmishes), he would hover protectively over the offended party, guarding him from future harm. This symptom suggested Pulsatilla which successfully cleared up his ear condition.

This boy was in no way soft or girlish. He just had the Pulsatilla desire to care for smaller, weaker creatures. While this trait is, understandably, found more frequently in girls, many a boy doubtless suppresses this aspect of his nature for fear of being considered a sissy.

Pulsatilla's dependence does at times, prevent her from maturing. She may retain the characteristics of a child of rather infantile character.

An important symptom is: "first serious impairment of health begins at puberty" which is not surprising in view of the nature's dependence. Puberty is the first stage of true psychological emancipation from the family, which Pulsatilla does not seek. She does not fight against her parents to assert her independence.

In her resistence to maturation, she acquires a host of unexplained little aches and pains: last week in the knee, yesterday in the head, tomorrow in the abdomen. In this way she remains reliant on her parent's support.

Another Pulsatilla characteristic is indecisiveness and irresoluteness. Like the meadow anemone which is swayed by every passing breeze, the individual is blown one way and another, revealing a habitual inability to make up her mind on matters both large and small. In choosing which flavor of ice cream, which Matchbox car, or which doll to buy, the child goes through agonies of indecision.

Pulsatilla's irresoluteness is also seen in the child who cannot get down to the next day's homework, less from laziness than from extreme hesitancy: which subject should be done first -- math or history, English or French? She sees reasons for and against each one and ends up studying none of them unless firmly directed, "Begin with the math." Then she starts work obediently, almost gratefully.

Pulsatilla's emotionalism can be manifested in a tendency to self pity. The self-pitying note can even be detected in the tone of a baby's cry. It is distinctly plaintive and differs from the yell of a Sulphur or Calcarea baby. The snarling cry of a Chamomilla baby makes one want to spank the child, while the pitiful cry of Pulsatilla makes one want to comfort and caress it.

Later the child may become a crybaby who whimpers and whines a lot, or wails piteously from the smallest scratch -- not so much from pain as from a desire to be bandaged, kissed, and fussed over. The slightly older child is easily discouraged, feels insufficiently liked, is woulded by teasing, and resorts to gentle tears whenever crossed or reprimanded. The self pity is seen in the touchiness of adolescents who are offended in a situation where another would laugh.

Altogether, Pulsatilla has a prepossessing and pleasing nature, and when its softness and malleability are combined with stronger qualities, they fulfill a nice balancing function. Although mild and unaggressive, Pulsatilla is by no means weak. There is strength in a sociable and civilized disposition, a sympathetic and sensitive attitude, and even in a yielding and adaptable nature. After all, the massive oak was laid low by the North Wind, not the delicate but resilient Wind Flower.

Sulphur - Children's Constitutional Type

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
The head is often the site of skin eruptions such as cradle cap or eczema. The rash turns an angry red any time the child is washed, and the child screams from the irritation of the water.

There are definite stages to such eruptions. Soon after it commences, the eruption begins to discharge a yellow, watery pus that later crusts over. The skin easily becomes infected, causing pimples with the above-mentioned symptoms.

The head is quite warm and the child often refuses to wear a hat. Many Sulphur children perspire profusely from the head.

A chief presenting complaint is often that of frequent headaches. Migraines are preceded by visual disturbances such as flickering lights and halos around objects. A common cause of headaches is mental exertion. Some children say that they get headaches from school. The headache tends to throb and lying down in a darkened room with the head slightly elevated on a pillow will offer some relief.

(b) Eyes:
Sulphur influences the eyes, causing dacryocystitis ["inflammation of the lacrimal sac of the eye," Yasgur] and conjunctivitis ["inflammation of the mucous membrane covering the anterion surface of the eyeball and lining the eyelids," Yasgur]. Dried, thick, yellow pus coagulates and prevents the eyes from opening in the morning, much like that found with Calcarea carbonica. There are, however, a few differences. The inflammatory process in Sulphur is very destructive to the mucous membranes of the eye, whereas that of Calcarea carbonica tends to be more benign. In Sulphur the eyelids become red, especially at the edge.

The eyes may feel or actually be extremely hot, and during infections are almost always dry and itchy. If the child is old enough, he may report that it feels as if someone had thrown sand in his eyes. With all this sticky mucus and irritated, dry, hot eyes, one would naturally assume that the child would wish to cover the eyes with a damp cloth. Not so. The Sulphur youngster screams and kicks as a warm or cool wash cloth nears the eyes. Instead of soothing the itch, water irritates every little cut; instead of helping the burning and stinging, the water brings as much relief as applying tiny daggers might, causing much additional pain.

A common time to observe this symptom complex is during summer hay fever season. Pulsatilla types may also be similarly affected, but the eyes will not be as irritated as they are in Sulphur individuals, and the Pulsatilla eye complaints will be categorically ameliorated by cold water applications.

(c) Ears:
One usually notices the redness of the ears within the first few seconds of observation.

Occasionally one prescribes Sulphur during acute otitis media. The following case describes the classic Sulphur otitis. Ricky, a Lycopodium child under chronic treatment, developed an otitis with a thick, yellow, offensive-smelling discharge that was streaked with blood. After trying Lycopodium to no effect, the intense redness of the ear was noticed and the remedy Sulphur was prescribed, successfully ridding Ricky of the problem.

Finally, the ears are often plagued by eczema, either on them or behind them.

(d) Nose:
The nose may be affected in a similar manner to the eyes, with discharges that excoriate and redden the tip.

There is one very unusual thing about Sulphur that should be mentioned here. Occasionally I meet a child who cannot blow his or her nose, even at eight or nine years old. This is not because the nose is blocked, but because of a lack of the coordination needed to blow the nose; the hapless youngster huffs and puffs and tightens the chest, but can only manage to pass a little air through the nose. This is a very strange clue to Sulphur children to tuck away in the back of your mind.

(e) Face:
There are so many clues to the remedy written on the face of a Sulphur that it is often tempting not to elicit a full case history at all and just give the obvious remedy.

The first and most striking feature of the face is the redness of the eyes, ears, and lips. At times the face may be pale, but as soon as the child begins to laugh, cry, or become excited, the red, ruddy glow suddenly radiates.

The optimistic, happy nature of the child can often be read on the face.

The next trait one notices is the skin eruptions, such as acne, blackheads, or eczema, that crop up easily in Sulphur patients, especially during adolescence. The acne becomes bright red or purplish when the teenager exercises or after taking a hot shower. These are not little eruptions, but resemble angry red boils.

(f) Mouth:
Babies may be prone to aphthae [canker sores] that become bright red, the color spreading much further than the actual ulcer. In reaction to what is happening inside the mouth, the lips become red, chapped, and cracked, and may feel as if they are on fire. The mouth is extremely sore, making the child cry out in pain.

Sulphur children, along with Pulsatilla, make clucking sounds when trying to scratch an itchy upper palate with the tongue, especially during bouts of hay fever.

The tongue may guide us to the remedy as well, having a bright red tip in some, while in others, red edges join the red tip.

(g) Throat and Neck:
It is not uncommon to have to decide between Sulphur and Calcarea carbonica with regard to the throat. The child may have chronic tonsillitis, with huge tonsils, swollen glands, much post-nasal catarrh, and stuffy sinuses. Since both remedies share all these symptoms, a mistake may easily be made here. The easiest way to tell a Sulphur is by how bad the breath smells. There is a decaying, rotting odor inside the Sulphur throat. The throat and tonsils have a dark, reddish color.

(h) Asthma:
The bronchi and lungs are often involved; many parents of Sulphur offspring bring their children for the treatment of asthma. When these children are having breathing problems, there is a great deal of perspiration on the face and extreme fatigue. The asthma may alternate with or follow a skin eruption, or follow a cold that has dropped into the chest. The asthma may also be triggered by household allergies, especially exposure to mold or cats.

(i) Pneumonia:
Sulphur is one of the most frequently prescribed remedies for pneumonia, either current or residual. The child becomes hot, uncovering the legs or the whole body, panting, and needing ventilation from an open window to ease his or her breathing. The fever attending the infection rises as the day goes on. The child seems to cough incessantly, bringing up green mucus as if there is no end to the supply. A common story is that the Sulphur child had pneumonia of the left lung and then recovered slowly, but never totally lost the cough.

(j) Bronchitis:
There is a hard, dry, racking cough, which finally yields a white or yellowish expectoration. The cough is aggravated by lying on the back, being in a warm room, or getting warm at night. It is ameliorated in the open air.

(k) Food Cravings and Aversions:
Sulphur children desire sweets, spicy foods like pizza, and meat.

They often dislike milk, having the same sorts of reactions to it that Natrum muriaticum does. The reaction can be anything from gas, bloating, and regurgitation to vomiting or diarrhea after drinking the slightest amount of it. They dislike sour foods, and they strongly dislike eggs. This helps to differentiate them from children requiring Calcarea carbonica, who love eggs.

Sulphur children tend to be very thirsty, drinking large quantities of cold water or soda pop. In fact, the Sulphur child with any health complaint will remain thirsty, especially for ice-cold drinks. Lack of appetite combined with much thirst is a symptom frequently observed in many of the child's acute illnesses and should be remembered as a Sulphur keynote.

(l) Stomach:
Stomach symptoms found in practice belong to two general groups of children. The first group consists of those who are thin and hungry all the time. While they may not like to eat breakfast, they eat voraciously the rest of the day. Because they often skip their morning meal, they are particularly hungry from eleven o'clock until noon. If the child is in school, by ten or eleven o'clock she is feeling faint and finding it hard to concentrate. She becomes hypoglycemic and hyperactive and, therefore, more difficult to control.

The second group does not wish to eat much at all. These children eat little snacks throughout the day and then merely pick at supper.

(m) Rectum:
The rectum is the most ill-affected portion of the digestive tract. The healthy Sulphur child has very regular bowel movements, sometimes having two or three (or more) movements a day. The parents state that when the child becomes ill, even with a respiratory tract infection, diarrhea ensues. Diarrhea also develops quite easily every time the child is on antibiotics.

The diarrhea is usually painless in itself except for the excoriated anus it produces. It is so acrid as to redden the anus and make the skin raw. The parents of some children report that the child's buttocks are sore and red to the point that sleeping, walking, and sitting are extremely uncomfortable. This rawness can make the child very irritable and peevish. The child is very cross and cries, and does not wish to be talked to, touched or held.

One may find constipation rather than diarrhea. The hard stools that are passed with difficulty cause burning, stinging, and itching of the anus. In Calcarea carbonica children the constipation may be painless, whereas in Sulphur it tends to be so painful that the child refuses to move his bowels for fear of the pain it will bring.

A final observation is that the entire area around the anus, as well as the underwear, can be messy and soiled, even in older children. Personal hygiene is not high on the list of Sulphur priorities.

(n) Urogenital System:
Boys: The history elicited may contain many bouts of inflammation of the penis. The genitals, like the anus, may smell bad on examination due to poor personal hygiene. The mother states that the child tends to develop rashes all over the area.

Girls, likewise, tend to develop rashes and mild infections of the vaginal area. Improper wiping after stool is the most common causative factor. They must always be reminded to wipe front to back, not back to front, which so easily spreads bacteria to the vaginal area.

(o) Extremities:
The extremities are quite warm. The children walk about barefoot even in the winter and stick their feet out of the covers at night. Parents often complain of offensive foot sweats in their little ones.

A main Sulphur complaint is eczema of the hands, palms, soles, elbows, and knees that is red and itchy.

Sulphur may also be thought of as one of the four main remedies for weakness of the ankles. This weakness causes turning of the ankles or "pigeon-toed" walking.

(p) Skin:
The skin is perhaps the most affected body part in Sulphur. The eruption can be of any type from scales, hives, boils and pustules to vesicles and scabs. The eruption is almost always wet. If the child gets a scratch or cut, or is bitten by an insect, the skin locally turns purple and aften develops an infection. There is a poor recuperative and regenerative ability of the skin that makes both eruptions and surface injuries slow to heal, and leads the child from one skin infection to another.

All these eruptions have some common characteristics. They all itch intensely, especially when the child becomes heated. Burning is also common, especially after scratching or bathing. Most eruptions do not do well after bathing.

Sulphur is the main remedy to think of for suppressed eruptions. For example, if the child had an acute or chronic rash to which a salve or drug was applied, and the eruption disappeared shortly before the onset of asthma, bronchitis, diarrhea, or mood changes, a suppression of the disease has probably been accomplished. This is such a common occurrence that many parents will not remember it without persistent questioning. Treating diaper rash, eczema, and psoriasis with strong topical medications is the norm these days, so such histories must be carefully elicited.

Finally, the remedy Sulphur should be considered for neonatal jaundice. The Sulphur neonate will have the typical diarrhea described above as well as skin that itches intensely. As they cannot yet scratch themselves, they love to have a parent run a hand up and down the body.

Sleep (Herscu):
They may have a great amounts of energy at night and do not wish to sleep at all. They will be up running around, jumping and doing acrobatics to burn off the last stores of that day's energy.

Sleeping positions on the left side or abdomen are usually preferred. They sleep restlessly, tossing and turning, and may awaken every hour or so after one or two o'clock in the morning.

Most of the children will be the "early birds" in the family, waking up at dawn to read or watch television. Sulphurs feel sleepy after eating lunch.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) The child is extremely warm-blooded. They like to play outside and dislike remaining in a warm house all day.

(b) The next strong Sulphur sign is the body type. While some resemble the Calcarea carbonica type, being round and plump, they will be much more robust and ruddy than the typical Calcarea carbonica. Most of the children, however, become taller and thinner than the rest of their age group, stretching out from the chubby toddler they once were.

(c) These children hate to get into the bath, screaming and kicking all the way to the bathroom.

(d) Another situation where the remedy Sulphur can be invaluable is after vaccinations. There are some patients who improve quite nicely with a remedy until vaccinated. Then the case begins to unravel. If one elicits keynotes of Sulphur in such cases, if will often as not put things back in order.

(e) Skin eruptions accompanied by intense itching and burning pains, as well as offensive-smelling discharges from practically anywhere on the body are typical.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):

In the waiting room the Sulphur child is typically all over the office exploring everything, touching the pictures, pulling toys off the shelves, and generally making a mess of the reception area. If the child has any fear, it is easily overwhelmed by this intense curiosity. Upon entering the reception area, the doctor may find the child speaking to the secretary, asking about the telephone or the computer, wanting to know how it works and what all the wires are for.

If the Sulphur child is on the floor playing with other children, it can be observed that he is in charge of the play. It is also evident from the interaction with these new children that the Sulphur child has no fear, but is rather good at clear, easy communication.

Looking at the child, one can see that he is not accustomed to being personally neat, as his clothes are messy, his shirttails are hanging out, and his hair is flying in all directions.

Already the doctor has formed certain conclusions about this child and, by extrapolation, Sulphur children in general. They are curious and without fear of strangers. They can make contact with others quickly and gain their trust. They are messy; but what is more, they do not care a bit about their appearance. Along similar lines, they do not care about the doctor's property. The child may have to be forced by a parent to put all the toys away. When the child finally does comply, he simply picks up a pile of toys and dumps them in a heap in the closest repository.

Sulphur children tend to fall into one of four categories of temperaments: happy-go-lucky, irritable, hyperactive, or cerebral.

Most common is the happy-go-lucky, smiling type. I remember eight-year-old Melinda slouching in her chair, chewing gum and swinging her legs back and forth vigorously, as her legs were not long enough to touch the ground. She seemed very relaxed even though it was her first visit to my office. When I asked who the patient was, the girl volunteered, "Meeeeee! I am the patient," before her mother could answer. Melinda's mother stated that the child was happy and easygoing.

With a smile and a winsome personality, and questions that are thought-provoking even for adults, the child leaves a strong, positive impression. The Sulphur energy, on the verge of exuberance, always shines out.

It is this exuberance coupled with a strong sense of self-centeredness that allows a Sulphur to both wish to and truly be able to impress others. This is observed in many ways, from informing the receptionist all about a new toy she just got, to telling the doctor she won an award at school, to directing the attention of other waiting patients to the blocks she just stacked.

The Sulphur child enjoys being the center of attention. Even is he is not the actual patient but rather the sibling of one, he may come up and pull at the sleeve of the doctor and say, "You know what?" He just does not wish to be left out.

The second type of Sulphur children, the irritable type, have a negative attitude toward practically everything. They complain about household chores, that nobody appreciates them; they seem dissatisfied with everything. Toddlers can become peevish and irritable, screaming so long and loudly that it is difficult to quiet them down.

Children may become quite aggressive and may slap, hit, bite or pull the hair of the mother, or abuse animals when upset. It should be stressed that this irritable type is the rarest form of Sulphur.

The hyperactive child is commonly cured with a prescription of Sulphur. The child has a great amount of energy, unstoppable by parents and teachers alike. He breaks all the rules of home and school, becoming more unruly and disobedient before lunch when the blood sugar level drops.

They nag to be let out to play, crying louder and louder, their faces quickly becoming crimson, pestering the mother nonstop until she hits them or until they win the struggle. It is amazing how quickly the crying stops as soon as he has what he wanted. He immediately becomes his lovable self again and does not hold any resentment. The fact that the parent is now in a rage or distraught is meaningless; he has his candy or toy, which is all that counts.

The cerebral Sulphur child can be quite different from other Sulphur children, resembling Natrum muriaticum. Such children are very articulate, answering questions with well-thought-out, direct responses.

These more intellectually oriented youngsters tend to have few close friends, unlike the gregariousness of other Sulphur types. They may love to read about faraway places, indulge in endless science fiction books and movies, or even pore over technical manuals on computers, farm equipment, or airplane mechanics. Boys commonly spend time making airplane models and meticulously arranging baseball card collections.

When they become upset they may wish to be alone and not be consoled. All of these traits often mislead one to think of Natrum muriaticum, especially since most of the physical general symptoms are the same for both remedies. However, as the patient talks, the doctor may notice a slouched posture. Then the doctor elicits the information that the child is messy instead of neat. As one delves deeper into the case, another differentiating point to look for is that these children are not overly sensitive to any grief in their lives and that they do not hold grudges at all, forgiving and forgetting easily. The cerebral Sulphur is also more haughty and condescending than one would find in a Natrum muriaticum, and is able to look directly at the doctor for longer periods of time.

Sulphur children are usually born with a great natural intelligence: an ability to quickly and integrate new information. With this innate intelligence comes the openness and desire to explore new situations. As a result, the child appears very bright in comparison to other children who, due to shyness, reservation, or the fear of new situations, are slower to experiment and acquire knowledge.

This intelligent youth often assumes the leadership position in a group. While other children may wish to be leaders, it is Sulphur children who glide effortlessly into such roles. They love the position and feel secure in it.

There is a strong degree of self-determination in these children. They are strongly opinionated and have the audacity to tell any adult what their wishes are in no uncertain terms.

Sulphur children then, are fiercely independent. One finds four-year-olds who demand to wash and dress themselves. They like to do everything by following their own schedules and on their own terms. A three-year-old girl was the only child who talked back to her parents out of a family of four children.

The child touches everything. It is this inquisitiveness that is partially responsible for the "messiness" of the child, who quickly figures out the workings of a toy, object, or game and them goes on to the next one. There is a degree of joyful abandon in this disorder as opposed to other remedy types who can be wantonly destructive. One feels almost guilty for stopping this amiable child's exploration of the office. This little demolition expert makes the doctor feel like a "stick in the mud" for curtailing the happy child's fun.

Sulphur children, however, do tend to have a dirty and messy appearance. Their clothes, hair, and their rooms are typically dirty, unkempt, and disordered, and they do not mind. It is as if the grooming impulse and personal hygiene gene is missing from these children.

If one looks past the cuteness, past the curiosity, one can discern a self-centered child who does not care about others' feelings or possessions. The messiness in these children is just one facet of the personality that reflects an attitude that others do not really count -- that other's opinions about their habits do not count. The child tracks mud into the house, puts dirty shoes on the furniture, and seems immune to repeated reprimands. They devour the last piece of cake, drain the orange juice pitcher, or snitch the last candy bar from the cupboard. They do not do this out of meanness but rather out of only thinking of their own needs.

Thus far we have seen the sharpness of the mental processes. Some children who need the remedy Sulphur can also enter into the opposite state of dullness, lethargy, and lack of concentration. It appears to be a sort of facultative breakdown that often first begins just before lunchtime and then gradually generalizes to the entire day. The teacher tells the parents that at eleven o'clock in the morning the child begins to prop her head up in her hands with the elbows on the desk, gazing out blankly with almost crossed eyes due to weakness and lack of concentration.

They then begin to daydream frequently and stop doing well in school. They come home from school and lie around, listen to music or watch television. Instead of their previous top grades, they now seem not to care. Since they have an innate mental agility, they easily take tests without studying and receive adequate marks. As they enter the higher grades, the information becomes too complex to pass tests without studying. They no longer do their homework, and instead will try to "cram" for the test the night before or to cheat outright. Anything goes for these once precocious children as long as they do not have to strain their mental faculties.

Parents report that their children have poor concentration, lack ambition, and never finish chores. The children may try to bluff their way through life with a keen sense of humor. They no longer care about external demands on their mentality, since it has become more difficult to concentrate. Instead, more time is spent on social activity. It is important to think of this laziness not as a conscious choice to slack off, but as an actual dulling of the mind. A prescription of the remedy Sulphur can do wonderful work here.

The most common fear is of heights. These children may also have the well-known anxiety about family members. If a parent does not come home on time, they begin to imagine the worst and will fret and worry.

Sulphur (Coulter):

Sometimes the Sulphur child's aggressive unwillingness to cooperate, attributed to selfishness, is actually generated more by an extreme independence and resentment of outside interference. "I want to do it my own way!" he insists. "By myself, by myself!" he cries angrily, pushing away help as he struggles to tie his shoe laces or attempts some other difficult task.

Sulphur can also be materialistic. "What's mine is mine, and what's yours is negotiable." At an early age the child can be quite ferocious in snatching away toys from others while protecting his own tenaciously. "It's mine!... Don't touch!" The remedy was once successfully prescribed for this reason to an eighteen-month-old boy with a complicated respiratory tract infection: while sitting in his mother's lap he tugged at her earrings and shouted "Mine... mine" with an angry and determined expression on his face.

At times, however, the reverse is encountered. Instead of grabbing, babies will insistently thrust a toy or rattle into another's hand. An older child will approach whomever he had taken a fancy to and generously hand over his book or stuffed animal in the same assertive manner. Thus, the extremes of selfishness and generosity are strangely encountered in this remedy.

As Sulphur grows older, he or she begins to collect things: rocks, shells, stamps, matchboxes, baseball cards, dolls, or tiny china animals. They are by instinct pack rats.

The child is extremely pleased with his possessions. He is proud of them, talks of them, displays them. However cluttered and messy his room, he knows exactly where everything is and cannot bear having anything moved. The pockets of a younger Sulphur boy will be stuffed with his favorite objects.

A vivid illustration was the eczematous three-year-old who walked into the physician's office with five -- not one, but five -- pacifiers in his possession: one in his mouth, one tightly clenched in each fist, and the remaining two dangling from each arm where he could see them. If any of the five disappeared, he would fly into a passion. This situation called for Sulphur. Soon after receiving a course of the remedy his eczema started to resolve and he decided to give "all" the pacifiers away to Santa Claus. "Will he come [it was July] to get them?" However, being Sulphur, he wanted an electric train in exchange.

During his boyhood stage Sulphur loves swapping his goods and seldom emerges the loser in these transactions. The child may have an astonishing money sense, having a sharp eye for bargains and insisting that his parents shop accordingly. Here again, however, the reverse is encountered in the child who will happily trade a camera or a new BB gun for an irresistible sack of worthless old toys and feel proud about it.

The child hates to part with any object, even the most useless because, "Who knows? -- some day it might come in handy." He resents lending even the most easily replacable things. This need for tactile contact with his possessions, keeping them on his person or within reaching distance, is a particular Sulphur characteristic.

The "heated" or eruptive nature of Sulphur can be seen clearly in both the physical and mental spheres. The infant is active, restless, and colicky. He is always hungry and continually on the go, fussing against whatever holds him back or holds him still. He may lie awake crying at night, wanting to be fed and amused, then sleep most of the day. One of these night-time babies, a five-month-old boy, was brought to the homeopath for a severe case of diaper rash. The skin on his buttocks and groin was not only raw, raised, bright red and shiny-tight, but also cracked and so inflamed that the heat could be felt a foot away. How the baby could stand this was a mystery, but he was a tough little fellow (as Sulphur often is) with a demanding but basically sanguine disposition. He received three doses of the remedy at twelve-hour intervals. Not only did the rash begin to subside immediately, disappearing completely in a few days, but his inner clock was also changed. Thereafter, he began to sleep at night and do his playing and nursing during the day.

Sulphur hates being washed, dressed, put to bed, or seated at the table. They may not be able to sit through a meal. Later in school they cannot sit quietly at their desks. Sitting still, and especially standing still, are intolerable.

As the boy grows older, noise-making and movement continue to be intrinsic to his nature: slamming doors, tumbling downstairs, loud shouting, fidgeting about, and making noise for its own sake. Adults are constantly telling him, "Keep quiet! Be still! Sit down!" or "Stop it!" But Sulphur needs to be active. He loves to be outside playing ball, riding his bicycle, and engaging in various strenuous activities.

Some boys must always be talking. Often they are only quiet when listening to music. Even here, however, the music must be stimulating and loud. He also likes his books, movies, and television programs to be full of excitement, fast action, and lively stimulation.

The disposition can be fiery and pugnacious. They are not necessarily obnoxious -- just obstreperous and constantly asserting themselves. In fact, they may be remarkably uncomplaining, possessing the positive, buoyant outlook of those two charming Sulphur immortals, Tom Sawyer and Dennis the Menace. They emanate heat, but, like fire, also radiate cheerfulness.

The maturing lively boy may turn his creative energies to troublemaking, with a most disruptive influence on the class. In contrast, the boy who is the social core of the class is also frequently a Sulphur. He is still making waves, but in a constructive way, by manifesting his leadership qualities.

Given the heat-emitting and commotion-causing qualities of this remedy, it is hardly surprising that Sulphur is the "ace of spades" of homeopathic adolescent remedies.

Tuberculinum - Children's Constitutional Type

Physical Characteristics (Herscu):

(a) Head:
The head provides a number of clues to this prescription. The first clue is that these children are often born with a large amount of long hair on the scalp and on the back. Most parents remember this hair, as it is not very common for babies to be so hirsute, especially down the center of the back.

These children develop ringworm of the scalp very easily. The eruption causes circular patches of hair to fall out.

The third clue is that these children often strike their heads. Some strike their heads against a wall or the floor when they are mad. Others do it during a headache. The most common time, however, is during attempts to sleep, when they burrow their heads into the pillow or hit their heads against the pillow or mattress as a way to relax.

(b) Headaches:
Headaches can be caused by studying or by reading or watching television for too long. The headache may begin with visual disturbances like those found in Natrum muriaticum, Sulphur, and Phosphorus: flickering, zigzags, and lights. Occasionally, the child notices that everything he looks at just before a headache strikes has a blue tinge to it. This is very confirmatory of Tuberculinum. Also, as in Phosphorus and Lycopodium, the headache may be preceded by a feeling of severe emptiness of the stomach and an intense hunger.

The headaches are severe, with so much pain that it typically leaves the little patient ravaged for days afterward.

An interesting, though rare, observation is that these children sometimes sweat profusely, especially from the scalp and forehead, during a headache. This is only peculiar to a few remedy types and so may be used to confirm the remedy.

(c) Eyes:
Just as these children are often born with long hair on the head, they are also born with long, full, beautiful eyelashes. The child has a twinkle or brightness in the eyes like that found in Phosphorus.

The sclera [the white of the eye] may have a blue hue. These children are often born with strabismus, astigmatism, or weak eye muscles that give rise to weakness of accommodation such as myopia, all of which cause the child to develop headaches from reading.

Eczema may occur on the eyelids. The children who develop upper respiratory infections also develop blue allergic "shiners" around the eyes.

(d) Ears:
The adenoids enlarge easily, causing Tuberculinum children to develop chronic fluid in the ears. These children develop recurrent ear infections in which the ear becomes red and painful, making the victims cry before the eardrum finally and inevitably ruptures. The ear then discharges thick, yellow pus. Sometimes this discharge develops into a chronic condition with a thin, white discharge that lasts for months.

(e) Nose:
The nose is affected in two ways. Nosebleeds occur from overheating, exertion, fevers, sleep, or from the slightest blow to the nose. The other problem is the ease with which Tuberculinum children contract colds. These frequent colds begin when cold, wet weather passes through the area. Others develop chronic coryza after they drink milk products.

The child who has allergies wakes up with a stuffy nose that stays stuffy until he goes outside to play. Then the nose begins to run with a clear mucus, just as it does in Calcarea carbonica. Authentic coryza begin with the production of thick, yellow mucus that extends to the ears, sinuses, and lungs.

(f) Face:
The face is often pale, or pale with patches of ruddiness, especially on the cheeks.

The face may have terrible acne in the teenager, almost to the point of boils. The central line of the face (the nose, chin, and central forehead) is most affected.

Finally, Tuberculinum perspires quite easily on the face, noted most during exertion or sleep.

(g) Mouth;
The child may be born with anomalies, such as cleft palate or a small dental arch. The teeth are greatly affected. First is the curious fact that the child may be born with too many sets of teeth. In most, the teeth are too crowded and will not align properly along the dental line, so that some of the teeth will lay in front of or behind the others. Commonly seen are teeth that are severely serrated.

These children grind their teeth in their sleep; if a child is old enough to have worked at it for a while, the teeth may be ground down and perfectly flat!

(h) Throat and Neck:
The throat may show large tonsils from repeated or chronic tonsillitis. With tonsillitis or any respiratory infection (even if the child does not currently have an infection but tends to contract them), one will be able to palpate all the cervical lymph nodes, as they will be large and indurated. The nodes of the neck will feel like a chain of marbles.

(i) Chest:
The chest is greatly affected in these children, just as might be expected from the remedy's namesake. Afflictions vary from physical deformities to acute or chronic infections. The chest may be narrow and long or take the form of a pigeon chest or a funnel chest. The shape of the chest and rapid growth during adolescence often lead to chest pains, felt as stitches whenever there is exertion.

(j) Weak Lungs:
Lung problems may begin from the first day of life. Some of these children are born with fluid in the lungs. Most catch colds frequently that drop into the lungs and settle into a persistent cough. The health history commonly reveals repeated and frequent bouts of bronchitis, croup, whooping cough, pleurisy, or bronchopneumonia. A child seems to recover from one attack, retaining perhaps only a lingering cough, only to suddenly develop a new infection.

There are a few symptoms common to all these respiratory infections. The child has a high fever in the evening that is accompanied by a red face, profuse perspiration, and very swollen, hard cervical glands.

Tuberculinum children develop chronic coughs due to a little tickle in the back of the throat. Weakness of the lungs precludes the ability to recuperate completely, and so the children maintain this cough. Parents might add that it is always there but that sometimes it gets worse. Such a cough becomes more noticeable after playing outside in cold air. Once an acute cough is fully developed, however, it is aggravated in a warm room and eased somewhat in the fresh, open air.

(k) Pneumonia:
Tuberculinum is one of the best remedies to give during pneumonia with chills, nausea, vomiting, and high fevers that recur in the afternoon, and where there is a distinctly red face. The coughing fits that accompany the pneumonia typically begin in the afternoon and consist of dry, painful coughs that make the child cry. Headaches also prevail at these times.

The lungs of the pneumonia patient are full of mucus that makes breathing difficult, causing shortness of breath and wheezing. This is especially the case when lying down at night. While much mucus can be heard in the rattling breathing, the child may not be able to bring it up. Sufferers cough and cough, moaning with the pain of each spasm.

They perspire profusely all over with this illness, most especially on the face. They constantly grind their teeth. They desire cold water during coughing fits. Diarrhea develops, as well as bone aches throughout the body.

The remedy Tuberculinum is also helpful for children who have had pneumonia that never fully resolved and left them with the type of ongoing cough described here and a tendency for recurring bouts of bronchitis.

(l) Asthma:
These children may also develop asthma quite easily. It may be the allergic variety, set off by animal fur or by pollen and grasses. It may follow an acute infection such as pneumonia or come on during a simple cold.

(m) Food Cravings and Aversions:
They strongly crave cold milk and spicy meats such as ham, bacon, sausages, and salami, especially if these are smoked. Many have a strong desire for sweets, salt, spices, eggs, butter, peanut butter, yogurt, and macaroni and cheese.

About a third to a half of Tuberculinum children are averse to eating meat as well as vegetables.

In Tuberculinum cases the main clue is the strong desire for cold milk, some children drinking gallons a day. They also have a high thirst for cold water, even if they themselves are chilly.

(n) Stomach:
Children tend toward poor nutrient absorption or a fast metabolic rate. This can be recognized by the fact that they can eat as much as an adult but not gain any weight.

Like Phosphorus and Lycopodium children, Tuberculinum youngsters may have an increased appetite before or during a headache, feeling an emptiness in the stomach that must be filled with food.

(o) Rectum:
If present, constipation is usually quite severe, with the stools becoming very hard and consisting of little balls. It is accompanied by colic.

The more common complaint, though, is diarrhea. The thin Tuberculinum child may suffer from lactase deficiency, causing profuse diarrhea every time milk is taken. In other children, there may appear to be no reason for the diarrhea. The common history elicited from the parents is that the child has recurrent bouts of diarrhea that last for one, two, or even three months; for some children this type of stool gets to be the norm. Diarrhea may accompany any illness, but especially respiratory disease and fevers. The loose stools often persist long after the illness has ended.

The specific symptoms of the diarrhea may remind one of Sulphur. It occurs mainly in the morning when the child wakes up, forcing the child to run to the bathroom. The stool is painlessly and explosively expelled without effort. This is common with Sulphur and may lead the doctor to mistakenly prescribe it. After the remedy does not work and the case is reanalyzed, it will be realized that the stools do not have the characteristically strong Sulphur odor, nor do they excoriate the anus as one would expect to find with that remedy.

(p) Urogenital System:
Enuresis: The remedy Tuberculinum is the best friend that the parents of a bed wetter can have. This remedy has cured more children of the embarrassing, socially-stigmatizing disorder than any other remedy in the materia medica. The problem may be lifelong or have only begun after an acute illness.

For most children the cause of the problem is that they cannot rouse themselves from a deep sleep to get up and go to the bathroom. It is commonly found that after the remedy has acted the sleep is not as profound and the child will awaken if needed.

Boys tend to masturbate from the early age of four or five years. Embarrassed parents mention that the child either masturbates or is always touching his genitals and can maintain an erection.

Girls: Even from menarche the girls develop dysmenorrhea before the period, complaining of severe cramps, backaches, and swelling of the breasts. It is interesting to note that the pains increase with the flow. This is unusual as most women experience relief as the flow becomes heavier.

Some thin, emaciated-looking girls do not begin to menstruate at the normal age. They can get to be fourteen or fifteen years and still not show any sign of approaching menarche. These girls begin to lose weight in their teens, have slow comprehension, and develop one respiratory disease after another. The problem is not so much the menstrual cycle or the lack of it, but rather a deep constitutional disorder that may first make itself known at the expected time of menarche.

(q) Back;
Along with pigeon or funnel chest, there may also be scoliosis. Teenagers may complain that their backs hurt whenever they stand for too long and feel better if they walk about or play.

(r) Extremities;
One may observe out of the corner of an eye that the feet and legs are restless during the interview. The child kicks the legs vigorously from the knees down.

The child may have deformities of the limbs. The children may be bowlegged or have weak ankles that frequently turn. Looking at the fingers and toes, one may notice that they are deformed and crooked, turned medially or laterally. It is incredible to watch these crippled digits straighten out over a period of months with the prescription of Tuberculinum.

There may be abnormally slow bone growth. There may be no apparent problem during the first few years. However, as the child continues to grow older, X-ray examination will reveal that the child is falling behind in bone development.

Alternately, the child may undergo rapid bone growth accompanied by many problems in overall health. With every growth spurt, the tall, thin person grows weaker and more lethargic, with problems such as a runny nose, swollen glands, tonsillitis, and aching joints. The child just lies around watching television until the growth reaches a plateau.

Fingernails and toenails may split or peel easily, be plagued by hangnails, or become ingrown.

The child perspires from the feet, especially at night.

(s) Arthritis:
Tuberculinum is one of the common remedies for juvenile arthritis. The pains and stiffness are aggravated by damp weather, a change of weather, sitting or standing for too long, rest, and first motion after rest. They are ameliorated by continued motion and heat. Children with arthritis wake up stiff and feeling crippled until they move about.

The pains wander and are accompanied by swelling, heat and redness. After the inflammation stops, the joint remains large and becomes externally pale looking. This apparent cessation of the arthritic process only seems to prompt another joint to go through the same sequence of events.

(t) Skin:
As mentioned before, the health history may contain the fact that the child was born hirsute. This is a big keynote for the remedy.

Looking at the child's skin, one finds it is pale, thin, delicate, and has a translucent quality.

This type of skin is very susceptible to ringworm, making Tuberculinum the main remedy for this condition.

The overall allergic predisposition of the child may show itself on the skin as well as in the respiratory system. The child may develop hives.

Eczema also readily develops. Some Tuberculinum children have eczema from birth. The eczema and hives have common modalities: the itching is intense at night, as it is in cold air or during cold, wet weather, and is especially intense when the child is undressing for the night. The most beneficial palliative is dry heat.

In general, the Tuberculinum child perspires easily.

(u) Fevers:
These children develop fevers very easily. Tuberculinum is the main remedy to consider for a fever of unknown origin. The fevers usually begin to rise at three or four o'clock in the afternoon and continue into the night, dropping in the morning and rising once again in the afternoon. Perspiration is evident all over the body, but especially on the head. The face becomes very red. A great thirst for cold water is not uncommon.

Sleep (Herscu):
Even though the child is tired he may find it hard to fall asleep both from physical restlessness and an inability to calm the mind. He may need to rock to sleep or bang his head rhythmically on the pillow until he fades away.

Once Tuberculinum children do fall asleep, they usually sleep quite deeply -- so deeply, in fact, that they often lose the inhibition against wetting the bed and urinate. This is a common symptom for Tuberculinum. The sleep may be so deep that the child does not wake up when a parent carries him to the bathroom or even while urinating there.

Almost all of these youngsters grind their teeth during sleep. Many also experience severe night sweats.

Tuberculinum children often wake up slowly and unrefreshed, but eventually they feel okay. However, of one wakes them up or if they are pushed in the slightest in the morning, one will find their tempers very difficult to handle. If the child is allowed to approach the parent, then everything is fine.

Important General Characteristics (Herscu):
(a) Tuberculinum may be called for in the case of a child exhibiting only a few keynote symptoms of the remedy, plus a family history of tuberculosis. This remedy may also be considered for cases in which a disease recurs over and over again. There is a weakness that not only prevents acute conditions from ending quickly but also brings out constitutional symptoms with every acute attack. It is this underlying weakness that forms the basis for understanding this remedy type, similar to that discussed in the chapter on Medorrhinum.

(b) The child is negatively affected by changes in weather such as those coming before a storm, at the onset of cold, wet weather, and in fog and drafts. Ironically, the child tends to be chilly yet prefers the cool, fresh air even though it may aggravate the physical complaints. Their ideal, preferred environment is cool, dry, mountain air.

(c) Complaints often change location from one body system to another, and are never completely eradicated from the body.

(d) Tuberculinum should also come to mind for the congenital anomalies and illnesses that seem to be plaguing humanity ever more frequently.

(e) One commonly finds retarded Tuberculinum children with large heads, swollen glands, and bone anomalies who have constant upper respiratory problems. After taking the remedy, they seem to brighten up and become healthier.

Mental/Emotional Characteristics (Herscu):

Mental and emotional states are often the leading qualities that lead to a prescription of the remedy Tuberculinum. As with all remedy types, the state of the mental faculties will often be the first clue that the child needs this particular remedy, although this may not be the reason that the parents bring the child in for a consultation.

A proportion of these children may be born with mental handicaps ranging from mild learning difficulties to severe mental retardation. Mental or emotional retardation is often accompanied by many other disorders or physical deformities.

Within the wide range of mental difficulties, on the less affected side of the spectrum we find children who merely find it exhausting to apply themselves to a lesson or project. Though the mental aptitude to work at a certain level may be there, the child has a weak ability to concentrate on the task at hand. The strain of focusing on the task, of sitting and doing the work, is too great.

Some develop headaches from studying or concentrating for too long. Because study can easily lead to physical aggravation, the child becomes averse to taking on mental activities. Homework is an agonizing topic for many Tuberculinum children. The parents may state that the child absolutely cannot, or will not, sit still long enough to do an assignment.

Another common scenario of the Tuberculinum child who excels in school until befallen with a severe illness. Then the spark with which she studied and concentrated flickers out. The parental description is that "ever since she had pneumonia, she just cannot study, concentrate or comprehend the way she used to."

The memory becomes affected, forcing them to read a chapter or learn numbers or letters over and over again. After taking the proper remedy, the child will be able to concentrate and learn much more easily. The degree and depth of amelioration varies greatly, so parental optimism needs to be tempered with actual class reports from teachers who, unaware of the homeopathic treatment, have noticed significant academic improvements.

Restlessness is an important feature of the Tuberculinum child's behaviour. There is an odd dissatisfaction with whatever he is currently doing, which manifests in a desire to move, to change positions, to ramble from room to room and from toy to toy. In church, the parents must struggle to keep the child well behaved.

These hyperactive children are noisy, screaming when upset or when they want someone's immediate attention. They are also loud in general, repeating things over and over.

Tuberculinum constitutes the main group of hyperactive children that responds to changes in the diet. Like Lycopodium and Sulphur types, they react intensely to sugar. But for Tuberculinum children, it is especially dairy products that trigger impulsive, restless, and malicious behaviour. After eating cheese or drinking milk they often end up breaking things and hitting others.

Many parents can tell the moment their Tuberculinum offspring is at all under the weather because the amount and intensity of basic energy expended is greatly reduced. During a respiratory illness she will become lethargic and weak. She will need to sleep long hours or lie in bed all day -- almost the opposite energy expression of her usual self.

These restless juveniles, like Tuberculinum adults, may love to travel. The parents of such a child state that he likes to go to new places all the time. The most common way to elicit this is by asking about car rides. A usually nasty, irritable Tuberculinum child may become quite agreeable, attentive, and playful during a ride in the car. The ride fulfills an inner desire for change.

Many Tuberculinum babies seem to be born irritable and angry, crying and being very fussy, especially on first awakening. The children exhibit irritability, contrariness, or destructive tendencies early and to an extreme degree. These strong negative tendencies may remain hidden until the child has an acute illness. The child with a high fever may become totally uncontrollable in the office: kicking, screaming, hitting, and pushing the mother or father away. "This is unusual," apologizes the parent for a usually well-behaved child.

They have fits of irritability that lead to temper tantrums. During these tantrums it is common for the child to pound his fists and feet on the floor or strike his head on the floor or wall. This "head thumping" is very characteristic of this remedy, as is the strong aversion the child has to being touched when having one of these attacks.

Contrariness is also noted with great regularity; the child is negative. "Let's have supper." "No!" "Let's go shopping." "No!"

There is an intolerance to contradiction that makes the child violently angry. The contrariness and quarrelsome nature, for which this remedy is well known, leads to the aggressive fighting behaviour often seen in these children. When corrected, the Tuberculinum child may tighten his lips, clench his fists, and then explode. This type of child opposes another's every decision. This is the child who disobeys for no apparent reason, deliberately doing what is not allowed.

Parents may complain that it is a constant power struggle over every issue at home. "It does no good to punish him. If is spank him, he slaps me back." Or, "If I punish him, he seems to be unaware of it and continues to act the same way. He is so obstinate."

Mood and behaviour can change quickly. A parent often describes the child as unpredictable, expressing a wide range of responses, even is very similar situations. One time the child will comply with a request. The same request on another day may trigger a temper tantrum. This unpredictability can drive parents to distraction. The child suffers internally, not really knowing what she wants. Yet she knows that she needs something, something other than what she has.

Destructiveness and violence should always make one think of Tuberculinum. One finds both self-destructive behaviour and disruptiveness toward others.

This violence may begin after a bout with an acute illness. "Now," one mother reported, "my son Nate is whiny and nothing seems to please him. He has become strong willed, wanting everything his way. If he does not get it, he quickly becomes angry, making fists and hitting people for little reason." Such dramatic changes in the ability to deal with authority, especially after an illness, should always make one consider the remedy Tuberculinum.

Lodged deeply within the psyche of these children is an eye for an eye mentality. If they are hit, they hit back as a matter of course. If thwarted, they lash out at the offending person directly or indirectly. For example, the child may wait on purpose, dillydally, and waste time dressing just to perturb the parents by ruining their plans. Another method of irritating offending persons is by intentionally ruining their belongings. They destroy books, presents, favorite plants -- in short, anything that is cherished by the other.

These children break things easily, repeatedly, and with enjoyment. Breaking things is one way to release tension. Younger children love to sit and destroy a magazine or newspaper in the middle of the floor of the waiting room. If a sibling builds a model, the Tuberculinum child will break it. It is as if they are relieved of some mental anguish when they demolish something.

The family pet commonly takes the brunt of a Tuberculinum child's temperament. It is very common to hear that the child enjoys choking the animal, pulling the tail, pulling the hair a little too roughly while petting, dragging the pet on the ground, etc. There is a malicious character to this remedy type. The parents often fear for their child's future. "What will he be like when he is sixteen?" is a frequent anxious comment.

The children may also enjoy teasing others in a mischievous way. Their pranks can be playful or have an edge of destructiveness. For example, the child may hide toys of books that a sibling wants. He then watches with pleasure as the sibling frantically searches for the object.

Tuberculinum children who are not aggressive or mentally slow, tend to be leaders. This type of child is extroverted and easily communicative. She looks all around the office, like Sulphur. The child is an "up" person -- active, wriggling about in her chair, asking, "What's an MD? What's an ND? What's this thing for?" She shares with others and has many friends. With her individualistic manner she usually gets what she wants. She tends to be quite competitive, never giving up or quitting when she plays.

The strongest fear of Tuberculinum is a fear of animals, especially cats and dogs and all their wild derivatives such as lions, tigers, wolves, and bears. Unlike other remedy types who have a fear of animals, the Tuberculinum child may try to bluff by ascribing negative attributes to these animals. They state that they are gross, ugly, and disgusting. I recall the case of John, a child who had always loved animals. During an acute episode of pneumonia, he developed a strong fear that his own pet dog would bite him.

Fear of being alone is often found in developmentally delayed Tuberculinum children. They feel that something bad will happen to them if a parent is not around, similar to that of Lycopodium.

Notes on Tuberculinum (Coulter):

Children who have been repeatedly given antibiotics for respiratory tract infections, who can't get rid of one cold before another comes, will benefit especially from a dose of this medicine in high potency at the beginning of the school year. If fact, its value as a preventive as well as its efficacy in chronic ear infections, enlarged glands, tonsils, and adenoids, epistaxis [nose bleeds], enuresis [bed wetting], eczemas, ringworm and other skin conditions, its service in young persons who grow too tall too fast without corresponding muscular development, cause Tuberculinum to be prescribed for children and adolescents more frequently than any other nosode.

The mental instability of Tuberculinum is not the suddenly contradictory mood of some other remedy types, but a chronic, inherent tendency: accommodating behavior alternates with disruptiveness, tenderness with violence, restlessness with passivity, anger with indifference, reliability with capriciousness, cheerfulness with negativity, febrile activity with lethargy, need for security and support with the desire for independence, a desire for seclusion with eagerness for intense experience -- making the individual a constant fountain of emotional upheavals.

The alternating moods can be observed from an early age. The normally attractive and affectionate child periodically becomes ornery and disobedient, exhibiting violent fits of temper that upset the whole family dynamic. He constantly wants attention but at the same time desires to be let alone. He is quick to strike out at others, will bite at a restraining hand, or hurls objects with a desire to break things and to injure. The child hurls not only objects but also words, the most offensive, preferably scatological, ones he can muster, and certainly the frequent tantrums of the "terrible twos" -- the violent outbursts of peevishness and fury from little apparent cause -- yield to Tuberculinum as to no other remedy.

Misbehavior may take other forms than destructive behavior: this remedy ranks high for excessive stubbornness and willfulness in a child. The principal distinction is that many other remedy types are content when the object has been gained, while Tuberculinum soon desires something else.

This type can also be mischievous. In fact, a mischievous streak in children often signifies an underlying Tuberculinum susceptibility. One three-year-old with chronically runny ears was not disagreeable. He was, however, unmanageable in an impish way. For instance, discovering the potential of a really sharp pair of scissors, he began to cut tiny, almost unnoticeable, holes in the backs of upholstered living-room furniture. Confronted with these misdeeds and reprimanded, he stoutly denied his guilt and blamed the family dog, Patches. He realized that no one believed him but was sufficiently shrewd to sense that, unless caught in the act, he could not be proven guilty. No threats or punishment could induce him to change his story. And, to make it more credible, in the presence of other family members he solemnly delivered upbraiding homilies to poor dumb Patches.

A pleasing attribute of this type is a lively sense of humor. A ten-year-old girl cured of enuresis by periodic doses of Tuberculinum 1M used to warn her father that smoking, coffee, and alcohol would hasten his aging. One day he parried, "I'm not aging any faster than you, young lady. You are growing older every day yourself!" "Not so," was the ready reply. "Once you're over the hill you start picking up speed!"

Incidentally, this child who so fearlessly confronted adults -- parents, teachers, and anyone else with whom she could match wits -- was extremely fearful of dogs and when younger became quite hysterical if approached by one. This fear is a key to the remedy. When the drowning physician finds himself in a sea of non-specific symptoms, it may prove a sturdy plank.

The Tuberculinum dilemma consists in the need to fulfill both the civilized and primitive sides of one's nature. The conflict occurs largely at the subconscious level and, when thwarted, is expressed in tantrums on the slightest provocation, melancholy, restlessness, and alternating moods and modes of conduct.

But the homeopathic remedies are directed precisely at the unconscious level. And the potentized tuberculin virus, like the other deep-acting nosodes, achieves its profound cures by addressing our archetypal conflicts and helping to resolve them.

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