Monday, 7 April 2008

Alternatives

I am one of life's cynics.
I freely admit it. I know I am.
My family know it.
And most people who meet me, soon realise it.

But I am not a blinkered, non-accepting type of cynic.

I am just someone who is aware of the negatives of human nature more than many people (from being married to a police officer for so many years probably!) - and am therefore more likely to take a step back and look again closely at something or someone before accepting what is being said or claimed.

I believe in objectivity. Not gut-reaction, immediate, blind, belief.

That brings me onto alternative therapies, currently a topic in the news.

I fully 100% believe that there are lots and lots of natural remedies that have true medicinal properties. What else do you think most of our artificially synthesised drugs were originally derived from for goodness sakes?!

I believe that many alternative therapies DO have a positive effect.

I even believe that, where some of the improvements are not actually due to physical changes but more as a result of patients 'mentally believing that they will help', these therapies have a valid use in the medical world.

What I have an issue with are the MANY charlatans that profess that their alternative therapies WILL provide miraculous cures, etc, especially in the direst of situations.

They are targeting people at their most vulnerable, and some sort of regulation should be imposed. For every genuine practitioner there must be a few hundred who are just jumping on the bandwagon. And that is not right.

The good points of these alternative therapies, are being overshadowed by the many con-artists just taking advantage of the seriously ill.

I was extremely impressed with Terry Pratchet, who was interviewed this week. He has been diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers. He was articulate, open and very upfront about what he is going through.

He mentioned that he had had all his old mercury fillings removed from his teeth.

Not because he thought that it would help delay his Alzheimers.
He fully believed the medical profession who say that there is no documented proof that mercury fillings bring on this terrible disease.
He just felt that it was something he could do, and because he would feel exceedingly stupid if (in the long run) it might have helped!!

***
When we came to live in France, we were surprised at how homoeopathy runs alongside traditional medicine here. Very comfortably.

Many fully-qualified doctors also train and are qualified in homoeopathy. They do not, in any way, advocate homoeopathy instead of traditional medicine. They believe in running them side by side, complementary as it were.

During our first summer here, LeeLee was badly injured in an accident outside our house.

The road is a very steep slope and she set off down it on an old-fashioned scooter - handlebars, one foot on the plate and push yourself along with your other foot.

The slope caused her to reach a dangerously high speed at which point she fell off and skidded down the rest of the hill on her knees and hands, and finally on her side.

She lost vast areas of skin and muscle/flesh from her arms, legs, hands and knees. She was in a terrible state.

After an operation to remove as much of the dirt and gravel as possible, and to cut away all the torn skin/flesh - she was left with large open areas. Very vulnerable to infection.

She was bandaged up as a 'mummy' and a nurse visited our house each day to remove the bandages, treat the raw flesh and to replace the mummy-like wrappings. Painful in the extreme! A brave little girl we had - even if she swore at the nurse and doctor each time. At least it was in English and not the French that they would have understood!!!

What we found fascinating was the treatment.

LeeLee was obviously pumped full of antibiotics as well as painkillers. But she was also treated homoeopathically as well.

Each day she was put in the bath to soak off the bandages and to cleanse the wounds. Pure lavender oil was put in the bath water because of its natural anti-septic properties. In addition, this oil (neat) was dripped onto all the open wounds before the bandages were replaced.

When we asked why, it was explained. It is now understood that (with large areas of open wounds) it is better to NOT let a scab form. A scab results in a scar.

By keeping the wound open, new (un-scarred) skin is formed naturally from the outer edges towards the centre. It takes a long time, but is worth it in the long run. Gradually the open area shrinks naturally leaving no trace of a wound. And no scar.

However, keeping the wound open increases the risk of infection - and that is where the lavender oil comes in. It is excellent at preventing infection, even in such large open wounds! It provides an infection-proof barrier whilst also fighting any infection already in the wound.

In addition, LeeLee was prescribed charcoal - to be put under her tongue each day and allowed to dissolve and be absorbed.

Again we asked why?!

Charcoal has been know to absorb poison in the human system since time immemorial. What they now know is that it also absorbs the bacteria in the blood that can spread infection through the body. It is just another 'poison' to be absorbed by the charcoal!

By 'eating' charcoal, any infection from the wounds was prevented from being transmitted further afield in LeeLee's body. Fascinating!

Whether we believe or not in the homoeopathy that was prescribed - all I can say is that LeeLee recovered totally.

She NEVER had any infection in the wounds even though they were open for months. And has only one area of scarring - and that is on one of her knees only, which had the worst friction burns they had ever seen at the hospital.

She was a very brave (and lucky) girl, and did not let it stop her enjoying the summer with her best friend, over from England! And I honour the medical staff who quite happily used all their traditional medical experience whilst introducing homoeopathy along side.

PS
LeeLee would just die if she realised I had posted this, so don't tell her!

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