Natural Remedies For Sunstroke and Pleurisy:
New Zealand Heatwave Before Christmas 2012 Caused Sunstroke. This post gives an account of the homeopathic treatments I used.
Note: If you have sunstroke, you should certainly go to a doctor or alternative health practitioner. But this is how it all happened, and what I did to remedy the problem of sunstroke with subsequent pleurisy of the lungs:
I have had sunstroke twice before in my life, many years ago now. I never expected to experience it ever again, since I have taken to wearing a hat most days when I am in the sun, and I am cautious about getting too much exposure. My health certainly benefits from getting into the sun for short periods.
But just a few days before Christmas, we had a heat-wave in the little town which I have just moved to. This town is around 130 ks inland, and around the same distance south of Auckland. I moved here only two months ago.
Being new to the place, I guess I was caught unawares as to the dangers of the sun, which is much more intense here than the heat you get at a seaside resort such as Orewa, from whence I came.
The day I left to go on my journey to Dunedin to see my family for Christmas, I mucked around in the garden for an hour or so, watering my plants well so that they would survive the week ahead without me. I had on a cap, but the sun got the back of my neck, which is the most vulnerable spot for getting sunstroke. Then I walked down to the town around 2PM to get a $2.40 Lotto ticket. By this time the heat was incredibly intense, reminding me of the days we had heat waves at Kilkivan, an inland town in the middle of Queensland, when the temperatures would soar well beyond 40 degrees.
I hurried home when I realized how hot it was, and how it was making me feel ill already.
The next day, when I arrived in Dunedin, the effects of the sun the previous day were hitting very hard. My children thought I had jet-lag. But it was only around 3% jet-lag. I felt dizzy. I was losing my balance and seeing stars when I looked up. My temperature was extremely hot, especially around the head, I had an intense headache and I felt nauseous. My head was throbbing madly and I was experiencing some pain at the nape of the neck, stretching upwards on the right side of the scalp.
I hoped I would not have to go to the doctor or to the hospital. I had left my community services card at home, so a trip to the doctor would be expensive. Plus I preferred to avoid their pharmaceuticals if I could help it.
The only thing to do was to rest and get stuck into the homeopathic remedy which I chose out of my daughter’s collection, and to drink plenty of water.
Cooling the head by covering it with wet cotton cloths was the next thing. Putting a wet band around so that the temples are covered, and another at the nape of the neck, is very helpful.
Homeopathic Remedy For High Temperature In First Stage Of Sunstroke: Aconite and Belladonna
The first day, when my hot head, chronic headache, and the accompanying dizziness and pain were the most worrying symptoms, I used a homeopathic combination called ‘Fevamed Relief’, which had Aconite 24x and Belladonna 30c in it. These two are great for complaints which appear suddenly: Aconite is always good when the symptoms suddenly appear, usually due to a chill or getting damp in a shower; Belladonna is another one for when symptoms come on suddenly, but with the patient having a bright red face because of fever or high temperature. This ‘Fevamed Relief’ mixture also had Arsenicum alb 60x and Echinacea 24x in it.
This preparation was one specially designed for the feverish symptoms of babies and small children, but I found it to be equally effective in allaying the sunstroke symptoms which I was experiencing.
If I had been at home, I would have used either Aconite or Belladonna on its own, or alternated the remedies, as I do not usually buy these combination remedies. This was a ‘Naturopharm’ remedy, whereas I always buy Weleda homeopathics.
I took two or three squirts of this Aconite/Belladonna combination every 20 minutes or so for the first couple of hours. Then I panned out the dose to one every hour.
I could feel an instant effect as soon as I took the remedy, although it took all that first day for the temperature to drop to near normal.
Pleurisy of the Lung Followed the Sunstroke: Homeopathic Bryonia came to the fore.
The next day I found that the pulsating head, with accompanying headache, had gone. But now there was intense pain in the right side of the chest and in the back on the right side, which was probably pleurisy of the lungs. Bronchial problems can often come after over-exposure to the sun. The peculiar thing was that it was a right-sided chest complaint, whereas in the past I have always had left-sided chest complaints.
Breathing was painful, and my chest hurt when I moved the torso around to get up off a chair or out of bed. I could hardly move. It was possible that the Aconite/Belladonna preparation might have helped the bronchial problem too, but I felt as if this remedy had run its course and that no more help would be gained from continuing it.
I decided to switch the treatment to a homeopathic specific for bronchial troubles. My daughter had a combination which had Bryonia 24x in it, so I beamed in on this one. Bryonia is excellent for lung problems. This remedy also had Colocynthis 30c, Carbo veg 24x, and Mag phos 60x in it. This combination was called ‘Colimed Relief’, another Naturopharm baby remedy. But again, it worked well for an adult too.
I took this remedy for two days, using around 10 doses of several squirts each the first day, and reducing to around 6 doses of several squirts the second day. On the second day of taking this Bryonia remedy, I coughed for around an hour, which brought up most of the fluid from the lungs. By the end of that 2nd day, the chest and back pain was completely gone, and breathing had returned to normal.
This all saved an expensive visit to the doctor or to the hospital. However, sunstroke can be dangerous, so I would urge you to see your doctor if you have these symptoms. Try the homeopathic remedies only after you have visited the doctor, just to be safe.
Herbal Remedies for Sunburn:
A stong tea allowed to cool, of either Chamomilla recutita flowers, or Elderflower (Sambucus nigra), or Lavender officinalis, can be used to bathe the sunburn. These herbs can be mixed together to make the infusion if you wish.
St John’s Wort is supposed to be a wonderful healer for radiation burns of all kinds. Use just a few drops of the blood-red oil on the affected parts.
Aloe vera, something which many people have in their gardens or flower-pots, is also very soothing and cooling. Just slice open a leaf and squeeze out the gell to apply directly to the burnt area.
Homeopathic Hypericum or Calendula creams are useful to soothe and help the healing of the skin. Homeopathic Cantharis is another which can be applied topically to reduce the sting of sunburn. Homeopathic Cantharis in liquid form is possibly another alternative to Aconite, Belladonna, Bryonia, etc, for taking internally to treat sunstroke symptoms. Personally, I have not ever tried this remedy.
Dr John H. Clarke, M.D., in treating sunstroke, lists most of the remedies which I found on those two baby homeopathic preparations of my daughter’s: Aconite, Belladonna and Arsen alb. These ones, which I found to be very effective, are some of the first remedies for sunstroke which he gives in his book ‘The Prescriber’.
I found ordinary ceylon tea good to drink during this period: Tea actually helps bring down the temperature, which is why it is so frequently drunk in India.
Over the first couple of days after getting the sunstroke, I also found that putting a cold wet facecloth over the forehead and on the nape of the neck helped.