Thinking Outside the Box on Alzheimer’s
On Thursday, 20th July, 2017, the Guardian included an article by Joseph Jebelli - ‘We still think Alzheimer’s is incurable - one day it won’t be’.
In this article, he mentions that early accounts of dementia were described by Roman philosopher Cicero and Greek physician Galen. And yet only in the past two decades have we begun to realize Alzheimer’s is an affliction no less urgent than cancer or stroke. Alzheimer’s research now demonstrates that memory is a material phenomenon, an exquisite product of healthy brain cells that appears to reside in a network of durable connections between those cells.
The noted cognitive neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga once said: ‘Everything in life is memory, save for the thin edge of the present’. Given the advances made in understanding the signs and symptoms, the causes and risk factors, the genetics and neurobiology, the number of therapies awaiting discovery is limitless.
I would like to take up the challenge with homeopathy. This is because it is one system of medicine which may be able to address this state if:-
Treatment commences as early as possible.
A friend or relative can explain the level and nature of trauma in the background, which correlates with the level of suffering. (Gabriel Garcia Marquez speaks of ‘the inseparability of past, present, and future’.)
A drug or toxicity layer can be exposed and removed through treatment.
A physical contributing factor is identified, such as a history of hysterectomy, insomnia, malnutrition, obesity, osteoporosis (on a physical level), or depression and grief (on an emotional one). Note that insomnia is an important trigger as not only can it influence obesity but also bone formation through its adverse effect on the adrenals.
Maintaining causes can be removed, for example, isolation, junk food diet, sedentary lifestyle, lack of mental stimulation, stress.
A family history is elicited (miasmatic inheritance plays a vital role).
In my recently published book, ‘Touching Base with Trauma: Reaching Across the Generations - a Three-Dimensional Homeopathic Perspective’, I include Alzheimer’s under the heading of ‘States on the Spectrum’ alongside such conditions as ADHD, addiction, OCD, and schizophrenia, as examples. This is because its roots could be laid down in the mother’s pregnancy due to emotional triggers such as shock or physical factors.
Exploring the history of previous family members could be the main key to preventing the onset of these ‘states’ in the individual.
An article in the publication, Memory, documents that amnesia begins at the age of seven and is very much conditioned by the experience of early childhood. After all, it is during this time when the axis of the hypothalamic and pituitary stress response is calibrated.
Once homeopathic remedies are individualised to fit the case, one can avoid relying on the most reputed one - i.e. Alumina, which may not match it unless it is the exact simillimum. Depending on the origin of the ‘state’, a fitting remedy can be selected matching the triggering symptoms. Remedies such as Ambra Grisea, Anacardium, Conium, Crotalus, Helleborus, Hyoscyamus, Kali Bromatum, Nux Moschata, Opium, Plumbum, and Selenium are examples of remedies which could reconcile the case accordingly.
When exploring the common emotional themes running through all the remedies mentioned above, one can see there are varying but strong psychic forces underlying Alzheimer’s, the roots of which (as in many other ‘states’) are laid down in the formative years of life. On a physical level, the theme of stagnation runs through the remedies, often demonstrated in the form of constipation. This illustrates the marked degree of toxicity which needs to be removed in these cases. Only then can the patient attain optimal health. With its marked focus on the gut and strong emotional triggers, in my observation, Alzheimer’s falls under the category of ‘states on the spectrum’.
If causative factors cannot be elicited (at any level), observation can still lead to the indicated remedy. After all, it is the manifestation of the disease state which expresses the true ‘uncompensated’ state of the patient. Each remedy acts out the distress in its own inimitable way. An Alzheimer’s patient, after all, is not able to feign their sickness.
The reason why it is extremely difficult to address Alzheimer’s disease with any system of medicine is because one has no access to the pre-verbal period of the sufferers’ early life. It is actually during this time when the ability to modulate stress is established.
Adalian, Elizabeth, (Spring 2013), ‘Beyond the Constraints of Alumina’, Homeopathy in Practice.
Adalian, Elizabeth, (March 2017), ‘Touching Base with Trauma: Reaching Across the Generations - a Three-Dimensional Homeopathic Perspective’, Writersworld.
P. Bauer and M. Larkina, (2014), ‘The Onset of Childhood Amnesia in Childhood: A Prospective Investigation of the Course and Determinants of Forgetting of Early-Life Events’, Memory, 22:907-24.