This post is a response to a question about drug withdrawal symptoms sent during a live Q&A session in our support group “Treating Children’s Anxiety Naturally”.
How can homeopathy help people cope with withdrawal from psychotropic medications?
Drug withdrawal symptoms can often look just like the symptoms you started the drug for. It’s worth researching the withdrawal symptoms carefully if you are coming off a med and then you know what you need to look for. They are temporary but can be difficult to live through, meaning that people often return to the drugs they are trying to withdraw.
Our first action is to deal with the problem the drug was prescribed for, helping the person with that problem and then helping them withdraw psychotropic drugs with the cooperation of their conventional prescriber.
Safety first. It’s a great idea to have supervision from the conventional prescriber, who has a set up to catch you if you fall. We want to get you through the process safely.
What I do as a homeopath:
1. I consult with the patient to find the symptoms that occurred originally that necessitated the prescription of a psychotropic drug. Most people have little trouble remembering them as they were usually strong and memorable and people usually forget to take meds at some point and have a relapse. Also, sometimes some or all of the symptoms remained despite the psychotropic drug.
I need to distinguish and exclude the symptoms that are side effects of the med.
Then I give the needed homeopathic remedy to the patient and monitor the changes. Usually, we see that the patient comes to gradually need a lower dose of the med and their conventional prescriber will recognise this and begin to lower the dose. Sometimes this is not obvious and the patient might propose to their prescriber a lowering of the dose as a trial.
2. When the dose is lowered enough that the patient decides they want to stop the psychotropic med [or decides with the collaboration of their prescriber that they will trial coming off] we review the withdrawal symptoms of the drug and keep a note of what to look out for. At this point, we might repeat the remedy we used originally if needed to help with any withdrawal symptoms. We might need a different remedy for the symptoms.
3. The next stage after the withdrawal symptoms settle and the patient feels stable is to homeopathically detox the remaining side-effects of the psychotropic medication. This can be done with the medication itself in homeopathic form. This can often bring good improvements not just with obvious side-effects but with overall feeling of being more ‘well’. If there were medications that are thought to have contributed to the mental health problem in the first place [medications such as steroids can have side effects such as psychosis for example] these medications can also be detoxed and would usually be detoxed first and foremost.
4. The 4th stage is to work with the patient to further raise their level of health. Often, old symptoms or problems return. They were not resolved but more overtaken by a deeper illness. When we see old symptoms coming back we know that the patient is at an earlier, higher stage of health. The intention is to work with these symptoms with remedies until we raise the level of health to a point high enough that they can weather traumas without relapsing.
I have also used this method to help people overcome withdrawal for recreational drugs. One case was a baby born addicted due to exposure in utero. Another was the side effects of cannabis use.
I hope this has been a useful explanation.
If you need help with drug withdrawal symptoms or a mental health problem my 15 min free call is the best way to discuss this with me. www.calendly.com/sallylloydhomeopathy