Category Archives: Ailments: G-H

Gallstones

Gallstones are hard, round lumps of solid material usually composed of either cholesterol or bile.

What to look for

  • severe pain

  • indigestion.

  • fever.

  • severe nausea and vomiting.

  • jaundice.

Gallstones develop in the gall bladder (a small, organ that stores bile which a digestive juice produced by the liver. The stones may be as small as a pinhead or as large as a golf ball… They may be different consistencies and hardness. You may have several gallstones or just one.

People often have gallstones and do not realise it as there may be no obvious symptoms. When symptoms do occur, it’s usually because the gallstone has moved and become lodged in the bile duct which is at the side of the gall bladder. Now the symptoms may begin especially after eating a large meal.

Causes

The responsibility of the gall bladder is to store bile, a brown or greenish fluid that helps the body break down fatty food. The bile is produced in the liver and drains from the liver to the bile duct.

When you eat a meal, the gall bladder releases its stored bile into the cystic duct. From there the fluid passes through the common bile duct and into the small intestine.

Bile consists of bile acids and cholesterol. Normally, the concentration of bile acids is high enough to break down the cholesterol in the mixture and keep it in liquid form. However, when we eat too much fat, the liver will produce extra cholesterol – too much for the bile acids to break down. As a result, some of this excess cholesterol begins to solidify into crystals, which we call gallstones.

Gallstones can develop in people who are on low fat diets as well. As the gall bladder hardly gets used, the cholesterol has more time to solidify. Other factors can cause gallstones to form by reducing the activity of the gall bladder and these include; cirrhosis, the use of oral contraceptives, and pregnancy.

Traditional Treatment

In a lot of cases people do not realise they have gallstones and therefore no treatment is necessary however it may be advisable to start procedures to alter your lifestyle a little to prevent them from ever becoming a problem. Often when the pain from gallstones becomes unbearable, doctors will recommend the removal of the gall bladder.

Some alternative treatments have also been found to be effective in alleviating the symptoms of troublesome gallstones.

Sometimes a person will have a once only attack and the stone dislodges itself and never returns. Doctors in this case will wait to see if you have any further problems.

If you have further trouble with your Gall stones, your Doctor may recommend one of several techniques.

  • Some gallstones can be dissolved through the use of a bile salt

  • A method called contact dissolution can also be used to dissolve gallstones.

  • Surgical Removal of the Gall bladder. The operation is done by ‘keyhole’ surgery and usually involved one night in hospital. It is very effective and safe.

Always limit the fat you eat after having this operation.

Alternative/Natural Treatment

These options may eliminate some of the gallstone symptoms.

Chinese Herbs – Very small gallstones may be dissolved through the ingestion of Chinese herbs such as pyrrosia leaf (Pyrrosia lingua) and rhubarb (Rheum palmatum). Very small gallstones may be dissolved through the ingestion of Chinese herbs such as pyrrosia leaf (Pyrrosia lingua) and rhubarb (Rheum palmatum).

Homoeopathy – A number of Homoeopathic remedies can be used to treat gallstone-related symptoms – Dioscorea, Colocynthis, or Belladonna, Berberis vulgaris, Hydrastis, or Chelidonium majus. You should consult a professional Homoeopath for exact medicine and dosages.  (Go to Homoeopath page) A number of Homoeopathic remedies can be used to treat gallstone-related symptoms – Dioscorea, Colocynthis, or Belladonna, Berberis vulgaris, Hydrastis, or Chelidonium majus. You should consult a professional Homoeopath for exact medicine and dosages.  (Go to Homoeopath page)

Bach Flower Remedies – The flower essence most recommended for this complaint is willow. The flower essence most recommended for this complaint is willow.

Dietary Considerations

Depending on the severity of your condition, an improved diet may help relieve gallstone symptoms.

Eat high fibre, low-fat foods and lots of raw fruits and vegetables, whole grain cereals and bran. Add fresh lemon or lemon juice to your meals. Obese people are more prone to getting this condition than people closer to their normal weight.

Prevention

A high-fibre, low-fat diet helps keep bile cholesterol from hardening. However, don’t cut out fats abruptly or eliminate them altogether, as too little fat can also result in gallstone formation.

Moderate consumption of olive oil (about 2 tbsp a day) may actually lower your chances of developing gallstones.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you have any of the above symptoms


Gastritis

This is inflammation of the lining of the stomach.

What to look for

Some people do not have symptoms but if they do the symptoms are usually:-

  • upper abdominal pain.

  • nausea.

  • vomiting.

  • diarrhoea.

  • loss of appetite.

Gastritis is a general medical term for inflammation of the stomach lining. Attacks of acute (meaning that the attacks do not last for a long time) gastritis usually last only one or two days. People with chronic gastritis may have no pain but may experience appetite loss or nausea.

Causes

Gastritis can be caused by too much alcoholfood poisoning or a bacterial infection. Aspirin and other over-the-counter and prescription drugs may cause erosion of the stomach lining.

Traditional Treatment

Gastritis can be treated with over-the-counter medications, antacids or antibiotics.

Both conventional and alternative practitioners frequently suggest changes in lifestyle that reduce your risk of developing gastritis.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Herbal Therapies – To soothe your stomach, chamomile (Matricaria recutita), or Liquorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) extract in capsule or liquid form may also help. To soothe your stomach, chamomile (Matricaria recutita), or Liquorice(Glycyrrhiza glabra) extract in capsule or liquid form may also help.

Homoeopathy – There are many possible Homoeopathic remedies for Gastritis, consult a Professional for advice. There are many possible Homoeopathic remedies for Gastritis, consult a Professional for advice.

Dietary Considerations

  • Avoid alcohol, caffeine, and carbonated drinks from your diet

  • Eat more non-citrus fruits, cooked vegetables, and bland foods,

  • Eat fewer refined carbohydrates.

  • Try drinking raw potato and cabbage juice to relieve this problem.

  • Supplements of zinc and vitamin A may help heal the stomach lining.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you are vomiting blood or have bloody, dark stools; you need immediate medical attention.

  • stomach pain becomes severe.

  • you have excessive thirst, a dry mouth, or decreased urination

     

Genital Herpes

Genital Herpes is a highly contagious, sexually transmitted disease caused by a viral infection.

What to look for

  • numbness, tingling, itching or burning in the genitals.

  • burning sensation while urinating or having intercourse.

  • painful or frequent urination

  • watery blisters in the genital area.

This is a very common and highly contagious sexually transmitted disease. It is currently incurable but it is not fatal.

Usually, herpes spreads only if the infected person is experiencing an outbreak of blisters. However, even people with no symptoms can sometimes spread it; it can also be spread through oral sex if one partner has a cold sore on their mouth (cold sores are caused by the herpes virus).

The first outbreak is usually the most extensive and painful, and can last from five days to three weeks. Some people never have another attack, others do have more throughout their lives.

Causes

Genital herpes is caused by a virus that invades the body upon sexual contact with another herpes carrier. After symptoms disappear, the virus travels to deep nerve centres at the base of the spinal cord near the buttocks. When reactivated, the virus moves out along the nerves, resulting in a new outbreak.

Very sick or stressed people have the most attacks and there are many types of stimuli or stress may reactivate the virus, including sunburn, sexual intercourse, allergic reactions to foods or medications and menstruation.

Traditional Treatment

There is no cure for herpes, but there are ways to relieve the discomfort and promote recovery.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

It is a good idea to investigate the alternative treatments available as they are often successful in relieving the symptoms and preventing future outbreaks.

Chinese Herbs – A doctor of Chinese medicine will prescribe a formula tailored to your needs. It may include herbs such as Gentiana (Gentiana scabra) and Dong Quai. A doctor of Chinese medicine will prescribe a formula tailored to your needs. It may include herbs such as Gentiana (Gentiana scabra) and Dong Quai.

Herbal Therapies – Echinacea (Echinacea spp.) and garlic (Allium sativum) are thought to strengthen the body’s defenses against viral infection. Research also suggests that liquorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), eliminates the herpes virus. Drink herbal teas or take capsules as directed. Echinacea (Echinacea spp.) and garlic (Allium sativum) are thought to strengthen the body’s defenses against viral infection. Research also suggests that liquorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra), eliminates the herpes virus. Drink herbal teas or take capsules as directed.

Homoeopathy – A Homoeopath will prescribe a specific combination of remedies that may include Rhus toxicodendronSepiaNatrum MuriaticumHepar sulphuris, and Thuja Occidentalis. A Homoeopath will prescribe a specific combination of remedies that may include Rhus toxicodendronSepiaNatrum MuriaticumHepar sulphuris, and Thuja Occidentalis.

By reducing stress, you can prevent outbreaks.


Personal Care

  • Apply diluted lemon juice, vitamin E, or tea tree oil (Melaleuca spp.) to dry up sores.

  • Use zinc sulfate ointment to heal sores.

  • Soothe lesions with baking soda compresses.

  • Add 3 tbsp salt to a warm bath; follow with a cold bath.

Dietary considerations

The amino acid lysine prevents the herpes virus from living. Avoid arginine-rich foods such as peanuts, cashews, and chocolate. Lysine-rich foods include beef, lamb, fish, milk, and cheese.

You can also take lysine in capsule form daily to help prevent outbreaks. In addition, vitamin E may decrease pain and speed the healing of lesions.

Prevention

If an infected partner is having a herpes outbreak, don’t have intercourse, even if you use a condom.

Always use a condom with a person who has the disease as the symptoms may still be present.

Don’t practice oral sex if one of you has a cold sore.

When To Seek Further Professional Advice…

  • you have any of the symptoms listed above

     

Genital Warts

What to look for

  • painless flesh-coloured or white growths on the vulva, anus, or penis that may develop a cauliflower-like appearance.

  • growths that are itchy or mildly sore.

  • sometimes there are no symptoms

Women who are pregnant and people with weak immune systems are more susceptible to this infection.

Genital warts are contagious, you should see a doctor if you discover any such growths.

Although the warts are harmless in themselves, there appears to be some link between genital warts and cervical cancer. Therefore you should have a pap smear regularly to note any changes in the virus.

Causes

Genital warts are caused by the same virus that causes other warts on the hands and feet etc – the human papilloma virus, or HPV.

Traditional Treatment

Although there is no cure for genital warts, they are easily controlled and should not disrupt your life. Nearly all warts go within six months to two years. Nonetheless, genital warts should not be left untreated as they are highly contagious and can come back later on.

Never attempt to get rid of genital warts with over-the-counter remedies. Instead, let your doctor remove warts with a chemical “paint”.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Because genital warts are contagious, you should see a doctor before looking at any other type of treatment.

Chinese Herbs – A doctor of Chinese medicine will give you a unique herbal prescription to cleanse your liver and build up your immune system. Ingredients may include Chinese foxglove root (Rehmannia glutinosa) and gentiana (Gentiana scabra). A doctor of Chinese medicine will give you a unique herbal prescription to cleanse your liver and build up your immune system. Ingredients may include Chinese foxglove root (Rehmannia glutinosa) and gentiana (Gentiana scabra).

Herbal Therapies – To help heal warts, apply garlic (Allium sativum), or the juice of a sour apple, a dandelion stalk, a fresh pineapple, or fresh green figs. Calendula (Calendula officinalis) juice applied to the area may be beneficial as well. All have properties that are therapeutic to skin conditions. To help heal warts, apply garlic (Allium sativum), or the juice of a sour apple, a dandelion stalk, a fresh pineapple, or fresh green figs. Calendula (Calendula officinalis) juice applied to the area may be beneficial as well. All have properties that are therapeutic to skin conditions.

Homoeopathy – A Homoeopathic physician will prescribe a treatment to strengthen your immune system. Some Homoeopaths may recommend that you apply Thuja Occidentalis tincture to the warts. Sabina, taken orally, is another common remedy. A Homoeopathic physician will prescribe a treatment to strengthen your immune system. Some Homoeopaths may recommend that you apply Thuja Occidentalis tincture to the warts. Sabina, taken orally, is another common remedy.

Dietary Considerations

To prevent infections from recurring, eat plenty of foods that contain vitamins A and C, which help the body fight off infections, and folic acid, which strengthens the immune system. (Broccoli and spinach are good sources).

Personal Care

  • Apply tea tree oil (Melaleuca spp.) to warts to help them heal.

  • Eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables.

Prevention

The best way to prevent genital warts is to use condoms.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you develop any of the symptoms listed in the description section

     

German Measles

A common mild viral infection which occurs mainly in children.

What to look for

A child with German measles may not look or act sick, but symptoms may include:

  • swollen glands.

  • rash on the face and the neck; it spreads to the trunk and limbs

  • loss of appetite, irritability, loss of interest in personal care.

  • in an older child or teenager, joint pain and nerves may be affected.

A rash appears in only about half the cases of German measles and does not last for long.

German measles, is a mild illness and does not usually cause many annoying or painful symptoms for your child.

People who have had German measles once develop a lifetime immunity.

However, the virus can be extremely damaging to a foetus developing within the mother’s womb. It causes birth defects and serious abnormalities if the mother catches it during the first few months of pregnancy.

Causes

German measles is caused by a virus found in the nose and throat of a patient. It is passed from person to person by the tiny droplets in the air breathed out. As well as this it is transmitted from a pregnant mother to her developing baby through the bloodstream via the placenta.

Traditional Treatment

Your child should stay at home while sick or up to a week after any rash disappears.

No medical treatment of a child with German measles is required. If you are pregnant and are exposed to rubella, you should contact your Doctor immediately.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Immunisation will prevent this disease and also prevent it being passed onto pregnant mothers.

Homoeopathy – Always consult a Professional for appropriate dosages and remedies for children. Always consult a Professional for appropriate dosages and remedies for children.

BelladonnaPulsatilla, and Phytolacca are three remedies often prescribed; the choice depends on your child’s symptoms and temperament.

Prevention

Immunisation of children as a protection to others is strongly recommended by most Healthcare practitioners, but be aware that vaccination does not always provide lifetime immunity.

Pregnancy Concerns

If you are pregnant, are not sure of your immunity to rubella, and suspect you have been exposed, contact your doctor immediately, because the virus can pass to your unborn child.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you are pregnant and you think you have been exposed to German measles – call your doctor immediately


Glaucoma

This is a condition where the pressure of the fluid in the eyeball builds up.

What to look for

  • Teary, aching eyes, blurred vision, occasional headaches.

  • A sudden onset of severe throbbing pain, headaches, blurred vision, redness in the eye, dilated pupils, and sometimes nausea and vomiting.

  • In infants, teary or cloudy eyes, unusual sensitivity to light, and enlarged corneas.

Chronic glaucoma, can be extremely painful and can also eventually cause damage to the retina and optic nerve leading to partial or complete blindness.

It may be well established before you notice the warning signs: You have headaches, you need new glasses, you develop tunnel vision, and eventually you develop blank spots where you can’t see anything.

Causes

The eye’s lens, iris, and cornea are continuously bathed and nourished by a water-based fluid called aqueous humor. This fluid is constantly being produced and consequently needs to be continually drained away. And this is what the problem is with glaucoma patients, there is an obstruction to the drainage of the fluid and as a result, pressure builds up and causes problems.

This condition can be genetic, babies can be born with a defect in the drainage system in the eye and can consequently develop glaucoma early in life.

As the optic nerve deteriorates, your field of vision narrows and you have difficulty seeing things at either side. If nerve damage continues, it can affect your central vision and lead ultimately to total blindness.

Researchers believe certain things can trigger this illness…

  • Using certain drugs,

  • a lack of collagen,

  • corticosteroid eye drops (sometimes prescribed for other eye disorders), are thought to destroy collagen balance in certain situations,

  • stress and allergies may aggravate symptoms of chronic glaucoma.

Traditional Treatment

Treatment of chronic glaucoma requires measures to control the flow and drainage of the fluid in the eye. You can help yourself by relieving stress and maintaining collagen production. Acute glaucoma is different: If the pressure of excess fluid in the eye is not relieved quickly, the result can be blindness.

Appropriate therapy depends on the nature and stage of the ailment.

Chronic glaucoma is typically managed with eye drops.

If your chronic glaucoma does not respond to medication, or if you cannot tolerate the side effects, your doctor may recommend another treatment.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Alternative approaches to treating glaucoma emphasise prevention and good eye maintenance. Use this ONLY in addition to conventional medicine.

Herbal Therapies – A variety of herbs have properties that may aid this complaint – Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) helps maintain collagen balance and prevents the breakdown of vitamin C. This is available in tablet form or you can eat the real fruit if available. A variety of herbs have properties that may aid this complaint – Bilberry (Vaccinium myrtillus) helps maintain collagen balance and prevents the breakdown of vitamin C. This is available in tablet form or you can eat the real fruit if available.

Personal Care

Eye exercises may relieve stress and eyestrain caused by overworked eyes and many eye problems, including glaucoma.. – ask your Doctor.

Reduce alcohol and caffeine intake as these two substances may affect blood circulation to the eye.

Avoid cigarette smoke.

Dietary Considerations

Vitamin C apparently helps with this condition so therefore eat foods rich in this vitamin- cauliflower, broccoli, turnip greens, strawberries, grapefruits, and oranges.

Alternatively, you can take supplement of vitamin C daily. Eat foods rich in vitamin A such as liver, kidney, egg yolk, butter, dairy products and cod liver oil. Chromium and zinc may also deter glaucoma, as most people with the disease exhibit deficiencies of these minerals, as well as of thiamine (vitamin B1).

When to seek further professional advice

  • you have symptoms of acute glaucoma.

  • you have abnormal symptoms after taking any medication prescribed by your doctor

     

Goiter

Goiter is an enlargement of the thyroid gland in the front of the neck. Associated with the overproduction or underproduction of thyroid hormones.

What to look for

  • swelling at the base of the neck

  • If you have an overactive thyroid gland, you may also experience weight loss despite an increased appetite, an increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, nervousness, diarrhoea, muscle weakness, and hand tremors.

  • If you have an under-active thyroid gland, you may also experience lethargy, slowed physical and mental functions, depression, loss of hair, dry skin, a lower heart rate, an intolerance to cold, constipation, easy weight gain, and tingling or numbness in your hands.

Goitres can be any one of several types of growths in the thyroid gland, located at the base of the neck. A goitre may be a temporary problem that will remedy itself over time without medical treatment, or a symptom of another, possibly severe, thyroid condition that requires medical attention.

Causes

Goitres can occur when the thyroid gland produces either too much thyroid hormone or not enough.

Most goitres are caused by iodide deficiency, a key ingredient in the manufacture of thyroid hormone. To make up for the resulting shortfall of the hormone, the gland begins to grow. If the swollen gland causes breathing problems it must be removed.

If you consume too many foods such as soybeans, rutabagas, cabbage, peaches, peanuts, and spinach a thyroid growth called a sporadic goitre, can form.

Traditional Treatment

A goitre may require no treatment, especially if it is small and has succeeded in boosting production of thyroid hormone. However, if the goitre develops because of excessive thyroid hormone production, fails to produce enough hormone, or causes discomfort, you should seek medical help.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Alternative therapies treat goitres by attempting to boost production of thyroid hormone and correct the body’s chemical imbalance.

Chinese Herbs – Notoginseng root (Panax Notoginseng) and Tang-kuei formula may help reduce the size of a goitre. Consult a Practitioner for correct dosages. Notoginseng root (Panax Notoginseng) and Tang-kuei formula may help reduce the size of a goitre. Consult a Practitioner for correct dosages.

Herbal Therapies  – To improve an underactive-thyroid condition, try bladder wrack (Fucus vesiculosus) three times a day. Take it in tablet form. To improve an underactive-thyroid condition, try bladder wrack (Fucus vesiculosus) three times a day. Take it in tablet form.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you have a large goitre

     

Gonorrhoea

Gonorrhoea is a bacterial infection of the genito-urinary tract and, occasionally, the rectum, pharynx, and eyes.

What to look for

  • a puslike discharge that may be yellowish, cloudy, green, white, or bloodstained.

  • frequent need to urinate and burning while urinating.

  • severe pelvic and lower abdominal pain.

  • constant urge to move bowels (anal gonorrhoea).

  • nausea, vomiting, fever, chills.

  • pain during intercourse.

  • reddened, irritated tip of penis.

  • severe sore throat, pain on swallowing (pharyngeal gonorrhoea).

Women usually do not realise they have this disease until it is in the later stages. Men however will notice very quickly and have one or more of the above symptoms. The disease is extremely contagious and if you suspect either you or your partner has been infected – see a Doctor immediately.

Even if you have no symptoms, you should ask your doctor to perform a gonorrhoea test once a year. This is especially important for women who are pregnant or plan to be.

Causes

Gonorrhoea is caused by a bacterium, which is transmitted sexually.

Traditional Treatment

Because gonorrhoea is a contagious disease with serious consequences, you must seek conventional medical treatment first. Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

In addition to conventional treatment, a number of alternative therapies may speed healing.

Chinese Herbs – To cleanse your system, a doctor of Chinese medicine may prescribe an herbal formula tailored to your body’s needs. This might include gentiana (Gentiana scabra), Chinese foxglove root (Rehmannia glutinosa), dong quai (Angelica sinensis), bupleurum (Bupleurum chinense), and liquorice (Glycyrrhiza uralensis).

Herbs such as Coptis (Coptis chinensis) are helpful in strengthening the urinary and reproductive systems.

Herbal Therapies – Calendula (Calendula officinalis), myrrh (Commiphora molmol), and thuja (Thuja occidentalis) may reduce the inflammation and discharge that accompany gonorrhea – use these herbs as a tea or douche.

Pipsissewa (Chimaphila umbellata), may also help, as could uva ursi (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi), goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis), and burdock (Arctium lappa).

Homoeopathy – A Homoeopathic physician may want to attack the gonorrhoea bacteria with antibiotics and then prescribe a remedy to strengthen your immune system and prevent recurrences.

At-Home Remedies

  • Take hot baths to help reduce pain and inflammation.

  • Eat a balanced diet, including live-culture yogurt.

  • Supplement antibiotic therapy with the herbs listed above.

  • Use ice packs to reduce abdominal pain.

Dietary Considerations

If your doctor approves, try fasting for one to three days to clean out your system. Drink the juices of pomegranate and cranberry or a mixture of celery, parsley, and cucumber to flush out toxins from the urinary tract. Because antibiotics destroy beneficial intestinal bacteria as well as pathogenic kinds, eat yogurt containing live cultures or take acidophilus supplements.

Prevention

Always use a condom. If your partner develops symptoms, both of you should be tested and treated by a doctor.

When to seek further professional advice

  • you have any of the symptoms listed in the description section

     

Gout

Gout is the inflammation of the joints caused by too much uric acid in the system

What to look for

  • sudden, intense pain in a joint usually the big toe

  • swelling, inflammation, and a feeling that the joint is very hot.

  • usually strikes unexpectedly and may recur

Without warning and, for some reason, in the middle of the night, it strikes, an intense pain in a joint, most often the big toe, but sometimes other joints, including knees, elbows, thumbs or fingers. Attacks of gout can be unexpected and excruciatingly painful. The attacks may return without notice in weeks, months or other intervals.

Gout usually strikes middle aged men who are overweight or suffering from high blood pressure.

Gout is the body’s reaction to irritating crystalline deposits in the space between the bones in a joint. In spite of the extreme pain at onset, gout responds well to prompt treatment; mild cases may be controlled by diet alone.

Chronic attacks of gout, however, may require long-term medication to prevent damage to bone and cartilage, as well as deterioration of the kidneys because of excess uric acid production.

Chronic gout sufferers may feel tiny, crystals of uric acid slats settle in the joints, skin and kidneys. In the kidneys, they can lead to painful and potentially dangerous kidney stones.

Causes

Gout is brought on by an excessively high level of uric acid in the blood. Uric acid is essential to the digestive process, and the excess is filtered through the kidneys and eliminated in urine. If the body produces too much uric acid or fails to excrete it, crystals of sodium urate become concentrated in the joints and tendons, causing inflammation, pressure, and severe pain.

Factors that can cause this problem include…

  • Injury,

  • a surgical procedure,

  • periods of stress,

  • or reactions to alcohol and certain drugs, including antibiotics.

  • Gout may also occur in the presence of some tumours or cancers.

  • Gout may also accompany psoriasis or anaemia.

Susceptibility to gout can be inherited, and repeat attacks are common if the body’s uric acid level is not kept under control.

Traditional Treatment

To relieve the strong pain associated with this disease is the first requirement. Any pressure on the affected joint worsens the pain so it is advised to keep the joint bare.

You must keep the uric acid levels under control to prevent continuous attacks. Ask your doctor for a suitable treatment. You will need to go back for your doctor to monitor the levels of uric acid regularly.

If you do not have this condition treated, you will do damage to your kidneys.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Non-conventional approaches to treating gout begin with reducing the immediate pain and inflammation, then continue with therapies to control excessive uric acid production.

Aromatherapy – Juniper oil is helpful if applied using a compress to the affected area. Do not use this oil if you are pregnant, or if you have liver or kidney disorders. Rosemary can be used in a compress or in massage oil. Do not use this essential oil if you are pregnant, epileptic or have high blood pressure. (see the Aromatherapy section for more information).

Herbal Therapy – Drink an infusion of 2 tsp celery seed or Gravelroot in a cup of water, three times a day, to stimulate elimination of uric acid. Speak with your Pharmacist or Naturopath about taking charcoal tablets for this condition.

Homoeopathy – Mixed homoeopathic remedies may include dilute doses of ArnicaLedum, Urtica urens, Benzoicum acidum, Lycopodium, and Pulsatilla.

Dietary Considerations

Your doctor will probably recommend that you cut out certain protein-rich foods. You should drink plenty of liquids but avoid alcohol. You will need to remain within your recommended weight range.

Vegetarians rarely get this disorder which goes to show that diets which include meat and animal fats are more likely to cause gout.

Diets for preventing attacks of gout in people showing a genetic vulnerability to the disease usually eliminate red meat and meat extracts; yeast; organ meats; shellfish and certain kinds of preserved fish, including sardines, herring, and anchovies.

Foods that appear to suppress the immediate symptoms of gout include complex carbohydrates, particularly from cereals, fruits, and leafy green vegetables. Simple carbohydrates, such as those in refined sugar, are likely to increase uric acid production and should be avoided.

Several authorities report favourable results in treating the pain of chronic gout by having patients eat fresh or canned cherries or drink cherry juice.

Drinking plenty of clear, non-alcoholic fluids (fresh fruit juices) – particularly good is celery juice, herbal teas, or water helps to dilute the urine and promote excretion of uric acid through continued flushing of the kidneys.

When to seek further professional advice

  • severe pain in a joint recurs or lasts more than a few days

     

     

Groin Strain

This is a strain in the groin area of the body (where the torso meets the legs).

What to look for

  • pain and stiffness in the groin region

By definition, the groin is where your torso joins your legs. It is a place where a lot of body movement takes place. Especially in relatively active people.

The effect of a strain to these key muscles and tendons is sudden and often debilitating. The pain is immediate and intense and often you must rely on help to be moved to a more suitable place to rest.

Causes

The immediate cause of a groin pull is bruising or tearing the muscles that run from the pelvis down the thighs. Groin pulls are usually caused by overexertion, lifting heavy objects improperly, or failing to warm up before a strenuous activity. Another cause may be that you have had an accident.

Traditional Treatment

A minor groin pull will generally heal itself with rest. If the muscle tissue is actually torn, the healing process may take a week or more. Surgery may be necessary in very severe cases.

To reduce the swelling and inflammation of your groin strain, apply an ice pack as quickly as possible after the injury. You should rest and also take an aspirin for the pain.

Alternative/Natural Treatments

Massage – A qualified masseuse can perform massage on this area for you. A qualified masseuse can perform massage on this area for you.

Aromatherapy – Blend 3 drops of peppermint and 3 drops of marjoram to 15gm of base cream or massage oil. Apply to the affected area via a soft massage. Blend 3 drops of peppermint and 3 drops of marjoram to 15gm of base cream or massage oil. Apply to the affected area via a soft massage.

Homoeopathy – Arnica is the Homoeopath’s first-aid remedy for muscle injuries. Rhus toxicodendron and Ruta may also be useful for muscle strains.

Personal Care

  • Rest.

  • Apply a cold pack for 10 minutes on and 10 off until the pain goes.

  • Avoid exertion

Prevention

Always do warm up exercises before doing strenuous exercise or activity