A thirty one year old marketing consultant came to see me several years ago suffering with hay fever. He was allergic to tree pollen, cats and house dust. It had been worse the last couple of years. He said he had tried all the usual tablets.

His hay fever was worse for drinking alcohol, worse being around people smoking and worse in open top cars. His nose felt prickly inside, he would sneeze and sniff a lot. His eyes were watery and itchy. He said he wanted to take his head off it was so itchy. It helped to rinse his face with cold water. The nose was itchy, blocked, drizzled and he blew his nose a lot. His eyes could get itchy, especially the lower rims and lower canthi. In fact his whole being would become itchy. He could wake at night with a blocked nose. Getting shaving foam up his nose made him more itchy and sneezy.

I asked him a bit about his health in general and he told me that he was someone who felt the cold. As a child he used to worry about trivial details. In his teens he had academic success, won math’s prizes. He got into debating and public speaking which helped his confidence, he became president of a debating society. He described himself as tidy and very well organized, steering into obsession, logical order. He cared deeply about everything that he did.

I prescribed the homeopathic remedy Silicea for him.

Just nine days later he reported that he was ‘Doing well, great, less allergic than usual.’ He had initial detox reaction. On the fourth day after taking the homeopathic remedy he went to the park at dusk, had alcohol, got chilly and there was pollen around; all things which usually made his hay fever worse. To his surprise he was fine until 10 pm and even then only sniffing a bit. He noticed that on the London Underground his nose was not affected. He just experienced a slightly itchy palate, usually a precursor to symptoms getting worse, but it did not develop in to anything more. He was sleeping more deeply and his nose was not feeling prickly.

Improvement continued over the rest of the year. He did so well that he did not experience any hay fever the following year and indeed only needed a repeat prescription three times over the next six years.

I am not someone who usually takes any interest in alternative therapies. I suspected that the effect must be mostly placebo, but given that it had clearly worked for my colleague and my sister-in-law, felt it might be worth a try. I now wish I had sought homeopathic treatment sooner. I would recommend it unhesitatingly to anyone who, like me is dubious about anything that sounds alternative.

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