Making an Infant talk –
How to give best homeopathy treatment in Infant
Though as a homeopath we encounter a majority of pediatric cases, there is a big gap in our literature on pediatric subjects. The only book focusing on children’s remedies was by Borland. Nowadays we are more and more aware of the importance of the mind symptoms for prescription, but when we come to pediatric cases, we get lost. Teachers told us that we have to observe the child carefully but they don’t give sufficient guidelines as to how to interpret your observations. An infant comes with the mother, the first question was what to observe. Now if I observe that the child is comfortable and playful, what is the interpretation and what rubric to take, and suppose if I observe the infant to be cranky what will be the interpretation. This lack of clarity has prevented us from giving the best homeopathy treatment to infants.
I remember of a case of a 3-month infant coming to me a few years back. Reluctantly I accepted the case as I was not confident to handle the infant. After a few questions, As a routine, I asked the mother (to understand the thirst of the child) how much water does your child drink? The mother drew a blank face, and suddenly I realised the goof up. I was terribly embarrassed. I tried to handle the situation, but my nervousness was quite obvious to the mother. I lost that case as the mother didn’t come to me after that as she must have realised that the doctor is not competent enough to handle the child. One should be well aware that normally infants are not put on water till they are 4-5 months of age. Many such questions used to cause embarrassment because we do not know the normal developmental milestones, and we try to ask the same pattern of questions we have for adults.
I found good success when I tried to categorise the pediatric case taking into groups and then forming a basic questionnaire for that particular group. I group the pediatric group into 4 basic categories
- Infants (birth to 1 year)
- 1st month
- 2-5 months (nursing period)
- 5-8 months (weaning period)
- 8 to 15 months (dentition period)
- Toddlers (1 year to 3 years)
- Preschool (3 to 5 years)
- School (5 to 10 years)
Remember this is not a very strict grouping but a very generalized grouping to help me frame proper questions and to have proper interpretations. eg. If a toddlers steal a pencil of his friend and bring it home (not a persistent behaviour), then I consider it as normal, but if the same thing is seen in a schooling child I take it as a pathological symptom.
Questionnaire for Infant – (nursing period):
A 4-month-old infant is brought for complaints of cough. My typical questionnaire and interpretations with rubrics will be like this:
1. Ailments from
An infant who was otherwise healthy comes to you with cough and cold. What has caused the illness in him? If a positive causative factor is traced then this can be taken as an eliminating symptom to prescribe. Direct question to mother to ascertain this is required:
- Was any vaccination given just 2-3 days before the complaint started? (A/F Vaccination)
- Was there any incident just 1 or 2 days before by which the infant must have got scared, like falling from bed, or like a balloon burst when he was playing with it? (A/F Fright)
- Was there any incident just 1 or 2 days before by which the infant must have got angry? (A/F Anger)
- Was there any emotional disturbance in the mother just 1 or 2 days before the complaint started, and what did she felt – A/F Anger/Grief/fright/Sadness?
- Was there any news by which the mother was very happy just 2-3 days before the complaints started? (A/f joy)
2. Characteristic Symptoms:
Note the chief complaints in details and see if you can find some PQRS?
3. Obstetric History
If the complaints are since birth, a detailed inquiry into the obstetric history can provide some vital clues about the disposition of the infant.
4. Mothers Pregnancy History
If the complaints are since birth, take a detailed mental history of the mother during pregnancy. (Only if the state of the mother during pregnancy corresponds to the disposition of the infant now, take this point as eliminating ailments from, or else ignore the mother’s history during pregnancy).
Note the birth weight of the child and compare with the birth weight now. See if he is gaining weight or losing weight. This will help understand the constitution of the infant.
Note the constitution of the child
To know the thermals, check the temperature of the infant’s body. The temperature can be checked at the following places: Chest, Inner thighs, and extremities. If the temperature is warm, then it means the body is throwing out heat, and the infant can be warm-blooded. If the temperature is cool, then the infant can be a chilly patient. Also, note whether the child is comfortable if wrapped or uncomfortable and whether the child keeps the covers at night or kicks the covers.
To know the thirst – Question regarding the feeding pattern and style
- of time the infant ask for breastfeeding
- He takes feeding from one or both breasts at a time.
To know more about generals ask
- Speed of breastfeeding
- Fast or
- During the feeding, he perspires or falls asleep
9. Sleep Habits
After waking from sleep, he is cranky, cheerful, and dull
Find out the sociability-Activity- destructibility axis of the child.
When an infant comes to your clinic, rather than being confused, and groping into the dark, this small questionnaire gives me so many hints, that most of the time the remedy becomes very clear. Now I can really make the infant talk and give me a good homeopathic history.
References and more reading
Sections 154 to 159 from The homeopathic treatment of the disease of females and infants at the breast – Dr. Jahr
Children types – Borland
Homeopathy for mothers and Infants — Borland
Dr. Pravin Jain – The author of this article is a well known and best homeopathic pediatrician in India, rendering homeopathic treatment for children across India via his clinics under the brand HomoeoCARE.