Nux Vomica: A Homeopathic Remedy
Nux vomica’s family name is Loganiaceae, and it also known as poison nut, Quaker buttons and semen strychnos. It comes from the seeds or ‘vomiting nuts’ from an evergreen tree native to India, Burma, Thailand, China and Northern Australia.
Below is a list of issues Nux vomica can help but they are specific, so a description of each symptom (where necessary) is included. If, for example, you have a cough where breathing is not difficult, then Nux vomica may not be necessary in that particular case.
The general symptoms include catching the cold easily, catching a chill from a cold, dry wind, pains tend to be cramped, symptoms tend to be on the right side, prefers spices and feels better for warmth, hot drinks and sitting or lying down. Concentration in this person tends to be poor and they can be impulsive, irritable, impatient and excitable.
Backache – where the pain is found in the lower back is an aching, pressing, bruised and sore type of pain. The pain is worse in the morning or when in bed, as well as when moving, and the person needs to sit up in bed to turn over. When this happens, person will often feel the need to go to bathroom (stool).
Colic – where the pains are griping, pressing, sore, cramping and bruised. This colic most often occurs after over-indulging and often accompany indigestion and nausea. Person feels bloated/full after eating and tight clothes feel extremely painful in a pressing manner.
Common cold – frequent sneezing, watery eyes, the nasal catarrh is burning/watering, and indeed the nose runs during the day, but is blocked at night. A sore throat and headaches are also common. This type of cold can be caught when in draughts and often starts as an irritated area in the back o the nose.
This is fairly common in breastfeeding babies, where their noses get blocked up during the night.
Constipation – where it alternates with bouts of diarrhoea, the need to pass a stool is ineffectual and nearly constant, the stools when they do come are large, hard and the person feels unfinished. The constipation can be a result of many things, including over-eating, alcohol, pregnancy, habits that are sedentary.
This person want to pass stools but cannot, or when can, only passes small amounts and feels the need to pass much more.
Cough – Where breathing is difficult, the cough is racking, dry, suffocating, distressing and tickling. Often occurs in violent fits. The larynx will be raw and the mucus has a sour taste to it. Often vomits when hacking up mucus. Hot drinks ease these symptoms.
The cough causes difficulty breathing and is dry when accompanied by a fever. Tends to be worse after midnight until morning.
Cystitis – where the need to urinate is frequent but ineffectual and can be very urgent. The pains are burning and pressing, urinating is ineffectual and frequent and the urinate itself is burning and in tiny amounts. Symptoms at their worst during urination. Person really wants to pee but can’t, then suddenly and desperately needs to go (often incontinence occurs).
Earache – Where it itches and the pain is stitching. Swallowing relieves this but often makes the pain worse. Hearing tends to be acute in this situation.
Exhaustion – where the exhaustion is nervous and it is worse on waking.
Fever – where the body’s temperature alternates between very hot and cold, is a dry heat and one-sided. Where it occurs with backache and extreme chilliness, sweating, shivering. Fresh air and draughts make this worse. Person will want to be completely covered in bedding, and indeed can become chilled even when turning over or if a body part slides out of bed. The fever is often only in one side of the body and the person feels internally chilly, externally dry heat. Limbs will feel tired and heavy and the person often feels thirsty.
Flatulence – Where the belly/stomach feels bloated and rumbles, and the person has no tolerance for tight-fitting clothing. Feels worse for eating and passing wind makes stomach feel better.
Flu – where pain is in the bones and joints is sore, bruised. Often accompanied by the common cold. Chilliness and fever associated with this flu. Feels better for warm compresses and being warm in bed. Worse for being in bed, for cold, in the morning.
Person feels extremely chilly and cannot get warm.
Gastric flu – as with flu.
Hayfever – occur with common cold symptoms. Symptoms can last all year, with no easing in winter.
Headache – Where head feels heavy and pain is in the back of the head and forehead, where pain is pressing and sore, bruised, stupefying, tearing, where accompanied with billowiness and dizziness. Many things can cause this – alcohol, over eating, lack of sleep, cold wind, damp weather, common cold, mental strain. It is classed as a ‘hangover’ type of headache comes in the morning, most often after a night of over-eating and drinking and the eyes often feel sore.
Indigestion – where the belches are bitter and sour, the belly/stomach is bloated, empty, the pains in the stomach are cramping, sore, pressing, bruised feeling and accompanied with heartburn. Hot drinks improve it. Food will lay in stomach like a knot for 1-2 hours after eating and the stomach will feel full, heavy and tender. Often accompanied with colic symptoms.
Insomnia – when waking early, about 3am and person feels sleepy when going to bed but either cannot sleep, or gets to sleep but wakes around 3am. Often anxious thoughts prevent person going back to sleep. Occasionally, falls asleep just before alarm goes off and wakes feeling very tired and worn out.
Nausea – where it is constant and can be caused by several things, including pregnancy and travel. The nausea makes person feel faint and can often occur during a painful period.
Period problems – where the periods are heavy and painful and pains aching/cramping in lower back. Doubling over in this instance eases symptoms.
Piles – where the cause is pregnancy, Nux vomica will aid it.
Sore throat – where pain spreads up to ears, is raw and stitching, with a lump feeling in the throat. Swallowing can be difficult and throat feels rough and pain radiates out towards ears when person swallows. The rawness can be caused by the coughing and airways can become irritated.
Toothache – where better for external heat and when heat wrapped up. Usually caused when having a filling or tooth extracted. Feels better when a hot water bottle, wrapped in a towel, is placed against head.
Travel sickness – when accompanied with feeling faint and nauseous and is better for lying down. Tobacco can make it feel much worse.
Vomiting – When the vomit is bile-like and mucusy, it is bitter, sour, smelly. Can be caused by several things, including alcohol, pregnancy and even anger. Biliousness (whether with or not with vomiting) happens after over-eating or otherwise indulging in rich, unusual foods and can feel like food poisoning. It is common with travelling.
When someone is in need of Nux vomica, they tend to have overindulged (be it food, alcohol, tobacco, coffee) and where further food etc makes them feel worse, although they often find it hard to stop. Mornings will be the worst time of day for them, especially if they have had a rough night. Nux vomica people generally tend to be workaholics, impulsive and tend to be a bit stroppy.
Nux vomica is a wonderful remedy that should be in everyone’s first aid kit, whether conventional or alternative medicine dominates. While there are some specifics about the Nux vomica person above, anyone with the symptoms can use this remedy, especially in travel-sickness or hangover cases. As with all homeopathic remedies, it is a good idea to confer with a specialist, with a professional homeopath who can take any conventional medications into account.
If you are interested in homeopathy, why not read my other homeopathic articles.
The Complete Homeopathy Handbook by Miranda Castro