Summer has finally arrived here in the UK. It has been a long time coming. Schools will be closing for the summer break soon and many of us will be going away for a while. Whether you are travelling overseas or taking a UK “staycation”, you don’t want your holiday ruined by ill health. The following homeopathic remedies will help you cope with minor incidents such as bites, sunburn and “holiday tummy”.

For first aid and relief of minor upsets during your vacation I recommend taking the appropriate tablets in the 30C potency. Take the remedy every couple of hours as soon as possible after a problem appears, then 3 or 4 times a day until the symptoms subside. Calendula cream or spray can be applied externally to soothe damaged skin. If the situation is severe, or you are concerned in any way, always seek medical advice.

Cocculus indicus: Travel Sickness

As a child I suffered badly from motion sickness. It made car journeys a nightmare for me, and probably for my parents. I still remember my mother buying some travel sickness pills before we set off on our vacation. I obediently took a pill shortly before it was time to leave. What effect did it have? It made me vomit! My mother tried to persuade me that the pills were supposed to work like that – making me sick before we got in the car so there was nothing left in my stomach. Of course that was completely untrue. I still felt nauseous throughout the journey, so received no benefit from the pill at all.

Fortunately, I very seldom suffer from motion sickness now, but for those who do, I recommend Cocculus indicus. This great little homeopathic remedy can ease the misery of travel sickness swiftly and easily. Do you have kids that can’t bear to look at the scenery because it makes their travel sickness feel worse? Perhaps they have to close their eyes so that they can’t see objects passing by? Cocculus indicus can soothe the nausea.

Apis mellifica: Insect Bites and Stings

Insects love hot weather just as much as we do. When you are out and about in the summer sunshine, don’t let sandflies, ants, wasps or other insects interrupt your picnic or BBQ. Take Apis mellifica as soon as possible after an insect bite where there is a stinging pain, redness and swelling.

Ledum palustre: Mosquito Bites

Ledum palustre is an excellent remedy for soothing and calming the skin after mosquito bites. Don’t be kept awake all night by the itching and stinging, trying hard not to scratch those nasty bites. Ledum will help to reduce the swelling and irritation without the need for anti-histamines. Ledum is also helpful for any puncture wounds which, although small, are also very painful.

 Nux vomica or Podophyllum peltatum: Diarrhoea and Vomiting

If you are going on an overseas holiday you’ll probably be trying out the local dishes and perhaps washing them down with a plentiful supply of beer or wine. It’s all part of experiencing the excitement and atmosphere of a summer vacation. But what do you do if the food and drink leads to an upset stomach? Over-indulging in spicy foods, drinking tap water containing foreign bacteria, eating food that has been left too long in the heat; all of these things can lead to severe diarrhea and vomiting. Nux vomica and Podophyllum peltatum are great remedies for “holiday tummy”.

Graphites: Constipation

A change in routine and a change in diet can be wonderfully relaxing. Unfortunately, our digestive systems often work better when we get up at the same time every day, eat at regular intervals, etc. This is why some of us find that, when we go on holiday, our systems seem to stop working normally. Often, during the first part of a holiday there is no urge to pass a stool at all. When things eventually start to move, the stools can be so large and dry that a visit to the toilet is a very uncomfortable experience! If your constipation lasts more than about 48 hours, take Graphites tablets (30C) to ease things along gently.

Calendula Cream: Cuts and Abrasions, After Sun Cream

Calendula cream is the great soother. If you are going on holiday with young children, it’s an absolute must-have. From minor cuts to grazed knees, and also to stop the skin from drying out after a day in the sun, apply Calendula cream externally to the affected areas. Calendula is both an antiseptic and antifungal and it also reduces inflammation. It also acts as an antioxidant and boosts the production of collagen, helping skin to heal quickly and reducing the possibility of scar tissue.

Urtica urens: Mild Sunburn

Let’s face it, summers in the UK can be very disappointing; sometimes it seems like we hardly ever see a sunny day. So when we do get chance to do a bit of sunbathing, whether at home or abroad, we tend to make the most of it. It’s just too tempting to lie out until the sun eventually starts to dip behind the buildings and we can’t avoid the shadows any more. We all know we shouldn’t spend too long sunbathing, but sometimes we just can’t resist.

When too much time in the sun causes an itchy, red rash, it’s time to take Urtica urens. Take Urtica 30 C, one tablet every 30 minutes until the itching and stinging sensation disappears. It’s also a good idea to apply Calendula cream externally, as mentioned earlier in this blog post. And don’t forget to drink plenty of water to rehydrate yourself. Take the Urtica 3 times a day over the following two days to help your skin recover.

Cantharis: Sunburn with Blisters

If you have really over-done the sunbathing, or if Urtica urens fails to help, try Cantharis tablets, also in the 30C potency. Cantharis will tackle more intense sunburn when the skin is starting to blister and peel. Take one tablet every 30 minutes until the pain eases, then every 3 or 4 hours over the next few days.

Arnica montana: Bruises, Shock and Trauma

Arnica is the prime remedy for general shock and trauma, whether to the body or the mind. In my opinion, everybody should carry Arnica tablets wherever they go. It is such a wonderfully versatile remedy that can be used in so many situations. Arnica is great for bruising. Take it as soon as possible after a bump or fall. Not only does it help to reduce bruising and swelling, it also calms the emotional shock caused by the incident. Kids love running around and playing on holiday, so slips around the pool, tumbles from the swings, and all the little everyday traumas can be treated with Arnica.

This list of homeopathic remedies can help you enjoy your holiday and deal with minor injuries. But in cases of severe sunburn, sunstroke, or any incident that could cause serious harm, always seek professional medical advice.