Homeopathy is a therapeutic medical system, which is based on the observation that substances that are capable of causing diseases of the mind or body in healthy people can be used in the dilute form as remedies to treat the similar disorder in someone who is ill. This is the homeopathic Law of Similars also expressed as "Let Likes be Cured by Likes". The word homeopathy is derived from the Greek words homoios, meaning like, and pathos, meaning suffering.
Dr. Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843) was the physician who developed the use of the therapeutic
principle of similars, in 1796.
Specifically prepared and diluted medicinal substances are dispensed as potentised remedies to the patient.
The key to successful homeopathic treatment is identifying the similarity between the effects of the original substance in healthy people and the pattern of illness in the individual who is sick. It is the similarity that is essential. The homeopathic method involves an exceptionally complete and detailed description of the patient, the illness and its evolution.
Homeopathy is a medical system with which any medical condition in any human being of any age has the potential to be treated. Homeopathy is safe and effective, which is proven not only by the world-wide support and interest of patients and health professionals, but also by research and clinical trials in various related areas/fields. Additional research to demonstrate the efficacy of homeopathy for specific conditions is required while acknowledgement of clinical, individual effects of patients needs to also be recognised as being central to the homeopathic process. Homeopathic practitioners acknowledge the limits of their own paradigm with respect to cure of disease and work closely together with existing medical services to the best benefit of the patient.
Patients often make the choice to visit a homeopath for a safer yet effective alternative to conventional medicine. Homeopathic practitioners are capable of supporting a conventional medical approach both diagnostically and therapeutically through various options of complementary treatment.The homeopathic approach acknowledges the importance of individualisation. Homeopathy is patient driven and caters for the specific needs unique to every patient's experience of illness. It is a holistic system that can take into account every aspect of the patient's life and being, making it a therapeutic system that employs the body's own healing potential to the benefit of the patient's overall health and wellbeing.
Homeopathy in South Africa supports the health objectives of the government of South Africa.