Cynthia H. Chrisman, MPH, CCH
Certified Classical Homeopath

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What to Expect and What to Ask
How Do I Choose A Homeopathic Provider?

What to Expect and What to Ask

Why choose a Classical Homeopath?
Making homeopathy your first choice in healthcare gives your own system a chance to heal before having to resort to drug or herbal therapies, or surgery.  I am specially trained to help you overcome tendencies toward illness or disease, to help you maintain an optimal level of health and well-being.  My goal is to see your level of health improve so you don’t have to return as often.  Prevention is the best health insurance money will buy.

How do you help me get better?
Most health concerns, physical or emotional, will respond well to the correctly chosen remedy.  But the accuracy of choosing the correct remedy for yourself or your family can be somewhat challenging.  Remedy choices may change from time to time depending upon your lifestyle, past medical history or energy level.  It is wise to consult a professionally trained homeopath for complex health complaints.  Once resolved, you need only return if your level of health declines for any reason.

How to prepare for an appointment?
Contact me by email or phone.  I am often able to see you in my Cambridge
and Berkshire offices within one week because of flexible office hours.  If you need a special visiting arrangement please ask.  After we make contact, I send what you need, including directions.  Most come with a list of their questions or health concerns they have.  On return visits, it is useful to bring notes of any changes or reactions you may have noticed since your last remedy.

What are visits like and how often do I return?
Your first visit with me lasts about two hours and involves a detailed investigation of your entire health history.  Follow-up visits (6-8 weeks apart at first) last about 30-45 minutes, depending on how you are feeling and what sort of illness you have.  A slowly developing complaint or one that you've experienced for many years, may not disappear right away but progress may occur within weeks. In acute or more urgent ailments, progress can be very fast, often minutes or hours.

What conditions can homeopathy successfully address?
Contact me if you wish to learn how well homeopathy can address your specific health problem.  Too many conditions exist to mention here and some do not even have a “diagnosis.”  Homeopathy does not “treat” or “diagnose” conditions, per se, but addresses your unique problems as a whole person.  Homeopathic remedies stimulate your body’s immunity to improve how well you fight off infections or viruses.  How well you are presently coping with life’s stress and strain--body, mind and spirit--is a vital part of homeopathic health care.

What about my diet and lifestyle?

Diet, exercise, sound sleep and reducing stress are a vital part of preventing illness and maintaining good level of health.  I review these details with you because it is one of my main concerns to help remove barriers to health and vitality.  I also have concern about the effects of environmental hazards on your health.

Why does a whole person approach matter if you are helping me with my existing health problem? 
A deeply curative response is possible with homeopathic health care because it works systemically upon the person not their complaints, per se.  Conventional medicines only combat local symptoms without regard to your unique traits.  Some regard homeopathy as “slow yet sure.”  Homeopathic health care involves a total care approach which for many is a lifetime commitment to getting well and staying that way.

Can I use homeopathy if taking other medications?
A homeopathic remedy does not work at the same level of the body as chemical drugs do. Remedies are so dilute that they do not metabolize in the kidneys, liver or other biochemical processes of the body.  And when you take your remedy in the correct dosages, it will often stimulate your body to decrease its dependency on other medications as your energy improves.  I recommend working closely with your physician to monitor these types of changes.  

What are homeopathic remedies?
They are taken from a wide variety of naturally-occurring substances and diluted until only minute traces remain so you need not worry about side effects or dependency.  They are under the approval and regulation of the FDA and made available to the public through local pharmacies or natural food markets.  They are very inexpensive, easy to take and keep a very long time.  They do not use up vast natural resources when made like pharmaceuticals or herbs do and they are never tested on animals.

What legal protection do I have?
Health consumers unfortunately do not have the protection they would always like or deserve.  I believe you should be protected and therefore I disclose my practice fully in writing to you before we meet (Disclosure Statement).  Expect and ask for such when receiving homeopathy from any practitioner or from any provider of health services.  Protect yourself from under qualified providers who lack the knowledge and expertise you are paying for.

In MN, CA and RI, a complementary and alternative health care freedom act, enacted separately by each state, protects health consumers seeking such care by bringing it under regulation by the state health department.  As health care ‘consumers’ continue to turn to other options this trend will continue to expand.  Currently in other states, homeopathy is peer-regulated on a national level through such professional organizations as the Council for Homeopathic Certification (CHC).  Consumers of holistic therapies must choose providers wisely.  Protect yourself by expecting full disclosure of degrees, training, and experience; fees; a summary of services provided; information about the assessment and recommended service. 

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How Do I Choose a Homeopathic Provider?

DO YOUR RESEARCH. KNOWLEDGE IS POWER. Homeopaths differ greatly in training and experience. “Gut” feelings are very helpful during your search process. I suggest asking things like:

What is your background?
Whether they are a medical doctor or not, make sure they are at least credentialed in Classical Homeopathy. This means they have met the minimum standard of professional training, including the medical and scientific knowledge necessary to help you with homeopathy. Make sure they at least have a C.C.H. which stands for “certified in Classical Homeopathy,” or its equivalent.  Experience in the medical field is an asset, but a conventional medical degree is not required to become an accurate and knowledgeable homeopathic practitioner.

What is your experience with someone like me?
Some homeopaths do not see young adults, teenagers or children, for instance, so be sure to ask whether they have appropriate experience. You can get a good idea over the phone about which kinds of age, lifestyle, or unique condition they are familiar with enough to help you.

What percentage of your practice involves homeopathy?
Some practitioners primarily practice another discipline (i.e. conventional medicine, acupuncture, chiropractic, psychotherapy, and nursing) and add “homeopathy” as an adjunct therapy from time to time. The practitioner who spends 100% of their time practicing homeopathy is qualitatively very different than someone else who spends their time practicing in another field and uses homeopathy from time to time. Your practitioner should spend at least 75% of their time practicing homeopathy.

How do I locate a qualified homeopath for my family or friends in another state?
Search the directory at the National Center for Homeopathy (NCH) or call them at 703-548-7790. Few “homeopaths” in this country have met minimum standards of practice, especially in small towns. Expect to travel in some cases, at least to the first visit.

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