Have you ever wondered why Stramonium is listed in some of the remedies in the Banerji Protocols in homeopathy that deal with conditions affecting the central nervous system?
Let’s explore the rationale behind it.
But in order to understand its sphere of action, we need to understand the toxicological pathways of this plant.
The plant Datura Stramonium when ingested activates the anticholinergic system.
This works by blocking the action of the muscarinic neurotransmitter, a receptor that has a role in the peripheral and central nervous systems. The cholinergic system is an important part of the autonomic nervous system and plays a role in movement, circadian rhythmicity, digestion and blood pressure, among others.
The cholinergic system has also been shown to play an important role in processes such as motivation, pain, cognitive flexibility, perceptual memory, spatial learning, thinking and emotions.
All parts of the plant are toxic.
Symptoms of toxicity may include intense thirst, difficulty with speech and swallowing, reduced urinary and gastrointestinal motility, sinus tachycardia, vomiting and diarrhoea, fever, confusion, restlessness, hallucinations, delirium, dilated pupils, convulsions and loss of consciousness.
Not surprisingly, the affinities of Stramonium in homeopathy are the Spinal nerves, Brain and Mind, Circulation, and Muscles.
These are some of the symptoms covered in the Materia Medica, which correspond with the toxicological reports:
-mouth and throat extremely dry and difficulty swallowing
-violence in most physical symptoms: violent thirst esp for sour drinks, violent hiccough, violent perspiration, violent congestion of the blood to the head
-secretions are suppressed, passes neither urine nor stool
-increases the mobility of the muscles of expression or locomotion: trembling, tremors, convulsions with consciousness, spasms worse at night, twitching
-hydrophobia- very thirsty yet dreads water
-fear of water
-one side paralysed, the other convulsed
-face hot and red with cold hands and feet
-great mobility of voluntary actions and suppression of all secretions
-paralysis of muscles and excessive secretions and excretions
THE ROLE OF STRAMONIUM IN HOMEOPATHY IN ALTERATIONS OF THE CENTRAL NERVOUS SYSTEM AND THE BRAIN
By looking at the bulk of symptoms covered in the Materia Medica and the affinities of this remedy, we start to see the range of action on the nervous system and spasmodic affections. Hence a remedy indicated often for stammering, vocal ticks, and nervous repetitive behaviours associated with Pandas, ADHD, OCD and ASD.
-Speech is affected
-Stammering. Distorts face and makes great efforts to speak
-gestures, nervous ticks
-involuntary movements of the hands
-head and arms: disorderly, gracefully or rhythmic motions
For Stammering, where the person has to exert a long time before the first word is pronounced, Stramonium 200 every 3rd day is helpful.
This plant belongs to the Solanaceae family or Nigtshades, and as a part of this family, it shares some similar characteristics to Belladonna and Hyoscyamus. In fact, the physiological action of Stramonium is practically the same as that of Belladonna, though the influence on the sympathetic nervous system is stronger.
- Belladonna- alkaloid atropine
- Hyoscyamus- hyoscyamine
- Stramonium- contains a mixture of alkaloids: scopolamine, atropine and hyoscyamine.
This a well know trio in homeopathy for mental and neurological disorders.
This is also reinforced by the fact that The Banerjies have found both Stramonium and Hyoscyamus the most effective remedies for changes in the central nervous system, and we can find them in protocols such as Dyslexia, Autism, Alzheimer’s and agitation, aggression or delirium.
Belladonna and Hyoscyamus are both complementary remedies and follow each other.
BANERJI PROTOCOL TIP
- Aethusa 200 every 3rd day
- Stramonium 6c twice daily
- Stramonium 200 every 3rd day
- Chamomilla 30 twice daily
- Calcarea Phosphorica 3x twice daily
STRAMONIUM IN HOMEOPATHY AND NIGHT TERRORS
The alkaloid content in the plant varies depending on where the plant is and especially with the amount of sun received. Alkaloid concentration is higher if the plant is exposed to more sunlight.
From here, we can extract one of the characteristics of this remedy and its polarity, light and darkness as a theme running through this remedy.
This is reflected in the well-known keynote of this remedy -worse by dark and better by light, worse by glistening objects-. It shares a correspondence with the original source. Hence this is a remedy for night terrors and states of fear and a remedy often prescribed for small children.
-a strong desire for light but turns away from direct light
-desires company, can not be alone
-dread of darkness
-sleepless in the dark
-night terrors: knows nothing about it afterwards
-fear of fire
- For night terrors, try Stramonium 200 every 3rd day for 8 weeks.
STRAMONIUM AND DELIRIUM
Neurological manifestations of Stramonium toxicity include ataxia, impaired short-term memory, disorientation, confusion, hallucinations (visual and auditory), psychosis, and agitated delirium, and this is due to the activation of the anticholinergic system and its implications in its range of action like regulating functions such as sensory processing and cognition.
This is found also in correspondence on our Materia Medica in the Mind section:
-ailments from fright and fear
-desires to escape in delirium, furious delirium
-lives under the impression of some immediate danger
-fear of being attacked
-fear of violence
-loquacity, talks all the time, laughs, play, sings and prays
-horrible hallucinations that terrified the patient
-violent rage, destructive, wild, threatening
-strange, absurd ideas think about himself: thinks himself tall, double, etc
-aversion to all fluids
-sit silent, eyes on the ground, picking at her clothes
-general paralysis of the insane
-delusions as to size and distance
-screaming, biting and scratching
- In this case, Stramonium 200 every 3rd or twice daily, depending on the intensity, is effective in homeopathy for aggression in children, elderly people with dementia or anyone suffering from a mental health condition.
Stramonium is also one of the remedies first thought for complaints that have started after fear and fright and present some of the symptoms above. This is also a remedy for children after a traumatic child birth.
The fright layer remains active even though the actual threat may have already passed, and some of these behaviours remain coming to the surface either at night in the form of dreams or when awake. This is why you will find in the material medical the keynote ” lives under the impression of some immediate danger”.
The behaviours or symptoms displayed are unconsciously designed to attract attention and ensure they are noticed and engage attention, for instance, hitting and biting- wild and aggressive character-, talking all of the time, and foolish gestures. They also tend to become quite clingy if this is in children and a need for constant company in adults. This is one of the reasons you will find the well know modality in this remedy – better by company.
These are some examples of situations that could cause the need for this remedy:
-dysfunctional home environment
-separation in parents
-traumatic shock with fear
-a child that is left behind while one of the parents is away for work
-death in the family
-any kind of PTSD
-a car accident- either as a witness or passanger
-children that are given for adoption
-separation from a loved one
THEME OF FEAR, DANGER AND DEATH RUNNING THROUGH THE REMEDY
In many cultures, the plant is strongly associated with moments of passage: initiation and death. For many Indian tribes, the plant is strongly associated with death and is used in rituals to connect to the other side for its hallucinogenic properties.
Hence this becomes a theme running through the symptoms in the materia medica.
-fear of cemeteries, ghosts, spirits
-fear of closed places
-sees ghosts, hears voices, talks with spirits
-all objects look black
-awakes in fear at night: either clings to close ones or strikes them