Belladonna is named after the Greek Fate Atropos, who held the power of life and death over mortals. Italian ladies used it from the 16th century to make their eyes sparkle. This was used to enlarge their pupils. Since it is used to make the eye beautiful of young ladies so it is named belladonna, which in the Italian language means for “beautiful woman”. It was also used as a wash to remove pimples. This was used as a poison that caused Juliet to appear dead in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet.
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Deadly nightshade was also used in witchcraft and magic during the Middle Ages. It has another name deadly nightshade as it has dark berries. Belladonna alkaloids atropine and hyoscine were also used in allopathic practice.
Atropine was also used –
- In cold preparations to reduce respiratory secretions.
- For dilation of bronchi
- After heart attacks
- As an antidote to insecticide poisoning
- In mushroom poisoning
Prover of this remedy was Dr. Hahnemann who developed it in 1799. It was used for scarlet fever as it produces exactly the same symptoms in healthy individuals as that of scarlet fever.
Names of Belladonna
Common Names of Belladonna: Atropa Belladonna, Deadly nightshade, Dwale, Devil’s cherries, Sorcerer’s cherry, Witches berry, Lethelis, Hortense, B. trichotoma, Solanum fluriosum
- English: Deadly nightshade
- Hindi: Sag-angur
- French: Belladone
- German: toll Kraut
Description of Plant: Belladona is a large bushy perennial herb. the plant is 1: 1.6 m high. The leaves are alternate below and in pair above, one bigger than the other. The flowers are axillary, stalked solitary, dropping. They bloom from May to August. The root is thick, juicy, branched, and spreading. The leaves and flowers are chopped and pounded to a pulp to make the Homeopathic remedy.
The plant has purple, bell: shaped flowers. When flowers shed they give way to blackberries. Its leaves have a weaker effect than roots. So root is used for making medicines.
This plant is native to Europe, western Asia, North Africa, and North America. It is cultivated all over the world. It can grow up to 5 feet. It has purple flowers and dark, inky berries that are slightly sweet. Belladonna is very toxic. Eating a small number of its leaves or berries can be fatal to humans. Touching the leaves can cause irritation of the skin.
This plant grows in chalky soil, woods, and wasteland. It is also cultivated in Kashmir and Shimla. It is indigenous in Great Britain.
Parts used to prepare the remedy: The whole plant when it begins to flower is used for the preparation of the mother tincture.
Uses of Belladonna remedy
The plant is used as an antispasmodic, relaxant, and sedative.
- Acute fever
- Dry cough
- Dryness of nose
- In fever
- Inflammation of kidney
- Menstrual pain
- Pain in breasts during breastfeeding
- Pain in kidneys due to inflammation
- Right side pain in the ear
- Sore throat
Ancient use of Belladonna
In ancient times it is used for swelling and inflammatory conditions. It was used for pain in the abdomen and ulcers. It was used to induce sleep during surgical conditions. Now a day it is used as an anesthetic during operations.
Preparation of Homeopathic Remedy Belladonna
For preparing this remedy whole fresh plant including the root is dug up. It is then cut into pieces and pounded to form a pulp from which juice is taken out. This juice is then mixed with alcohol before being filtered, diluted, and succussed to form a homeopathic remedy.
Belladonna in Homeopathy
Homeopathic remedy Belladonna is given for acute condition which is sudden and very severe in nature. This is given in acute pain with inflammation or infection. It contains chemicals like atropine and scopolamine which have medicinal properties. Atropine is helpful in relaxing muscle spasms. It is useful in regulating heart rate.
- It is used to dilate the pupils during the examination of the eye.
- Atropine is used as an antidote for insecticides and chemical warfare agents.
- Scopolamine is useful in reducing body secretions like stomach acid.
- It helps in curing motion sickness.
- It is a very good remedy for fever and inflammation when a patient has delirium along with fever.
Suited to Personality
It is given to patients who have delirium. He sees devils and phantoms.
He has various kinds of hallucinations and visions. It is given to patients who think that they have the power to heal others.
This remedy is very useful in the treatment of complaints found in males. This remedy should be given to patients who have both passionate and destructive nature.
It is given to a patient who will show their explosive temper. He will collect his emotions for a longer time and then he will explode from time to time. People who are bossy and dominate another person. He is shy towards the stranger and appears well to those who he knows well. It is given to a condition in which the patient complains that he hears many voices in his head. It is a good remedy for schizophrenia where the patient feels that others are plotting to kill him. It is given to patients who are healthy and robust. They are full of life and have excess blood in their body. It is given to patients who are red and flushed. They can be seen easily in the crowd. They do not seek out the company of others. They have strong, vivid emotions and sentiments. They have various kinds of thoughts and imaginations. It is given to patients who do not need support from others. They do not like to reveal their suffering. They do not require consolation. It is given to patients who have irritability, anger, and have violent impulses. It very good remedy for violent mania. They have an explosion of anger, in which the patient has anger and shouting. The anger is so much that the patient starts coughing while the face becomes extremely red. He is so angry even at his own mistakes and then wants to break things.
It is a good remedy when a patient has anger which alternates with weeping, which is beyond control. He has fear of cancer. He has fear of death or fear of the dark. It is given for violent manias. Rage can appear during headaches in which patients strike people or bite them.
He has wild look on his face and his strength is greatly increased.
He may bark and growl like a dog in this condition. He may commit suicide in rage. It is given in manic depression where the patient has long periods of depression with a desire for death. The patient wishes to commit suicide by hanging or stabbing himself.
- It is a very good remedy for pyromania and kleptomania.
- It is given in condition where the patient sleeps only a few hours at night and roams about in an
- the aimless way all day.
- It is given to women and children with light hair and light color eyes. It is given to a person who is very good when they are healthy but when ill become violent.
- Suited to the person who has a pale face. This paleness suddenly alternates with redness.
- The patient is often sensitive to cold. He takes cold very easily.
It is given when a patient has a previous history of the following medical conditions:
- Lack of sleep
- Frequent urination at night
Cause of symptoms inpatient:
- When getting head wet
- Exposure of Sun
- When a patient has exposed to cold air
- From the exposure to wind
A patient gets worse:
- In the evening and afternoon
- From air
- While drinking
- Looking shining objects
- During sleep
- From strong smell
- Bending forward
- From light and noise
- After 3 pm
- After midnight
- From sudden changes from warm to cold
A patient gets better:
- From bending backward
- While standing
- In warm room
- From rest
- When wrapping up the body
Food items patient wants to take:
- Bread and butter
- Warm drinks
- Taking Tobacco
Food patient dislikes:
- All sorts of nourishments.
- He does not want to take any food
- Taking milk
- The patient has a great violent thirst at noon. He has an excessive thirst for cold water in the evening with a watery taste in his mouth.
- It is given when the patient’s tongue is dry, cracked, and difficult to move.
- The tongue is very dry and it starts trembling when protruded.
- Belladonna Remedy Indications
Clinical conditions for which this remedy should be given:
- Convulsion of measles
- Exophthalmic goiter
- Eye troubles from overuse or use of poor light
- Fear of water
- Gout rheumatism
- Gum boil
- Hepatitis A and B
- In summer complaints of a young infant
- Inflammatory affections
- Otitis media (initial stage) (Infection of the middle ear)
- Headache: It is given when a patient has pain in the front part of the head and in the back of the neck. This pain is often seen at rest and during motion.
- Headache is so severe with pulsation which is not only visible but also audible. The Head is hot. He has great swelling with redness over the whole body. The patient is very sensitive to cold.
- He takes cold when uncovering his head. He has complaints of headaches when cutting hair.
- A patient has felt as if there is a rush of blood to head and face.
- Along with headache, it can also be given patient has an intolerance of light. This intolerance is especially from artificial light.
- Objects appear double and seem to revolve and run backward upside down.
- It is a very good remedy when a patient has dryness of the throat with continued dryness of the mouth and lips. He has a great thirst. He has the feeling of constriction of the throat.
- It is a very good remedy for tonsillitis with swelling and pus in the tonsils. Tonsillitis is worse on the right side. The parts are bright red when swallowing liquids. A patient has painful swallowing particularly fluids. A patient has pain in swallowing saliva.
- It is a very good remedy for pain in the abdomen in infants. Pain is so severe that the patient bends backward.
- The pain appears and leaves suddenly.
- This pain lasts for a longer or shorter time and disappears as suddenly as it came.
- It is given when a child’s pain in the abdomen is better by lying flat on the abdomen.
- It is given when a patient has the feeling of heat in the abdomen as from a hot iron.
- It is given when a patient has frequent urging to stool without passing stool or with scanty and hard stool.
- The patient has a violent urge to pass stool from 10 p.m till 2 a.m. It is a very good remedy for dysentery.
- It is also given in bleeding piles with pain in the back as if breaking.
- It is given in female complaints when there is a pain in the pelvic region that comes suddenly and goes suddenly.
- It is given when the patient complains of prolapse with bearing down pains as if everything would issue from the vulva. This pain is better by standing, especially felt in the morning. It is given to irritable women who complain of burning, stinging sensation in the affected part, and cutting pressing pain. Pain is worse in the morning and better by standing and sitting erect.
- It is given in complaints of menses which are too early and too profuse. Blood is dark red in color. Sometimes blood is pale bright red or black and offensive.
- It is also given when a patient has complaints before menses like violent pain in the abdomen with loss of appetite, tiredness, and clouded vision.
- During menses, it is given when a patient has bearing down pain. Pain is also felt in the back.
- It is given in cough complaints when a patient has a very dry and tearing cough at night. The patient has dryness as the throat is scraped. It is a very good remedy for a barking cough with waking suddenly at 11 p.m. It is a very good remedy for whooping cough. Cough often starts in the evening at about 10 p.m. and occurs every quarter of an hour or oftener in three or four fits at a time.
- It is indicated when a patient has coughing which ends with sneezing.
- It is given when a patient has a frequent pulse, accelerated, full, hard, and slow at times small and soft.
- It is given when the patient is sleepy, yet cannot sleep. The patient lies half sleeping and half-waking. He goes to bed after 11 o’clock. He feels sleepless from 2 to 5. A patient has uneasy sleep before midnight. HE tosses in bed and quarrels in sleep.
- It is indicated before pus formation takes place in skin conditions.
- It is a very good remedy for urticaria seen during profuse menses.
- Urticaria is seen over the whole body, mostly on the inner side of limbs not on the face.
- It is a very good remedy for boils with redness and swelling. These boils are sensitive to touch.
200 potency, 1 drop or 1 globule of this potency to be taken in a cup of water is very helpful in violent symptoms.
Once an improvement is noticed, stop dosing and repeat the remedy only if symptoms return.
Precautions: This medicine should never be taken after 3 p.m and after midnight.
Manufacturer: SBL, Schwabe, Reckeweg