Silica, sometimes called Silicea terra or abbreviated as sil., is a homeopathic remedy. Silica is a mineral and is prepared from silicon dioxide found in flint, quartz, sandstone, and many other common rocks.
Homeopathic medicine operates on the principle that "like heals like." This principle means that a disease can be cured by treating it with products that produce the same symptoms as the disease. These products follow another homeopathic law, the Law of Infinitesimals. In opposition to traditional medicine, the Law of Infinitesimals states that the lower a dose of curative, the more effective it is. To achieve a very low dose, the curative is diluted many, many times until only a tiny amount remains in a huge amount of the diluting liquid.
In homeopathic terms, remedies are "proved" by experimentation and reports made by famous homeopathic practitioners. Silica was proved as a remedy by the German founder of homeopathy, Dr. Samuel Hahnemann (1775–1843).
In homeopathy, silica is often used to treat symptoms of chronic diseases where there is general weakness and a lack of either physical or emotional strength. The rocks silica comes from are hard and compact. Silica is used to strengthen many parts of the body and impart to them silica's hard, dense, strong characteristics.
Silica is used to treat conditions associated with frequent and recurrent illnesses that occur because of a weakened immune system. These include frequent colds, flu, and chronic ear infections (especially those with a thick, yellow discharge or fluid in the middle ear).
Silica is also useful in expelling material from the body. It is used to remove splinters, bits of embedded glass, and other foreign irritants. It also aids in the elimination of stools from the rectum.
Certain skin and bone complaints can also be treated with silica. These include fractures that are slow to heal, rough or peeling lips, acne, weak nails, and ingrown toenails. Other ailments for which silica is considered an appropriate homeopathic remedy are migraines that begin in the back of the head and extend to the eyes, heavy sweating around the head and neck, mumps, dental abscesses, vaginal cysts, mastitis in breast-feeding women, and general low stamina.
One diagnostic tool in homeopathy is to observe when symptoms improve or worsen as a clue to which remedy to use.
Symptoms benefiting from silica worsen:
- in cold damp weather
- in the morning
- after getting feet wet
- at the time of the new moon
- if sweating is suppressed
- from washing or swimming
- from lying on the left side
- in hot, humid weather
- with warmth
- with wrapping the head
Homeopathy also ascribes certain personality types to certain remedies. The silica personality is said to be chronically exhausted and lacking in stamina. These people are happy to sit and take no action. The silica personality type feels cold intensely. These people are often intellectually bright but lack confidence. They obsess about small details to the point of exhaustion because they fear failure and being hurt. They tend to be shy and have good manners but are also willful to the point of resenting any outside interference.
For homeopathic remedies, the remedy material is finely ground and then prepared by extensive dilutions. In the early days of homeopathy, silica was prepared from powered rock. Today, most silica is manufactured chemically.
There are two homeopathic dilution scales: the decimal (x) scale with a dilution of 1:10 and the centesimal (c) scale with a dilution of 1:100. Once the mixture is diluted, shaken, strained, then rediluted many times to reach the desired degree of potency, the final mixture is added to lactose (a type of sugar) tablets or pellets. These are then stored away from light. Silica is available commercially in tablets in many different strengths. Dosage depends on the symptoms being treated.
Homeopathic and orthodox medical practitioners agree that by the time the initial remedy solution is diluted to strengths used in homeopathic healing, it is likely that very few molecules of the original remedy remain. Homeopaths, however, believe that these remedies continue to work through an effect called "potentization" that has not yet been explained by mainstream scientists.
Homeopaths recommend that anyone with implants or artificial body components avoid silica because of its tendency to cause foreign materials to be expelled from the body.
When taken in the recommended dilute form, no side effects have been reported.
Studies on interactions between silica and conventional pharmaceuticals have not been found.
Hammond, Christopher. The Complete Family Guide to Homeopathy. London: Penguin Studio, 1995.
Lockie, Andrew, and Nicola Geddes. The Complete Guide to Homeopathy. London: Dorling Kindersley, 1995.
Foundation for Homeopathic Education and Research. 21 Kittredge St., Berkeley, CA 94704. (510) 649-8930.
International Foundation for Homeopathy. P. O. Box 7, Edmonds, WA 98020. (206) 776-4147.
National Center for Homeopathy. 801 N. Fairfax St., Suite 306, Alexandria, VA 22314. (703) 548-7790.