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Herbal medicine

What is Herbal medicine?

Everyone knows that plants provide many nutrients that can keep us healthy. They provide not only vitamins but many other micronutrients too. That other foods do not contain.

Culinary herbs such as parsley, basil, thyme and garlic have medicinal properties. Other herbal medicines perhaps may not taste so nice. But long ago we found that they are beneficial for health. In fact humans have probably always used plants as medicine. And, in many parts of the world herbal medicine is still the leading source of medicine.

Modern herbal medicine combines the knowledge of past generations of herbalists with modern scientific methods. This allows properly trained herbalists to provide safe and effective herbal remedies.

How is herbal medicine different to conventional healthcare?

The human body has the ability to heal itself. Given the right nutrients it will often do so. Sometimes it just needs a helping hand, or herb. A gentle nudge with gentle herbs.

In complex cases a herbalist will look for and treat the root causes of the problem. Not suppressing symptoms but removing the cause. This leads to lasting improvements in health and vitality. And greater resilience in the future.

A herbalist views the body and mind as a whole. What affects one, affects the other. Compare this to modern medicine, with a different doctor for every part of the body.

What happens at a consultation?

During your consultation Nikki will carry out a comprehensive health assessment. This includes your medical history, family history, diet, lifestyle, medications and supplements. As well as the quality of your sleep, how much energy you have. Along with an overview of your general health and current health concerns.

All consultations are private and strictly confidential. The first one lasts between an hour to an hour and a half. So, you will have ample opportunity to ask any questions you might have. After the consultation Nikki will write a herbal prescription for your own blend of herbal medicines. She will be sure to choose herbs that work with any current medications you may be taking. She can also discuss your agreed individual treatment plan.

Where can I buy herbal medicine?

Our herbal dispensary can usually supply all you need. If you prefer you can source your own herbal remedies. Our dispensary mainly stocks herbal tinctures. They are of the highest quality and are organic where possible. Sometimes Nikki may suggest herbal teas, capsules, powders or tablets. Or, topical treatments such as herbal cream, gel, lotion, oil or ointment. For people that prefer using non-alcohol containing medicines, glycerites or aromatic waters may be appropriate. Nikki will explain how to take the medicine.

How often do I need to see the herbalist?

It is usual to have a follow up appointment between two to four weeks after the initial consultation. At this appointment Nikki will asses your progress and if necessary make any changes to the medicine or management plan. These appointments are usually shorter than the initial appointment, lasting up to 45 mins. Subsequent appointments are arranged as necessary.

How do arrange repeat prescriptions of herbal medicine?

You can arrange repeat prescriptions by email or phone. Collect them in person or they can be sent in the post if an appointment is not required. But, longer term treatments will require periodic follow up appointments to monitor progress. The herbal medicine may be changed after a consultation so that it remains appropriate to current circumstances.

How long does herbal treatment last?

The length of treatment can vary. Generally the longer a person has had a particular condition or problem the longer it can take to resolve. Nikki can give an indication of the expected treatment timescale at the first consultation.

What conditions are suitable for treatment with herbal medicine?

Herbal medicine can address acute conditions such as an acute urinary tract infection. But it is more often chosen to manage or reverse chronic illness, such as autoimmunity, menstrual difficulties or skin conditions.

If you would like to know more about how herbal medicine can help you, please contact Nikki, using the contact form.

What qualifications does the herbalist have?

Nikki qualified as a medical herbalist in 2002. She is a member of the National Institute of Medical Herbalists (NIMH) and the College of Practitioners of Phytotherapy (CPP). She has further qualifications in Nutritional Medicine (PGDip). Nikki regularly attends seminars and workshops to ensure her knowledge and expertise is up to date. Most recently she trained in Functional and Evolutionary Medicine, on Chris Kresser’s ADAPT training course.

Please note: Nikki cannot answer questions about individual medical cases or make specific recommendations about therapy unless you are currently under her professional care.