Sunday Health Tip: An Introduction to Flower Essences
Posted Oct 30 2011 11:03am
I thought it was about time to introduce my readership to Flower Essences, so I asked Dr. Connie Hernandez, ND, to write an article about them. She used them as a healing tool to help me on my journey to fertility , and ever since, I’ve been fascinated by them. I did mention them in my post, “ Natural Remedies for Grief ,” but I thought it would take a real expert to do them justice.
Among the many types of remedies that we use as naturopathic doctors, flower essences are some of my favorites. Often people hear the words “flower essence” and believe that the words refer to aromatic essential oils. But flower essences are not aromatic. They are a type of energy medicine, as is homeopathy. Flower essences differ from homeopathy in both the way that they are made and the way that they are prescribed. These energy medicines are similar in that they have little effect if not vibrationally resonant with the person taking them, but can have dramatic impact when well chosen.
Flower essences use purified water and sunlight to extract the essential qualities of the flower. The water is then generally stabilized with brandy, although vinegar or glycerine may be used for people who do not tolerate any amount of alcohol. (A one ounce dosing bottle will have 1/3 ounce of alcohol as a stabilizer, and the dosage will generally be 3 drops under the tongue, or in a glass of water. Remedies can also be dosed by dropping drops in bathwater.) With energy medicines, each dose is like an energetic adjustment. It is dosing more frequently, rather than taking more drops, that gives a greater effect. It is helpful to repeat a dosage 3 times a day, or as needed in a given situation.
Flower essences most effectively address mental and emotional limitations. If you scan a flower essence repertory, you will see essences that address fears and anxieties, oversensitivity, jealousy, inability to focus, lack of self esteem, tension in the mind and body, grief, and so on. A flower essence remedy will sometimes consist of a single essence, but will often be what I call a “bouquet in a bottle,” with several essences addressing a central theme.
I generally help clients name their flower essence and formulate an affirmation to repeat when they take the essence. Children especially enjoy choosing a sticker to affix to their bottle of essences. (Adults do too!). Children can safely take charge of their own essence bottle, and love the control that that gives them over their treatment. Flower essences are completely safe for them, and the worst that could happen is that they could spill the remedy or consume the entire bottle, thus getting 1/3 of an ounce of alcohol. I haven’t seen that happen, as children are generally quite concerned with taking the essence the right way.
There are now many sources from which to obtain flower essences. Many people know Rescue Remedy, which is a combination essence developed by Dr. Bach, a 19th century British physician who moved from practicing conventional medicine to homeopathy to the exclusive use of flower essences for the treatment of all conditions. The Bach essences were the first essences to be popularized in the United States. In my clinic, I have chosen to use essences from manufacturers with whom I have had personal contact, or manufacturers whose essences have been proven effective in practices and hospitals, or whose research is known to me. I rely heavily on the Bach essences, the California essences of the Flower Essence Society, the Australian Bush essences, and the Alaskan essences. Recently I have spent time in the Inner Hebrides training in the use of Orchid Essences, which represent a whole new level of use of essences…. but that’s for another time.
Flower essences are safe, effective and wonderful for home use. Pick up a resource book, and get to know the essences by starting with a single essence that speaks to a concern of yours or your child’s. You’ll be glad you did! – Dr. Connie Hernandez, ND