Borax veneta: sodium biborate

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Borax veneta: sodium biborate

The remedy Borax is a mineral salt. It is Sodium biborate, and therefore in the Natrum family of remedies, of which Natrum muriaticum is the most well-known member. According to Hahnemann, Borax was first imported from Tibet by Venetian traders, giving it the name veneta. In the United States it is known as a laundry compound, "Twenty-Mule-Team Borax," made famous by commercials on the television show, "Death Valley Days." Death Valley is a major source of Borax in this country.

Borax was originally used in crude form as a mouthwash for curing aphthous ulcers or canker sores in babies and children. It was effective because it is actually homeopathic to apthae, producing canker sores in healthy people who proved the substance, and curing them when used as a homeopathic remedy. Borax has been used mainly as a children's remedy, but it is useful in adults as well.

Borax has been given mainly on two keynotes, the canker sores and its most characteristic symptom, the dread of downward motion. Most homeopaths probably know little more about the remedy unless they have had particular cause to study it. In this article, I will explore other characteristic components of the mental and emotional picture, as well as some fascinating physical symptoms.

Let us begin with the complex of symptoms around fear of downward motion. Borax patients do not like going down in any manner. Borax babies do not like to be rocked, put down or dropped, and this can persist throughout life, showing up as fear of going downhill, going downstairs, descending in an elevator, fear of falling, and fear of flying in an airplane. There is also sometimes aggravation from going upward, or from motion in general. Children startle, fling their arms out or cling to their parents, nurse or furniture for support and shriek in terror or cry if they see or feel themselves going down. They can have motion sickness in cars, planes, elevators, boats and cable cars, but particularly when going down or up. They have airsickness and seasickness with the feeling of the bottom dropping out or sudden descent. Tabacum, Petroleum and Cocculus have motion sickness, but Borax is distinguished by fear and nausea induced by motion on this vertical axis.

Borax children are exquisitely sensitive, not just to motion, but also to light and especially to sudden noise. According to Kent, "If you compare Borax with other Natrums you will find an astonishing likeness in the nervous excitability; Nat-c. and Nat-m. Aggravation from noise, oversensitiveness to noise and over excitement of the nerves run through all the Sodium family. They are wonderfully intense people."

The startle response is profound in Borax patients. They startle very sharply and easily from a cry, a gun shot, a sudden sneeze or thunder. It makes them shriek or cry. Even the slightest noise can provoke a startle response, sometimes more than a loud noise. These children are easily woken from sleep by noise, look terrified and reach out for their mother to cling to. Dogs who have been made gun shy by sudden loud noise have also been treated successfully with Borax.

Restless and excitable, Borax patients are nervous and high strung. They are upset easily by trifles (Graphites). They are prone to anger and cursing and take offense easily. Like other Natrums, they can be critical and abusive to those who offend them. They have less of a problem with rejection and withdrawal than Natrum muriaticum, and lack the sense of the isolation of Natrum carbonicum. They do have a need for support, however, when they feel themselves going down, which might be thought of metaphorically as well as actually.

Consistent with their restlessness, Borax patients have difficulty staying on task when they try to do their work, especially mental work. It is very difficult for them to get down to business. They are easily distracted, and not very inclined to work. They go from task to task without really getting anything done, frittering away their time, being fruitlessly busy. They start many projects but do not follow through on them. It is particularly hard for Borax to do mental work in the afternoon, especially after a siesta.

Borax can be excessively irritable, peevish and quarrelsome, particularly at four P.M., or quite equally cheerful, happy and laughing. According to Kent, their mental symptoms, such as anxiety and nervous excitement, may disappear suddenly at 11 P.M.

Sometimes these states of irritability and cheerfulness alternate, particularly before and after urination and stool. Borax will be anxious, irritable, discontented and even screaming or shrieking before stool or urination, and perfectly tranquil and content, or vivacious and cheerful afterward- quite a transformation from performing simple bodily functions.

Nursing, another simple bodily function, is difficult for the Borax infant. They may cry or scream when nursing. These infants can become malnourished because of nursing problems. Red, bleeding, aphthous ulcers on the gums, cheek and tongue make the mouth very sore, and nursing is quite painful. The mouth feels hot, dry and tender. The palate is sore and wrinkled, as though it has been burnt. The tongue is cracked and ulcerated. A white, fungus like growth may be present, as Borax is also a remedy for thrush. Borax babies often refuse the breast, according to Kent, because the milk is scant, thick and tastes very bad. It may taste bitter or moldy. Kent cured a number of mothers whose babies refused the breast and the babies themselves with the same remedy, given to the mother and obtained by the baby through the breast milk. Mothers can also have pain in the opposite breast while nursing, and soreness or ulceration of the nipples. There is an empty feeling in the breasts after nursing, with a desire to compress the breast with her hand.

Borax has hair which tends to look disheveled and tangled together, with the ends difficult to separate. The head is hot. They have a headache at 10 A.M., like Natrum muriaticum, with nausea and trembling. They are also prone to herpetic eruptions about the lips like Natrum muriaticum. The eyelashes grow inward and irritate the eyelids causing them to invert. They feel a strong need to rub their eyes. The nose tends to be red, in young women (Natrum carbonicum), shining and throbbing. The tip is swollen and ulcerated. There is a sensation of cobwebs on the face and hands.

Children have colic and diarrhea, especially after fruit, with slimy, offensive or greenish stool. Apthae can appear throughout the digestive tract from mouth to anus. Nausea can come on from hard thinking or thinking of work, with trembling of the body and weakness of the knees.

Borax desires sour foods, milk and whiskey. They are aggravated by fruit, chocolate, sour foods and wine.

Borax patients have a violent, dry, hacking cough with stitching pains in the chest. The expectoration tastes moldy and their breath smells moldy. They get out of breath from going upstairs. Breathing stops while lying, causing the patient to jump up to catch his breath, causing pain in the right side. It is a remedy for pleurisy.

Borax children can be afraid to urinate because of hot, smarting pain at the opening of the urethra, causing screaming before urination. They hold the urine as long as possible, which makes them anxious and irritable, and they feel much better afterwards. Red sand can be found in the diaper of infants.

Borax women have vaginitis with a discharge like egg white, which feels like warm water flowing. The leucorrhea occurs between the periods. They have membranous dysmenorrhea, with cramps extending to the small of the back. Infertility can be a serious problem for these women. The breasts can become full of milk when not nursing. The clitoris feels distended, with a sticking sensation. Men may be indifferent or averse to sex.

The toes and fingers are inflamed, with ulceration of the tips and eczema and loss of the nails. The backs of the finger joints itch. The balls of the toes are inflamed. There is heel pain and burning pain in the big toe. The fingers and toes are sensitive to cold, with chilblains. The limbs tremble at 10 A.M.

Borax is a remedy for psoriasis and erysipelas of the face. Herpetic eruptions are common around and on the mucous membranes. The skin is dry and unhealthy and suppurates easily if infected.

Sleep is often disturbed by nightmares in children. They wake up startled and shrieking as if the have had a fright. Sleep is likely to be disturbed around 4 A.M. They may awaken also at 3 A.M. from becoming hot in bed. Dreams are either disgusting or pleasant, and may be amorous.

Borax patients can easily feel disoriented in time and space, especially after awakening from dreams.

Recognizing Borax is relatively easy if you look for the up/down axis of symptoms and the great sensitivity to noise, light and pain (Coffea). Borax is so sensitive that everything startles them. The sensitivity is also seen in the tendency to canker sores and herpes on the mucous membranes. The combination of dread of downward motion, startling from sudden noise and apthae almost always leads to the prescription of Borax, especially in a patient who resembles other remedies in the Natrum family.

International Foundation for Homeopathy.

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By Robert Ullman

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