Group II – Poor Physical or Mental Growth

Homeopathic remedies for poor physical or mental growth in children, include Baryta carb, Borax, Natrum mur, Sepia, Carbo veg and Aurum met. …

Baryta carbonica. [Bar-c]

      The second group are all very much of the same type; they all apply more or less to the backward child, either a case of delayed development, or a definite mental defective. The outstanding drug in this group is BARYTA CARBONICA, which is more typical of the backward child than any other drug in our Materia Medica.

The characteristics of the BARYTA CARB child are very definite it is a dwarfish child, dwarfish mentally and physically. I have never seen a BARYTA CARB child who was up to standard height, but they may be up to standard weight. The next glaring characteristic is that the BARYTA CARB child is always an excessively shy child.

That shy characteristic covers quite a lot of the BARYTA CARB child It is nervous of strangers; scared of being left alone; very often it is terrified of going out of doors; a town-bred child going to the country is terrified in the open fields. They often get night terrors without any clear idea of what the terror is; and they always have a fear of people.

Another characteristic linked with that fear of people is that the BARYTA CARB. children are always touchy; they do not like being interfered with; they are very easily irritated. The next thing is that throughout their lives they have been late in everything-late in speaking, late in walking, late in dentition slow in gaining weight.

Another marked feature is an exaggeration of the normal child’s forgetfulness. Every child is forgetful, every child is inattentive, but in the BARYTA CARB. child this is very much exaggerated. If they are playing they never stick to it for any length of time, they pick up a toy, play with it, and drop it; you may hold their attention for a minute or two, then they turn round and look at the nurse or mother or whoever happens to be there.

They pick up a thing from your desk and fumble with it for a minute or two, and the next moment they are playing with the handle of a drawer. It is that lack of concentration that is the outstanding characteristic.

As they get older the same report comes from school-the child is inattentive, never concentrates on a lesson, appears to learn something today and has completely forgotten it tomorrow. The mother would teach the child its alphabet a dozen times over and ten minutes after it knew it, it would be allowed to go out and play and half an hour later it was all forgotten.

Another thing is that they are very easily tired out; any attempt at sustained effort exhausts them. When they are young they become cross and irritable as they get older any sustained effort brings on very troublesome headaches-usually a frontal headache with a feeling as if the forehead were bulging and sitting right down over the eyes, and it is awful effort for them to keep the eyes open.

The next point about them-and it is pretty constant to all the BARYTA CARB children is that they are liable to get colds, and their colds are characteristic. They always start as a sore throat, and most BARYTA CARB. children have hypertrophied tonsils.

To the hypertrophy of their tonsils can be linked the other glandular tissues; the BARYTA CARB. child very probably has enlarged cervical glands, possibly enlarged abdominal glands. With the enlarged abdominal glands linked the fact that the child stands badly, there is often marked lordosis and a very prominent abdomen.

With the abdomen condition is the symptom that the BARYTA CARB. Child is usually worse after eating-more inattentive, more irritable, more touchy, and very often more tired after eating.

The next thing about them-linked with the tonsillar hypertrophy is that if that get enlarged tonsils and get cold they are very liable to develop a quinsy. Here is a tip that is worth remembering. To a typical BARYTA CARB. child with an acute tonsillitis it is wiser to give a dose of BARYTA MURIATICA rather than BARYTA CARB. during the acute phase; and very often they will need an intercurrent dose of PSORINUM after the BARYTA MUR. before reverting to BARYTA CARB.

It is quite easy to tack on the PSORINUM to the BARYTA CARB. because many of these children tend to get a crusty skin eruption on the head and crusty margins to the eyelids, they may have a definite blepharitis, and most BARYTA CARB. children are worse from washing-all of which are definite PSORINUM symptoms also.

They are very liable to get intensely irritable skin eruptions, but with intense irritation, and that again is liable to be worse after they have been bathed.

As would be expected with that type of child with low physique, they are chilly, are if they are exposed to cold their tonsils become affected. One other features of the BARYTA CARB. children is a marked tendency to salivation; dribbling is a common characteristic of mentally defective children.

Above are the keynotes to the “mentally defective” group of drugs, and of these BARYTA CARB. is by far the most commonly indicated. Following that come other drugs mentioned previously starting will BORAX.

Borax. [Bor]

      The feature that makes one consider whether a child is a BARYTA CARB or BORAX type is the manner in which the child is frightened. They are both scared children and they are very often quite similar to look at, but whereas in the BARYTA CARB. child anything strange in its surroundings scares it, in the BORAX child it is any sudden noise in its vicinity which simply terrifies it.

The tendency to salivation and dribbling is equally marked in BORAX, but in the majority of BORAX children one is dealing with a definite stomatitis, and associated with the salivation there are white spots on the tongue pearly spots round the margins of the tongue, spots on the lips and on the inside of the cheeks.

There is a very similar history in regard to night terrors in the BORAX, child but there is usually an exciting cause in these cases; the child has been doing too much during the day, or has been overexcited in the evening, and then it is almost sure to have a marked night terror.

With the BORAX child there is not the same degree of inability to learn. The child is simply idle. If he would give his heart to it he could learn, but he is just idle. These children never settle to anything, and even at play they do not persevere but get bored and change from one thing to another.

Another thing that distinguishes them from BARYTA CARB. types is that BORAX children are much more irritable, and their irritability does not end up in weeping as it very often does in BARYTA CARB, but it ends up in a violent passion the child kicks and screams.

The next point which distinguishes the BORAX child from the BARYTA CARB. child is that the BARYTA CARB. Child tends to get a generalised skin eruption, or a very definite crusty eruption on the scalp, but the BORAX child is much more likely to get herpetic eruptions-very often herpetic spots about the lips, or a generalised rash of small herpetic spots on the body.

BORAX cases are also more liable to get acute digestive upsets than BARYTA CARB. types which have the typical chronic constipation, the hard stool. BORAX is liable to sudden attacks of diarrhoea and vomiting. Another characteristic of BORAX which distinguishes it from BARYTA CARB. is the peculiar BORAX sensitiveness of fruit, with violent colic after eating fruit colic followed by diarrhoea.

Associated with the tendency to inflammation of the mucous membranes, acute stomatitis etc., it is very common in BORAX children to find either enuresis or pain on micturition; pain on micturition is much more common, and very often it is without any definite urinary infection.

Another thing that distinguishes the BARYTA CARB child when a little older is that the BARYTA CARB child gets depressing frontal headache from over-study; whereas the BORAX child tends to become sick, and tends to get definite nausea from intense concentration.

Then there is the final clinching points in connection with the BORAX child, and that is the notorious BORAX aggravation from downward motion.

BARYTA CARB children often get train-sick BORAX children will get train-sick and car-sick too, but BORAX children have a peculiar terror of downward motion, and it is that terror much more than the actual feeling of discomfort which is the characteristic of the BORAX children.

It occurs in numerous circumstances; the typical pointer is the child who screams time it is laid down in bed if the nurse does not lower is very gently; but it is equally marked in older children who scream on going down in a lift. it is the peculiar terror rather than the physical discomfort, which distinguishes BORAX from any other drug.

One useful practical tip is in connection with air-sickness. There are various drugs fro train-sickness and sea-sickness but BORAX acts in the majority of cases of airsickness, because it is the sudden dip which upsets most people and particularly the terror of falling. Air-sickness has been completely overcome by three or four doses of BORAX before travelling by air.

BORAX is like BARYTA CARB in being sensitive to cold, but it has much more sensitiveness to damp than BARYTA CARB.

Douglas Borland
Douglas Borland M.D. was a leading British homeopath in the early 1900s. In 1908, he studied with Kent in Chicago, and was known to be one of those from England who brought Kentian homeopathy back to his motherland.
He wrote a number of books: Children's Types, Digestive Drugs, Pneumonias
Douglas Borland died November 29, 1960.