SILICON DIOXIDE, SiO2.
This remedy, which was first proved by Hahnemann, is to be spelled S-i-l-i-c-a and pronounced Silica, and your pharmacist should be warned that the remedy will not be accepted if the label on the bottle has any more letters on it. I am well aware that many works on Materia Medica call it by another name, but that circumstance does not make it right, and I request that you call it Silica, and nothing else, unless you give it the full term of Hahnemann’s when you can refer to it as Silica terra.
Silica is a deep-acting remedy, and is especially adapted to scrofulous children, to nervous, irritable people and to supportive processes with tendency to fistulous borrowings. There is a general aggravation of the symptoms at night and aggravation from open air (5), from cold and wet weather (9) and from change of weather to damp (9). There is also aggravation from, pressure, from lying on th painful side, from wine (5), and, according to the books, a general aggravation at new or full moon (141).
An important thing to keep in mind in reference to Silica is the decided aggravation from cold air in any from (5) and the relief from warm wraps or applications (10); also remember it where one takes cold easily (5), especially, perhaps, from uncovering the head or feet.
It is of value for nervous exhaustion (156), with numbness (146) and pricking in limbs which go to sleep easily (71), especially the side on which one lies, restlessness (160), sensitiveness to noise and extreme sensitiveness to tough (166).
Silica is to be thought of in epilepsy (66), the aura
beginning in the solar plexus, and for epilepsy following injuries to the spine, especially when pressure on the spine cause pain in the head (171).
The Silica patient is nervous and starts at every sound, and it is useful for the chronic effects of fright (80) and nervous shock.
The headaches of the remedy are severe, often due to nervous exhaustion (96), accompanied by soreness and flickering before the eyes and followed by dimness of vision (104). The headaches are occipital (100) or begin in the occiput, pass over the vertex and settle over one eye (Dunham says r.), and are often accompanied by a cold feeling (90) rising from the back or nape of the neck to the vertex. At times there is a tearing or throbbing as if the head would burst (104).
The headaches are aggravated by mental exertion (93), from motion (96), light (95) or noise (96)l they are worse from cold (93) or uncovering the head and better from heat (92) or hot applications. Many books state that the headaches are better from binding the head up tightly (93) in warm wraps, but you can remember that in this remedy it is the heat rather than the tight bandage that affords relief.
In infants the fontanelles remain open too long (91), the head is large and the rest of the body emaciated, the scalp is sensitive to touch (91) or to pressure and we are apt to find offensive eruptions on the occiput, especially in scrofulous or other conditions of malnutrition. A condition calling for this remedy, especially in scrofulous and rachitic states, is perspiration about the head.
(A differentiation that may be made in reference to sweat about the head in infants, while not always very close practically, may be of help in the selection of one of two remedies.
In Silica this sweat is profuse, offensive and sour- smelling, especially noticeable when sleeping and is general on the forehead and whole head and down the neck.
Calcarea carb. has profuse sweat of the head when sleeping, it is especially on the back of the head, it may be sour but it is not offensive. The build of the child will also be an aid in the differentiation. One other thought and that is, under Silica the forehead and head are often cold but become warm when lightly covered.)
Silica has an offensive foot-sweat (1850 that causes soreness of the feet and between the toes. It is also of value for troubles resulting from the sudden suppression of habitual sweating of the feet.
The eyes of Silica are dry with a feeling of a splinter or of sand in them (77), with “lachrymation in the open air” (Lippe). There are fiery sparks (78) or black specks before the eyes (77), or blackness before the eyes especially after headache. It is of value for ulceration of the cornea (77), senile cataract (73) with ciliary neuralgia (75), aggravation from ” any draught of air or just before a storm” (Hering), for lachrymal fistula and caries of the orbit.
Silica is of value for caries of the mastoid (64) and for acute and chronic inflammation of the middle ear, especially with suppuration and offensive discharge (63).
There is deafness (63) and roaring in the ears (65) with involvement of the Eustachian tube and usually associated with naso-pharyngeal catarrh.
It is of great value for necrosis of the lower jaw (123) and for abscesses at the roots of teeth with aggravation from cold air (187) and relief from holding warm water in the mouth.
The diarrhoea calling for Silica is found especially in scrofulous children with offensive perspiration, and it frequently occurs during teething or from exposure to cold air. The movements are frequent and putrid or cadaverous-smelling (59).
In constipation calling for the remedy, there is lack of expulsive power so that even a soft stool is passed with difficulty (34), or the stools are hard and large (35) with frequent urging and only partly satisfactory results in spite of great effort, followed by burning in anus.
There are two principal reasons for the constipation of Silica: one, the lack of expulsive power, the other, the irritability or spasm of the sphincter (34) whereby the party- protruded stool is forced back again. They strain so hard that the abdominal muscles becomes sore and lame, until finally, when success seems assured, the constriction of the anus nullifies all their efforts.
It is a frequently indicated remedy in fissures of the anus (159), with irritability, and for haemorrhoids (86) that are very painful, better from warm applications, and associated with constipation and spasms of the sphincter anus (158).
Copious urine seems to be the rule in Silica and it has been used for nocturnal enuresis (198), especially in children suffering from worms (208).
It is a remedy to be thought of for elephantiasis of the scrotum, with burning and stinging pains relieved by warmth, and for chronic gonorrhoea (83), with thick, fetid, purulent discharge.
The menses may be scanty or profuse and are often preceded by icy-coldness of the whole body.
The leucorrhoea is usually chronic, purulent or milky (126) acrid and excoriation (126), ” with smarting on urinating” (Minton) (126) and paroxysmal discharge (126).
Expectoration under Silica is thick, yellow, purulent and usually offensive (69). It is of value in bronchorrhoea (26), for “pulmonary affections of stone-cutters” (Hering) and in the supportive stage of phthisis (149) with night-sweats (185).
In the breast Silica is of value in the beginning of mastitis (22), with relief from hot application, and for hard, indurated tumors(23), with sharp, stinging pains. It follows well after Conium.
It is of great value in diseased conditions of the bones; caries, especially of long bones, diseases of the spine, Pott’s disease (152) and rachitic, with the offensive sweat about the head at night, body being dry.
It is of value in suppurative processes generally, “whether in the soft tissue, periosteum or the bone itself” (Dunham), especially with fistulous openings that refuse to heal, hectic fever, sweat, offensive and ichorous discharge and the general aggravation from cold.
(Both Silica and Hepar Sulph. are useful in supportive processes and both have aggravation from cold and relief from warmth and hot application, but Hepar sulph. has rich, thick, creamy pus, while in Silica it is thin, bloody or like bloody water).
Silica is indicated in all forms of abscess, including those of the knee and hip-joint, carbuncles, especially after the removal of the core, felons (81), glandular swellings that threaten to suppurate and fistulous openings wherever found, the especial indications in this latter condition, besides the relief from heat, being the character of the discharge and that the opening seemingly refuses to heal an the fissure grows larger and larger. Small wounds heal with difficulty and threaten to suppurate (183) and Silica is a remedy to be thought of for the results of impure vaccination (205). It is also to be thought of for the bad effects of foreign bodies in the eye (74), or penetrating the flesh, as needles, splinters or in-growing toe- nails (141).
The finger nails grow yellow, become brittle the corrugated (141).
Silica is antidotal to Hepar. sulph. to a degree.
” It is” also ” an antidote to Mercury when it has produced bad effects in large doses, but it does not follow well after Mercury, nor does Mercury follow well after Silica. Fluoric acid follows well after Silica and antidotes the bad effects from too frequent repetition of Silica” (Lippe).
I use Silica 30th.