The skin accounts for 16 percent of the total weight of the human body and as such may be described as its largest organ. Stretched out flat, it would cover 15–20 square feet
(2–2.6 square meters). It protects the internal organs of the body from environmental impact and injury, and acts as a sensory organ, regulating body temperature and metabolism for example, the control of bodily fluids and elimination of waste.The skin contains blood vessels, lymph vessels, and nerve endings that perform its sensory function, glands that manufacture sebum to keep the skin supple and waterproof, and follicles that produce hair and nails. Homeopathic practitioners tend to regard skin complaints as an outer manifestation of what is going on within the body, and look for underlying causes of skin eruptions. Stress,poor diet, and allergies, as well as infections, may all cause outbreaks. Skin conditions may be aggravated by factors
such as lack of exercise; eating sugary foods, refined carbohydrates, or other foods; caffeine and alcohol; constipation; the use of cosmetics; and contact irritants
in the environment.


The term acne includes common blemishes such as blackheads (comedones), whiteheads (milia), and yellowheads (pustules). Acne is associated with high hormone levels—for example, at puberty—that increase production of sebum, the skin’s oily secretion, leading to clogged pores. If pores become infected, pimples form. Acne may be exacerbated by taking certain drugs or by stress. If there is a firm swelling beneath the skin, treat as for boils (see below).

Sunlight in moderation and fresh air are beneficial. Avoid refined carbohydrates, chocolate, cheese, nuts, carbonated citrus drinks, and processed foods. Wash affected areas thoroughly twice a day. Do not scrub the skin, since this spreads infection, or pick pimples and risk scarring. Use commercial preparations sparingly.

If there is scarring or large, fluid-filled pimples (cysts), treat as for rosacea. If pimples persist for 14 days, or are causing distress, see a doctor.


Mild eczema is common, especially in children. The skin is inflamed and itchy, possibly with small pimples and scaly patches. If scratched, the skin may bleed. Eczema is commonly found in the flexures, such as the bend of an elbow, and on the face, but it can occur anywhere. It may be an allergic reaction to a variety of chemical irritants, plants, food, or metals, or it may be hereditary. Eczema may be exacerbated by stress, hormonal changes, or dietary factors.

Avoid known irritants. Use moisturizing ointments, preferably paraffin-based, to keep the skin soft. Use emulsifying ointments for washing rather than soap. Wear cotton next to the skin. Avoid potentially irritating foods, such as dairy products, one at a time for a month, and see if the condition improves.

If the skin produces a watery discharge, or becomes infected, creating a yellow discharge, or if irritation causes sleeplessness, treat as for severe eczema.


A boil is a firm swelling (nodule) beneath the skin caused by the infection of a hair follicle. Thick, white or yellow pus accumulates and comes to a head. Boils may be associated with illness, being run-down, fatigue, or stress. Recurrent boils may be due to an infection or they may be a symptom of diabetes.

Bathe a boil with a solution of hypericum and calendula. Never squeeze a boil, and if it bursts, let it drain naturally. Avoid handling food after dealing with boils.

If boils recur, are accompanied by fever or severe pain, or do not heal within a week, consult a doctor.


This condition consists of raised red patches—sometimes with paler centers—that itch intensely. It may be caused by food allergy, certain drugs, bites or stings, or heat, cold, or sunlight. Urticaria may also be a symptom of stress or leaky gut syndrome.

Take a cool shower or place a covered ice-pack on the affected area. Urtica ointment may relieve itchiness.

If the eyes, lips, or throat swell dramatically, call doctor, and take Apis 30c every minute until help arrives.


Cold sores are blisters on and around the mouth caused by a virus. They are triggered by being run-down or by hot, cold, or windy weather. Accompanying symptoms include ulcers, inflamed gums, a furry tongue, and mild fever.

Avoid eating peanuts, chocolate, seeds, and cereals.


A wart is caused by a virus that causes cells to multiply rapidly, forming a raised lump. Warts on the feet (verrucas) tend to grow inward as a result of the pressure placed on them.

Cover a wart, but not the surrounding skin, with a fabric adhesive bandage. Drip thuja mother tincture on to it twice daily. Over-the-counter treatments can be used with homeopathic ones, except on facial warts. Keep treatments away from the eyes.

If the condition does not improve, and especially if a wart changes size or color, or if it itches or bleeds, consult a doctor.


Dandruff is characterized by a flaking scalp, which is sometimes itchy and red. It may be caused by seborrheic dermatitis, a form of eczema. More rarely, it may be symptomatic of psoriasis or a fungal infection.

Reduce your intake of refined carbohydrates and animal fats. If the whole scalp itches, place a cold compress soaked in olive oil on the head overnight; wash off with a pure soap shampoo. If all else fails, use a shampoo containing selenium, but follow instructions carefully. Apply calendula ointment to itchy areas around the hair line.


Old hair is lost as new hair grows. Growth may slow sometimes so that hair is lost faster than it is replaced. Thinning often occurs with age, especially in men, and may be hereditary. Hair loss may be associated with thyroid problems, anemia, vitamin or mineral deficiency, stress or shock, or certain drugs.

Avoid processes such as dyeing or perming, and do not wash or condition the hair too frequently. Let the hair dry naturally. Scalp massage may help. Eat plenty of protein.

If the condition does not improve, or if there is no explanation for sudden hair loss, consult a doctor.

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