top of page
Natural Herbs

Herbal Medicine 

From the humble chamomile to the misunderstood dandelion, our native flora offers an abundance of medicine on our doorstep. All we need to do is to understand and respect how plants can work for us.

What is herbal medicine
Is herbal medicine safe

What is herbal medicine?

What are the benefits of seeing a herbalist?

How is seeing a herbalist different than buying herbs over-the-counter?

What sort of health problems can be treated with herbal medicine?

How do herbs work? Do they work?

Is herbal medicine safe?

What if I am already taking medication?

What is herbal medicine?

Herbal Medicine is the oldest medical therapy in the world.  It is the science and art of using herbs in support of health and wellbeing. Herbal Medicine uses the natural plant and plant extracts (which many pharmaceutical drugs are based on), which contain many constituents that make them so effective in treating disease. Many of these plants are on our doorstep, daisy, elderberry, elderflower, hawthorn, plantain, honeysuckle all contain medicine. We pass them everyday and don't realise or appreciate their healing potential!

 

Herbal Medicine combines ancient tradition, clinical experience and modern scientific research. Described as an ‘alternative’ medicine, herbal medicine is in fact still the most widely used form of medicine on the planet. Modern research is also continuously being used to establish the safety and effectiveness of many herbal remedies. 

What are the benefits of seeing a herbalist?

While herbalists recognise the benefits modern medicine can have, herbal medicine provides a more holistic approach to treating people. It embraces the larger patterns of imbalance that can be present in the human body, alongside addressing symptoms and manifestations of disease. Working with someone, like Geri, who has been trained in medical sciences and herbalism can be both empowering and enlightening.  It also ensures you are making the safest and most educated decisions in the use of herbs to support your health and wellbeing.

In addition to specialising in the medicinal application of herbs, herbalists appreciate that our life experiences can shape and craft our physical wellbeing.  We provide individuals with the opportunity to share their concerns, joys, sadness, stress, in a safe and supportive environment.

 

How is seeing a herbalist different than buying herbs over-the-counter?

In the last 30 years we have seen an explosion in the natural products and dietary supplements market. The Irish vitamin and mineral market alone is worth over 30 million! Alongside this we have an information-saturated market which can make understanding which dietary and herbal supplements to take even more confusing. Making choices about your health through over-the-counter decisions and without proper guidance and information about the herbs can often times end in ineffectiveness, disappointment, or could make matters worse. Not to mention how expensive it can become when you seeking some help and not getting anywhere!

In this modern over-the-counter herbal supplement market, there can be significant detachment from traditional preparations, or ways in which herbs have been consumed for thousands of years. When it comes to herbal preparations, this is a complete misunderstanding about the nature of herbs and how they work in the human body. Herbalists are trained to understand herbs and how they work with the body, recognising that herbs don't just do one thing and that they can work differently for different people. Herbalists also take the time to understand the specific needs, circumstances and make-up of the individual, leading to more effective application of those herbs.

What sort of health problems can be treated with herbal medicine?

Herbal treatment can be helpful for most health problems, either alone or in conjunction with other treatments. Conditions that respond well to herbal treatment include:

  • Asthma and other respiratory problems

  • Common Cold, Coughs, and Flu

  • Poor circulation, varicose veins and angina

  • Depression, anxiety and sleep

  • Digestive disorders such as IBS , Diarrhoea and Constipation

  • Headaches and migraines

  • Hormonal imbalances; Irregular periods, PMT, perimenopausal/menopausal symptoms

  • Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia

  • Skin problems such as, dermatitis, eczema and acne

 

If you would like to understand how herbal medicine could help with your complaint, Geri is always happy to answer your query by email or phone (find the contact details below).

 

How do herbs work? Do they work?

Let's just state this up front. Herbs are not drugs and they do not work like drugs. Many people expect them to. If you are looking for that quick fix to feel better then herbal medicine might not be for you. Herbs or their efficacy should not be assessed on how drugs work. Pharmaceutical drugs aim for specific molecular targets, often times manipulating a specific outcome (and pharmaceuticals can be life-saving due to how specific they can be and how fast they can act!).

Herbs, on the other hand, can contain hundreds of chemical compounds. Each of these compounds is represented in various amounts depending on where the herb was grown, when and how the herb was harvested and processed, the form that it is in (capsule, tincture, tea), and how long it has been sitting on the shelf. These chemical compounds are present in an herbal supplement in much lower quantities than owhat might be being prescribed by herbalist in clinic.

Due to these factors, herbs can work in much less 'specific' ways than drugs. They are also much more subtle and often times much more gentle. Depending on the condition, they can be slower to act and best used in conjunction with an understanding of the patterns of imbalance they can correct. Geri utilises  a therapeutic model of Western herbalism known as the 'tissue state model'. The tissue state model recognises three distinct imbalances in the body; hot/cold, moist/dry, tense/relaxed. These patterns are identified through consultation, and herbs that have a corresponding correctional attribute are applied. For example, cooling herbs for hot, irritable states, or stimulating herbs when there is depression or lack of function. Because herbs are so broad spectrum, they are best at addressing these bigger-picture patterns.

Additionally, herbs may form only part of the picture in the overall treatment plan. Changes to nutritional or dietary habits, as well as your lifestyle may also be required, meaning herbs may only as effective as the client allows them to be. You can't expect to take herbs and continue negative habits and expect that the herbs will take care of everything on their own. While this may be the case when taking pharmaceuticals, it is absolutely not the case with herbs.

Is herbal medicine safe?

The herbal approach prescribes safe, non-toxic medicinal plants which work with and support the body's own system to help overcome health problems.  It is a safe and highly effective form of treatment for many health problems, ranging from the common cold to osteoporosis. It is suitable for people of all ages.

 

Medical Herbalists are trained in the same diagnostic techniques as orthodox doctors and combine this with a holistic approach during treatment. Identifying the cause of the problem rather than just the symptoms, medical herbalists treat the person as a whole and not just the illness. Medical Herbalists are trained to identify any potential interactions between orthodox and herbal medicines and to know when a condition is best referred to a doctor or another therapist. In Ireland, the majority of professionally qualified Medical Herbalists belong to the National Institute of Medical Herbalists and can be identified by the letters MNIMH after their names.

 

What if I am already taking medication?

Where orthodox medicines are being taken, herbal medicine can still provide excellent complementary support. Medical Herbalists are trained to identify any potential interactions between orthodox and herbal medicines.

Herbal medicine can be a great alternative to orthodox medicine approaches. With less side affects and a more personalised perscription that aims to treat the cause and not just the symptoms.

What are the benefits of seeing a herbalist?
How do herbs work? Do they work?
What sort of health problems can be treated with herbal medicine?
How is seeing a herbalist different than buying herbs over-the-counter?
Lemon Tea

An opportunity for you to share with Geri, your health and wellness concerns with  and any other information relevant to your story. Bespoke herbal protocol specific to you and your needs.

What Our Clients Say

Natural Herbs
"After many years of going to Geri I would highly recommed her to anyone." She has made me bespoke tinctures and remedies and cured ailments that previous visits to doctors had no luck with. I have expereinced first hand the positive effects of herbs, not to mention Geri's highly professional, kind and thorough approach."

Elizabeth, Cork

Contact details
bottom of page