Are the remedies safe for pregnant women, babies and pets?

Are the remedies preserved in alcohol suitable for pregnant women, babies, children and pets? family

Traditionally stock remedies were make up in a ratio of two drops of mother tinctures into 30 ml of 40 per cent proof brandy. It was switched in the 1990s to a 27 per cent proof brandy. The mother tincture itself is 20 per cent proof, but there is so little of it in each bottle of stock remedy that basically the liquid in the average stock bottle is either 27 per cent proof, or 40 per cent proof.

However, if people make up mixing bottles (two drops of each selected remedy into 30 ml water), don’t add extra brandy as a preservative, and take the remedies in the way suggested (four drops at least four times a day) to a cup of water (let say 250ml), the daily dose of alcohol is actually near zero, which is why the remedies are considered safe for pregnant women, small babies, children and pets.

We were told there is more naturally-occurring alcohol in a ripe banana, or a splash of vinegar, or a glass of fresh orange juice, than there is in four drops from a mixing bottle.

If you want to take the remedies using ‘the glass of water method’ which is to put two drops of each selected remedy (4 drops for crisis formula) in a glass of water and sip as often as required until relief is obtained, we will suggest putting the drops into a hot drink (milk, tea, etc.) and by doing so, it has the advantage of evaporating the alcohol. We sometimes recommend this method to people who for one reason or another dislike the alcohol content.

Let’s read some FAQs pertaining to alcohol from Bach Centre’s website:

Do you need to add alcohol to a mixing bottle?
Alcohol helps stop the water from going off. Many people add some brandy or other strong spirit to a mixed bottle, especially if the bottle will not be kept cool – if, say, they intend to carry it about in their pocket all the time. A teaspoon of brandy – about 5mls – is enough.
Other ‘non-alcoholic’ ways of keeping the contents fresh include keeping the bottle in a fridge, or adding a teaspoon of cider vinegar or vegetable glycerine.

Is it safe to take the remedies if you are pregnant?
Yes, it is safe. The alcohol in the undiluted remedy can usually be ignored as the amount in a dose is so small. However, if you have any worries on this score we would always advise that you talk to your doctor or midwife.

Is it safe to take the remedies if you are a recovering alcoholic, given the brandy content?
If remedies are mixed into treatment bottles and taken four drops at a time in the usual way the amount of alcohol taken is very small.
Nevertheless, taking even a minute quantity of alcohol may have a psychological impact on someone who has decided to give up completely. In addition there is a very powerful drug (known as Antabuse) which can cause a violent reaction in someone drinking even a tiny quantity of alcohol. For these reasons it is best in these circumstances to consult your qualified medical practitioner before taking the remedies.

When you do so you might explain the dilution process and mention that if the remedies are dropped into a hot drink most or all of the alcohol will evaporate, and it is of course possible to administer the remedies externally by rubbing them on the pulse points. But if in doubt, ask your alcohol advisor.

Is it safe to take the remedies alongside other kinds of medicine?
Normally there is no problem with taking Bach remedies alongside other medicines. The active ingredient in a flower remedy is the energy from the plant, not a physical substance, so it will not interfere with the physical action of the other medicine. Nor will the other medicine stop the Bach remedy from working.
The only point of caution concerns the alcohol used to bottle and preserve the remedies. This can usually be ignored as the amount of alcohol in a single dose is minute. But you should check with your prescribing doctor, pharmacist or health advisor before taking an alcohol-based Bach remedy if you have been advised to avoid all traces of alcohol.

Last but not least, for people with a moral or religious objection to alcohol may find a solution in adding remedies to boiling drinks or using them externally. Some religions give special dispensation for the medical use of alcohol. Consult your spiritual advisor if you are not sure where you stand.

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