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Apis mellifica is a homeopathic remedy made from the entire body of the female honey bee. Homeopathic doctors may prescribe Apis mellifica to people who are restless and irritable or who complain of burning, stinging pain, swelling, or inflammation. This remedy, which apparently has no side effects, may be used for bites, stings, sore throat, urinary retention and pain, and headaches. Most of the research supporting this homeopathic remedy is anecdotal; clinical double-blind studies are needed to validate the anecdotal reports.
The creation of this remedy begins by crushing the bee's entire body — including the stinger, which only female bees possess. The remains are then diluted with alcohol, lactose powder, or distilled water. The process of dilution is repeated until there is no remaining cellular evidence of the bee. The mixture is then bottled as a tincture, formed into tiny pellets, or made into a gel for topical applications.
Homeopathic treatment is highly individualized and based on the mental characteristics and physical symptoms of the patient. Patients for whom Apis mellifica may be prescribed are often short-tempered, restless, impatient, irritable and difficult to please. When these mental symptoms are in conjunction with burning, stinging pain, inflammation and swelling, the patient is often a good candidate for Apis mellifica.
One of the main uses of this remedy is to ease the effects of stings from wasps, hornets, mosquitoes, and bees. It has also been used for snake bites and spider bites. A topical gel may be recommended to relieve the itchiness and swelling associated with bug bites and stings.
This remedy may be prescribed for a person with a sore throat that is sensitive to the touch, worsens with the application of heat, and is associated with difficulty swallowing and a feeling of burning and swelling. The most common dosage is 6x. Five pellets may be taken under the tongue at least 30 minutes before or after eating or drinking. This is done three times a day until symptoms subside.
If a patient has urinary retention or pain, Apis mellifica may help. This is particularly true if the urine is dark, scanty, and accompanied by the urge to urinate. Five to ten drops of the tincture taken every two or three hours may be recommended.
Headaches with stabbing, stinging pain that originates on the right may be relieved with Apis mellifica. The pain may worsen when touched or when heat is applied, but decreases when a cool compress is used. Five pellets three times a day or five drops of tincture every two or three hours is most often suggested for headaches.
There are no known side effects associated with Apis mellifica. Those who are pregnant, nursing, or who have a chronic illness may want to consult with their doctor before using it. Evidence of the effectiveness of Apis mellifica is mostly anecdotal. More carefully designed scientific studies are needed to validate the safety of this substance.