What is Lichen Planus?
Lichen Planus is an inflammatory disease affecting the skin and/or mucous membranes. The exact cause of lichen planus is not clearly known though it is considered to be a disease of autoimmune origin. Here the cells of the immune system start to attack the cells of skin and/or mucous membrane due to an error in judgement. How and why this autoimmune phenomenon gets initiated and the immune system starts to attack the skin or mucous membrane cells remains to be explained. However, a few known risk factors for lichen planus are hepatitis C, exposure to certain chemicals and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Symptoms of Lichen Planus
Lichen Planus can affect the skin or mucous membranes. Where lichen planus affects the skin, it is termed as cutaneous lichen planus while where it affects the mucous membranes, it is labeled mucosal lichen planus. Cutaneous lichen planus presents itself as purple, flat topped, papular eruptions on the skin. Vesicle or blister formation, followed by scab formation on breaking, may also be noticed in few cases. The most prominent skin sites for lichen planus are flexor (inner) aspect of wrist, forearm, waist, legs and ankles. The eruptions are attended with marked itching. The eruptions may also show symmetrical distribution. Mucosal lichen planus may affect the lining of gastrointestinal tract, larynx, genitals and conjunctiva. Nails and scalp are yet other areas where lichen planus can have an effect. When lichen planus affects the mouth, it is termed as oral lichen planus. Oral lichen planus presents itself as white patches in mouth (cheeks, gums, tongue, lips), white lacy lines in the mouth, or sores/ulcers in the mouth. The ulcers may be accompanied by pain and tenderness.
Homeopathic Treatment of lichen Planus
Homeopathy is one of the safest modes of treatment for skin ailments, including lichen planus. Homeopathic medicines for skin diseases always work best to eradicate the disease from its root rather than suppress the symptoms. As lichen planus arises from some internal derangement in the human body, the most appropriate way to eradicate it is through internal medication. In lichen planus, Homeopathic medicines bring recovery by modifying the misdirected response of the immune system towards the healthy cells and mucous membranes. The Homeopathic medicines that have benefitted the majority of my lichen planus patients are – Sulphur, Arsenic Album, Sulphur Iod, Kali Iod, Plantago and Merc Sol.
Homeopathic Medicines for Lichen Planus
Sulphur and Arsenic Album – Top Grade Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus
Sulphur and Arsenic Album are two top rated Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus. I have seen highly satisfactory results in lichen planus cases with the use of these medicines. The guiding symptoms for Sulphur prescription are eruptions on the skin with marked itching and burning. The itching gets worse in the warmth of the bed and towards the evening. Scratching increases the burning sensation on the skin. Sulphur is also one of the best choices of Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus cases with a history of suppression of eruptions with use of local medication. Arsenic Album is best used for papular eruptions or ulcers on the skin with intense itching. Violent burning or cutting pain in eruptions may be experienced. The skin is oversensitive in such cases. A peculiar symptom to look out for is that warm applications bring relief from the burning on skin. Arsenic Album is one of the most reliable Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus of this type. Anxiety and restlessness may be experienced along with skin eruptions in patients with this condition.
Sulphur Iod and Kali Iod – Wonderful Homeopathic Medicines for Lichen Planus
I would rate Homeopathic medicines Sulphur Iod and Kali Iod as the most effective Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus. Sulphur Iod is most applicable in cases of lichen planus where the papular eruptions are present on the arms and face. It is accompanied by marked itching. On the other hand, Kali Iod is rated most suitable of Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus cases where purple, papular eruptions are located on the legs. Here marked itching is experienced on the eruptions at night and from heat. Scratching relives the itching.
Apis Mellifica – One of the best Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus with marked stinging, burning
Apis Mellifica is another of the most useful Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus which has led to some wonderful recoveries. The characteristic indication for prescribing Apis Mellifica is skin eruptions accompanied by marked stinging and burning. The itching is intolerable ad gets worse with heat, a symptom peculiar to such cases where Apis Mellifica will show results. The burning also gets worse with heat. Cold applications or cold air reduce the itching, burning and stinging on the skin.
Plantago – One of the most prominent Homeopathic medicines for oral lichen planus
Plantago is one of the best Homeopathic medicines for oral lichen planus. I have seen excellent recoveries in a number of oral lichen planus cases with the use of Plantago. The main symptom which signals use of Plantago includes white patches on the tongue. Putrid taste and offensive breath in the mouth are other characteristic features. Ulcers and swelling in cheeks may also be found in such cases.
Merc Sol and Borax – Known Homeopathic medicines for oral lichen planus
Natural medicines Merc Sol and Borax are two other Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus of the mouth. The key symptom to look out for before prescribing Merc Sol is ulcers on the gums, tongue and inside the cheek with irregular, undefined edges. This results in a metallic or bad taste in the mouth and increased salivation. The mouth may emit an offensive odour as well. A person who needs Merc Sol will experience an increased thirst for water along with the above symptoms. Borax is one of the most likely selected Homeopathic medicines for lichen planus cases where ulcers or white patchy growths are present in the mouth. These ulcers and white patchy growths are sensitive to the touch and cause pain even when you eat. The mouth may feel hot and have a bitter taste.