Edward Bach studied medicine at Birmingham University and University College Hospital, London. He qualified in 1912 and worked as a house surgeon, pathologist and bacteriologist. He also carried out original research into immunology and vaccine therapy. In 1919 Bach took up a post at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital. Inspired by his experiences there, he began using plant-based preparations to try to address the emotional causes of disease.
He left London in 1930 to dedicate himself to finding new healing plants. The essences that he discovered over the next few years - a complete system - came to be known as the Bach flower remedies.
Bach’s system gives you a simple way to manage everyday emotions and feel more yourself. You can use it alongside any other approach to well-being. They can be used by people of all ages including newborn babies and pregnant women.
Working with a Bach Flower Remedies Practitioner
Consulting a practitioner is easy and is a good way to get started with the Bach system. Practitioners aim to teach you the remedies during the consultation process, so that you will be able to help yourself and your family in future, but always be able to call on your practitioner for help and assistance when you need it.
The International Practitioner training that I undertook is administered by the Bach Centre in the UK. Level 1 covers the basics of the system. Level 2 provides a deeper and more personal understanding. Level 3 is aimed at people who want to work with the remedies in a professional practice, and is assessed by means of examination and coursework including the preparation of written case histories.
Almost 100 years after Dr Bach first made and used his flower remedies, they are now used in over sixty countries worldwide and are part of the mainstream healthcare system in some countries.
Selecting Bach flower remedies
Dr Bach believed in treating people as individuals. The best mix is always one chosen for you personally. Start by thinking about the way you feel right now. Look through the list of remedies - there are only 38 - to see which ones best match those feelings. You could also think about your basic personality - the sort of person you are underneath everything else. You can select up to seven different remedies and mix them together. Don’t worry if you make a wrong selection, because if a remedy isn’t needed it won’t make things worse.
If you have selected more than seven remedies you are probably including some that you don’t need. Leave out any that relate to feelings that were in the past, and any that aren’t really needed because another remedy is more accurate. Consult a Practitioner if you need personal advice to help you use the system.
Dr Bach’s system is based on emotions. Consult a qualified medical advisor if you need help with a physical problem.
Taking Bach remedies
For short-term use put two drops of each selected remedy in a glass of water and sip as required. For longer-term use sip from the glass throughout the day, at least four times a day, and make up a fresh mix each day.
A more economical method is to make up a personal mix in a dropper bottle. Add two drops of each selected remedy to an empty 30 ml dropper bottle (try the local pharmacy) and top up with non-fizzy mineral water. From this mixing bottle take four drops at least four times a day. A mixed bottle can last up to three weeks if you keep it cool and avoid touching the dropper with your fingers or tongue. Some users include a teaspoon of brandy, cider vinegar or glycerine in the bottle to help preserve the contents.
Dr Bach's focus was on simplicity and ease of use. The effect of taking the remedies is not to suppress emotions but to help us be present to them without being overwhelmed or stuck in them. Their great gift is that they help to break emotional and behavioural patterning.