Holistic Health at Home: Bach Flower Essences

Flower essencesHumans have utilized plants for healing for centuries. In fact, until the 20th century, pharmaceutical preparations originated from medicinal plants and other natural substances. Medicinal plants use the physical energy of the plant in the form of an active chemical constituent. Alkaloids, glycosides, saponins, and bitter principles are just a few of the constituents found in medicinal plants.

These chemical constituents have a physiological effect on the body, which can be monitored and studied. Of course, there are many plants and constituents yet undiscovered, and healing plants are a complex holistic balance of these substances. However, essentially, when we use an herbal remedy we are using a physical energy to rebalance the physical body.

The Bach flower remedies, on the other hand, make use of vibrational energy. Developed by, Dr. Edward Bach, the flower essences system of healing uses vital energy extracted from wild flowers, herbs, and trees, and includes a range of 38 remedies. Each remedy contains the vibrational pattern of the particular flower that resonates in harmony with a particular human vibration and personality pattern. The vibrational healing force is subtle and addresses illness on a subtle level.

Dr. Bach believed that stressful mental states and disharmony produce worry, fear, exhaustion, impatience, resignation, and other negative emotional states. Negative emotional states can have a depleting affect on an individual’s vitality, causing the body to loses its natural resistance to disease, increasing its susceptibility to infection and illness.

With times of emotional change, growth, and struggle, the flowers assist by balancing. They help us realize the transitory nature of emotional states. The flowers will not avoid the struggle or replace it, but can prevent physical imbalances manifesting by harmonizing and rebalancing negative emotional states.

For example, at this time of year, many people struggle with the change in weather and the loss of daylight. The remedies Crab Apple, Elm, Larch, Oak, Pine, Star of Bethlehem, Sweet Chestnut, and Willow can all help with despondency or despair. If you feel your inner strength and perseverance may be wanning a bit reach for Oak and Pine.

For more serious situations, flower essences can also be used in conjunction with other forms of treatment, such as in a physical or emotional emergency, or if there is a physical illness accompanied by emotional turmoil, doubt, or discouragement. A great “all-around” remedy to keep on hand for more intense situations is the combination remedy called Rescue Remedy®. Rescue Remedy® includes the essences:

  • Cherry plum for hysteria and uncontrolled emotional reaction
  • Clematis for fainting and unconsciousness
  • Impatiens for stress and tension
  • Rock rose for extreme terror and panic
  • Star of Bethlehem for shock, grief, and sorrow

Rescue remedy is even effective for the unconscious person. It can be administered by dabbing a drop or two on the lips, ears, wrist, neck, or palms of the hand.

Keep it in your first aid kit and a couple of spare bottles in your handbag, briefcase or glove box of your car. Rescue remedy can also be applied externally to bites, bruises, stings, burns, sprains, cuts and wounds. Use a couple of undiluted drops directly on to the area. It is also available as a cream from the Apothecary Shoppe. Remember also that it is equally effective for animals and plants.

4 Ways to Use Rescue Remedy:

Keep it on hand for emergencies.

Take 3 to 4 drops (in water if available or undiluted if not) as often as needed.

Apply externally to bruises and cuts.

If a person is unconscious, it can be rubbed onto wrists, gums and lips while waiting for emergency services.


Remember, rescue remedy is not a substitute for medical treatment. However, it can be invaluable support while waiting for care and it will not interfere with any other medical treatment.


How the flower remedies work is open to interpretation. It is thought that each remedy contains the vibrational pattern of the particular flower that resonates in harmony with a particular human vibration and personality pattern.

Flower essences do have their limits, however. Bach flowers will not heal the physical body where an organ has been damaged beyond repair or where there is an inherited physical condition. Bach flowers help psychological and emotional states, but this does not mean the physical body will automatically be “cured.” In these cases, it is useful to use the flowers in conjunction with other forms of therapy.

But, one does not need to be physically unwell for the flower essences to work. They are particularly useful during convalescence or where we have to face difficult situations in life. Visits to the dentist, court cases, exams, and speaking in public are just a few examples where flower essences can help.

Have you tried the Bach flower remedies as part of your holistic health routine? Post a comment! We’d love to hear from you!

This information has not been reviewed by the FDA. This information has been presented for educational purposes only and is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.