Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Summer is finally here and with that more activity and travel. It’s important to have on hand a first aid kit in case of accident or mild illness. There are natural remedies that work just as well or better than some things you could have in your first aid kit. Often natural remedies are safer and have fewer side effects than pharmaceutical remedies with the added benefit of strengthening your immune system. Following, listed in order of importance, are the top ten natural items you should have in your first aid kit or medicine cabinet.
1. Activated charcoal helps decrease nausea, stop diarrhea and stomach upset when used internally as well as treat joint pain, wounds, ulcers and bruises when used externally. Charcoal can be used as an antidote to poisoning, after giving Syrup of Ipecac, but you should contact a Poison Control Center before using. Charcoal from burnt toast is not effective and charcoal briquettes can be dangerous due to fillers and petrochemicals that help them light.
2. Tea Tree Oil (Melaleuca Alternifolis) can be used topically to treat any fungal problems, insect bites, itches, sores, small wounds and abrasions, pimples, boils and carbuncles. It can help nasal congestion when used in a steam bath or rubbed around the sinuses.
3. Homeopathic Arnica 30C is useful to speed healing after trauma such as car accidents, surgery, bump on the head; anything that can result in swelling or bruising. This works very well in combination with Bach’s Rescue Remedy. Rescue Remedy helps the emotional aspects of trauma, as well as helps with anxiety attacks and stress.
4. Bromelain is pineapple enzyme and is used to reduce all types of inflammation from arthritis, sports injuries, trauma, bursitis and tendinitis. Take it between meals to decrease inflammation or right before meals to help with digestion.
5. Aloe vera juice/gel used topically reduces the sting of sunburn. It can also be used internally as a laxative, for stomach aches, to help reduce uric acid kidney stones and to stop bleeding gastric and duodenal ulcers. Be sure to get pure aloe vera with nothing added.
6. Oscillococcinum is a homeopathic remedy that decreases the duration and intensity of flu symptoms, including fever, chills, body aches and pains. It can be used with existing medical conditions and medications. Take at first sign of flu symptoms for best results.
7. Kava kava is very useful for both muscle spasms and anxiety. It can be taken up to every two hours short term without damaging your liver, as long as you are not drinking alcohol. You can get it as a tea to help with insomnia and to relax muscles.
8. Bioflavonoids or flavonoids inhibit histamine release and is useful for any type of allergic reaction including rashes, hay fever, and asthma. Dark berries and green tea are useful food sources of bioflavonoids, but you can get it in capsule form as well.
9. Skullcap/Passionflower/Valerian Tincture or tea will promote a good night’s sleep for most people and also help with relaxation.
10. Calendula succus is wound soothing, skin healing and useful to clean small wounds in the place of soap and water. It will help wounds heal faster and is gentle on the skin.
When you use natural remedies, remember that there is a possibility of allergic reaction. If you are allergic to certain flowers, some of these remedies may not be right for you.