Today, many people are going vegan and using home remedies. The reason is simple-free from diseases and a good positive will to eat only what nature has bestowed upon us. If we look around and gather knowledge about the herbal resources we have, we will notice that many ingredients are given to us by nature itself. Be it a refreshing aroma of lemongrass in a tea, a soothing effect of turmeric on our wounds, a good taste of ginger in a beverage, or a blueberry-infused lemon tea, herbs are everywhere.
In this article, we shall tell you how you can make use of herbal remedies to not just treat yourself to good food but to also apply topically on wounds. Herbs can be used to make herbal first-aid salves. But before getting down to the real thing, let us learn and know a bit more about herbs.
Why go herbal
Herbal life brings you more closely to nature. We use herbs as the leaf of the plant for various purposes. The best thing about them is that they can be used in many ways. You can have them directly, you can have some after drying and you can even cook or boil them. Note that if you are using any other part of the plant, be it a fruit or stem, it will be termed as a spice, not an herb. As we know, herbs are great for adding fresh flavors and colors to any eatable or drink. They have sweet and savory, both tastes. If we talk about the nutritional value, they got plenty. Also, the fact that herbs don’t have additional or artificial fat, sugar or salt, makes them more lovable.
Each herb has its own set of properties that provide health benefits to different parts and organs of our body. When you use fresh herbs, they have a smaller shelf life as no preservatives are being used. They also have highly delicate flavors. When you add them to your meals, they will last only a few minutes. Another important thing to note is that if you use a little amount of herb, they will impart a bit of flavor. But if you use them in high quantity, their flavor may overpower the taste of other ingredients in a dish.
Besides having good taste and smell, herbs are good as topical agents. Let us learn why;
Herbs as topical agents
Since ancient’s times, many herbs are used in the treatment of injuries, pains, wounds, bruises and other problems. One might find it hard to imagine getting a cure to an insect bite using a leaf. But this is indeed a fact. Many animal bites, insect bites, stings and other wounds we get can be healed with specific medicinal herbs or a combination of herbs. Even if someone gets an allergic reaction or has a reaction to some poisonous plants, applying herbs or paste of herbs can be beneficial.
Besides wounds, herbs also help in joint pains, muscle spasms, never swelling, sprains, fractures and bone pains. Some plants such as cayenne pepper help a lot in treating joint pain related to our spinal cord. The essential oil of lavender can help relieve inflammation and pain associated with it, not to mention how its fragrance helps us with anxiety. Neem leaves are used widely across the world in the form of packs or pastes to treat Common skin diseases and related pain. Rosemary and linseed oil can be used to cure neck pains or swelling. Some other unknown topical herbal agents include Boswellia, teasel, Angellica and rue.
Making a herbal first-aid salve
Imagine having first aid with no chemicals, drugs, or ingredients related to allopathic medicines. How good it would be if you can apply topical pain-relieving salves without having to worry about their side effects. This can be made possible with our list of some easy and affordable methods through which you can make herbal first-aid salves.
Salve with beeswax for bruises
Since many people might consider making an herbal salve a complicated process, we would love to start with the simplest method which is also very common. The method will help you prepare around 9 ounces of herbal salve which is enough for use.
You will need a bunch of items included 0 oz. infused herbal oil, 1 oz. beeswax, a double boiler jar, extra essential oils and clean glass jars. Some important points to note here is that you can take beeswax in grated form or pellets will also solve the purpose. You can also take metal tins instead of glass jars. Both metals and glasses are good for storage. Here, we are adding essential oil to get a hint of fragrance on applying the salve.
Start the procedure by boiling the oil in the double boiler. After few minutes when the oil becomes warm, start adding beeswax. Keep stirring until the wax melts and forms a uniform consistency. You can also test the consistency by dipping a clean spoon and then freezing it for few minutes. If the consistency is softer, then you may need to add more beeswax.
Pour the warm mixture into old jam jars or small metal tins. Before pouring, you might need to add essential oils if you opt for that method. Don’t forget to stir clean with a stick to implement all the fragrance of the essential oil. In the add, cap the containers and try to store them in a cool and dark place. These might last up to one year if stored well.
Herbal salve for burns
Every one of us has to face burn or injury related to it once in a lifetime. This is a time when you should have proper ingredients at home to treat the burn. While many procedures are included in treating a burn, there is nothing harm in preparing an herbal salve that saves money. The salve will pose no side effect and will help heal the burn completely.
For the method, you will need around 30g of raw honey, 30 g of coconut oil (unrefined), a tablespoon of beeswax and a tablespoon of sea buckthorn oil. The sea buckthorn oil is optional and you can easily buy it only. Instead of coconut oil, you can also use virgin coconut oil which is easily available in the market. Additionally, you will also need half a tablespoon of aloe Vera gel and aloe Vera juice. You can also replace aloe Vera juice with rosewater if you wish so.
Start the procedure by first heating the beeswax in a small saucepan. Make sure that the bottom is heavy. Boil it on the lowest heat for few minutes. When you realize that the beeswax is melt, start adding coconut oil slowly. Let the mixture combine and melt completely on a low flame. Now add in honey and Sea Buckthorn Oil. Keep whisking and stirring slowly. You need to make a uniform mixture out of the ingredients.
After you have got a good consistency, you may turn off the heat. In the following step, you may pour in aloe Vera or rosewater and mix it properly. Keep in mind that you need to form a homogenous mixture. Keep mixing until you achieve a uniform consistency. If you are satisfied with the consistency, pour in the containers.
The mixture is going to harden in 12 to 14 hours. Let it sit still till then and after that, you can touch it or use it as per your requirement.
Lemon rash salve
While rashes are not really the first aid category problems, you may need a salve now and then to treat them. When left unnoticed, they can be really a pain in your life. For this rash cream, we are using lemon as an active ingredient. The lemon balm infused with olive oil can help relieve the rashes as they together with act as good anti-fungal and anti-allergic agents. Lemon also has antibacterial and antiviral properties. The salve can be used in the treatment of insect bites and shingles as well.
To make the salve, you will need a tablespoon of beeswax, 8 tablespoons of olive oil infused with herbs such as almond or jojoba, she butter, coconut, etc., 2 tablespoons of vitamin E oil and 4 to 5 tablespoons of lemon juice. You can also add in few drops of tea tree oil or essential oil.
The process is simple. Start by melting carrier oil, vitamin E oil and beeswax on low heat. After few minutes of melting, remove the heat and add in lemon juice and tea tree or lavender oil. Store in a separated jar and keep in a cool or dry place.
You can also prepare another easy lemon rash balm by chopping up a fresh lemon and placing it in a jar and pouring a cup of olive oil on it. Letting it sit in sun for two to three weeks is the next step. After that, strain and then store for use.
Salve for joint pain relief
The pain relief salve we are going to discuss provides comfort in a short amount. This will act as a good curing agent as we shall be using the most potent anti-inflammatory herbs. Also, we will use several analgesic essential oils to prepare the formulation. You can use the salve to massage into the muscles. You can use it before and after physical activities. It will help soothe and heal the bruising and will also stimulate blood circulation.
You will need around 4 ounces of herb oil with essential oils in it, 1-ounce beeswax, 2 tablespoons of essential oils, half a teaspoon of camphor granules and half a teaspoon of menthol crystals. You can add as many organic herbs to it.
To prepare the salve, first, choose the herbs you wish to infuse with the essential oils. You can use olive oil or organic coconut oil as a career oil. When you have done with the infusion, you should collect half a cup of herb-infused oil. Do this after straining. Take a saucepan and keep it on low heat. Melt an ounce of beeswax and mix it with the herb oil. A good way is to start with a smaller amount of wax and then keep increasing it slowly. If the mixture is too soft, add more beeswax and if it’s too hard, add in oil. Keep checking the consistency of the mixture. Remove from heat when you have got the desired consistency. Allow the salve to cool down. Take a spoon and stir again. Add camphor and menthol while stirring. You may also add any other essential oil here. Whisk until the oils are combined in the salve. Pour into storage containers like tins or jars. Keep them stored in a cool or dark place and you can use the salve for up to 1 year.
The pain-relieving salves can help in problems such as rheumatoid arthritis, tension headaches, migraines, spondylitis and back pain. They can also help with gout problems. These salves are known to have the power to protect and strengthen our bodies for exertion. If you are doing some intense physical movement, these come in handy. Furthermore, they help in repairing overworked muscles. These are useful especially for gym enthusiasts and athletes who go the extra mile to work their bodies hard.
The salve can also reduce inflammation during a sprain or even a fracture. People having problems in joints or are a part of an accident injury can find these salves very useful. These also help in reducing swelling and numbness. Scientists have also discovered that herbal salves provide relief from fibromyalgia.
So these were some important ways to prepare herbal salves in your homes. These salves are a type of remedy that even our ancestors used. With the development of technology, we have started using artificial products and medicines. Yes, it might be a little bit hard to start believing that these will work. But trust us, when you get into the process and use it on yourself or any family member, you will start believing the miraculous magic of herbal ointments.