How to Create an Herbal First Aid Kit
Finding alternative treatments for everyday ailments can be comfortable and satisfying. Many herbs have a variety of different uses, so they are very versatile and an extremely cost-effective way to go regarding first aid for your family. Creating your own customized herbal first aid kit is easy!
They also make great gifts for friends or family. Add your remedies and herbs to a sturdy plastic box with bandages, moleskin, surgical tape, scissors, tweezers, gauze and other first aid essentials, and you and your loved ones will be prepared in the event of an emergency! You could also make ‘mini’ versions to store in your car or with your camping equipment or to keep on board your boat.
There are several ways to use and administer herbs. They can come in the form of tinctures, capsules or bulk loose herbs to be prepared into an infusion (tea). Loose herbs can also be made into compresses, oils, and salves. You can find many books at your local library with detailed information about making your herbal remedies, or you can buy what you need from your local health food store.
Common Ailments and How to Treat Them Naturally
Burns - Aloe Vera gel, lavender essential oil applied neat (undiluted)
Blisters - Use a drop or two of lavender essential oil applied neat, then covered with moleskin.
Cuts and scrapes - Look for an already commercially prepared all-purpose salve that contains comfrey and soothing oils such as olive and vitamin E.
Bruises, sprains and sore muscles - Arnica infused oil is lovely, as are Epsom salt baths.
Splinters - Mustard seed powder or any clay is used for removing fragments. Just mix your mustard seed powder or clay with enough water to make a paste. Spread evenly over the inflicted area and allow to dry. Peel away the earth after about 15 minutes. Usually, it will bring the fragment to the surface! It even works on glass!
Heartburn - Peppermint tea, Swedish bitters, marshmallow root infusion.
Diarrhea, upset stomach, motion sickness, and nausea - Peppermint or spearmint teas. Crystallized ginger and apples are also a good thing to eat when experiencing diarrhea. Also, Marshmallow root, licorice, chamomile and lemon drinks are sweet too for stomach upsets.
Ear infections - Mullein and garlic ear oil. You can make this yourself or buy it premade in health food stores.
Coughs and colds - Horehound tincture, sage and honey tea or ginger tea will help sooth bronchial upsets. Eucalyptus and camphor oils, mixed with a carrier oil & rubbed onto the chest can help relieve congestion.
Pharyngitis or laryngitis - Licorice root tea.
Insomnia - Chamomile tea.
Anxiety - Skullcap and Valerian tinctures, chamomile tea.
Colic and other upsets in infants and children - Chamomile tea, calms forte for children.
Teething - Clove oil applied directly to the gums.
Athlete’s foot - Rosemary essential oil. Use ten drops in a shallow basin full of warm water and soak feet 1-2x daily.
Insect bites - Stinging nettle capsules, tea tree salve.
Sunburn - Apple cider vinegar or lavender essential oil applied neat can help alleviate sunburn pain.
Constipation - 1-3 Tbsp. Crushed flaxseeds. Also, eat high fiber fruits.
Motion Sickness and nausea- Ginger, peppermint or cinnamon tea.
Diaper rash - Calendula salve.
Yeast infections - A clove of garlic wrapped in gauze and inserted vaginally can help. Be sure to remove it and enter a new clove daily. Yogurt is also effective in treating yeast infections. You can apply it externally to help relieve itchiness and eat it daily to help clear the infection.
Urinary tract infections - Cranberry tablets and tea work best. Also, unsweetened cranberry juice is useful as well. It is also essential to limit your sugar intake during a UTI and drink plenty of water.
Poison ivy/oak - Make a paste using baking soda mixed with enough water to thicken. You can also add lavender or peppermint essential oils to the dough to soothe blistery skin. Spread over the affected areas for immediate relief.
Pain relief - White willow bark, skullcap, meadowsweet and passionflower tinctures are all analgesic in nature and will help provide pain relief.
Shock - Rescue remedy
Sprains, strains, and bruises - Arnica infused the oil.
Styptic - Cayenne pepper capsules or an infusion made with cayenne and apple cider vinegar will work well to stop bleeding. Shepard’s purse tincture is also used often to help prevent or slow bleeding after childbirth.
Taking charge of your health and treating yourself naturally can be a very empowering experience. Herbs can help us heal quickly in the most gentle way possible.