Summer remedies

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Summer is upon us, and spider bites, poison ivy, chiggers and ticks, heat stroke and sunburn are to be expected.

Brown Recluse spiders prefer to live here and bites abound. The ground zero of the bite often turns black as the skin dies. A large red circular welt rings the black center. Iíve seen people take good care of themselves by putting comfrey or plantain directly on the bite secured with a bandage, taking grapefruit seed extract or monolaurin and of course boosting the immune system with astragalus or mushroom extracts. You might even consider using an old-fashioned black ointment or grapefruit seed extract ointment right on the wound. Keeping medical care on hand is a good thing.

Suggestions for poison ivy include the homeopathic rhus tox. There are many soothing and anti-itch sprays/gels to choose from and simple baking soda as a powder to dry the blisters. A lye soap is great as it dries the rash and neutralizes the poison ivy oil. No hot baths just warm showers using the special soap is suggested. If the exposure is severe or on a delicate part of the body, prompt medical care is important along with the natural methods.

Preventing chigger and tick bites is key. I found cactus juice a couple of years ago, and it proved to be a great product to use during crawly and flying biter season. I canít tell you legally it effectively repels all of those miserable many leggeds. But it is DEET free, completely safe and I donít get bitten at all when I use it and neither do other people. Chiggers are hard-to-see mites. The welt is intensely itchy. Wash it and use the same natural products that are used for tick bites such as plantain ointment. If you get a bullís eye pattern, see a healthcare provider right away. Medical treatment is complimentary to the choice of natural products for tick-born diseases.

Summer can be very hot, so heat stroke is possible. Avoiding heat stroke is far better than having it, so stay in the shade, under fans or air conditioning, keeping activity low during the worst of the heat. Drink plenty of fluids such as green tea (add mint to perk it up) to hydrate and reduce your chance of sunburn (yes, enough green tea consumed can reduce sunburn). Interestingly, supplementing daily with 800 micrograms (mcg) or more of folic acid may reduce the awful incidence of heat stroke according to researchers at Penn State. Supplementing with a multi-mineral supplement is a good thing, too.

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