Arnica montana - benefits, uses and tips

Do not let yourselves fooled by arnica's beauty - Arnica montana, also known as wolf's bane, leopard's bane, mountain tobacco and mountain arnica, is a moderately toxic ethnobotanical European flowering plant in the sunflower family. It is noted for its large yellow flower head - its flowers contain some chemical compounds that can cause permanent heart problems, besides a lot of other issues. So NEVER consume arnica oils or infusions prepared from dried flowers. Instead, for external applications, arnica is particularly efficient for muscular pains, bruises and sprains. If you had an minor accident or hurt yourself during a sport activity, arnica is recommended to heal the pains.

Heals bruises and eliminates pain

Arnica montana have been approved for external use in the Complete German Commission E Monographs ( Arnica is classified by the FDA as an unsafe herb) - for the external treatment of bruises and muscle pain and suffering. Do not use arnica for internal use ( in homeopathic remedies is so diluted that it doesn't have side effects) also, avoid the contact with the eyes, mouth and open wounds because the plant is toxic.

You can buy arnica in the form of gel, cream, ointment and tincture.

Arnica is indicated for:

  • healing of the bruises. Arnica heals the bruises and helps the body to absorb blood from skin tissues. The cream or the ointment that contains 5-25% arnica extract (applied few times a day) reliefs pains and inflammations and the purple spots. Two of arnica's chemical substances, helenalin and dihydrohelenaline, are absorbed by skin and they have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties

  • calming sprains and dislocations. Because of its anti-inflammatory proprieties, arnica is indicated for treating mild dislocations. Also, it helps improving blood circulation, increasing the flow of nutrients to the inflamed muscles, and to remove residues from the lesion - for example, the lactic acid, a substance that causes pain. Do not use arnica on open wounds because it's very toxic when administered internally.

  • calming tired feet. Do you feel your feet tired at the end of the day? Submerse them in warm water and add a teaspoon with arnica tincture. The blood flow will improve instantly.

  • what other uses? Bursitis and tendonitis, feet pain, carpal tunnel syndrome.

Careful to erruptions

A vast majority of people can enjoy the benefits of this plant without any side effects. However, if you are allergic to helenalin, the use of arnica will cause contact dermatitis.

If you are allergic to chrysanthemums or any member of this family - Asteraceea, you must avoid arnica, this plant belongs to the same family.

Because of its ability to prevent clots from forming, arnica should not be taken with other medications or herbal products that can thin the blood like aspirin, clopidogrel, warfarin, enoxaparin, apixaban, dabigatran, rivaroxaban, ginger, garlic, or ginseng, to name a few. If you are taking arnica and you have an upcoming surgery, let your surgeon know and stop taking the arnica at least 2 weeks before the procedure. If you aren't sure if it is safe to take arnica with your daily medications, ask your pharmacist to check for interactions.

*This article has no intention in advising to treat or cure any illness nor has any intention to persuade readers into taking any action following the facts in the article.

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