Herbal first aid and other tips

Herbal First Aid Starter Kit

The notes here describe a herbal first aid kit provided to participants of the Naturally Healthy workshop series. Where possible, information on the contents has been described. The information here is provided for reference purposes but is not intended to replace professional medical advice. Some of the contents were made specifically for the workshop series. Where relevant, alternatives have been provided. Alternatively complete an enquiry form for further information.


The first rule of first aid is to prevent accidents by making the home as safe as possible, especially when there are young children or old people about. Make sure medicines and household cleaning products are kept out of reach of children. Look around the home for other potentially dangerous areas and make them as safe as possible. Where necessary, use childproof boxes and bottles, electric plug guards, fire guards, flex tidies and smoke alarms.

If an accident does occur, don't panic! Stop and take a deep breath or a drop of the Five Flower Remedy to help you remain calm so that you may act more effectively.
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The Ailments

Bruises: Soak cloth or cotton wool in vinegar and apply to the bruise as soon as possible for 20-30 minutes. Comfrey cream speeds up the healing.

Burns: First remove the heat by holding under cold water for 10 to 15 minutes. Lavender oil, honey or marigold speed up healing.

Cuts: Clean well in water, salt water, marigold tincture or marigold tea. If bleeding does not stop, sprinkle cut with cayenne pepper or lemon juice. Apply marigold cream or honey (both are antiseptic) and cover with clean bandage.

Fainting/feeling faint: Lie down or put head between knees. Smell lavender or rosemary oil. Rosemary tea is helpful.

Insect bites and stings: Apply vinegar (especially good for wasp stings), marigold or lavender tea. For bee stings, remove the sting first, either with tweezers or with a drawing poultice made from mashed onions or sodium bicarbonate. If allergic to stings and bits apply chamomile compress as soon as possible.

Nose bleeds: Apply iced water compress to the back of the neck. If prone to nose bleeds, take a little lemon juice in water on a regular basis.

Poisoning: Seek professional help. Remember to take the suspect substance, or sample of the vomit, with you.

Shock: Use Five Flower Remedy immediately. Wrap up and keep warm. If you need to call an ambulance don't give anything else. Otherwise use chamomile tea with honey.

Sprains: Apply ice pack, crushed cabbage leaf or vinegar compress as soon as possible to reduce swelling. Then rub in the Hot Oil to restore circulation and speed up healing.

Sunburn: Apply compress of vinegar, cucumber juice or cold tea. Yogurt can be used as a cream.

Toothache: Chew a piece of ginger or a clove.
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The Remedies

Five Flower Remedy (Rescue Remedy)

An excellent remedy for dealing with the shock of the accident or trauma (physical and emotional). Best used immediately. Speeds up healing in humans and pets.

2 to 4 drops on the tongue. Alternatively 4 drops in a glass of water, sipping regularly.

Lavender essential oil

For burns, wounds, rashes, skin troubles. Use as an inhalant to reduce stress and headache.

Hot Oil

What is it?

An infused oil containing cayenne, ginger, black pepper and mustard. Any oil with similar hot spices will provide a similar use.
For muscle aches and pains, cramps, chilblains, muscle spasm, period pains. Improves circulation, warms cold areas and cold joints.

Massage a small amount into affected area.

Caution: keep hands away from eyes. Wash hands well after use.

Marigold cream (Calendula cream)

For cuts, abrasions, spots, fungal conditions, many rashes. A general antiseptic cream.

Comfrey cream

For bone or muscle damage, including bruises, sprains, strains. Speeds up healing of any tissue. Avoid using on dirty wounds as rapid healing can trap dirt.

Marigold flowers

For cuts, spots, or as a general antiseptic wash or compress for infected cuts, stings, bits, grazes, inflamed eyes, sore varicose veins and any red, sore-looking skin.

Internally: Drink the tea as an antiseptic, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory. Clears the lymphatic system and supports the immune system. Use as a tea for children's fevers. Use as gargle for sore throats and to relieve pressure in congested ears.

Relax tea

For adults and children to help reduce restlessness, fevers, teething, tummy upsets, etc.
2 teaspoons per cup boiling water. Cover and leave for 10 to 15 minutes.

What is it?

A blend of dried herbs containing chamomile, lavender, fennel and aniseed.

Chamomile: calming and soothing to nerves and digestion. For nervous stomachs, teething. Number 1 choice for babies. Used for colic, vomiting, loss of appetite, restlessness, nightmares, teething troubles, itchy skin rashes.

Lavender: calming to nerves and reduces tension. For nervous exhaustion, tension headaches, colic, indigestion.

Aniseed: calms digestion, calming and stimulating to lungs. For bronchial spasm, coughs, wheeziness. Aids sleep. Helps overcome the stresses of illness so that more energy can be directed towards healing. Good for childhood diarrhoea, colic, asthma, hiccups.

Fennel: For indigestion or wind. Also improves milk supply when breastfeeding.