Whether the blow is blunt or sharp, trauma can damage superficially or deep into the body. Trauma may be controlled, as in surgery, or accidental. In all cases of trauma, a few important remedies provide significant support for healing. See Shock, emotional.
The depth of trauma to the surface of the body is reflected in the names of wounds which open the skin:
- abrasion (upper skin layers),
- laceration (skin and subcutaneous tissue),
- puncture wounds and bites (may be shallow or deep through subcutaneous tissue into deeper tissues).
Blunt trauma may not open the skin, but may leave a bruise or bump.
A fracture or broken bone may be from blunt or open trauma.
Burns may come from contact with hot liquids, or chemicals, or sunburn.
Sprains and strains which occur repeatedly indicate possible problem with coordination.
Abrasions, lacerations, and puncture wounds or bites all have interrupted the skin barrier. They should be cleansed of visible dirt with warm water, mild soap (not antibacterial, to avoid sensitization reactions), and a clean face cloth. If there is a lot of gravel attached to a ‘road-burn,’ using a soft brush while immersed in soapy water will remove the bits of debris, and prevent ‘dirt tattooing’ after the area heals, which can remain for life.
Disinfection with chamomile tea is accomplished as follows: pour two cups of boiling water over two tablespoons of chamomile flowers, and allow to steep for 20 minutes, and cool to body temperature. (Uriel Chamomile tea) Chamomile is both healing and disinfecting. Chemical antibacterials and disinfectants slow down wound healing. “An antibiotic (from the Latin for ‘against life’) acts not only against bacterial life but also the life in the injured tissues.”* Chamomile, a living plant, acts against bacteria only. The intelligence of nature’s living systems is not available in chemical treatments.
After cleansing, Uriel Mercurialis Calendula ointment or Weleda Wound Care ointment or Weleda Calendula ointment should be applied at least once daily to the traumatized open area.
If the area is inflamed or creating pus, more frequent cleansing is required with Uriel Calendula essence (for adults 1-2 teaspoons in one cup of water) and then ointment application.
When the skin is damaged and open, a pink or reddish tissue color is healthy with a good blood supply. Yellow or white areas of a wound can signify bacterial growth and need for removing the dead tissue (debridement).
Puncture wounds and deep cuts may harbor bacteria deep in the tissue where there is no oxygen. The tetanus-causing bacteria (Clostridium tetani) thrives in these conditions. Tetanus immunization is important with any interruption of the skin, but especially a crush injury or dirty puncture wound. Blood levels of tetanus antibody may be tested to determine if a booster immunization is needed, since commonly the antibodies from tetanus vaccination last longer than ten years. One or two tetanus immunzations are insufficient for protection. Three tetanus immunizations bring full protection.
When a wound has fully healed, and there is evidence of thick scar (keloid), Uriel Polygonatum Cepa Gel for adults can be applied to the scar twice daily to diminish scar.
Blunt trauma results in bruises and bumps, broken small blood vessels under intact skin. An old folk remedy has validity: press a piece of cool metal (a coin or spoon) against the area, to prevent it from spreading. The coldness and pressure constrict blood vessels and lessen discomfort.
Then, arnica in some form is applied, unless the person is known to be allergic to arnica. If someone newly develops redness and itching at the site of an arnica application, they may be allergic to arnica, and its use should be discontinued. Arnica has been said to be the most useful of all herbs, if only one herb could be chosen. It is said to be better used on intact skin than broken skin, to avoid allergy.
Coolness helps in initial treatment of trauma, so one can use Uriel Arnica Essence or Weleda Arnica Essence for adults one tablespoon in 1 cup of cool water on a cloth to wrap the area immediately after the injury.
When pain is less, apply BHI-HEEL Traumeel gel, or True Botanica Relief 4x cream, or Uriel Arnica Forte First Aid Gel for adults several times daily to continue the cooling process.
When cooling is no longer required, BHI-HEEL Traumeel ointment or Uriel Arnica Ointment or Weleda Arnica Ointment for adults can be applied and covered with a piece of fabric to improve the ointment’s penetration into the tissues. Wool increases the benefit of arnica, so a wool wrap over the arnica is ideal.
Oral remedies complement the topical treatments.
- BHI-HEEL Traumeel for adults one tablet four times daily orally, or
- True Botanica Arnica Pentas for adults 20 drops 2-3 times daily orally, or
- Uriel Arnica Planta Tota pellets 2x or 3x or 6x, for adults, 10 pellets 3-4 tmes daily orally, or
- Weleda Arnica 3x or 6x for adults 7 drops in a teaspoon of water 3-4 times daily orally.
The lower the homeopathic potency, the more it addresses an acute physical problem. So these recommendations are for low potencies, 2x, 3x, and 6x primarily. Higher potencies address the body more on an etheric or rhythmic level, and address more chronic problems.
True Botanica Goldenrod Pentas for adults 20 drops twice daily orally also specifically addresses wound healing though it does not contain arnica.
Surgery can be supported with oral arnica as described above when the surgeon lets the patient have fluids by mouth. Sometimes dosing homeopathic remedies is not allowed in a hospital setting. Other times it is possible to dissolve arnica in drinking water, and use it throughout the post-operative days. Topical arnica can be used around but not on or in a surgical wound until after it is fully healed.
Burns from chemicals must be immediately washed under running water until the chemical is removed. In workplaces, there may be an antidote specific for the acid or alkali nature of the chemical. Prescription Weleda WCS powder is highly recommended in anthroposophic dermatology for adults to follow up this rinsing of chemicals from the skin.*
Sunburn over and over increases the likelihood of skin cancer. Prevention is best, and natural sunscreens usually are based on zinc oxide and titanium dioxide. These minerals provide a shade to protect the skin. Elta and DeVita natural sunscreen products may be found in health food stores. Avobenzone is the active chemical in sunscreens providing protection. SkinDeep.org provides a listing of topical products and the level of safety for each.
When a mild to moderate sunburn has occurred, use immediately a compress with Uriel Arnica Nettle Essence for adults diluted one part to nine parts water, or Uriel Arnica Nettle Spray on the area.
When the area is less acute, or if a compress is too cumbersome, Uriel Arnica Nettle Gel for adults can be applied. As the sunburn progresses to peeling, Weleda Burn Care ointment for adults nourishes the skin and diminishes itching.
Severe sunburns require medical attention.
Burns from contact with hot surfaces or liquids are classified as
- first degree when only redness and pain are evident.
- second degree when blistering occurs with the redness and pain.
- third degree when there is loss of skin, hair, nails and lack of pain; third degree results in scarring.
Running cold water over the burn is the first step in treatment.
Secondly, apply Uriel Arnica Nettle Essence one part to nine parts cold water for adults on compress cloth around the burned area. Continue moistening the burned area with this cold solution. Add ice cubes to the solution if pain is significant.
As pain diminishes, Uriel Arnica Nettle Gel for adults can be applied thinly and repeatedly, allowing it to dry.
As the skin begins to flake off, Weleda Burn Care ointment for adults provides oils for the drying process.
Severe burns require medical attention.
Fractures (broken bones) may occur with blunt or penetrating trauma. The skin damage can be addressed as described above, when open (abrasion, laceration, etc.) or closed (bruise, bump). Healing the damage to bone is supported by Uriel Symphytum Stannum for adults 10 pellets four times per day orally for the period of bone healing, approximately six weeks. Pain is lessened and healing is sped on its way. Fractures require medical attention, with the possible exception of a simple fracture of the fifth (littlest) toe, which may be sufficiently handled with buddy-taping.
Sprains and Strains occur with athletic events and work and exercise. Repeated occurrence often indicates a need for evaluating the body’s symmetry (SymmetryForHealth.com) and an individualized exercise program to correct muscle imbalances. Arnica compresses and topical cream, gel, ointments, as described above, support rapid healing. Rest, ice, compression, elevation are important, and common sense to avoid re-injury
For people who are sensitive to Arnica, Uriel Cuprum Quartz ointment is a valuable option, for adults usually applied twice daily and covered with bandage; the metal can stain tissue and clothing, so be fore-warned.Print This Post
Severe trauma requires immediate medical attention at emergency room or urgent care center.
Evaluation for tetanus immunization is best done with the practitioner who knows your health history.
Lacerations must be sutured or taped within 24 hours to have best cosmetic results. Lacerations on the face, hands, or over a joint should be addressed quickly to avoid scarring and infection in critical tissues.
Severe burns and sunburns require medical attention.
Wounds that have pus not responding to home care (for example as described here) require medical disinfecting and possibly removal of debris (debridement) by medical practitioner.
The examining physician’s judgment is most complete resource in deciding on treatments, and should be followed.
Arnica sensitivity is not common, but is real and should be recognized, and topical arnica should be avoided if there is a history of sensitivity or if redness and irritation occurs when arnica is used. Do not avoid arnica out of fear of sensitivity; the sensitivity is not life threatening, and use of the plant brings great benefit.Print This Post
*Healing the Skin, Jachens, Lueder, Temple Lodge Press, 2008, p. 161.
Symmetry pain relief through postural alignment www.symmetryforhealth.com
Toxins in cosmetics www.ewg.org/skindeep.
BHI-HEEL www.heelusa.com +1 800 621 7644 (in USA) +505 293 3843 (outside USA)
DermaSciences www.dermasciences.com 1+ 800 825 4325 (in USA) +1 609 514 4744 (outside USA)
True Botanica www.truebotanica.com +1 800 315 TRUE (8783) (in USA) +1 262 912 0970 (outside USA)
Uriel Pharmacy www.urielpharmacy.com +1 866 642 2858 (in USA) +1 262 642 2858 (outside USA)
Weleda www.weleda.com +1 800 241 1030 (in USA and to obtain contact info outside USA)Print This Post