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Poultices, Compresses, and Wraps Part 2

The Onion Poultice

When chopping an onion the eyes can water and the nose will run; this is precisely why the onion is useful as a healing poultice. Onion can improve circulation and helps to break up congestion. The high sulfur content in onions causes thick mucus to move outward toward the skin.

To create an onion poultice, chop the white or yellow onions finely. To really get the juice to come out place a cloth over the chopped onion and smash it under a cup, then puree it in a blender for 5 to 10 seconds. While this can be used at room temperature, it has also been suggested that the onion can be lightly sautéed with a little water or olive oil until warm.

The Lemon Poultice or Compress

The lemon can be prepared for a poultice by slicing, however, when preparing the lemon for a compress, it’s best to cut the lemon in a bowl of warm water. This makes it possible to capture the aromatic oils from the skin of the lemon.

A lemon poultice works wonders when applied to cornsor calluses overnight but has also been shown to be a powerful stress reliever. Apply the poultice to the wrist; the cooling effect of the lemon is calming and can even help when feeling fatigued. As a wrap or compress lemon is especially useful in lowering body temperature and soothing high fevers. A lemon foot wrap, soaked in warm water infused with lemon, can often relieve and sooth a fever by keeping the limbs cooler and drawing the heat from the head. To be most effective a foot wrap should start at the toes and then be wrapped all the way up to the knees.

Chamomile Preparation

To prepare Chamomile place 2 to 3 tablespoons of organic flowers in a bowl and add hot water. Steep for 3 minutes. Remove the flowers from the water to use as a poultice; for a compress strain the water before using. If organic flowers are not available substitute 2 or 3 teabags. For the poultice place the teabags directly into the cloth.

Chamomile tea is well-known to quickly sooth an upset stomach, however, what many may not know is that as a poultice or a compress it can be placed directly on the stomach to aid in comfort. Be aware, due to its similarity to ragweed some children have been known to have adverse reactions to chamomile. If this is the case, discontinue use immediately; using chamomile applications with a child that is running a high fever is also highly discouraged.

Potato Poultices

To prepare a potato poultice, boil 4 to 6 potatoes withthe skin on. Allow them to cool for a few minutes andthen place them in a sock or sleeve. After smashing the potatoes allow them to cool for another 6 to 8 minutes as the poultice should not be too hot and potatoes will retain their heat well.

Once the poultice is the right temperature it can beplaced directly on the area of concern. For a sore throat or cough it can be placed around the neck; the same is true for muscle aches or pains. It is most beneficial when the poultice is warm; if it begins to cool too quickly a hot water bottle can be placed directly on the poultice to keep it warm. The warm, moist heat is what is most soothing with this application.

In Summary

One of the highest priorities when seeking wellness for your family is to know what to do in the rare instances when illness strikes. The local pharmacy or corner drugstore is not a refuge. Holistic options, including Chiropractic Care, are always best for your family.

1 Join the Conversation

  1. jane A. Harris says
    May 13, 2023 at 5:58 PM

    appreciate this. Had forgotten that my great grandfather taught me to use a potato poultice for a boil. Can both poultice and compress be used on a wound not totally healed over which shows some pink is on lower shin, three or four inches from ankle. A rug burn from a fall on the steps.

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