Anti- inflammatory & Anti-spasmodic Herbs

LaurieLovesLearning
LaurieLovesLearning ModeratorManitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin
edited May 11 in General Health

Over the past three days, I have had a part of my back get very painful. It is at my left shoulder blade. It is very difficult to use left arm at all. I've had issues in the general area with a rib in the past that have sometimes resolved enough to carry on.

I have lain on my back on the floor, done shoulder bridges, and would like to see if a walk might help.

I don't want to take ibuprofen unless it gets so bad that I can't sleep.

My young chiropractor died over the past winter...so he's not an option. He was pretty good.

So, that leaves me with trying to figure out the best external & internal methods of dealing with this for now. I just got an order of herbs in today. Maybe with what I had & now have, I can put something together. BTW, I have wild lettuce tincture & crushed chili tinctures made. I just don't know how strong the first is.

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Comments

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Moderator Posts: 4,584 admin
    edited May 11

    Herbs don't so much work that way.... it takes a while for herbs to really reduce inflammation, with the exception of arnica and such for acute injury. Capsicum takes several days to reduce pain. Now, monk's hood liniment applied externally would numb everything out, but not reduce inflammation. I think anti-spasmodic herbs would help you more now - skullcap, valerian, viburnum, pedicularis, coleus, indian pipe, prickly poppy, etc. A soak in a jimson weed infusion would help a lot.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin
    edited May 11

    @judsoncarroll4 What you said makes total sense. Antispasmodic is more specifically what I'd need. I hadn't thought of that for some reason. I should change some of my tags, I guess.

    I would be fine with a slower action, except I have a very busy day ahead tomorrow that isn't easily canceled.

    Unfortunately, I have none of those herbs that you mentioned. It's a great suggestion for someone else who might need to know the same answer here one day though. 😀

    Valerian is not my friend, unfortunately. I still have tea sitting here from my trial of it at one point.

    So, for now, it looks like ibuprofen is my sole option & possibly using a massage oil on the area if I can handle it.

    Thanks for the input. It is appreciated!

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Moderator Posts: 4,584 admin

    Yeah, when we don't have what we need on hand, that's all we can do. One thing I failed to mention though is that tobacco in a bath can help a lot... but just a few minutes at a time because it can cause dizziness or fainting. Tobacco poultice helps for localized. That is cheap, easy and readily available in most places.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Moderator Posts: 4,584 admin

    I just remembered one more thing. When Jolanta and I were working on Fr. Kunzel's book, Herbs and Weeds, he mentioned a compress of ferns or moss for back or leg pain. She said her husband had a pinched nerve and they tried it it worked! I don't know how or why, but it is worth a shot

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin

    I have a fern in the house (it's just getting pretty again). There may be moss outside if we look. At least I dont have to dig through the snow. It's something to try. Thanks.

    I was finally able to get the book. I'll have to look at it later and make a note of that. Right now it's literally of out of reach. 🙁

    I'm hoping that with the aid of the ibuprofen, everything settles out by morning. If it doesn't do anything, it will be one really nasty day ahead.

    My husband asked what I did and I have absolutely no idea. This has happened in the past, but not nearly to this extent. It is most likely a pinched nerve and/or something out of place. That's what I've thought in the past too.

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 916 ✭✭✭✭

    @LaurieLovesLearning There is a video on Facebook I wanted to share with you even though you've said you don't have it but for whatever reason I can't share the link.

    Anyway Chris from Chrisbeatcancer had a video about drinking 8 ounces of water with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda in it first thing in the morning on an empty stomach to reduce inflammation. He quotes a study but I can't remember the name of it. Try searching for Chris beat cancer baking soda. Maybe you can watch it that way.

  • torey
    torey Moderator Posts: 4,297 admin

    Sorry to hear that @LaurieLovesLearning. I can imagine the type of pain you are experiencing.

    Does it feel better with heat or with cold (ice)?

    For acute pain, I have recently discovered that Pycnogenal works pretty well instead of ibuprofen or any other anti-inflammatory. It comes in 25mg and 100mg capsules (at least the brand I have available). 1 x 100mg seems to be a good dose for a heavy man (240 lb).

    I agree with @judsoncarroll4 on some of the antispasmodics. Pedicularis is a good muscle relaxant. Skullcap and valerian before bed.

    If you have some Balm of Gilead (Cottonwood Buds) that would be a good topical, especially if you mixed it with some cayenne (or chilli) oil.

    Another topical would be a liniment. Wormwood is one of the ingredients in Absorbine. So a rubbing alcohol tincture of wormwood. It could be mixed with a similar tincture of cottonwood buds.

    Wintergreen EO is in a number of pain relief preparations.

    Start out with a low dose of the wild lettuce tincture and increase by ml or half ml amounts until you get to a point where it assists.

  • marjstratton
    marjstratton Posts: 816 ✭✭✭✭

    Some great suggestions here. Recently watched Kami McBride's medicinal herbal oils webinar, and she is particularly fond of St. John's wort. Could be something else to try when you have the materials and the time.

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Moderator Posts: 1,067 admin

    @LaurieLovesLearning@judsoncarroll4

    i was going to write about fern and moss, and I saw that Judson has already mentioned it. Thank you!

    for my husband’s pain, I collected moss (I would have collected fern, but it was winter), put it into a linen bag (or simply fold into a linen cloth), heated it in the oven for 10-15 minutes at 100C. One has to check that it is. It too hot on the body. And placed it on the painful area. It worked in about 15-30 minutes. It relaxed the tension and almost removed the pain. We repeated it a few more times until the pain was completely gone.

    Another recipe is with hay flowers. Or herbal meadow hay. One puts herbs into a linen bag and steams it on a steaming put until it is warm (not too hot!) and put it on where you need it. The recipe is also in the book which @judsoncarroll4 mentioned.

    a bag with moss or fern can be reused several times. Steamed herbs only once. Than you have to prepare another bag.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Moderator Posts: 4,584 admin

    It really is fascination - had ferns, especially, not had hundreds of years of documented use for such applications it could be dismissed as placebo. But, in my research, I keep finding them turning up in different cultures, over the centuries as effective for pain. In the old books, likely due to that, they were believed to repel evil spirits. The ancient Brits even believed a certain fern could make one invisible!

  • nicksamanda11
    nicksamanda11 Posts: 429 ✭✭✭

    I have never heard of ferns or moss as pain relievers. That's incredible😲

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Moderator Posts: 1,067 admin

    There was also a story in the book, that a woodcutter got sciatica while cutting wood and it was so severe that he could not return home. He stuffed his trousers with moss and after an hour or so he could walk. It is an anecdotal story, but historical herbal evidence is in many cases anecdotal.

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Moderator Posts: 1,067 admin

    @LaurieLovesLearning @judsoncarroll4 I have just read that moss contains perrottetinene and this makes it a good pain killer with a strong anti inflammatory effect.

  • torey
    torey Moderator Posts: 4,297 admin

    @jowitt.europe Is this constituent in all mosses or just certain species?

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin

    @jowitt.europe Good to know!

    @torey I had wondered the same.

  • annbeck62
    annbeck62 Posts: 767 ✭✭✭✭

    This is such great information about ferns and moss. Ferns are almost invasive on my property. I never thought to research if they had any health benefits, silly me.

    @LaurieLovesLearning I have a similar shoulder injury that showed up out of nowhere. Although with mine the pain travels from the shoulder blade to the front and even down the arm some. It's probably a pinched nerve very painful to use my shoulder ( I never realized how much I use my shoulder until this happened). It's been very slow to heal. I made a spray using Eucalyptus essential oil, jojoba, aloe, msm, magnesium oil and emulsifying wax. It really helps when the pain gets bad.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 1,345 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @judsoncarroll4 and @jowitt.europe Is there a specific kind of moss or fern? Don't have much for ferns yet but there may be some moss that grows on the ground here, not sure what kind it is.

  • JodieDownUnder
    JodieDownUnder Moderator Mid North Coast AustraliaPosts: 1,309 admin

    @LaurieLovesLearning loving the fern & moss chat. Other than hot & cold packs, I can't go past my St Johns Wort Salve, works great on body aches & pains. I'd like to hear if your wild lettuce tincture makes a difference to you.

  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Moderator Posts: 1,067 admin
    edited May 14

    @torey @vickeym To me it looks like our usual forest moss. But, as we are from different parts of the world, it can be different on other continents. The Latin name I found is radula perrottetii. The articles which I copied here are mainly from Swiss authors. Well, Switzerland and Pharmacy. They do lots of research. And J. Kunzle was Swiss. In his book he mentioned Lycopodium

    https://www.unibe.ch/news/media_news/media_relations_e/media_releases/2018/medienmitteilungen_2018/a_type_of_moss_could_prove_to_be_more_medically_effective_than_hemp/index_eng.html



  • jowitt.europe
    jowitt.europe Moderator Posts: 1,067 admin

    @vickeym as far as I understand - any moss. The Swiss herbalist J. Kunzle mentions Aspidium filix as the most efficient, but then from the content one understands, that any fern would help.

    last year I experimented putting fern in my shoes during long hikes. It was supposed to reduce tiredness. It did reduce tiredness in legs.

  • judsoncarroll4
    judsoncarroll4 Moderator Posts: 4,584 admin

    Most of the herbals that discuss ferns and moss seem to use them interchangeably as compresses.

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin

    My back seems to be okay for now. I'll let you know how it works should this happen again. I'm sure I'll revisit this discussion if that happens.

  • water2world
    water2world Sherry Jochen Sevierville, TNPosts: 761 ✭✭✭✭

    I really enjoyed all of the posts! I'm sure I will be trying some of the suggestions out. Of course, my back is just fine now (thank goodness), but I know it will start acting up again! Moss is growing out by the "flower bed", but no ferns, so I will try just moss!

  • LaurieLovesLearning
    LaurieLovesLearning Moderator Manitoba, Canada 🍁 zone 3, PrairiesPosts: 5,875 admin

    So...here is a question for winter.

    Is it possible to freeze the moss for winter use? If it is needed in winter, but you need to dig a few feet down into snow & then try to get it off of the frozen ground, a freezer stash sounds preferable to that and you are more likely (in theory) to find it much easier in a freezer.

  • Merin Porter
    Merin Porter Editorial Director Southwest Colorado (Zone 6a)Posts: 953 admin
    edited May 16

    So, I'm not an herbalist, and I hesitate to even mention anything here, because all of these other suggestions are already so informative and insightful. However, I do tend to pull back muscles every once in a while, so here is what I do, for what it's worth:

    >>>I drink chamomile tea. Maybe it's just me, but for some reason, chamomile really tends to relax my muscles.

    >>>Hot baths where the affected area is submerged, or time in a hot tub if you've got access to one. Similarly, I do find intervals on a heating pad to help.

    >>>I use The Grow Network's CBD Freeze product -- no, this is not a paid advertisement. It's honestly fantastic, although I imagine any herbal freeze-type product would probably help. For me, at least, it's extremely effective at relaxing/soothing injured muscles.

    >>>On the muscles that are tight (like, if it's my lower back that's hurting, I find that the front and side muscles on my upper legs tend to be too tight), I will walk and then stretch them warm, and I will also use one of those percussion massagers on the tight muscles. It does seem to help.

    >>>And I'm a big believer in breaking the pain cycle to promote healing, so I will use OTC pain relievers as needed. But that's just me.

    Also, as a preventative measure, I stretch in the mornings -- every morning -- and it does seem to help prevent me pulling my back. (It seems like me pulling it happens more when I have slacked off on the daily stretching.) I know that stretching cold muscles isn't really recommended, but all I can say is that it does seem to work for me. I start by bending over and touching the floor, hold it for a bit, then I gradually walk that out to a plank, holding the stretch along the way where I feel it in my calves and etc. I then hold the plank for maybe 30 seconds, and walk it back to my original, bent-at-the-waist stance. I then do a squat and, with my hands on my quads, make my back convex and then concave, and repeat this several times. I believe this is called a "standing cat stretch" or something like that. And then I roll up slowly to a standing position. YMMV, but that does seem to help me quite a bit on the preventative side.

    Anyway, I'm glad to hear you are feeling better! But I'm grateful that you asked this -- knowing that moss and ferns act as pain-killers/anti-inflammatories is just fantastic information!

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 1,345 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited May 16

    I searched from your info and found this site...

    You got my attention with this, as a friends husband was recently diagnosed with both lung and liver cancer. She is devastated but determined to help find a way to heal him.

  • kbmbillups1
    kbmbillups1 Posts: 916 ✭✭✭✭

    @vickeym He has a lot of good info on his site and tons of testimonials of people who have beat cancer too. Hopefully, something on there will be helpful.

  • vickeym
    vickeym Posts: 1,345 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @kbmbillups1 I sent her a link to his website also. Hoping something they find will be helpful for them. They are wonderful people and willing to help anyone. They have gone through so much.

    Their grandson was murdered almost two years ago and the kid who did it has still not gone to trial even with two eye witnesses and his admitting he "just wanted to know what it would be like" plus having previous charges for shooting his mother in the foot.

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