Thursday, July 12, 2012

Comfrey and Calendula Poultice

A few weeks ago I hurt my ankle.  I'm not really sure what I done to it, but I do know it hurt and it swelled up.  I had to wear a brace and one evening the swelling seemed worse than ever so I decided it was time to try a herbal remedy.   

Last year I started growing Comfrey in my herb garden.  This is an herb that has always captured my interest as it has so many great healing properties.  It is for external use only and is good for  muscle pains, reducing swelling, bruising and even healing broken bones.  Yes, broken bones!  Comfrey knits things together.  You can even use it on open wounds, but you have to be very careful when doing this because it can heal a cut extremely fast.   If you don't have the wound cleaned properly it can close it up with the dirt/infection inside.  So be sure to clean your wound very good if you intend on using it on any open wounds.

Calendula is another favorite of mine.  I didn't grow the annual flower this year but I had plenty of dried flower heads from last year.  Calendula is good for bruising, strains and inflammation (just to name a few).  So I decided to add it with my comfrey pultice and see what happened.

I picked some fresh comfrey leaves and got my jar of dried calendula flowers.  I tore the comfrey into smaller pieces and put both herbs in a bowl.  I then boiled some water and poured the boiling hot water over my herbs.  I let the herbs steep for about 20 minutes.  After the 20 minutes I drained off the access water and made several bandages by putting the poultice on strips of gauze.  I then put them in the freezer.  
After they were nice and frozen I removed it from the freezer and applied the gauze poultice directly to my ankle.

I also wrapped an ace bandage around my ankle to hold it in place.

And guess what!!!!  The swelling was COMPLETELY gone in the morning.  The pain was hardly noticeable.  I went ahead and continued changing the poultice the next day and my ankle was all better!  I was so excited.  I love using herbal remedies and to know without a doubt that it works give me an amazing feeling.   

There are a few things I would do different.  Next time I'll put the herbs in a blender to make more of a softer puree.  I think I'll add a little flour or cornstarch to make it a thick gel like substance.  I'll still use the gauze because it worked really well.  A matter of fact, I think I'll whip a few up and keep them in the freezer.  You never know when an injury might happen and you need a quick remedy!  Plus it will be great to have in the winter months when I can't go out and pick fresh comfrey.  

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