Natural Anaesthetics have been used by cultures around the world for as long a recorded history, There are a huge number of plant species that offer anaesthetic quality’s ranging from the now tightly controlled opium poppy’s to the sometimes deadly mandrake root. But what safe options are there that are still effective in our modern world?
We certainly wouldn’t advise any one goes out and start growing opium poppy’s in their back gardens to help with a bad back, but there are a number of both legal and effective pain killing plants and compounds that really could help you out.
Cloves are perhaps the most commonly used natural anaesthetic in our modern society. Their ability to deal with tooth ache has made them the most well known herbal treatment for oral pain available but what are they and how do the work?
Cloves are simply the dried buds of an native Indonesian tree ‘Syzygium aromaticum‘.
They contain a chemical called eugenol which was used topically for tooth ache in the US for a number of year although recently the us food and drug administration downgrading its effectiveness rating.
This one you might not of heard of before, Curare is a chemical compound found in the sap of many
rainforest plants such as the Pareira vine. This compound has been used by the South American native tribes for thousands of years as both a aesthetic and a poison added to hunting spears and arrows. This natural aesthetic is still in use in modern medicine although now days administered intravenously resulting in more stable results
Capsaicin is actually the active ingredient of chilli peppers, when eaten it acts as a irritant producing the strong burning sensation associated with curries and other foods that contain large amounts of chillies. Capsaicin is widely available in modern medicine both as a prescription and directly from pharmacy’s. It normally comes as a topical cream that can be applied to painful areas of the body where is works as a local aesthetic. 40% of people suffering from arthritis reduced there pain by half after using capsaicin for just one month!
Another great reason to use capsaicin is that has no known drug interactions meaning you can use this well taking other medications for pain.
Arnica is a large daisy like flower native to Europe, its used for its anti-bacterial and anti inflammatory qualities. It works by promoting white blood cells these in turn draw blood and fluids from joints and muscles cutting the amount of time it takes your body to heal naturally.
As well as this topical use, homeopathic arnica can be taken orally in tablet forum instead of swallowing the pill allow it to dissolve under your tong where it can be absorbed into your blood stream.
White willow bark
White willow bark comes from the Salix Alba tree native to Europe and Asia. The medicinal uses of the tree date back to the ancient Egyptians where white willow bark was used to treat inflammation.
It wasn’t until 1828 that scientists in Europe identified the active ingredient that offered the unique properties a compound known as ‘Salicin‘. The trouble was it was a long winded and costly process to extract the salicin from the bark of the willow trees. This lead to a synthetic version being developed by a German company “Bayer” they went on to mass produce this product under the trade name Aspirin.
Oil of oregano
Unlike oregano essential oil (and irritant if left undiluted), oil of oregano is ready diluted with olive oils or other similar ingredients this means its ready to be used on your skin straight out of the bottle. It has a strong antifungle action meaning a can be a great tool when dealing with candida infection. Oregano oil can also help to sooth skin after a burn so well worth making sure you have a bottle in your medicine box.
Turmeric is a great pain killer with some people claiming it can be more effective than ibuprofen at reducing pain , with non of the nasty side effects. Its active ingredient is called curcumin
How to take?
There are many different opinions online claiming to be the best methods of using turmeric, the way I find works best is to simply add 1 heaped tea spoon of turmeric power into a small glass of water mix then swallow in one. Although the taste leaves a lot to be desired within minuets you should be able to feel the effects of this wonderful natural cure all.
There are already a number of boxed natural pain relief products available on the market such a Zyflamend and Inflathera these contain a selection of known anti inflammatory herbs and compounds including ginger, turmeric and holly basil. The products are aimed at people suffering from arthritis and other rheumatoid issues but due to the natural nature of the ingredients there is nothing stopping anyone from giving them a go.