Self Help Home Remedies
These home remedies were compiled by Chris Nelson, a healthworker at the Feminist Women's Health Center in Chico, CA, in 1976. Originally printed in the Self Help Home Remedies pamphlet, which is now out of print, we have made the contents available here.
|Mild||Red sage, Chamomile, American saffron, Elecampane, Lemon balm, Parsley, Basil (use 1 c. every 3 hours)|
|Moderate||Ginger (1/4 tsp. dried or 1" fresh root), Yarrow, Motherwort ,Rosemary ,Mugwort ,Thyme ,Southemwood ,False valerian (squaweed), Wintergreen (contains aspirin-like chemical ),Gentian ,Angelica (the Chinese herb Dong-Quai ), Ephedra (morman or squaw tea)|
|Strong||Pennyroyal, Blue cohosh, Black cohosh, Myrrh 6 gm. Vit. C per day for 5 days before period is due|
|Moderate||Ova ursi (steep 1/2hr.), Red sage|
|Strong||raspberry, shepherds purse, black haw; witch hazel, white oak bark, bayberry bark
Use 1 oz. of mix and steep in 1-pint water: Prickly ash, Wild yam, Red raspberries, Cinnamon, Blue cohosh
Pre-Menstrual Tension/Nervines Remedies Index
|Increase calcium intake, Horsetail grass, Comfrey, Chamomile, Spearmint, Lavender, Mugwort, Oat straw, Valerian, Vervain, Skullcap, Alfalfa, Kola nuts, Celery seeds, Catnip, Motherwort, Passionflower, Hops (sedative), Lady slipper (can be poisonous)|
|Mild||chamomile, spearmint, and lavender|
|Moderate||catnip, Mugwort, alfalfa (high in calcium), kola nuts, celery seeds, increasing calcium intake before period is due. One very high calcium tea is a combination of horsetail, oat straw and comfrey leaf. A good supplement is also a calcium/magnesium compound called Dolomite (take one a day starting two weeks before period).|
|Strong||valerian (anodyne and muscle relaxant; use with caution), Vervain, skullcap, passion flower (use with caution as it has narcotic effect similar to morphine), hops.|
Water Retention / Bloating Remedies Index
|Use the diuretics listed in section on bladder infections.|
Constipation Remedies Index
|Eat light diet with lots of fruit, raw vegetables, yogurt and soups. Cut back on cheese, meat and starch.|
Diarrhea Remedies Index
|Eat more cheese, starch, barley, bananas, and applesauce. Herbs: Simmer herbs below in any combination for 10 - 20 minutes and sip slowly.
Slippery Elm, Stinging nettle, Cinnamon, Bayberry bark, Mallow, Blackberry root
Alternative to Tampons Remedies Index
|Use an old diaphragm, one without holes in it.
Take a small artist or cosmetic sponge, tie a string to it and insert. Remove when full, rinse and reinsert. When your period is over soak or wash out the sponge in 1 tsp. white vinegar/l cup water for 15 minutes. Dry and store until next period. Both of these suggestions work as well as a super tampon.
Menstrual Cramps Remedies Index
|Sweet balm (lemon balm), Chamomile, Mugwort, Motherwort (use as tea or poultice), Dolomite, Squaw vine, Spicebush, Parsley, Sassafras
Stronger: Black haw (a specific uterine sedative, also known as crampbark), skullcap (sedative), ginger root (counterirritant; use as a tea or poultice over uterus. Also effective for ovulatory pains. Use with caution), Blue and black cohosh, vervain, valerian, lobelia (use in small doses, can cause nausea vomiting and over-sedation).
Menopause Remedies Index
|General health measures, well-balanced diet, rest and exercise are all important. Vitamin E lOOu tablets, 3 - 4 times a day for relief of symptoms like hot flashes and nervousness.
Combine one part each of:
Blessed thistle or holy thistle, Raspberry leaves, Golden seal root, Uva ursi, holy thistle, Cramp bark, Cayenne, Squaw vine herb, Ginger, False unicorn root.
Powder and cap in gel caps. Start with 3 caps, twice a day then adjust dosage according to body needs.
Tonics: (specific for women) Black cohosh, Sweet flag (can be dangerous), licorice root, Star root, Black haw, Squaw weed (false Valerian), Motherwort, Pennyroyal, Spearmint, All mints
General Tonics: Comfrey, Alfalfa, Nettle Dandelion root and leaves, Sage, Yarrow, Yerba Santa, Myrrh, Golden Seal.
Hormone Herbs for Menopause
|These herbs are known to contain estrogens and progesterones. Many of these contain both progesterone (P) and estrogen (E) like activity.
Red raspberry (P&E), Wild yam (E) (root bark), Cucumber (stimulates hormone producing organs), Vitamin E (E), False unicorn, licorice (P&E), Helionas, Pennyroyal and other mints (E), Star root, Sarsaparilla (P&E).
Vaginal Infections Remedies Index
Through the use of self-cervical examination and becoming familiar with our healthy vaginal changes, we become aware of infection processes in the beginning stages. This means that we can take action early enough to prevent infections from happening. The best time to use herbal remedies effectively is in the beginnings of an infection. If you cannot tell by the discharge what kind of infection you have, have it diagnosed correctly before treating.
|Trichomonas Remedies Index
Trichomonas will not withstand an acidic environment. For women who are susceptible to trichomonas, spermicidal jellies (because of their acidity) tend to inhibit the growth of trich. Insert one applicator daily every 2-3 weeks as a preventative measure. Drinking cranberry juice or taking vitamin C will acidify the urine and all the tissues.
Men do not always show signs of trichomonas and they should abstain or use a condom for 10 days. The organism will not survive. They can also wash their genitals with the Betadine solution described below:
|Genital Warts Remedies Index
The only wart treatment found in the literature was a statement that tincture of yellow cedar applied to warts will make them disappears. There are no specifications as to how long to leave the tincture on the warts or how many times to apply it.
Podophyllum, the acid used to bum off warts, is a component of the mandrake (mayapple) root. The diluted resin (tincture, product dissolved in alcohol) is used externally as an irritant in Indian medicine. It could possibly be used to treat venereal warts. It is a powerful acid and should be washed off within 2 hours after application. DO NOT USE INTERNALLY!
|Yeast Remedies Index
Yeast is always present in our vaginas. It is only when our bodies are off balance that yeast will create an infection. Some precipitating factors are antibiotic therapy, stress, diet or weather changes, birth control pills and high sugar intake (creates an alkaline balance in tissues).
|Bacterial Infections Remedies Index
|Herpes Remedies Index
|Cervicitis Remedies Index
|Leukorrhea Remedies Index
This is a general term that refers to an excessive discharge from the vagina It can be either a normal or infectious discharge. Most of the herbs used for leukorrhea are astringents. Those listed can be used singly or in combination. More experimentation needs to be done to see if these herbs are effective for nonspecific or yeast infections. Use them as a douche.
Plantain, Pipsissewa, Fleabane ,Motherwort, Prickly ash bark, Sumac berries, Uva ursi, Yarrow, White oak bark, Bayberry bark, Witch hazel bark, Golden seal, Chickweed.
Vaginal Itching associated with Infections Remedies Index
Vaginal Inflammation Remedies Index
|Another vaguely defined term, possibly associated with infections.
Bladder Infections Remedies Index
Diuretics Remedies Index
|Ground ivy, Cornsilk,Dandelion root & leaves, Buchu leaves, Shepherd's purse, Marshmallow, Wintergreen, Huckleberries, Fleabane, Sassafras, Slippery elm, Cleavers (bedstraw)
Use these in combination with antiseptic herbs.
Juniper berries Cubeb berries Wild carrot leaves Hydrangea root Prickly pear
Pregnancy Remedies Index
Being pregnant entails more than the use of herbs. Good pre and postnatal care includes adequate diet, rest, exercise and assistance from a care provider. Herbs can be an excellent supplement to the other necessities.
|Morning Sickness Remedies Index
Peach leaves, Spearmint, Peppermint, Sweet balm, Wild yam, Cloves, Alfalfa,Knotgrass, Lavender, Anise, Sassafras, Colombo root.
|Cramps Remedies Index
Wild yam, Cramp bark
|Uterine Tonics Remedies Index
Red raspberry, Wild yam, Lemon grass (contains Comfrey Squawvine water-soluble Vito A), Strawberry leaf, Sarsaparilla, Alfalfa.
Both of the following are excellent anti-miscarriage herbs; they are uterine sedatives: Black haw; Star root.
|Avoid the following:
They can induce abortion; many of them can be poisonous. Black cohosh Blue cohosh Celery root Pennyroyal Slippery elm douche Tansy Western red cedar, Yarrow, Rue, Lovage, Ginger, Cotton root bark, Sweet flag, Mistletoe, Ginseng, Golden seal, Juniper berries, Oil of sassafras, Myrrh, Southernwood, Motherwort, Angelica, Marigold, Bracken fern, Golden ragwort, Mugwort, Also avoid other emmenagogues listed previously.
|Labor and Delivery Remedies Index
|To ease the pain of Contractions: Remedies Index
Wild cherry (inner bark-do not use in excess) Lobelia (can cause nausea and vomiting), Wild yam, Black haw, Black cohosh, Red raspberry leaves, Cotton root bark.
|Placental Expulsion Remedies Index
Angelica, Broom snakeweed, Skullcap, Birthwort, Sweet basil, Sneezeweed, Licorice root, Pennyroyal
|Postpartum Tonics Remedies Index
Black haw, Pennyroyal, Squawvine (2- 3 glasses a day), Juniper berries (relaxes smooth muscles).
|Stitches from Episiotomies Remedies Index
As prevention to tearing, massage perineum throughout pregnancy with olive oil or wheat germ or sesame oil to help tissues stretch.
Apply ground ginger poultice for pain.
Apply comfrey root poultice to build new tissue and for pain. Also drink comfrey root or leaf tea.
Nursing and Lactation Remedies Index
|To Increase Milk Supply
Fennel, Barley water, Saw palmetto berries (3-5/day for last month of pregnancy), Maple bark, Cotton seed tea Alfa1fa Wintergreen Baneberry leaves, Comfrey, White poplar bark, Tall blue lettuce, Skeleton weed (excellent), Atole (blue com, very high in protein)
|To Decrease Milk Supply
Red sage rubbed on breasts, Wild alumroot rubbed on breasts, Cinnamon tea, Parsley leaf tea, and Huckleberry leaf tea.
Cracked and Painful Breasts Remedies Index
Sore Nipples Remedies Index
* For definition of terms used here, check out the Glossary.