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Eczema is an itchy, inflammatory skin disease usually found on the elbows, knees, wrists, neck, and scalp. Sometimes crusts and raw patches appear and in severe cases there is oozing and even bleeding. In most cases the cause is unknown but can sometimes be due to an allergic reaction.
Dairy products sometimes cause eczema. Cutting back on dairy foods may bring quick relief. Good diet with plenty of organic vegetables can sometimes heal the lesions and stop eczema outbreaks.
There are many herbs that help eczema although it may take time to find the best one for each individual person. Milk thistle seed, myrrh, licorice root extract, ginger, borage, and comfrey are some herbs known for helping eczema.
Stinging nettle or yellowroot tea may bring soothing relief. Soak a cloth in warm tea and apply to rash for 20 minutes five times a day. Stinging nettle and yellowroot contain substances that fight bacteria, redness, and inflammation.
Burdock leaf is especially good for scaling skin. Combine with yellow dock, cleavers, heartsease (viola) , and red clover for best results. This tea should be consumed three times a day and applied often to the affected areas of skin.
Evening primrose or chickweed ointment helps heal lesions and crusty areas. Apply often throughout the day, after baths, and at bedtime. Chickweed also makes excellent infused oil for use in bath or massage and grows abundantly in the North Georgia area.
Heartsease (also known as viola tri-color) can also be beneficial in the treatment of eczema and other skin problems. Make tea from aerial parts (flowers, leaves, and stems) and drink three or four cups a day for a couple of weeks. Also use heartsease in ointment for soothing external applications.
Slippery elm is considered a good herbal remedy for eczema. Make an herbal paste from dried, powdered leaf and a little water. Apply and leave on for one hour. Rinse and gently pat dry three times a day.
Some essential oils are well suited for treating eczema. Blend almond or olive oil with a few drops of rose, geranium, juniper, lavender, or hyssop essentail oil. (Never blend multiple essential oils without testing for reaction on normal skin. Remember that essential oils are powerful substances that must be treated with care.)
Calendula or pot marigold is another effective remedy for eczema and is an excellent moisturizer. Apply as ointment or lotion. Many times tea tree oil and witch hazel can help. Some herbalists recommend jojoba oil and morning sunshine. Elder leaves and aloe vera are also known to be good for healing eczema. Other remedies include bathing in baking soda, adding cranberry juice to the diet, and applications of zinc sore-throat spray.
Turmeric may also be used in the treatment of eczema. Take capsules daily for six weeks and condition should improve.
Children are often diagnosed with eczema. Combine dry oatmeal (or powdered oat straw) with chamomile tea to make a thick paste and apply often for two or three days. A bandage may be used to keep paste from rubbing off.
* Always consult with a healthcare professional before using any herbal remedy especially if pregnant or suffering from a serious health problem requiring prescription drugs.
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