Benefits of Calendula

By | November 2, 2013

People have known about the benefits of Calendula flowers for centuries to treat a variety of minor ailments and today the bright colored petals are used primarily for skin conditions including dermatitis, eczema and skin injuries including bruises, scrapes, scratches and burns.

Medicinal Benefits

The Compositae family contains many recognized plants including marigold, chrysanthemum and daisy, but the plant used most for medicinal purposes is Calendula officinalis that can be grown in most areas. The dried flower petals are used to make medicinal salves, washes and ointments and today, homeopathic preparations made from the flower petals is how calendula is used internally. The benefits of calendula petals include its high in Vitamin C, and is similar to Dandelion in its chemical composition and has been used to help circulation, improve appetite and to help break fevers.

Calendula-officinalis

External Uses

The external uses of Calendula are wide and varied:

  • Scrapes, scratches, bruises and especially burns respond well to Calendula creams, ointments and washes, as do bug bites, diaper rash andallergic skin reactions.
  • Many traditional physicians recommend calendula cream to help heal sunburn, minor topical burns and hemorrhoids.
  • When applied to wounds, calendula prevents microbial growth and does not cause skin tissues to retract providing more oxygen to the skin cells to help speed up healing.
  • Studies have shown that using calendula cream while undergoing radiation therapy for breast cancer reduces the appearance of dermatitis.
  • Reducing the pain of ear infections may be possible using a formula that contains calendula
  • Scalp disorders including dandruff and cradle cap are reduced using an infusion which also helps to prevent flaking and itching.

Preparations

Calendula preparations are available in cream, ointment and liquid base for the skin or scalp conditions and creating your own calendula preparations at home using home grown flower petals is easy. When creating preparations at home to utilize the benefits of calendula for the skin a two to five percent ratio is recommended and when preparing infusions to be used as a skin wash or hair rinse one teaspoon for every eight ounces of water is recommended.

Tinctures are created with alcohol to help prevent the formula from spoiling and provide a longer shelf life. Creating tinctures takes a few weeks as the petals are added to the alcohol and allowed to steep in a dark, opaque, capped bottle at a ratio of 90% alcohol to 10% flower petals.

Homeopathic Preparations

Homeopathic preparations have been used for centuries to treat common medical ailments and today licensed homeopaths can help individuals use these remedies safely. Commercially prepared remedies are available that can be taken safely by children, adults and pets providing a non prescription alternative for many minor medical conditions.

Homeopathic calendula preparations are available in tablets, liquids and creams in many strengths providing a choice for alternative treatment of wounds, burns, bruises, and other minor conditions. Infants and children should be given homeopathic remedies designed just for them plus some homeopathic liquid preparations are flavored.

Warnings

Calendula tends to irritate gallbladder conditions and if you take prescription medications you should consult your physician prior to taking any herbal preparation. People who are allergic to ragweed, daisies or chrysanthemums may have a reaction when using preparations using this herb; the most common adverse reaction being a skin rash.

This herb is a safe, natural treatment for skin conditions that can be grown in the flower garden allowing people to make their own remedies without the concern of herbicide or pesticide contamination.