Doctors and healers of all kinds have been using herbal compresses for thousands of years to ail in the repairing of damage to body and providing relief of symptoms ranging from asthma to eczema. If you have been growing herbs in your garden, once you have learned how to make a compress, you will have the additional enjoyment of having been able to make the compress yourself and be a part of your own treatment from start to finish.
A compress is a fantastic way to treat symptoms externally on a particular part of the body. Compresses work in one of two ways – with heat or without heat. If the skin around a wound is not broken, you would make use of a compress without heat as the heated compress could cause further damage. If the person needing the compress is experiencing a lot of pain you can simply make use of a heating pillow or something similar where the heat cannot be transferred to the compress and alter anything in it. Anything with insulating properties would be fine.
Thailand is famous for the herbal compresses that originate over there. They have been in use for over 2,500 years and have helped to relieve, reduce and relax. These compresses differ only in their contents and combinations of herbs and plant extracts. Their product is the same: reduced tension, relief of body pain and a return to a feeling of general well-being.
Herbal compresses are not difficult to make. The first step is to brew a strong mixture of your favourite selection of healing herbs, such as onion, arnica or chamomile. Do this in the same way that you would make a cup of tea. Find, or buy a decent quality piece of cotton cloth and fold it over a few times so the cloth is four to six layers thick. Whatever size you decide to make it is according to the size of the area that you wish to treat. Whilst doing this, make sure that there are no loose threads on the piece of cloth as you will not want to expose to skin when you are using the compress.
The cloth you have shaped, folded and now cut to shape must be soaked in the mixture that you have prepared. Leave it there for a few minutes up to half an hour if necessary. Saturate the cloth with the mixture and remove any excess liquid – this is for no other reasons than that you will want to avoid making a mess anywhere. You can now place the cloth – damp with your herbal brew – over the affected area. Hold the cloth there with surgical tape, or simply by hand. If you are planning to use a heated compress, simply place it in the microwave for twenty to thirty seconds. The compress needs to set for about thirty minutes to an hour.
The length of time that you leave the herbal compresses over the affected area is fully dependent on the wound and the herbs that were used.