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Poultices and Compresses

Many herbal remedies are applied directly to the skin as poultices - usually on rashes and wounds and as topical pain-relieving remedies. Poultices are prepared in various ways  chewing up fresh leaves or roots and spitting them out onto the skin, to mashing up fresh leaves or roots by hand or with a mortar and pestle. Sometimes just enough hot water is poured over dried or fresh plant material to soften them. Then the wet herbs are placed directly on the skin or between two pieces of cloth and laid on the skin. A light cotton bandage to bind the poultice to the area is generally used (or in the woods, a nice large flexible leaf is commonly employed and tied with a bit of twine). Compresses are simply soaking a cloth in a prepared infusion, tincture or decoction and laying the cloth onto the affected part of the body/skin. Since most people will only have access to dried plant materials to work with, using compresses instead of poultices will suffice for poultice remedies.For more information on natural health and wellness go to

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