Alternative medicine

Alternative Medicines That Work For Me

Alternative Medicines That Work For Me

There is a lot of hype about alternative medicines, and some of them are certainly without much value. Of course there is a lot of hype about regular medicines, many of which do as much harm as good. The fact that natural remedies and treatments rarely hurt people as much as prescription drugs is one reason to at least try them. Here are a few that I can vouch for from experience.

Tea Tree Oil

I had a lump on the side of my nose, growing slowly, bleeding at times. I had it for years, and the one time I asked a doctor about it, he wasn't sure if it was actually cancerous. I read somewhere that tee tree oil might work. I bought a bottle at a health-food store for $6. I applied a drop to the lump each day, and in less than six weeks, the lump was gone completely.

Coincidence? After having the growth for years? I don't think so. In fact I had another growth years later on my neck, and for several years, I couldn't remember what I had used the first time. When I found a clue in some old notes, I used tea tree oil on that growth, which was even larger than the first one. It was gone in about six weeks.

St. John's Wort

When hiking in Canada, I cut my foot. The gash was deep. I found St. John's Wort (Hypericum perfolatum), which has been proven to have anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. I mashed up a few leaves and bandaged them to the cut, replacing them occasionally. I have honestly never seen a cut heal faster.

St. John's Wort is one of the better known alternative medicines now. It is used as an anti-depressant, with numerous studies showing it's effectiveness. It is also used by some as a temporary mood-elevator. This effect isn't proven yet, but whenever I've had tea made from the plant, it tasted awful and left me happy for two hours. Anecdotal and subjective evidence (I'm not even entirely convinced), but interesting.

Valerian Root

When my wife has cramps and pain, nothing works better than a cup of tea made from valerian root. You can get the tea in many stores now. I wouldn't try driving after having valerian root. This is a powerful relaxant.

In fact, valerian root is too strong for some people. A gentler herb that will relax you is chamomile. You can find this as tea too. It makes a great drink with honey, just before you are ready to go to bed.

There are so many alternatives out there. I have stopped a headache just by chewing on willow twigs. I have stopped diarrhea with oak bark (careful - this can hard on the liver in large doses). I have watched a friend's poison ivy rash disappear overnight with the application of jewelweed juice.

I am sure that I have tried just as many alternatives that didn't work, too, but you know what? Put all the ineffective ones together and the cost probably doesn't add up to the cost of one visit to a doctor. As for the effective ones, well, no doctor yet has introduced me to one of them. You have to do your own research on alternative medicines.

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Are Your Symptoms Acid Reflux

Are Your Symptoms Acid Reflux?

Are you having a painful burning sensation in your chest or your upper abdomen? Does this pain sometimes radiate into your back? Does it almost feel like you can't catch your breath? These general symptoms sound like heart attack symptoms and is often the reason that thousands of people show up in emergency rooms every year with them, only to find out these symptoms are related to acid reflux. It's estimated by medical professionals that as many as 20 - 30 million Americans suffer from acid reflux or as it's becoming known - gastroesophageal reflux disease or GERD.

Most of us have experienced it, especially after that spicy Italian sausage and pepper sub or even that piece of dense chocolate torte. For me it was drinking iced tea all day that caused me to have problems. So, for those of us with food related acid reflux it's easy to know what foods to avoid so we don't have a problem. We can take an over the counter antacid and obtain relief.

For some of us however acid reflux becomes a chronic condition that over time can cause damage to the esophagus. When the damage to the esophagus occurs this is when acid reflux can cause serious medical problems. What happens with chronic acid reflux is that the stomach acids that back flow from up into the esophagus actually damage the lining of the esophagus. This back up of acid can cause ulcers to form along the esophagus and can cause what is called Barrett's esophagus which is when the normal esophageal cells are replaced with abnormal cells. These abnormal cells have been associated with cancer of the esophagus.

The question is what to do? Try the easiest path first. If you have occasional acid reflux you can try observing what foods bring on the acid reflux. Some medical professionals do not see any link between acid reflux and food at all. They believe that acid reflux occurs no matter what type of food you eat. This has not been my personal experience. I have found that avoiding combinations of foods does prevent my acid reflux from occurring. Keep a diary of what you have eaten when your acid reflux acts up. This way you'll know what types of food to avoid. It is suggested that you do not lie down right after any meal. Do not bend over right after a meal. Don't wear tight fitting clothing. Do not smoke! Smoking can trigger acid reflux symptoms. If you have periodic acid reflux you can seek relief from over the counter antacids. For more severe and chronic acid reflux it is suggested that you seek advice from your medical professional. You may need a prescription antacid for relief.

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