Arnica – Uses and Benefits

Alternative Names:

Arnica latifolia ,Mountain Tobacco,Arnica Sororia, Mountain Arnica, Common Arnica, Leopard’s Bane ,Sneezewort , Arnica Montana, Arnica Flower,Arnica Fulgens, Wolf’s Bane.

Herb Description

Arnica is a perennial species, belonging to the sunflower family. The name Arnica derived from the Latin arna , “lamb”, in credit , to the soft, hairy leaves.

This herbaceous is indigenous to the mountains of Siberia & central Europe and cultivated in North America , where the leaves were smoked as a replacement for tobacco. This practice led to a usual name for the herb: mountain tobacco .

Arnica develops to 1 – 2 feet of height with bright yellow flowers .It flowers in july.The rootstalk is generally curved,dark brown, cylindrical, and bears brittle wiry rootlets on the under surface.The leaves occur are bright green color,the upper part are toothed and slightly hairy while lower leaves have rounded tips.

Preparations made from the arnica flowering heads have been used in homeopathic medicine for many centuries for bruises and sprains .Arnica is taken by many people including athletes,mothers & infants. It is generally recommended by plastic surgeons around the world. It contains anti-inflammatory property .Studies has reported the active components in arnica are sesquiterpene lactones, which are known to mitigate inflammation and decrease pain.here are some other active components include inulin,thymol , flavonoids, carotenoids & tannins.It also has counter irritant actions, which enhance local circulation, and is taken for the temporary relief of a deep seated painful irritation.

Properties

Anti-microbial.
Anti-inflammatory.
Antiseptic.
Anti-rheumatic.
Anti-neuralgic.
Anti-oedema medicine.
Uses and Benefits

Arnica is externally applied on the skin to ebb and cure bruises, sprains & relieve irritations from trauma, arthritis and muscle or cartilage pain. Arnica is also good for chapped lips, irritated nostrils and acne,When applied as a salve .

A macerated oil is beneficial for treating bruises, strained muscles and other problems associated with overexertion or trauma.As an anti-inflammatory, pain reliever and an antibiotic, is used in liniments & creams for dislocations, sprains, bruises, chilblains, and varicose ulcers.It works well in pain causing prostaglandins.

Its internally used as a mouth wash & gargle when fighting inflammation of the mucus membranes .A tincture can be used in the treatment of heart failure and coronary artery disease.

Arnica enhance the blood supply & accelerates healing. It also increases the rate of absorption of internal bleeding .

Arnica is more effective when diluted with from one to six parts of warm water. It is a stimulant to the skin, promoting absorption of nutritive material .arnica works as an herbal remedy for angina, senile heart, or coronary artery disease.

Side Effects

Excess dose of arnica can cause cardiac arrhythmias, coma and death.

Arnica if taken internally may cause nausea, vomiting,tremors, dizziness, abdominal pain, diarrhea, heart irregularities,coma and death. That’s why it is not commonly taken as an internal herbal remedy.It may also and cause irritate mucous membranes.

Arnica contains sesquiterpenoid lactones such as helenalin, are intensely poisonous and cardiotoxic.Therefore oral use of arnica is considered unsafe.

Long external use of arnica extract in high concentrations can cause in blistering, skin ulcers, and surface necroses.

Some allergic reactions may occur with Arnica such as:

Trouble breathing.
Itching.
Hives.
Rash.
Tightness in chest.
Swelling of lips.
Swelling of tongue.
Redness.
Blisters.
Dosage

Tincture:
1:10 tincture prepared with 70% ethanol .(Use thrice in a day) .

Infusion:
2 gm of herb per 100 ml of water.(Use thrice in a day).

Poultices:
tincture diluted 3 to 10 times with water.(Use thrice in a day).

Mouthwash:
Tincture diluted 10 times with water (should not be swallowed).(Use thrice in a day).

Oil:
Not more than 20-25% tincture.(Use thrice in a day) .

Drug Interactions
Arnica may increase the action of drugs known to cause a prolonged QT interval.

Such drugs are as follows:

Quinidine.
Procainamide.
Disopyramide.
Sotalol.
Amiodarone.
Chlorpromazine.
Prochlorperazine.
Haloperidol.
Pentamidine.
Amitryptyline.
Desipramine.
Doxepim.

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