March 30th, 2011Fomentations and Injuries
By Doreen Spackman M.H.
At The School of Natural Healing we teach how to prepare and use the Bone, Flesh and Cartilage with Comfrey fomentation many times a week, we have also used this in our home several times and for many situations. This fomentation could be used for broken bones, eye injuries, knee, hip or shoulder injury and to relieve pain.
My husband was in an accident 2 ½ years ago with his scooter. In the accident, my husband was ejected from the seat and bounced across the road to where his leg found the big bolt on a fire hydrant that deeply sliced the full length of his lower leg next to the bone. The injury was about 11″ in length and deep enough that the hospital did 2 layers of stitches within the wound, pulling different tissue and muscle together, then completing with a 3rd layer of stitches on top. As we walked out of the hospital with 5 prescriptions for pain and infection he said “Let’s go home and do the herb thing”. Now he had done some “herb things” and nutrition before, but nothing like this type of injury. He made a great choice and this is what we did:
Begin by making Decoction
1. Take 1 gallon of distilled water and 1 cup of Bones, Flesh and Cartilage w/ Comfrey put both in a big stainless steel pot and bring to a simmer (where the steam comes off but not a boil). Simmer until the tea is ½ of the amount that you started with.
Extra info … If it does boil don’t worry, turn it down and use it. Don’t throw it away, herbs are resilient and will still work great. When it says simmer it to ½ … and yours is a little more or less, that is okay it doesn’t need to be exact.
2. Strain off the herbs and put the liquid into glass jars. Put these in the fridge to use later. I usually put my jars in the back of the fridge because it almost freezes helping it to last.
To apply a Fomentation
1. Heat up a small amount of the tea/decoction (usually ½ -1 cup of the liquid depending on the size of the area you are needing it for and put it in a small pan). It only takes a minute or so to heat up just make it as warm as possible, but not boiling hot! We don’t want to blister the area. The warmth/temperature helps the pores to open and absorb the medicinal nutrients of the herbs, reduce inflammation and it has a very relaxing affect when applied this way.
2. Dip a white 100% cotton cloth into the liquid and slightly gently squeeze, leaving most of the liquid in, you just don’t want it to be drippy (Note: after this first use, the cloth won’t be white anymore and that’s okay you just want white to start with so there are no dyes in the fabric). I like to use the real thick cotton cloths that are about the size of a large wash cloth, because they hold more liquid. I also have hand towel size but the wash cloth size is the one I use the most.
3. Apply the wet cloth over the injured area and immediately put Plastic wrap (like saran wrap) over the “cloth only,” tucking approximately a half inch of the plastic edges under the cloth. This helps with any dripping, it also holds in moisture and heat.
4. Wrap with something that is snug such as a self adhesive wrap (like an Ace bandage or Vet wrap) or sock for the leg, just something to keep it in place but not too tight, just snug.
I like to apply the fomentation as soon as possible after the injury. Sometimes I have needed to make a quick tea for the first application until the Decoction was complete. It does take some time to simmer a gallon of water and 1 cup of cut herb. You can make it in a smaller amount to speed up the process, just use the same ratio given above of water to herbs, such as ½ gallon of water to ½ cup of cut herbs.
Changing the fomentation- I apply it in the morning and leave it on all day. Make sure to remove it for a couple of hours in the evening to air it out, then apply it again and leave on all night. I use a clean cloth and a new piece of plastic wrap each time I change the fomentation.
Usually along with an injury comes pain or concern of infection, so I will address these also. For pain and healing I would add 6-8 capsules of Complete Tissue and Bone every 2 hours until the pain subsides and continue it for at least 2-3 days, then wait 3 hours instead of 2 hours. “If” at 2 ½ hours the pain returns in any degree, that is the body telling you it needs the nutrition more often and continue with capsules every 2 hours. When you can go 3 hours between each time then do so, but listen to your body, it will let you know its needs, pain is one of the ways it tells you there is need of more nourishment. Then after taking the capsules every 3 hours for 2-3 days, try waiting 4 hours, apply the same principle, if your body is not in pain-Great! If it is, continue with taking it every 3 hours and repeat attempt to taper off capsules. Continue this until no capsules are needed - this time frame will be different for each person.
Note: Now if we are talking about a broken bone I would definitely take 100 Complete Tissue and bone capsules a day for 3-6 weeks to start.
To avoid Infection we used 12-16 capsules of the Infection formula each day, for 3 weeks (I would at least use this same amount for any moderate injury for the duration of 10 days or even longer if needed).We used this method for my husband (note: he never took any prescription medication for pain or infection once we left the hospital), with this process, he was never groggy and felt so good that one week later he went back to work leaving the fomentation on at work and covering it well because he does landscaping. My husband has commented over and over how glad he is that we have learned how to take care of our health by learning the methods Dr. Christopher taught. I love learning!!!
Have a Happy and Healthy Day!