Ethnomedicine/Home Remedies/S - U

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Sage[edit]

The Sage plant is an herb that has been used to help reduce excessive perspiration, digestive problems, sore throats, premenstrual cramps, and high blood sugar. Hot Sage Gargle can be used to help cure sore throats. In order to do this, 1 to 2 teaspoons of sage leaves should be mixed with 1 cup of boiling water and let to steep for 10 minutes. This should be gargled at least twice a day for best results. It should not be given to children under the age of 2. This practice has been common throughout history in European society, but more recently has spread around the globe.

Salditas[edit]

Sucking on or eating salditas, also known as salted plums will help heal sore throats. Be cautious of consuming too many plums, it may result in diarrhea. Eat one to two daily, until symptoms seem to decline. This remedy originated from the Asian culture but was later adapted by the Hispanic culture.

Salmon[edit]

Salmon can be eaten to reduce high blood pressure. The oils from the fish have amazing properties that fight heart disease. There are also pill forms of fish oil that can be taken, but the best is to eat the actual fish. This was first the way of the native Americans and then as we learned about the health benefits we started to adopt part of the diet of the native peoples. salmon glass of red wine

Saltines and Sprite[edit]

Im sure that everyone has had an upset stomach before and now how much of a pain it can be. You may try to eat some food but you are unable to keep it down for more than a few minutes before it comes back up. There is a simple cure for this. By slowly eating saltine crackers and sipping on sprite through out the day when you are in such a situation you will find that it helps you out. There is something about the simplicity of the cracker that is easy enough on your stomach that allows you to keep it down. It also allows your body to get some energy and help fight off the stomach bug. The sprite is nice and easy on your stomach as well. Its light and plain flavor is the perfect match with the crackers allowing your body to take in some sugar and give your immune system the boost it needs.

A good substitute for Saltines is "Fairy Toast". This is made by thinly slicing French Bread and baking it in the oven with a little salt sprinkled over the top. It's a little more mild and flavorful then the traditional Saltine crackers. And if your stomach's feeling up to it, spread a little butter on the toast.

Salt Solution Nasal Spray[edit]

Mucus stuck in the sinuses after a cold can cause many problems, such as sinus pain or pressure, head ache, and sore throat from excess mucus running down the back of the throat. Using a salt solution nasal spray is a very effective way to get rid of excess mucus and feel better. To make the solution, combine 1 quart warm water (distilled or boiled, if possible), with 1 tablespoon pickling, canning, or sea salt (not table salt), and one teaspoon baking soda. Put the mixture into a clean nasal spray container. Lean your head over the sink and spray the solution toward the back of your head. Keep solution in nose for as long as possible, and then blow out.

This treatment should be used 2 to 3 times daily to break down and clear away mucus, for as long as it takes to clean out the sinuses. If this treatment is used too frequently or incorrectly it could cause irritation in the nose and sinuses. It is a common American treatment used to help with colds and nasal congestion.

Such a solution can also be gargled to help remedy canker sores, a sore throat, or cough. Don't swallow the mixture, and also don't use the same mixture for both your nose and your gargling. Gargle, spit the solution out into the sink, and repeat with fresh unused solution.

Salt and Water[edit]

A mixture of salt and warm water has proven to be very effective when faced with a sore throat, cold sore, canker sore, or cut in one's mouth. Often the symptoms associated with these problems, including redness, inflammation, or soreness indicate possible infection or overall uncleanliness in the affected area. A salt solution made by mixing sea salt and warm water acts as a disinfecting/cleansing agent and can be used to reduce and or prevent further infection. A common way to make the salt water solution is by mixing 1 teaspoon of salt(use sea salt for the Iodine), 1 teaspoon of baking soda(NOT baking powder), and 1 pint of water together. If the solution is too salty it will desiccate the mucosa of the throat and potentially lead to an even greater irritation. Rinse out the mouth and gargle with the solution, but be careful not to swallow. Repeat this procedure 2-3 times daily until swelling goes down or pain is reduced.

When suffering from a sore throat, whether the inflammation is caused by an infection, an allergy or an injury, gargling a salty solution of water can help soothe the discomfort. The reason why this works is that when you introduce a solution with a higher percentage of salt content than that of your body, it will draw out some of the fluid in your throat associated with the swelling, like salting a slug draws out the moisture in its body. While a little salt won’t dry you up like a slug, it’s important to note that too salty of a solution can actually cause more discomfort! A teaspoon of table salt dissolved into around 8oz of warm water will do the trick.

My Mom has forced me to use this remedy every time that I get a soar throat. I believe that this works in a different way than previously stated. Instead of pulling the mucous out of the throat like a salted slug it makes the throat more moisturized. This relieves the parched feeling that results in a sore throat. The more salt used will result in more mucous and will then treat the soar throat better.

Gargling salt water is an age old remedy that helps relieve pain associated with a sore throat. This remedy is best utilized if you catch the sore throat at an early stage. The reasoning behind using water with a high concentration of salt is to soak out the some of the inflaming agents that cause a sore throat. Additionally, salt water has a certain cleansing effect with regard to viral or bacterial infection. A normal salt to water ratio is 1/2 teaspoon per 8 ounces of water. This remedy provides only short term relief, and must be repeated often to continue to see results. But over/extended use may cause more harm than help. As a good rule of thumb don’t gargle more than 2 teaspoons an hour, this will allow for 4 gargles per hour, which should be plenty. This is a family practice, passed down generation by generation, and has no specific cultural ties.

Hot salt-water is also a recommended remedy for preventing and/or healing infected body piercings. The professionals at Old School Tattoo in downtown Bellingham offer a small bag of sea salt to each of their newly-pierced clients, and instruct them to immerse their new body-art fully in hot salt-water for a minimum of 15 minutes each day until the piercing is healed. They are also instructed to begin this treatment again if the piercing becomes red, swollen, and/or infected to battle the bacteria.

Gargling a glass of warm salt water provides temporary immediate relief from a sore throat. This is important in western culture because as a society they tend to want things to happen instantly. Sore throats are usually due to inflammation which causes pain, swelling and an itching or irritated sensation in the throat. The inflammation is usually caused by bacteria and other germs that take over your soft tissues or mucosa. These inflammations, also known as edemas, are usually filled with water and the salt then works its way into your throat. The salt draws out the edema fluid which kills the bacteria. Gargling with salt water does provide immediate relief and the relief is real however it doesn't necessarily cure the ailment.

Salty Plums[edit]

Salty plums are plums that have been dried out and covered with a small layer of licorice and a fine powder that gives them a salty, tangy taste. While they are often eaten as a snack, when a person is sick, they are often used to calm a sore throat. The person is given one salty plum, every few hours to soothe the irritated throat. It is often said that salty plums are craved by pregnant women, so they are also used to “calm down” a woman during her pregnancy. This remedy is used by various Asian cultures.

Salvia Divinorum[edit]

Salvia Divinorum is a plant in the sage family that contains the chemicals Salvinorin A and B. In high doses Salvinorin acts as a powerful hallucinogen producing a wide variety of effects. It is currently legal under federal law, but a few states have but laws in places restricting or banning the refined chemical as well as the plant. Smoking or chewing the leaf is commonly used as a meditation aid or alternative to the illegal plant cannabis, although its effects are nothing like those of cannabis. Extracts of the plant containing higher concentrations of Salvinorin have been shown experientially to interrupt addiction. Drug users who smoke this plant often lack the desire to use drugs for some time after their Salvia experience. The extracts can also be used to gain new perspectives. It also has some similarities to hypnotism in accessing buried memories or what some people believe to be past lives. The plant has a long history of shamanic use in South America. In fact, the plant cannot be found in the wild. This is thought to be due to the plants poor method of reproduction. The plant was rediscovered fairly recently by western botanists, by discovering living specimens in shamans' gardens.

Sauerkraut[edit]

Sauerkraut juice is a simple remedy that can be found right in the fridge or at the grocery store. It is often used to cure canker sores in Western culture, where it is readily available. Simply swish a tablespoon of sauerkraut juice in the mouth once or twice a day for 30 seconds. After a couple of days, the size and pain of the sore should reduce. This may be repeated until the canker sore has healed. Also, it may be done continuously to prevent future sores from forming.

Sea Legs[edit]

When your out at sea and you begin to get sea sick and Dramamine has failed you there is only one remedy. Many sailors and pirates have used this remedy for years. I learned this remedy while out on fishing charter out of Westport Washington. The first step is to work your way to the side of the violently rocking boat. Then enjoy the view. Gazing at the horizon will quickly diminish the effects of sea sickness. Focuses on the tip of the horizon were the sky meets the water; this in effect will help with your balance and aide the equilibrium in your inner ear. Many people tend to go inside when they feel sick this tends to only worsen the problem. This should be repeated as much as possible. To assure that chumming does not occur.

Another fisherman's remedy that works when ALL else fails is slowly sipping room temperature beer. One beer is the recommended dose. Better than meds with their side effects.

Shark Liver Oil[edit]

If a Diaper Rash is really getting out of hand, and there is a strong red complexion of the skin, applying shark liver oil to the affected area during diaper change should rid of the rash in a couple of days. This is more of a Western culture remedy for diaper rash, considering that diapers are used more in the Western cultures.

Shoes[edit]

Many common backaches can be cured simply by wearing the proper shoes. Many lower back problems can be caused by wearing shoes with little or no arch support while exercising. When shopping for shoes, be sure to find a pair that fit the specific needs of your feet, or remove the sole of your existing shoes and replace them with in-soles with arch support. Also, high-heels on a regular basis can cause poor posture which may lead to upper-back and shoulder soreness. This treatment has no risks or side-effects.

Sleep Insomnia[edit]

This remedy is used when you are having trouble falling asleep at night, or wake up in the middle of the night and cannot go back to sleep. Start with heating about 8 ounces or one cup of milk, in the microwave just enough to make it warm. Next add a tablespoon of brandy, stir and drink.

This remedy can be repeated nightly, not more than once per night. Make sure you do not put in more than one table spoon of brandy per 8 ounces of milk. This has no immediate side effects unless you are lactose intolerant are allergic to the alcohol in the bourbon, if either of those situations are true you should stay away from this remedy. This remedy has been mostly used in European and American cultures. Most likely this remedy originated in Europe.

Soaking in Epsom Salts will restore magnesium to the body which will relax the muscles and cure most insomnia. Magnesium deficiency is the usual cause of insomnia. Recommended is a hot bath with 4 lbs. of Epsom Salts 1-2 times weekly for a few weeks.

Slug[edit]

Stinging nettle 01 - Green.jpg

When one walks in a place with heavy or wild vegetation, they may encounter an especially nasty plant called the stinging nettle. When one’s bare skin comes into contact with the stinging nettle, their skin will break out. It’s often a red dot on the skin that resembles a mosquito bite, a raised red bump. Though the rash is temporary, it’s fairly painful. The slug is a wonderful remedy for this pain. By rubbing the numbing slime against the rash, the pain of the stinging nettle will be alleviated.

This remedy only alleviates the pain. Once one stops applying the remedy, the pain may come back. The slug might also fail if one has a particular strong or painful reaction to the stinging nettle. Stinging nettle can be found in North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. This remedy probably originates from any of these places that also have slugs.

Soju Disenfectant[edit]

Cuts, even small and seemingly insignificant ones can quickly cause infection if left untreated. Normally one would use a disinfectant such as rubbing alcohol. This is essentially the same procedure, only using a potent alcohol that is the chief beverage of South Korea. Bottles of Soju can be found in virtually every store in Korea and is incredibly low priced and tastes like cheap vodka so there are no tears shed in dabbing some into a cut. The drink itself is a 40 proof beverage that is made out of potatoes and is essentially ethanol mixed with water. While it is not as potent as rubbing alcohol, it is nonetheless effective at disinfecting a small wound for the poor man.

Simply rinse out the wound with some water and pour small amounts of Soju onto the wound, and take a towel and hold it on the effected area until dry, then put on a bandage. The adverse affect being the cut area will burn because of the disinfectant, but that is to be expected. This has been practiced in Korea for years and will no doubt continue as drunk people continue to hurt themselves in the future.

Soybean Paste[edit]

The Korean Dish, Doenjang

Soybean paste used to make the Korean dish, Doenjang chigae, can be used to treat Bee Stings. Once stung by a bee, apply the soybean paste on the sting for about 15 minutes, or until the paste dries. The paste will lessen the pain, itchiness, and swelling of the victim. No risks or symptoms apply with this remedy. Because of the popular Korean dish, soybean paste is a well-known remedy for the Korean culture, however may be popular in other cultures.

Sports Drinks[edit]

Sports drinks when watered down by half, contain the electrolytes you need to help get over the flu much quicker then without the supplement. When you are inflicted by the flu virus, take a bottle of common sports drinks, such as Gatorade, or Powerade, and pour half of it into a water bottle. Fill the rest of the water bottle to the top, with cold clear water. Keep the bottle with you, and sip on it over the course of the day. Repeat until symptoms have ceased, or lessened. By gaining these electrolytes, the body has more strength and energy in order to help fight off the flu virus, as opposed to just drinking plain sprite or water. There are no risks to using these treatments, and not many people in our culture know about it.

Sprained Ankle[edit]

A sprained ankle can be a very painful experience and sometimes the pain can last weeks if not attended to properly. When the injury first occurs, if shoes are worn, the laces of the shoe should be tightened to create more pressure which helps lessen the amount of swelling. Ice then needs to be applied in the following order: 20 minutes on followed by 20 minutes off. The ice slows down the blood flow to the injury and will keep the swelling down. When icing the injury keep it elevated above heart level. This also keeps slows the rapid flow of blood to the injured foot. Soaking the injury in warm water with Epsom salts will also help the injury.

Soda Pop and Crackers[edit]

Soda pop and crackers are a good way to ease an upset stomach. Upset or queasy stomachs occur for a number of reasons, but usually develop from higher levels of stomach acid or excess air bubbles in the stomach. Crackers are good for neutralizing acids in the stomach and the carbonation from the pop helps to release some of the air bubbles through burping.

One hazard of this technique is, depending on the severity of the upset stomach, the crackers and the pop may not stay down long enough. It is best to take a little at a time, and make sure the pop is not too cold. If it is too cold, the coldness may shock the already upset stomach.

Any bland crackers will work for this. Saltines are good, as well as club crackers. It is important to make sure that the pop is non-caffeinated, because caffeine can make an upset stomach worse.

St. John's Wort[edit]

St. John's wort, also known as Klamath or Goat weed, is a flowering herb used to naturally help in treating mild to moderate depression, anxiety, and stress. The flowering tops of this plant are usually dried and brewed into an herbal tea treatment, or it can also be administered in a capsule form. An active ingredient in St. John's wort is hypericin, which is commonly used in treating depression. Many research studies claim St. John's wort to be of great use, while others deny its effectiveness. If taken in a tea form, it should be drunk three times daily, and it will take about a month to really determine its efficacy. There are some side effects, but much fewer than with prescription anti-depressant drugs. Some effects include sensitivity to sunlight, fatigue, and upset stomach. Though indigenous to Europe, this remedy dates back to ancient Greece and early Native Americans. This plant is now grown all over the world and is used by people of many different ethnic backgrounds.

Steam Shower[edit]

One remedy used to cure a cough is a steam shower. A cough from a cold is caused by a buildup of phlegm or other fluid in the respiratory tract. When one has a cough that won’t clear up, a bathroom with a shower can be used. They first must make sure all doors and windows are closes. They then turn on the hot water, without stepping into the shower or even disrobing. The hot water fills the bathroom with hot steam. The moist, warm air acts as a humidifier. By breathing this in, the steam breaks up the phlegm and thus there is no more need to cough. They can breath in the steam for however long it takes the cough to go away. This might not work for a particular strong cough or a cough that is a result of something other than buildup. It is unknown where the use of steam to relieve coughs originates from. The United States uses steam to stay healthy and comfortable, from saunas to steam facials. The steam shower can be used in any cultures that use hot showers.

Stinging Nettles[edit]

Surprisingly, despite the rash and pain an encounter with stinging nettles causes,the plant is often used by Native American cultures as a healing agent. A tea made from boiling this herb can serve as a digestive aid or an appetite stimulant. The tea can also be used as an external skin wash to help fight minor infections and other skin disorders. Stinging nettle tea is also believed to help alleviate the bite of chiggers and mosquitoes, although Native Americans prefer other plants for this use over nettles. By mixing a strong tea with tallow and using it as a hand lotion you can treat dried and chapped hands.

Nettle.jpg

Sugar and Water[edit]

Another great home remedy to relieve hiccups is with sugar and water. Take about a teaspoon of dry sugar and place at the tip of your tongue. Drink about 4-8 ounces of water to wash the sugar down. Repeat these steps up to three more times at two-minute intervals if necessary but usually the first time is successful. See a doctor if you have severe pain, if your hiccups last longer than a day (or 3 hours in the case of a small child), or if they started after you took a prescription medication. This remedy is not recommended for people with Diabetes. This method was actually found through an Eastern Washington publication known as "Tidbits." Sugar cubes are also very effective because they stay in your mouth and are easier to handle than a teaspoon of sugar.

Sunburns[edit]

When my dad was a kid he used vinegar on his sunburns to cut down on the stinging. To apply one would use a sponge and apply to your skin liberally every couple of hours. Make sure it is distilled vinegar. Make sure you do not get it near your eyes or in open wounds. Since my dad grew up in South America, I would think that it this is part of the South American culture.

Another popular and cross-cultural practice to relieve sunburn woes is the use of a short, green, mean-looking plant called aloe vera. By slitting the blades of the plant along the side, splitting them open, and applying the cool, goeey insides directly on your sunburn, you will be saving yourself a lot of post-sunbathing pain. Whatever you do, however, DO NOT venture back into the hot sun with this aloe vera goo on your uncovered flesh. It will attract the sun, and you will burn worse than before. So, apply generously and apply in the shade!

The best over-counter lotion/crème to alleviate sunburn pains such as stinging is to use Noxzema moisturizer that is found in the stores. It feels terrific especially if you store the Noxzema in a drawer because the crème naturally maintains a cool level which feels incredible on a sun burned skin. Apply enough Noxzema to cover the sunburn completely; and apply a minimum of 2-3 times a day. The sunburn should most likely be gone within 2 days depending on the degree of the sunburn. NOTE: Some of the Noxzema moisturizers come with Aloe-Vera; and use caution if your skin is sensitive to Aloe-Vera.

Superglue[edit]

An easy way to help prevent from going to the doctor is the use of superglue. Superglue is used typical in and around the home but for a quick way to take away pain from a cut and to stop the bleeding is the bondage of the tissues and the blockage of the air. This type of glue may only take a drop and is fast drying, it needs to be reapplied once a day because it can rub off throughout the day. For bigger cuts, be careful not to use too much, a drop is all that should be needed, and make sure that the surface area is dry and the bleeding has been stopped.

Sweat it Out[edit]

This remedy is used to help with colds. It can take anywhere from 15 minutes a day to a session that takes hours, it all depends. A factor that plays a part in time is how ill the individual is. You want to allow the ill persons as much time as possible to sweat out. Some special considerations with this method would be to keep in mind the body will be losing fluid during the process. This means that one must be sure to replenish the ill so they don’t become dehydrated. Some techniques to sweating out a cold are to take an extremely hot bath/shower for a good amount of time, curling up in an electric blanket, or even hitting up a sauna. Exercising isn’t recommended. Sweating out it a technique used among a diverse group of people. Probably the most apt name for this remedy/preventative practice is a Purging, it is a method used to prevent or counter-act a mild but potentially incapacitating sickness such as the common cold or the flu. The idea here is to literally ‘sweat’ the malady out of you; drink a liberal amount of liquid before bed (i.e. a gallon of water), then put extra blankets and covers (a down comforter works great) on your bed, cover yourself up, and go to sleep. Hopefully the combination of lots of liquid and extra warmth a.k.a, heat will have a purging effect, don’t expect a pleasant nights rest though. The entire process should take between 8 and 12 hours (depending on how long you sleep), and is best used in situations where you need to be active the next day. This is a family practice, passed down generation by generation, and has no specific cultural ties, though it may be attributed to the Irish. There are no special considerations, unless you have a sever bladder problem.

Sweat Lodge[edit]

This was a technique used by the Native American culture in order to purify the body and mind. They would heat up hot coals and sit in a tightly closed room whenever they felt that they were becoming ill. The duration of time spent in the lodge depends on the situation. This practice steams out essentially all the bad and leaves the body purified both mentally and physically.

Tea Bags[edit]

Tea bags, any kind of tea(but usually you should refrain from lemon and hibiscus flavors), can cure sties in your eyes. A sty is a painful little bump that you can get on your eyelid, usually from painfully removing a eyelash, whether on purpose or not. If you soak the tea bag in hot water, like to make tea, then place the tea bag on your eye, the heat and tea will sooth the sty and bring back the originality of your eyelid. Be careful to let the tea bag cool just slightly before placing it on your eye otherwise you will suffer more discomfort then originally.

Another use of tea bags is reducing puffy eyes. Heat two tea bags in the microwave until they are warm, but not too hot. After you have heated them up, squeeze them out(so you won't have the liquid running down your face), and lie down and place the bags over each eye until they cool naturally. I have done this many times and it never fails me.

Another treatment with the use of tea bags is for healing blisters. One should use a non-flavored tea bag and soak it in a cup of hot water just as if making a drink. After 2-3 minutes, when the tea bag begins to soak up the water, remove it and place it directly on the open wound/blister. For 10 minutes, push slightly down on the tea bag, allowing the herb juice within to trickle out onto the wound. After 10 minutes, check the skin surrounding the blister for a discoloration of either tan, brown, yellow, or orange skin. If this is apparent, take the tea bag off. If not, soak the tea bag on the blister for 2 more minutes. For the next half hour leave the blister open to fresh air, no allowing it to touch any objects or clothing. One should continue this process twice a day until the blister is properly healed. This treatment with tea bags will allow the blister to heal quickly. This remedy is used in a Western society with mostly athletes such as gymnasts. tea bag

Tea Bag Simmer[edit]

The use of standard tea bags can get rid of unwanted warts on your hands. Pour boiling water into a bowl large enough to fit both hands into. Add five tea bags. Once the water is cool enough but still hot, place both hands into the bowl and let simmer. Leave your hands here until the water become cold, about 15 minutes. Repeat this procedure everyday until receiving desired results. After a month of doing this everyday, your warts should reduce in size. This method of wart removal is found in Western culture.

tea bag

Tea Bag Soak[edit]

This home remedy is to help eliminate a stye. Moisten a non-herbal tea bag with hot water and place on the infected eye for 10 to 15 minutes. The tea, which is rich in medicinal properties, helps draw out the infection in the eye, and relieves swelling. For best results, use a Japanese Green tea made with Ban-cha leaves.

Teaspoonful of Sugar for Hiccups[edit]

There are countless remedies to curing hiccups, from the normal (swallowing or gargling with water) to the plain weird (tickling your mouth with a q-tip while upside down). Simply put, there are two principles to look at when using a home remedy to cure the hiccups, according to George Triadafilopoulos (a gastroenterologist at UC Davis): Over stimulating the vagus nerve (a nerve running from the brain to abdomen that causes hiccups), or methods that interfere with breathing, which increases the amount of carbon dioxide in a person’s blood, causing the body to be more occupied with ridding itself of the carbon dioxide than making hiccups.

The home remedy that is the sweetest, deals with overloading the nerve endings in your mouth. By simply placing a teaspoonful of sugar onto the back of the tongue, where ‘sour’ receptors are located, the nerves will become overloaded with a sweet sensation. Repeat as necessary whenever hiccups occur.


Tea-Tree Oil (for acne) (and wounds)[edit]

Although it may not be the most popular form of acne control, tea-tree oil does in fact help. In the form of body wash, or face wash, tea-tree oil works wonders for the skin. More commonly known in parts of Australia and other countries around the world, this harvested oil is quite beneficial. By washing your face with this concoction or any other affected area of the body twice a day, acne will soon begin to clear itself up. Used for the duration of your choice and varies among individuals. Generally used until apparent results are acquired. Located within the health areas of most stores, comparatively speaking this method does run a little higher in cost. Harvested from acres of tea tea farms and then compressed in order to obtain the oil, it's an all natural method that disrupts the development of acne and also keeps our complexion looking and feeling healthier.

Tea Tree Oil is also very useful when it comes to body piercings. If your particular piercing is hesitant to heal or becomes infected, dab a q-tip full of pure tea tree oil on the affected area two to three times daily. It also works wonders on the ever-dreaded "bump" that many nose and other cartilage piercings tend to develop. Just dab the oil on, and the bump will disappear in days.

Tea Tree Oil is best used in the sterilizing and the healing of wounds. After one receives a cut or an abrasion thoroughly clean the wound then take the appropriate amount of Tea Tree Oil, which is enough to cover the size of the wound, and apply it with a q-tip or cotton swab. Then cover with a bandage. Continue to apply oil (daily) until wound is healed.

Therapy Dogs[edit]

Rough Collies.jpg

A recent growing trend in the United States, Canada, and the UK is the use of therapy dogs to help patients suffering from various physical or mental limitations. A therapy dog can be of any breed and they range from tiny Chihuahuas to large St. Bernards. Therapy dogs are often confused with service dogs yet the two serve very different purposes. Service dogs are trained to help people with disabilities with their day-to-day life ; this help may include leading a blind person, alerting a deaf person to sounds, pulling a wheelchair, etc. On the other hand, a therapy dog is used for either "Animal Assisted Therapy" or "Animal Assisted Activities". These are both simply visits between a patient at a hospital, nursing home, children's hospital etc. and a dog. The two different kinds of visits are structured quite differently: one is considered "formal" while the other is "informal".

A formal visit is between a dog and a patient that have been matched up to each other and will see each other exclusively. These visits have goals designed by the doctors such as increasing the ability to pick up things like a ball and learning to throw it for the dog, or with a mentally disabled patient increasing the time that he/she can focus on the dog with hopes of gradually increasing that until there is an actual interaction. An informal visit, which would be under the category of Animal Assisted Activities, would include one dog visiting many people in a hospital. These shorter visits are made to give the patients a distraction from their illness or difficulties and to hopefully have a positive effect on them--mentally and physically.

There have not been many studies done on the affect of these dogs on the patients but those that have been published all show great results. It is now medically proven that petting a dog or cat lowers blood pressure and a recent study done by UCLA shows that spending at least half an hour a week with a therapy dog drastically lowers loneliness among patients. Although there have not been enough tests done to title this belief as "medically sound", more and more people are becoming firm believers that the use of therapy dogs helps patients living with depression immensely.

The only risks involved are if a dog becomes agitated and acts out suddenly or if they get spooked and run into something such an I.V. pole or the patient they are visiting. The dogs are thoroughly screened and must pass a series of tests in order to become certified, which greatly lowers these risks.

Tobacco Usage[edit]

Tobacco is the most commonly used drug on the market today. Most notably from cigarettes and chewing tobacco, yet now a more common fad is hookah, which is another way that tobacco has entered many lives. When first thoughts of tobacco arise in the minds of others it is seen as bad. However there are some benefits of using tobacco, nicotine. Nicotine is a mild stimulant to the nervous system. Some of the short term effects of nicotine include increased pulse rate and blood pressure due to constricting of the blood vessels, helps some people to concentrate, relax, and reduce stress. Nicotine can also help stimulate a person’s metabolism so that they will not eat as much, in turn helping them lower their weight. Tobacco usage varies greatly; depending on the users, they may distinguish the time and duration of their tobacco product. Taking a chew for instance lasts much longer than a cigarette, resulting in different needs from different products. As time goes on, a tobacco user may become psychologically dependent on the nicotine, increasing usage and amount. Yet, like most drugs, you start out slow and then become more of a frequent user. Using tobacco products may relieve psychological messes, but it can leave you with numerous amounts of discomfort if used in excess: cancer, gingivitis, yellow teeth, stomach ulcers, and possibly bad breath/stinky clothes. In Western Society, the use of has increasingly over time become an integrated part of our culture. With society’s emphasis on an ideal image, many women resort to smoking cigarettes as a form of weight loss. In addition to weight loss, many users have become dependent on tobacco as a way of relieving stress.

Toenail Fungus[edit]

Toenail fungus, also called Onychomycosis represents 20% of fungal infections. Fungus’ can be caused by many things including yeast and mold. This particular type of fungus affects 6-8% of the adult population. Vicks Vapor Rub has an amazing ability to reduce the fungus under the nails, as does Listerine. Apply a small dab of Vicks Vapor Rub under each toenail that is infected and let sit for at least an hour. Cover with a band aid to protect from other fungal infection. With Listerine, prepare a foot bath with a small amount of Listerine in the bottom (at least enough to reach under your toenails) and let soak for about 10 min. If conditions do not improve in one day, repeat all steps. This method is associated with purely American culture. It originated after a study of the strong disinfecting powers of Listerine and Vicks Vapor Rub.

Tofu[edit]

Significant amounts of tofu in the diet may aid in aging of the skin by means of increasing skin elasticity. Thus, the consumption may help with a number of symptoms that come with time including skin firmness and control of wrinkles. The active ingredient in this remedy is isoflavone which helps produce collagen. Isoflavone may also be found in other soy products and legumes.

Tomato Juice[edit]

This is a remedy that can be used to rid yourself of the skunk odor after you have been sprayed by a skunk. Of course, you can use this remedy after being sprayed by the skunk.

To practice this remedy you need a lot of tomato juice, somewhere around two gallons, if not more. Once you have the juice, you then bath in it, just as you would as normal when bathing, except you don’t use any products other than tomato juice. It doesn’t take too long, about 10-15 minutes. Just long enough to thoroughly cover you with the juice. Usually it only takes one or two times of bathing until the stench is gone, but repeat the bathing process until the stench is gone.

Toothpaste[edit]

Nearly everyone in the world has had a zit at one point in time. These red skin lesions can occur anywhere on your body where oil and dirt block your body’s pores. Acne, or the appearance of many zits, can be treated many times by over-the-counter products. I have found that toothpaste will many times reduce and the size, redness and pain in zits. I would recommend putting a pea sized amount of toothpaste, any brand, on a zit for two nights before going to bed. The ingredients in toothpaste help to dry up the zit and therefore reduce it in size, redness and pain. No risks are associated with using toothpaste to dry up a zit.

Using toothpaste as a remedy against zits is used mostly among teenagers, but also by those of all ages who suffer from acne in the western culture.Applying toothpaste to Acne before you go to bed will help reduce the size of and clear a pimple. The toothpaste helps to dry the skin on and around the pimple. Simply dab a small pea-sized amount of toothpaste on the pimple when you go to bed and leave it on overnight. In the morning wash your face and your pimple should be reduced in size and redness. You should repeat for a few nights or until the pimple is gone. This is a home remedy used among mainly teenagers but adults as well. If the skin becomes over dry and pimple has not reduced in size discontinue use. Make sure to use a toothpaste that is thick and actually a paste-like substance, rather than a clear, gel toothpaste. The paste will dry in a way that will extract the oil overnight but the gel will not have this effect.

If you are afflicted by a stinging nettle rash, spread a thin layer of toothpaste over it and it should reduce the sting's effects significantly. Toothpastes with baking soda seem to have the best results. After a half an hour or so the toothpaste can be washed off.

Also, if you wake up in the morning with an itchy bug bite, toothpaste can relieve this irritation. Simply apply toothpaste; (any type of toothpaste works, but I have found that non-gel toothpaste works best), to the itchy bug bite. Be sure to cover the entire bite and let the toothpaste dry before you put on clothes. If the itchiness returns, take a wash-cloth and dampen it with warm water to remove the toothpaste and reapply a new layer.

Toothpaste can come in handy in many ways to add to the common use of brushing teeth and the already noted above uses, you can also use toothpaste to relieve the pain after getting a burn. After burning yourself apply original Crest toothpaste liberally to the burned area. You must use the original paste, not the gel. This will relieve you of the pain/burning sensation you will feel. After the pain has resided leave the paste on the burn until it dries then wash off, if at anytime before the burn heals it starts bothering you again reapply the toothpaste and repeat the above steps to relieve yourself from the pain.

Toothpaste and Honey[edit]

This odd combination of household items can help with the quick overnight rid of a large blemish. Clean the blemish with a facial cleanser and apply the honey to the blemish. The natural bacteria in the honey fights the bacteria in the blemish. Then apply a small bit of toothpaste (not a gel kind) to a bandaid and place the bandaid over the blemish. The toothpaste helps to dry your skin after the honey fights the bacteria. The bandaid is there so that you don't get toothpaste or honey all over your pillow that night. Allow 8 to 10 hours for the infected area to show a dramatic decrease in size.

Tryptophan[edit]

Tryptophan, or better known now as 5-HTP, has been used in Western culture as a sleep aid, as a mood enhancer and as well as a dietary supplement for obesity. 5-HTP works by balancing out the serotonin levels in your brain to reach the desired effects listed above. It is also used in the drug scene in the Western Culture to help with the “hangover” that is sometimes produced from some drugs such as MDMA (ecstasy), which increases the output of serotonin by inhibiting the receptors in the brain.

Tulsi for Insect Bites[edit]

The herb Tulsi can be used for relief for insect bites or other skin irritations. A small done of the juice of the plant is taken orally once, and then again in 2 hours, which should clear up insect bites or reduce their irritation. Also, a paste made from the root of the plant is used topically for relief for the bites or other topical irritations. There appear to not be any negative side effects from using this herb, and not only does it relieve insect bites, but has a myriad of purposes as a healing herb. The Tulsi plant originated in India and is a major part of the Hindu religion; most believe it is the incarnation of a goddess in plant form, blessed with healing powers. There exist several rituals involving the worship of Tulsi plants in the Hindu religion, and has been used as a healing and prevention tool for centuries.

Turmeric[edit]

Turmeric is believed to be a medicine of all illnesses. When used in milk, it can prevent swelling of bruises if consumed. It is also believed to help cancer, heart problems, blood pressure, and overall good health. Turmeric is a powerful antioxidant and immune booster. In addition, it is used by many athletes, to help reduce swelling or bruises from a hard day’s workout. It is best to drink at night for one to two days. One half a teaspoon of turmeric added to a glass of boiled milk is sufficient for one dosage. Turmeric is also commonly consumed in food (in balance of course with hot and cold foods) It has no side effects or risks, except for that it stains clothes really easily. The use of turmeric originates from both Middle Eastern and Indian cultures. In Iran, Zardchoobeh (which in Farsi means turmeric) is mostly used in food. In India it is more commonly used in hot milk.

Uncooked Rice[edit]

Uncooked rice is absorbent and small enough to help with the pains of a stomach ache caused by too much acid present. If a few grains of uncooked rice are swallowed, the grains can soak up some of the acid present and lessen the effects of the stomach ache.

Uncooked rice can also be combined with various aromatic herbs such as lavender in large, new socks. Tie off the end, and throw it in the microwave. When heated, it is a natural heating pad, and is a great way to sooth aches and pains.