Ouch! That hurt!
I have kids….and you know what kids are like: they are always bashing into things (and bashing each other!). As an adult I’m not immune, I often whack myself on the corners of tables, or exercise too enthusiastically and get sore muscles. Arnica to the rescue! I always use Arnica for bumps and bruises and it works so well. I always have several bottles of it around the house for those aches, pains and accidents.
What do you mean by Arnica?
The Arnica I use for bumps and pains comes from the Arnica Montana plant. Commonly found in Switzerland, north Germany and the Andes, it enjoys living at high altitudes. It is about 15 cm tall and looks like a bright yellow daisy that has been buffeted by the wind, looking a bit worse for wear.
The plant is slightly toxic, so the safest way to use it is to take it as a homeopathic remedy, which is so highly diluted, that babies can take it. The arnica I use for bumps and bruises comes in tiny little pills that dissolve on the tongue. They are readily available at Boots pharmacies, Holland and Barrett, as well as online from Helios and Ainsworths. The ones I usually buy are the 30c strength, which is a good all rounder for the average accident! You can also buy it as a cream, which you can use in addition to the pills. I find the pills more useful, as they also treat the shock and irritability caused by the incident.
Is Arnica just for bumps?
I reach for Arnica 30c pills whenever there is an accident, it is my First Aid in a bottle. If someone is in shock after hurting themselves, or is adamant that they are okay (when they are clearly not), they would benefit from a dose. The patient might also feel numb, detached or dazed. These are some of the mental and emotional symptoms that can be healed with arnica.
For physical traumas, arnica can prevent further swelling, tearing, bruising and bleeding. I find that it takes the pain away very quickly. You know those huge bruises that look like eggs on your child’s head? Yup, arnica even works for those bumps! The swelling visibly dissipates before your eyes. It can help enormously with concussion.
I mentioned earlier that I used it for muscle soreness. Earlier this year I had a sore shoulder which I couldn’t get rid of; it wasn’t serious but it was a nagging pain, possibly caused by doing too many Joe Wicks workouts. I put up with it for several weeks and it didn’t go away, until I got a bump elsewhere from crashing into something. I took arnica for that bump, and to my surprise, it also got rid of that shoulder ache simultaneously! Since then I’ve been using arnica for DOMS (Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness) brought about by exercise and it works a treat.
How do I take arnica for bumps?
As soon as an accident occurs, take one little pill. Leave it to dissolve slowly in the mouth. My kids like to crunch it up and it still seems to work, but officially it’s recommended to eat it slowly! It can also be dissolved in a little water, or ground up into powder.
Depending on the severity of the accident, you may need to take it every 15 minutes. Normally, you would wait and see if the symptoms return before taking another dose. The trick is to take the minimum amount possible to trigger your body to heal itself. If the symptoms are going away, you will need to take it less and less until you feel better. You don’t need to take a ‘course’ unless recommended to do so by a professional homeopath.
You can also take arnica beforehand if you know that you are going in for surgery, such as a tooth extraction. It will help prevent some of the swelling and pain. It can even be used during and after childbirth.
When is Arnica not useful?
As always, seek medical attention for serious injuries. Arnica is wonderful, but it isn’t going to set a broken bone or heal anything life-threatening. It can, however, give you the support you need until you get medical assistance. It can stop the symptoms from getting worse while you wait.
If you have been taking arnica and it isn’t working, you might require a different remedy. In this case, you will need to consult a professional homeopath or if it can wait, a homeopathy book where you can read about the different remedies to see which one is right for you.
I hope this article has been helpful and given you food for thought. Let me know in the comments below if this has been useful, or tell me if there are any other remedies you would like me to write about!