Cuts and scrapes should be attended to immediately because of the risk of infection. Skin is the body's shield against germs. When a foreign body invades the skin, germs have an open invitation to raid healthy cells. Left untreated, cuts and scrapes can become painful sores, which are wounds that are slow to heal.

A number of things happen when you cut or scrape yourself. When you disrupt the skin, a clear, antibody-containing fluid from the blood, called serum, leaks into the wound. The area around the cut or scrape becomes red, indicating that more blood is moving into the wound site, bringing with it nutrients and infection-fighting white blood cells. Nearby lymph nodes may swell. After a few days, pus (which contains dead white blood cells, dead bacteria, and other debris from the body's inflammatory response to infection) may form. And finally, a scab develops to protect the injury while it heals.

Aromatherapy Remedies

Virtually all essential oils are antiseptic and therefore helpful in cleansing and treating cuts, but some are more notably so. Several of them also help to promote healing and kill pain, so obviously a combination of these properties makes a good oil for treating cuts and wounds. A further requirement is that the oil will not damage or irritate the exposed flesh (some of the most powerfully antiseptic oils are more suitable for washing surfaces, vaporising in sickrooms, etc., than for applying directly to broken skin).

This combination of properties reduces our choice to a small handful of oils, but as each of these is a really powerful healer, this is no disadvantage. Lavender has been used for this purpose for thousands of years (indeed, its name is derived from the Latin 'lavare' = to wash, since it was used to wash out wounds). Myrhh was similarly used by the ancient Greeks, and Tea Tree, although a relatively recent introduction to Europe, has a long history of use by the Aboriginal people of Australia.

The essential oil can be used neat on minor cuts - it will sting for a moment, but this will quickly pass. The safest method, which avoids touching the wound is to put a few drops of the oil on a plaster and then put this over the cut. For larger injuries, put the essential oil on a piece of gauze, and cover the wound with this, but be sensible about the extent to which you should attempt to treat without medical help. If in any doubt, especially if the edges of a wound may need to be held together with one or more stitches, use the essential oil as first aid and take the injured person to a doctor or casualty department as soon as possible.

Many other essential oils are equally suitable for treating cuts, including Benzoin, Bergamot, Camomile, Eucalyptus, Juniper and Rosemary, but Lavender and Tea tree are regarded as the most important and useful, with Myrrh in reserve for any wound that is slow to heal, especially if it is weepy.

Herbal Remedies

The herbal remedies mentioned here are meant to treat minor wounds however, in case of severe or heavy wounds, it is essential to take the injured patient to the doctor or the nearest health center as soon as possible.

Garlic has long been used in the treatment of cuts and scrapes. Crush 2 to 3 cloves in a glass of red wine and mix into a paste. Cover the cut with the paste and leave for a maximum of 15 minutes. The paste may sting at first, but as most things in nature, this is a good sign.

You can cover the cut with any of the following:

Sprinkle sugar or honey on the open cut and bandage.

Apply tea bags on the cut to stop the bleeding.

Apply lemon on cuts to stop the bleeding.

Apply a slice of bread on the cut to stop the bleeding.

Apply some turmeric on the cut to stop the bleeding.

Apply some grind black coffee on the cut and bandage.

Chop salvia leaves put on a bandage and apply on the cut.

Aloe Gel activates macrophages that fight bacterial infection, helps reduce pain & swelling.

Bayberry compress helps prevent bacterial infections.

Calendula stimulates collagen production and helps prevent infection.

Camomile used as an infusion or poultice, stops cuts & scrapes from oozing.

Comfrey used in a salve or cream to help relieve pain and accelerate healing.

Goldenseal has antibacterial properties which help fight infection. Applied as a paste.

Gotu Kola taken internally accelerates healing, reduces scarring.

St. John’s Wort Prevents infection, reduces inflammation, relieves pain.

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