July 10, 2013
Posted in Herbal Remedies
I was pruning back the monster that is our boysenberry bush this morning, cutting back the dead and dying canes and training the new growth that will gives us next year's berries, when I found a nest of loving and sweet wasps. Or rather, one of them found me. I didn't even see the stupid thing but I certainly felt him on the back of my hand as he told me, repeatedly, to get away from his home.
I smacked at my hand before I even knew what was going on and my work glove was off in an instant. As soon as I saw what it was, I knew what needed to be done.
I'm not one for taking drugs. I hate taking drugs. I will even go hours with a headache because I don't like to take drugs. So my first thought was not "Go get the Benedryl!" It was "Off to the mud!"
I've always treated stings with mud, so a quick cake of mud on the back of the hand it was. I'm not sure how it works exactly, but one would assume that as the mud dries it pulls the toxins out of the wound. I let that sit for a little bit and it immediately felt better as soon as the cool mud hit my skin.
Then I remembered that I had some lemon balm growing in my herb pot. I'm very interested in herbal healing, and am slowly learning more and more about what herbs are good for what ailments. Lemon Balm is a cooling herb and can help to reduce swelling and irritation from insect stings and bites. The essential oil is the best way to get these healing properties, but I don't have just the oil, so I did what I could.
I removed the mud I had put on at first. Then I took four leaves from the plant and crushed them up a bit with my teeth, then placed them directly on the sting. I then covered them with a whole leaf that I had bruised, and covered all of it with a coat of mud.
Then I cut a strip of old T-shirt and tied it around my hand, mostly to keep the mud in place and from me brushing up against stuff with a muddy hand. Just make sure to tie it so that when you pick up your knitting the yarn isn't running through the mud....
The sting feels amazingly better! I kept all that on for an hour, then removed it all and put a fresh batch on for another 30 minutes or so. There is barely any swelling (just a tiny bit) and it hardly hurts at all. I'm really impressed with how quickly it all worked, and how much better it feels.
And now, I'm off to spray the whole stupid nest with RAID.