For those of you who enjoy camping, hiking, walking in the woods or just the great outdoors in general, you know that sometimes accidents happen. I always like to carry along a few first aid items whenever I am “off the grid”.
An application that is often used in first aid situations is called a Poultice. A Poultice or Cataplasm as it is also referred to is basically a moistened mass of plant or food materials that is applied to various areas of the body in order to impart it’s medicinal benefits and to provide relief. There are various ways to create a poultice using either fresh or dried herbs.
One of my favorite items to carry along in my first aid pouch is what I like to call the, “Herbal Wound Healing Pocket Poultice”. If something like this exists on the market, I am not aware of it and so therefore I created my own. This is great if you are in an area where you are not familiar with the local plants.
The wonderful thing about this pocket poultice is that it doesn’t take up much room, is easy to make up in advance, stores well and can be used for a host of accidents and injuries. The herbs included in this poultice help to reduce inflammation, sooth irritation, disinfect wounds, stop bleeding and heal tissue. There are numerous herbs which can be substituted for the ones I have selected, it just depends on what you have on hand.
Plantain: Antiseptic, Anti-inflammatory, Demulcent, Vulnerary
Calendula: Antibacterial, Astringent, Anti-inflammatory, Vulnerary
Yarrow: Anti-inflammatory, Astringent, Disinfectant, Hemostat
Thyme: Antiseptic, Antimicrobial
Some of the things you can use the pocket poultice for include bug bites and stings, scrapes, cuts, abrasions, sprains, strains and bruises and as an antiseptic wash to prevent infection.
Here is how you can make your own Pocket Poultice.
Wound Healing Pocket Poultice
1 Large Empty Tea Bag
1 tbsp Plantain leaf (Plantago spp.)
1 tbsp Calendula flowers (Calendula officinalis)
1 tbsp Thyme leaf (Thymus vulgaris)
½ tbsp Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Place the herbs into the tea bag and seal the bag by stapling the ends together. To store place the tea bag in a plastic sealed bag and keep in a dark, cool and dry location.
Blend the herbs together
These are the teabags I used
Place the herbs into the tea bag
Seal the tea bag by stapling it shut
To use as a poultice place the bag in hot or warm water and soak for 1- 2 minutes and then apply to the affected area. You can then wrap the area with either a bandage or clear plastic to keep it moist and in place.
The bag can be used to make a strong antiseptic wash. Place the bag in boiling water and steep for 20 – 30 minutes. Allow the liquid to sit until it is cool enough to apply to the skin. Remove the bag and reserve the liquid. Once the liquid is cool enough to apply to the skin it can be used to wash and disinfect the affected area.
**In the spirit of full disclosure, I have included affiliate links, which means that I may get a commissions if you decide to purchase anything from that particular company. I only recommend products & systems that I use and love myself, so I know you’ll be in good hands.**