Herbal supplements aren’t just capsules or other substances that are ingested, but sometimes take the form of substances that are applied to the skin. The skin is the largest organ, and skin problems can cause untold misery, from chronic problems like eczema to temporary maladies like poison ivy and insect bites. In some cases, herbs can be applied topically and their aromas inhaled to help clear congested breathing. Three of the most important topical herbs in use include keravita pro tea tree oil, witch hazel, and eucalyptus.
Tea Tree Oil
Herbal vitamins like Tea tree oil comes from the leaves of the Australian tea tree and is primarily used for fungal infections like athlete’s foot. It can also be used to treat mild acne and localized infections, including sores on mucous membranes (like canker sores). Because it is naturally fungicidal, it works well for treating yeast infections as well. It is available as pure essential oil and is incorporated into other products like soaps and toothpastes. Tea tree oil is strong, so it is advisable to only use a small amount and to discontinue use if excess stinging or sensitivity occurs. It is important not to let tea tree oil come in contact with the eyes or to put it on broken skin and it should not be taken internally.
Witch hazel is made from the distillation of leaves, bark, and twigs of the Hamamelis virginiana plant. It has a long history of use in treating sunburn and wind burn, as well as for drying out poison ivy blisters. Witch hazel can also be used to disinfect minor cuts and scrapes, and can be used on normal skin for cleansing and refreshing. Many people with oily skin find that witch hazel helps keep oiliness under control. It is also versatile enough to be used topically over sore muscles and on hemorrhoids. Witch hazel should not be taken internally.
Eucalyptus is another of the topical herbal supplements, and is made from the dried leaves of eucalyptus trees. It has natural antibacterial properties, and is most commonly used for its vapors, which can ease respiratory problems like bronchial coughs, sinusitis, and nasal and chest congestion. Eucalyptus is available in the form or fresh or dried leaves and in essential oils and incorporated into salves. It’s important not to get eucalyptus into the eyes or inside nasal passages. For steam inhalation, you can use a teaspoon of the essential oil in boiling water twice a day. Eucalyptus rubs can be applied carefully around or under the nostrils to help clear congestion.