When it comes to simple, shallow scratches and grazes, staving away infection is the best way to avoid a trip to the doctor. There’s a number of natural products that can help you do this.
Raw honey is a fantastic product to have around – it’s a great remedy to use on pets, too. When honey meets the wound, hydrogen peroxide is produced via a glucose oxidase enzyme reaction. This is released slowly, and provides antibacterial activity, while keeping tissue healthy and undamaged. Some studies suggest that honey is better at preventing infection than antibiotics.
Whether you’re ingesting it for colds and flu or using it as a topical remedy, it’s common knowledge that garlic is a fantastic antibacterial and antifungal. Make sure you don’t leave it on the skin too long as it can be very potent/cause damage; about 20 minutes would be the top end of the scale.
Another remedy that’s as good for your furry and feathered friends as it is for you, a box of chamomile teabags is worth having around the house. The dried flowers contain many terpenoids and flavonoids, and its popularity as a tea makes it incredibly easy to obtain and use; all you have to do is soak your teabags, and then apply them to the wound. They’re particularly good for sore eyes, too.
4. Aloe Vera
Aloe is a popular burn remedy, but it’s been shown to be effective for cuts, scrapes and sores. Swiping some fresh, cut aloe across the site can significantly improve healing time.
5. Witch Hazel
Witch hazel is a wonderful astringent that contains procyanidins, resin and flavonoids. In short: it’s wonderfully soothing on swollen wounds (if there’s any heat or discharge accompanying the swelling, infection has probably already set in – so you’ll need to talk to your health practitioner). It can also help slow bleeding.
If your wound is deep, hot, puffy, weeping, bleeding heavily or extremely sore, it’s crucial that you get someone to have a look at it; the wound may need a professional dressing, or care to remove the infection.