Herbal medicine is the use of plants or plant extracts that are applied on the skin or eaten to treat illness. They are made of active ingredients from different parts of the plant including; leaves, roots and flowers. Herbal medicine has been in use in the ancient times by different cultures in the world to assist body functions and treat illness.
Conditions In Which Herbal Medicines Are Used
Herbal medicines are used to treat a wide variety of medical conditions. Some of the most popular conditions in which they are used include: Ginger which is used as an anti-inflammatory and for motion sickness, Aloe for inflammation, sunburns and skin irritation, Garlic for reducing cholesterol and blood pressure in the body, Turmeric to protect a person from cancer and Alzheimer’s disease whereas Arnica is typically used for bruises, sore joints and muscles.
What To Expect When Using Herbal Medicine
When you are taking herbal medicine with other medicines, you are likely to experienced some problems that may turn out to be severe. For example, some may reduce the effects of prescription medicines while others increase them. Moreover, you may experience some side effects in reaction to herbal medicine usage. Therefore, if you are planning to take herbal medicine, ensure you consult your physician first before use.
Who Should Avoid Herbal Medicines
- There is a category of people whom the physician have been advised to not use herbs. These people include; those taking other medications that could cause adverse affects. There are some medications that when taken with herbs can either act in similar or opposite ways. Those with similar actions will cause exaggeration on the activity while those with opposite actions can cause the drug to be metabolized slowly and the final result may not be met.
- People due to undergo surgery. Some of the herbs when taken can alter blood clotting and blood pressure of the body thereby causing a lot of bleeding during surgery. Therefore, it is advisable to stop taking herbs between 10 to 14 days to the date of surgery and also inform physician that you have been taking herbal medicines.
- During pregnancy and breastfeeding. Avoid using herbs during pregnancy or use them under care of a practitioner. A breastfeeding mother should also not use herbs for the first four to six months after giving birth.
In conclusion, one should remember that the use of herbal medicine is not licensed and are found everywhere in the country, hence it’s necessary to have some knowledge about herbs before use.