Quick and Easy First Aid Hacks for Treating Minor Injuries at Home

Lavender For Headaches This herb is pleasing to smell and pleasant to see. On top of being one of the most beautiful herbs, its medicinal use… Austin Alan - March 21, 2023

No matter how many pills we take, sometimes we still feel rough. Whether it’s an infected bump or scratch, a nagging ache that won’t go away, or just a general feeling of unease, it can be frustrating to not feel your best. But fear not, there are natural remedies that have been used for generations to help ease these ailments. By incorporating the tips and tricks on this list into your daily routine, you can supplement any treatment plan you’re on and potentially find relief. From soothing teas to healing plants and essential oils, these hacks can help you feel better, naturally. So say goodbye to feeling run down and hello to a more vibrant, healthy you.

Please remember that these are merely home remedies for minor injuries. These tips should not be used to replace medical care. If any injury does not resolve within a reasonable amount of time, please consult your healthcare provider.

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Honey For Wound Treatment

Honey is a sweet, rich substance that honeybees create an excess of as they gather resources for their hive. Not only is it a tasty treat, but it also has natural antibacterial properties and can be applied to a wound to help it heal. Simply clean the wound, then apply a thin layer of honey and cover it with a bandage. When using honey to treat cuts and scrapes, it’s important to use raw, unprocessed honey, as processed honey may have lost some of its beneficial properties. It’s also important to clean the wound thoroughly before applying honey and to cover it with a sterile bandage.

The antibacterial properties found in honey have a natural presence of hydrogen peroxide, glucose oxidase, and other antimicrobial compounds. This means that it may help prevent infection in a wound and promote faster healing. Honey also has anti-inflammatory effects, which can help reduce swelling and pain in a wound. The high sugar content found in this delicacy can help draw moisture out of a wound and promote healing. Nutrients and antioxidants found in honey help support healing and tissue repair. It also forms a protective barrier over the wound, which can help prevent further injury or infection.

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Garlic For Ear Infections

Garlic is a culinary delight in many dishes and has several benefits. The most well-known being its health benefits to your heart. There is also evidence to suggest that garlic may have antibacterial and antiviral properties that can help treat cholesterol, and blood pressure, guard against cancer, and help cure ear infections. Garlic contains a compound called allicin, which is the primary component in fresh-cut or crushed garlic.

Though it may seem silly, you can put an entire garlic clove in your ear to help relieve ear pain. Should the ear canal be too small, trim it how you need. You can also create an oil for a dropper. Peel a garlic clove and crush it, then add it to a small amount of oil and slowly warm and stir. Strain the oil and put a few drops into your ear. It’s important to let it sit and cool to room temperature before administering, as hot oil can cause a lot more damage than an ear infection.

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Black Tea For Sunburn

Black tea, known for its bolder flavor is commonly used in southern states of the United States in sweet tea. Not only is it a delicious drink in summer, it also has a use for sunburns when applied topically. Black tea contains tannic acid, which is a natural astringent that can help to soothe and reduce inflammation in the skin. When used topically, black tea can help to alleviate the pain and discomfort associated with sunburns.

To use black tea for sunburn relief, start by brewing a pot of strong black tea. Once the tea has cooled to a comfortable temperature, soak a clean cloth or cotton balls in the tea and apply it to the affected area. Leave the tea-soaked cloth on the skin for 15-20 minutes, then rinse the skin with cool water. On top of providing relief for a sun-kissed complexion, it also will leave you smelling quite nice.

Onions around the world! A recipe series from the National Onion Association celebrating the use of onions in traditional meals from Louisiana to Puerto Rico to Italy!
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Onion For Insect Bites

Even though these layered vegetables can make you cry, they can also help you heal from bug bites. These pungent root vegetables contain compounds called flavonoids and quercetin, which are powerful antioxidants that only have good effects on our body. The anti-inflammatory effects found in onions can help reduce swelling and redness associated with insect bites, as well as antimicrobial properties which may help prevent infection in a bite wound and promote faster healing.

Though it burns our eyes, the juice from onions can provide a soothing and cooling effect on a bug bite. This can help relieve itching and discomfort. To use onion for insect bites, you can cut a fresh onion into slices and apply a slice directly to the affected area. You can also extract the juice from an onion by crushing it or using a blender and applying the juice to the bite. It’s important to wash the area before applying the onion.

salt water
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Salt Water For Sore Throat

As bad as it can taste, gargling saltwater is a tried and true method to help relieve sore throats. It’s a simple and effective home remedy that reduces inflammation and kills bacteria. Gargling with salt water can help reduce inflammation in the throat by drawing excess fluid out of inflamed tissues and killing bacteria in the throat that can cause a sore throat. It also helps prevent the growth of new bacteria, which can help reduce the risk of infection. This can help relieve pain and swelling associated with a sore throat.

To use salt water for a sore throat, dissolve 1/2 to 1 teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water and gargle with the solution for 30 to 60 seconds before spitting it out. You can repeat this several times a day as needed, there’s not any way to overdo this treatment. Just be sure to not swallow saltwater, as it can cause dehydration, headaches, nausea and vomiting.

Folk remedies for sunburn
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Vinegar For Sunburn

Though highly acidic and not too pleasant to the nostrils, vinegar has been used as a natural remedy for sunburns due to its ability to help soothe the skin, reduce inflammation, and prevent infection. Vinegar contains acetic acid, which has been found to have anti-inflammatory properties. This means that vinegar can help reduce redness and swelling associated with sunburn. Vinegar can also help restore the natural pH balance of the skin, which can help reduce inflammation and prevent infection.

Vinegar has a cooling effect on the skin, which can help cool your skin and relieve the pain associated with it. Though vinegar can tighten and dry out the skin, diluting it will help reduce inflammation and prevent it from causing more harm. To use vinegar for sunburns, mix equal parts of vinegar and water and apply the solution to the affected area using a cotton ball or a soft cloth. You can also add the vinegar solution to a cool bath and soak in it for 10 to 15 minutes.

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Baking Soda For Poison Ivy

Baking soda, otherwise known as soda ash, is mined from an ore called trona. This material is present in all living things as it helps maintain the pH balance of organisms, ourselves included. This multipurpose powder is used in cleaning, cooking, and also day-to-day health. It is especially handy in treating poison ivy rashes. It soothes itching, irritation, swelling, and inflammation. Baking soda is alkaline, which helps deactivate the acidic oils in poison ivy. It also will help dry out blisters to prevent infection and allow you to heal faster.

To use baking soda for poison ivy rashes, you can mix 1-2 cups of baking soda in a warm bath and soak in it for 30 minutes. You can also mix baking soda with water to create a paste and apply it directly to the affected area. Leave the paste on for 10-15 minutes before rinsing it off with cool water. It’s important to avoid scratching the affected area, as this can cause the rash to spread. Mix a paste of baking soda and water and apply it to the affected area.

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Mustard For Muscle Pain

Mustard powder isn’t the most pleasing to the senses, often we put the sauce on whatever our dish of choice is and refuse to accept it any other way. However, this yellow powder is full of vitamins and nutrients that our body loves. It can also help with muscle pain as a topical solution. The mustard powder contains a compound called allyl isothiocyanate, which is known to increase blood flow to the affected area. This increased blood flow can help promote healing and reduce pain. Mustard powder also contains magnesium, which is an essential mineral that helps relax muscles and reduce muscle pain. This powder contains anti-inflammatory properties and spreads a warm sensation to help soothe sore muscles and encourage them to relax.

To use mustard powder for muscle pain, you can mix 1-2 tablespoons of mustard powder with warm water to create a paste. Apply the paste to the affected area and cover it with a warm towel. Leave the towel on for 10-15 minutes before rinsing the paste off with cool water. You can repeat this process several times a day as needed. It’s important to avoid applying mustard powder to broken or irritated skin, as it can cause more harm than good.

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Apple Cider Vinegar For Acne

Similar to regular white vinegar, apple cider vinegar is a great treatment for acne instead of sunburns. This is because it’s fermented with yeast, which is good bacteria that helps fight against the bacteria that causes acne. Like white vinegar, apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which has antibacterial properties that can help kill the bacteria that cause acne. It also helps balance the pH of the skin, which can help prevent the growth of acne-causing bacteria. Apple cider vinegar contains alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) that can help exfoliate the skin, unclog pores, and remove dead skin cells that can contribute to acne. Its anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce redness and swelling associated with acne.

To use apple cider vinegar for acne, you can dilute it with equal parts of water and apply it to the affected area using a cotton ball or a soft cloth. Leave it on for 5-10 minutes before rinsing it off with cool water. You can also use apple cider vinegar as a toner by diluting it with water and applying it to your face with a cotton pad. It’s important to dilute apple cider vinegar before using it on the skin, as undiluted vinegar can be too harsh and cause irritation. The natural acids in the vinegar can help to exfoliate and unclog pores.

How to treat minor cuts at home with natural ingredients? - The Statesman Credit: The Statesman

Turmeric For Cuts and Wounds

Turmeric is a spice that originates in India. It’s full of antioxidants and is considered a superfood. Turmeric has natural antiseptic and antibacterial properties and can help to prevent infection. The properties that can help reduce inflammation is a compound called curcumin, which has a wide array of health benefits, that can help treat arthritis, anxiety, and metabolic syndrome, and even help heal cuts and wounds. As a topical solution, it can help protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals and promote healing. It also stimulates collagen production, which is a protein that is essential for skin healing and regeneration.

To use turmeric for cuts and wounds, you can mix 1-2 teaspoons of turmeric with a small amount water to create a paste. Then disinfect the area by washing thoroughly with soap and warm water. Apply the paste to the affected area and cover it with a clean bandage. Leave the bandage on for several hours or overnight. You can also mix turmeric with coconut oil or honey to create a healing salve. It’s important to avoid applying turmeric to open wounds or deep cuts, as it can irritate the injury.

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Fresh-Cut Vegetables Helps With Splinters

It doesn’t matter that they’re small – splinters hurt. Not only that. Splinters are notoriously tricky to remove. When a splinter becomes embedded in the skin, it can be difficult to find. One method to help draw the splinter to the surface is to apply a warm compress to the affected area. The warmth can help increase blood flow to the area and promote healing. If that proves to be difficult, there’s an old-fashioned way to draw it out.

A traditional remedy that helps draw splinters to the surface of your skin is cut vegetables; such as potatoes, onions, or tomatoes. These can be used in place of a warm compress. To use this method, cut a slice of the vegetable and place it over the splinter. Secure the slice in place with a bandage or tape and leave it on for several hours or overnight. The moisture from the vegetable slice can help soften the skin around the splinter and create a suction effect that can draw the splinter to the surface of the skin. This can make it easier to remove the splinter with tweezers or a sterilized needle.

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Plantain Leaves For Insect Bites

Plantains are the starchy sibling of the well-known banana. While the fruit itself has a lot of benefits themselves, their leaves are incredibly helpful for insect bites. The anti-inflammatory properties found in them help relieve the itchiness, swelling, and redness commonly associated with bug bites. When applied to the skin, plantain leaves can provide a cooling sensation that can help soothe the irritation to your skin.

To use plantain leaves for bug bites, you can crush fresh leaves to release their juices and apply the juice directly to the affected area. Alternatively, you can apply a poultice made from dried or fresh leaves to the bite. To make a poultice, crush fresh plantain leaves or grind dried leaves into a powder and mix them with a small amount of water to form a paste. Apply the paste to the bite and cover it with a clean bandage or cloth.

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Catnip For Relaxation

Catnip is a plant that belongs to the mint family and is known for its not so calming effect on cats. However, catnip has also been used as a natural remedy to promote relaxation and relieve stress in humans. Catnip contains a compound called nepetalactone, which is responsible for its relaxing effects. Nepetalactone is thought to act on the central nervous system, producing a sedative effect. It’s also an excellent nighttime tea that promotes restful sleep.

As with any tea, cut and dried leaves and flowers from the catnip plant are the primary ingredient. Simply let it steep in hot water for five minutes and add your sweetener of choice. Additionally, you can get catnip in supplement form, the small capsules have the same effect as tea. Be careful not to drink or take too much, as it can cause diarrhea, upset stomach, and even headaches.

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Yarrow For Nosebleeds

Yarrow is essential in any survival kit. An excellent coagulant that is good to stop bleeding, even for nostrils. Yarrow contains astringent properties, which means they help stop bleeding by tightening and constricting blood vessels. They’re also anti-inflammatory, so when applied inside of your nose, they’ll soothe rather than burn. Cut yarrow leaves have been traditionally used as a natural remedy to help stop nosebleeds.

To use yarrow leaves for a nosebleed, you can crush fresh leaves to release their juices and apply the juice directly to the bleeding nostril. You can leave the fragments of leaves as it will help keep the blood from dripping while the oils in it tighten and cool your nostrils. It’s an excellent alternative if you don’t have any form of cotton lying around, or if you just want to smell something nice in a bad situation.

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Use A Teabag To Stop Bleeding

Instead of throwing your teabags away, you can keep a few to the side if you have something that refuses to quit bleeding. Tea contains tannins, which are natural compounds that have astringent properties. When a teabag is boiled in water, the tannins are released, and the resulting solution can be applied to a wound to help stop bleeding. The astringent properties of the tannins help to constrict the blood vessels, which can help slow down or stop the bleeding.

Though, this doesn’t mean you need a boiling hot teabag to put on your wound. You can set it to the side and reapply moisture for the tannins to release again. Boil a tea bag in a small amount of water for a few minutes until it is fully steeped. Remove the teabag from the water and allow it to cool. Apply the teabag directly to the wound, holding it firmly in place. Leave the teabag on the wound for several minutes, or until the bleeding has stopped. Once the bleeding has stopped, remove the teabag and clean the wound with soap and water.

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Thyme For Coughs

This herb has long been used as a natural remedy to help relieve coughing. Thyme contains compounds called flavonoids, which have anti-inflammatory properties. When thyme is brewed into tea, these flavonoids are released into the water. When consumed, thyme tea can help to reduce inflammation in the respiratory system, which can help to soothe coughing and other symptoms associated with respiratory infections.

To make a tea, boil a cup of water and add 1-2 teaspoons of dried thyme leaves to it. Allow to boil for 5-10 minutes, then add honey and lemon to taste. Thyme also contains compounds called thymol and carvacrol, which have antispasmodic properties. These compounds can help to relax the muscles in the respiratory system, which can help to relieve coughing. The heat from tea also allows your throat to relax.

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Marshmallow Root Soothes Sore Throats

We bet you didn’t know there was such a thing known as marshmallow root, at least we didn’t. Don’t get your hopes up trying to grow marshmallows in your backyard, though, as our modern definition of marshmallows was named after the roots on this plant. It has been used for centuries in traditional medicine, both internally and externally, due to its high mucilage content. Mucilage is a sticky substance that is produced by many plants and is known for its soothing and healing properties.

When marshmallow root is steeped in hot water to make tea, the mucilage is released into the water. When consumed, marshmallow root tea can help to soothe irritation and inflammation in the throat, which can help to relieve soreness and discomfort. Marshmallow root also has anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce inflammation in the respiratory system and further alleviate sore throat symptoms. Just add 1-2 teaspoons of marshmallow root to a cup of water and brew it into tea.

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Dandelion For Skin Rashes

This common weed may be considered a nuisance if you’re trying to take care of your lawn, but it’s a very good treatment for skin rashes. They are full of nutrients and vitamins that nourish your skin! They also have anti-inflammatory compounds that can help reduce the itching caused by rashes. It’s the leaves on the dandelion that have such great medicinal value in them.

Pick some fresh dandelion leaves and rinse thoroughly, as to remove any type of bacteria that may be on them. Then, pat dry with a clean paper towel or washcloth. Crush them in a mortar and pestle or chop them finely with a knife. Apply the paste to where your rash is and rinse it off after 10-15 minutes. Should the condition not improve or become worse, go to a doctor. Just remember that every little piece of greenery has good use to it.

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Sage For Sweating

Sweating can cause you to become extremely dehydrated, so whether it’s a hard day at work or you’re sick, sage tea can help alleviate your symptoms. Sage has astringent properties that can help to reduce excessive sweating by tightening the skin’s pores and reducing the production of sweat. This holy herb contains natural compounds called tannins, which have astringent properties. When sage is brewed into tea, these tannins help to constrict the sweat glands and reduce the production of sweat.

The incredible thing about sage tea is that you can not only ingest it but use it as a topical solution. The ratio of sage to water is 1-2 teaspoons to 1 cup, respectively. Drinking it warm or cool will have the same effect, but allowing to cool and using it as a topical solution will also constrict your sweat glands to where you aren’t losing your electrolytes. Sage does tend to have a smoky and bitter taste, so add honey or lemon to your preference.

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Mullein For Earaches

Mullein is a plant native to Europe, Asia, and North Africa, but it is also commonly found in other parts of the world, including North America. It has a long history of use in traditional medicine primarily for earaches and ear infections. It is believed that the anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties of mullein can help reduce the pain and inflammation associated with earaches.

Mullein flowers and leaves contain saponins, which have natural anti-inflammatory properties. They also contain mucilage, a substance that can help to soothe irritated tissues. When mullein oil is applied to the ear, it is believed to help reduce inflammation and pain in the ear canal. Mullein oil can be made by infusing mullein flowers or leaves in carrier oil, such as olive oil, for several weeks. The oil can then be strained and used as an ear drop to help relieve ear pain and discomfort.

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Licorice For Coughs

This historical root has been used for centuries as a breath freshener, a sweet treat, and a key ingredient in cough syrups. Countless generations have used licorice root to help relieve coughs and other respiratory symptoms. It contains several active compounds, including glycyrrhizin, which has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.

The most effective home remedy with licorice is to pair it with other items on this list, namely honey and thyme. Put 2 tablespoons licorice root in a pot or saucepan with water and allow to slowly boil for 20 minutes. Once the water is infused, remove from the heat and add 2 tablespoons of thyme to the mixture, and allow to boil again for 20 minutes. Then strain and move the mixture to a clean pan, adding 1 cup of honey and allowing it to simmer but not boil. Now you have a tasty cough syrup!

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Comfrey For Bruises

A plant that’s native to Europe and Asia, comfrey has been traditionally used for medicinal purposes. It acts as a natural remedy for bruises. This plant contains allantoin, a compound that is believed to help promote the growth of new skin cells and improve skin healing. When applied topically to a bruise, comfrey is believed to help reduce inflammation and promote the healing of damaged tissues.

Chopping comfrey up finely or grinding it up in a mortar and pestle will allow you to use it as a paste. Smother your bruise with the poultice and cover with a cloth or clean bandage. It can also be used as a compress in the form of tea. Add 1-2 teaspoons of dried, cut comfrey to a cup of boiling water. Once brewed, wet cotton balls or wash cloth with the tea and cover the area.


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Lavender For Headaches

This herb is pleasing to smell and pleasant to see. On top of being one of the most beautiful herbs, its medicinal use is helpful to those who experience stress and headaches. Lavender has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for a variety of ailments, including headaches and migraines. It contains compounds that have calming and soothing effects on the body and can help to alleviate pain and tension in the head.

Studies have shown that inhaling lavender can help to reduce the severity of headache symptoms, including pain, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. The calming effects of lavender may also help to promote relaxation and reduce stress, which can be a trigger for headaches. Lavender can also be brewed into a tea and consumed or applied topically to the skin in the form of massage oil or salve.

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Nettle Helps Soothe Pain And Arthritis Symptoms

Nettle, also known as stinging nettle, is a plant that hilariously enough helps with pain. They contain a variety of compounds, including histamine, serotonin, and acetylcholine, which reduce pain and inflammation in the body. One of the main ways that nettles are used for pain relief is by making tea from the dried leaves or roots of the plant. Nettle tea can be consumed regularly to help reduce pain associated with conditions such as gout and fibromyalgia.

Nettle tea can also be applied topically to the skin in the form of a poultice or compress. This can help reduce pain and inflammation associated with skin conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, and hives. Nettles may also have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to reduce pain and swelling throughout the body. Studies have shown that nettles may be effective in reducing pain associated with conditions such as osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.