Must-know hacks to treat minor injuries

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From sprains and bruises to toothache, bone fracture and postsurgical discomfort, the homeopathic remedy arnica is good for just about any pain caused by physical trauma. Unlike aspirin and other over-the-counter painkillers, arnica pills have no side effects.

In a 1991 English study on patient’s hospitalized for acute injuries, arnica relieved stiffness and improved psychological well-being in 98% of patients, compared with 57% of patients given a placebo.

Arnica works fast. One of my coworkers fell and pulled a muscle. Ordinarily, it would take a week or two for pain from such an injury to subside. Yet within three days after he started taking arnica, his pain was gone.

It may even be beneficial to take arnica before sustaining an injury. Many marathoners use it before they race. In Canada, horse trainers have begun to use arnica to coax a little more speed out of their thoroughbreds.

Arnica is derived from a mountain plant called leopard’s bane. It’s sold in “potencies” ranging from 6x or 6c (low potency) to 200c (high potency).

In general, higher potencies are best for chronic conditions, low potencies for acute conditions. But speak with your doctor before taking a dose.

Arnica is safe in a wide range of dosages from one pill every eight hours to four pills an hour. If pain persists, see a doctor. Arnica is available in health-food stores, pharmacies and mail-order homeopathic pharmacies.

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