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Natural Health News and Articles

Toxin-Free Lice Remedies are Safer and More Effective

Louse In The House!

When my kindergartener was sent home from school with lice, I did what most Moms do – freaked out. I went into the drug store, purchased the medicated lice shampoo and the furniture sprays filled with neurotoxins, followed the directions on the boxes, and felt completely confident that these tiny parasites would be annihilated. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, the treatment did not work. Soon, all three of my girls had heads full of lice and I did too!

Freak out number two: This time, I called the pediatrician and received a prescription for an even stronger lice shampoo. We all treated our hair with something that smelled like gasoline and burned like acid. I did the treatments out on our deck because the fumes were choking us. My young children, ages 6, 5, and 3 at the time, were crying, eyes bloodshot, coughing and spitting from the toxic fumes.

Lessons From The Trenches Of Chemical Warfare

Lice were dropping out of their hair, but I worried that whatever was in that stuff was being absorbed into their bloodstream through their scalp and breathed into their tiny lungs. Furthermore, this was the third chemical treatment I had used on my young children in a short period of time and despite my doctor’s advice, I was feeling increasingly uncomfortable with these methods. Furthermore, it wasn’t even working! I was so emotionally and physically exhausted from months and months of ineffective treatments and almost $500 in the hole from all of the expensive products.

I began researching non-toxic, natural remedies to treat lice and was appalled to discover that mainstream products contained ingredients categorized as pesticides, nerve poisons, and carcinogens. Furthermore, studies have shown that the over-use of these toxins create a breed of “super lice,” which I believed our family had. No amount of poison can destroy them!

Non-Toxic Lice Solutions

It’s 99% about the combing. No matter what lice treatment option you use, the most important tool in eradicating lice is the COMB. Invest in a good lice comb from the drug store. I love the Rid RIDvantage, red handled comb with metal teeth which cost about $10.00.

It’s 100% about the tenacity and patience. It seems easier to douse a head with chemicals, do one comb through then repeat the treatment as instructed 10-14 days later. Truthfully, a bit of elbow grease, a ton of patience, and good follow-through is all it takes to rid your household of lice without exposure to overly expensive pesticides, toxins, and nerve agents.

Basic Steps To Non-Chemical Lice Treatment

  • Step 1: Wash hair. There are many suggestions for what to wash the hair with but the idea is to get the lice sedate enough so you can comb them out. When they are submerged in water they go into a dormant state which allows you to better “catch” them when you comb.
  • Step 2: Condition with a heavy conditioner. I use Suave coconut scented. This allows the teeth of your fine tooth lice comb to glide through the hair. Conditioning also helps loosen up the “glue” of the lice egg on the hair shaft allowing easier removal.
  • Step 3: Combing. With hair only slightly towel dried, prepare your “combing station” with a small container of hot water, a washcloth or napkin, lots of hair clips and your good lice comb. Divide hair into small sections. Comb through each section of hair multiple times at multiple angles with the fine side of the comb. Be very methodical and deliberate. Gently scrape the comb along the scalp (where the new eggs are laid) and follow through down to the ends of the hair shaft. Dip the comb frequently into a container filled with water and/or wipe comb on a napkin. Even if you don’t think the comb is working, you will be amazed to see little tiny black things floating in the water or on the napkin. These little black dots will be either eggs or tiny bodies of the newly hatched nymphs. The grown lice are about the size of a sesame seed and light brown in color while nymphs (babies) are half the size of a poppy seed and appear black. You will likely have to pick many eggs out by hand, but the comb is best for the nymphs which are the new generation of egg-layers, the ones that bite and make your head itch, and can never seen in the actual hair with the naked eye.
  • Step 4: Blow dry hair on the highest heat setting when finished combing. If you own a flat iron, section hair and flat iron. Any eggs you miss with the comb and/or with hand picking will hopefully be burned with the high heat.
  • Step 5: Rub a lice-deterring oil into the hair, such as tea tree oil or coconut oil. Longer hair should be kept up in a tight braid. Read labels carefully as many lice sprays contain toxins.

Repeat this entire process every day for 10 days. After the tenth day, it is advisable to go through the five steps about a week later and once a month preventatively afterwards, especially following a sleep-over or other activity where chance of exposure might be high.

During the 10-day treatment, launder all clothing, bedsheets and towels in hot water and dry on high heat. Vacuum all couches, mattresses and car seats, bag up those plush items that cannot be washed and store them for two weeks. Boil or freeze hairbrushes after each use. Change sheets and pillowcases each night during the 10-day treatment.

It certainly is easier to use mainstream lice products, but not necessarily safer for our kids, less expensive, or (sometimes) even as effective.

With some tenacity and lots of commitment I promise you can rid your family of lice safely and naturally.

Written by Alicia DiFabio, Psy.D.

Alicia DiFabio, Psy.D. is a freelance writer with a doctorate in psychology. Her personal essays and parenting articles have appeared in various newspapers and magazines. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and four girls, one of whom has extensive special needs. She can be found writing about her adventures in parenting at her blog, Lost In Holland

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Treatment

Respiratory Essential Oil

Respiratory essential oils are commonly a blend of myrtle, spruce, peppermint, pine, lavender, marjoram oils and varieties of eucalyptus oil.

The intent is to relieve congestion, coughing, and difficult breathing.

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Treatment

Peppermint Essential Oil

Peppermint essential oil is a powerful antiseptic oil and is used to destroy bacteria, viruses, and parasites found in the digestive tract.

It also helps to alleviate sinus and lung congestion, irritable-bowel syndrome and the itching associated with ringworm, herpes, scabies, and poison ivy.

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Treatment

Thieves Essential Oil

Thieves essential oil is a blend of Clove, Cinnamon Leaf, Rosemary, Lemon and Eucalyptus.

Mix thieves and purified water into spray bottle to kill bacteria and harmful germs.

By spraying in front of the A/C unit, the mixture travels through the filter onto bed covers, sheets, pillowcases and bathroom counters.

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Treatment

Lemon Essential Oil

Lemon essential oil is derived from a lemon peel, is antiseptic and antioxidant.

Use it to treat viral and bacterial infections, aid with digestion issues, and boost immunity.

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Image

Essential Oils for Managing Emotions

This guide offers ideas for how to use aromatherapy and essential oil treatment for addressing different emotional states. It was originally produced and found on the Holland & Barrett website.

Essential Oils for Managing Emotions


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Natural Health News and Articles

Essential Oils & other Natural Treatments for Eczema

Reviewed & edited by Dr. Jeffrey C. Lederman, DO, MPH and Julie A. Cerrato, PhD, AP, CYT, CAP

Eczema, also known as atopic dermatitis, is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that usually occurs in children (often starting before age 5) but that can occur at any age. Eczema usually lasts for years but tends to flare up and subside.

Symptoms

Symptoms include cracked, dry or scaly skin that itches, often getting worse at night; red or brown patches, commonly inside the bend of the elbows and knees and, in infants, on the face and scalp; small, raised bumps on the skin that may leak fluid when scratched; and red, swollen skin that’s irritated from scratching.

Causes

Researchers haven’t identified a definitive cause of eczema but believe that the condition could be hereditary. Eczema may be a result of a gene variation that affects the performance of the epidermis, which is the outer layer of the skin that acts as a barrier to protect the body from the irritants, allergens and microbes of the outside environment.

Another possible cause of eczema is a dysfunction of the immune system, which generates an inflammatory response to environmental factors.

For years, people blamed eczema on allergies, but eliminating allergens has been found to rarely help clear the condition.

Treatment

Doctors usually treat eczema with prescription creams that contain steroids and antibiotics. They also recommend antihistamines, hydrocortisone and prescription-strength moisturizers. While pharmaceutical treatments are helpful, they only suppress symptoms and do not heal the root of the problem.

Instead, consider essential oils like lavender oil and tea tree oil, which can act as restorative agents to the skin as well as provide aromatherapy to aid in relaxation and reduce stress.

Lavender oil has antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal properties that act to restore the skin. Lavender oil gently eases irritation while working to promote a healthy balance of nutrients on the skin.

Tea tree oil acts as a protective agent for the skin with its antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. It also has been shown to help reduce the appearance of scar marks, which may result from constant scratching.

Essential oils are potent and highly concentrated, which means that they may cause skin irritation. Consider combining the oil with a water or oil-based substance to reduce potency.

The aromatic compounds of the lavender and tea tree oils act as a stress reducer, which also is important because stress is one of the primary causes of eczema skin flare-ups. To maximize the aromatic benefits of these essential oils, consider an aromatherapy diffuser.

Other ways to manage eczema

  • Choosing mild soaps and detergents without dyes or perfumes and making sure to rinse the soap completely off the body when bathing
  • Moisturizing the skin at least twice a day, especially after bathing, to ensure that the skin stays hydrated
  • Avoiding excessive bathing, which can cause more dryness
  • Wearing cool, smooth-textured cotton clothing
  • Avoiding rough, tight or scratchy clothing such as wool
  • Using a humidifier if indoor air is hot and dry
  • Reducing or eliminating stress

Written by Jessica Braun. Jessica is a health writer at WholesomeONE. She can be reached at jessica.braun[at]wholesomeone[ dot]com.

REFERENCES

  • http://www.uptodate.com/ contents/treatment-of-atopic- dermatitis-eczema?source= machineLearning&search=eczema& selectedTitle=1~150& sectionRank=2&anchor= H55642999#H55642999
  • http://www.uptodate.com/ contents/treatment-of-atopic- dermatitis-eczema?source= preview&search=eczema+ children&language=en-US& anchor=H4&selectedTitle=1~150# H4
  • http://www.uptodate.com/ contents/epidemiology- clinical-manifestations-and- diagnosis-of-atopic- dermatitis-eczema?source= search_result&search=eczema+ and+epidermis&selectedTitle=2~ 150
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/definition/con-20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/symptoms/con-20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/causes/con-20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/complications/con- 20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/alternative-medicine/ con-20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/prevention/con-20032073
  • http://www.mayoclinic.org/ diseases-conditions/eczema/ basics/lifestyle-home- remedies/con-20032073
  • https://wholesomeone.com/ news-articles/simple-lavender- oil-treatments-eczema
  • https://wholesomeone.com/ product-category/essential- oils/tea-tree-essential-oils
  • https://wholesomeone.com/ product-category/essential- oils/lavender-essential-oils
  • https://wholesomeone.com/ product-category/essential- oils/aromatherapy-diffusers

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5 Essential Oils to Keep on Hand

Are you looking for a natural way to fight common illnesses? Essential oils might be the answer.

Nandini Weitzman, a licensed clinical nutritionist in the state of New York and an alternative health practitioner who has been using Young Living essential oils and oil-based products for 13 years, recommends that you keep five essential oils on hand to help ward off or reduce the severity of a cold, cough, virus, fever or flu.

These oils are oregano, lemon, peppermint, a respiratory blend and Thieves. A respiratory blend is a mix of myrtle, spruce, peppermint, pine, lavender and marjoram oils and three varieties of eucalyptus oil. Thieves is a blend of clove, cinnamon bark, rosemary, lemon and eucalyptus radiata oils.

While all five oils work to ease common illnesses, they have their specialties.

  • Thieves and oregano are best for the flu.
  • Lemon oil is most effective in warding off or reducing the severity of a virus.
  • Thieves and oregano can be good at controlling a virus, too.
  • Peppermint is best known for reducing or preventing a cold, cough or fever.
  • RC works well when it’s applied to the chest or back or when it’s diffused or inhaled for sinus or chest relief.
  • Thieves works well to combat a cough. The essential oil can ward off the illness if you act quickly as soon as you feel the first signs of getting sick. The oil helps reduce the severity of the sickness if you act after you’re sick.

How to Use These Oils
You can breathe in these oils so they enter the body through the nose and lungs, rub them on the skin for quick absorption, or consume the oils in a capsule or lozenge. Nandini recommends using a cold air essential oil diffuser to diffuse the oil into the air and breathe it in. She says this method is especially effective because smelling is our most direct sense, sending the oil directly to the amygdala, the part of the brain where the seat of emotions is located.

Breathing the oil into your sinuses and lungs can help prevent or alleviate the mucus buildup from a cold or a cough. Cold air diffusers also protect the oil quality, unlike heat, which can damage the oil and make it less effective.

You also can boil any size pot of water, add four or five drops of oil to the boiled water, cover your head with a towel and, while holding your head over the liquid, let the steam enter your sinuses and lungs. The oils, carried by the steam water molecules, will start to release and neutralize the pathogens that have taken residence in these areas.

Applying Oil Directly on the Skin
For flu you can apply the oil in strokes to the back, right next to the spine. The skin absorbs the oil quickly as essential oils naturally penetrate the cell wall and work inside the cell. Nandini also suggests putting a drop or two of oil on a warm washcloth and then placing the washcloth on your chest to help ease chest colds. She recommends rubbing some oil directly on your chest or back to fight a cold or a virus.

Naturally Reduce Your Baby’s Fever
An easy way to reduce a fever in a baby is to put a drop of peppermint oil on the tip of your finger and then run your finger along the bottom of the baby’s foot. Let the oil sit on the baby’s foot for a short time and the fever should decrease. You can let the baby smell the remaining oil on your hand. This method also can work on older children. If a child complains about the scent, simply put a sock on the child’s foot to mask the smell.

Lozenges for a Cough
For coughs, you can try a Thieves oil-based throat lozenge, spray or mouthwash. If you take a lozenge, Nandini recommends keeping it between the back teeth and cheek to allow the juice of the lozenge to drip along the back of your throat. So, the next time you feel like you’re getting sick, perhaps consider one of these essential oils for a natural road to recovery.

Nandini Weitzman can be reached at nandiniyes@hotmail.com.

– By Jessica Braun
Jessica Braun is a writer and an editor at WholesomeONE. She can be reached at jessica.braun[at]wholesomeone[dot]com.



 

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Natural Health News and Articles

Frankincense Oil: Salvation for the Del Duca Family

When many people hear the word frankincense they think of the Three Wise Men and their gift for baby Jesus. For Tracy Del Duca and her 9-year-old son Sebastian, however, frankincense oil brings to mind a miracle of a different kind.

“Essential oils have completely changed our lives,” says Tracy. And if anyone should know about life changing events, it’s the Del Ducas.

The youngest of five children, Sebastian was only 22 months old when he snuck through a hole in the fence at a church softball game. Trapped on the inside Tracy watched in horror as he headed toward the street and into the path of an oncoming car. Tracy screamed out to alert the driver but the elderly woman became flustered and hit the gas instead of the brake. Little Sebastian was thrown about 80 feet.

His injuries were extensive. His heart stopped at the scene but a paramedic got it re-started. Doctors determined almost every bone in his body was broken and his head was too swollen to insert a shunt. Still he remained alive and so too did the family’s hope.

After months of Sebastian in a coma, the doctors told the Del Ducas there was nothing more they could do and they essentially sent him home to die. Tracy did not give up, however. Instead she got busy.

“We did a bunch of research into all these alternative health practices and every time we’d bring something to the doctors they’d laugh at us and tell us it was futile,” she remembers. “But once they had absolutely nothing else they could do for him it gave us carte blanche to look into all these alternative therapies we found—and we found many of them to be very beneficial.”

With the help of a chiropractic neurologist, the Del Ducas began weaning Sebastian off all of the drugs. He had been in a coma for about two years but as the medications worked their way out of his system something miraculous happened. He woke up.

Not surprisingly Sebastian still has health challenges. One recurring problem is seizures that can strike at any time. Over the years there have been times of less seizures and times of more. At one point after a bout of encephalitis he wound up back in the hospital and back on anti-seizure meds which put him into another coma.

Again the Del Ducas weaned him off the drugs and had some luck keeping the seizures at bay with various alternative treatments. However, within the last seven months the seizures have returned. On average Sebastian suffers three to four a month but sometimes they can be as frequent as several in a day. Given their past experiences, the Del Ducas felt they had to find an alternative to the traditional anti-seizure meds.

A friend told Tracy about a YouTube video of a family who used an essential oil containing frankincense to control their daughter’s seizures. The next time Sebastian had a seizure Tracy grabbed the frankincense, put a drop on his head and a drop on each toe and after two seconds the seizure stopped. Ditto the following seizure.

“It’s uncanny. There are many things we do that we know help with seizures but this is just amazing,” she says. “It’s gotten to the point I have a school teacher who comes to the house and once in a while takes him to the library and she won’t go anywhere without frankincense oil in her pocket because she has seen what it does.”

Tracy is a convert and encourages anyone wanting to learn about frankincense and other essential oils to do their homework. As a place to begin she recommends several books on essential oils by Dr. Gary Young along with his website Young Living.

“To have something like this is huge,” Tracy says. “I can’t begin to tell you how much it has enhanced our lives.”

Kristen Stewart is a freelance writer specializing in health, nutrition, parenting and lifestyle topics. To learn more, visit her website at www.kristenestewart.com.


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Natural Health News and Articles Video

Essential Oils Kill Bacteria by Dr Steuer

Two simple plant-based essential oils have the ability to break-up and kill certain bacteria.

Bacteria have the ability to change their genetic makeup overtime, for their own self preservation, they have their own defense mechanism. The result is that, once very useful antibacterial medications are no longer effective.

Dr. Steuer explains in this video that by combining melaleuca (tea tree) and oregano creates a very effective anti-bacterial solution.

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Video

Remove Makeup with The Oil Cleansing Method

Rachael Pontillo speaks often about her battle with acne when she was younger. Clearly (no pun), she’d won the battle and by using natural products.

In this video posted on her website, HolisticallyHaute.com, she details two common myths when it comes to facial oil cleansing. She also walks through the process of removing her own makeup using jojoba oil.

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Heal Sunburn with Essential Oils

With the summer season in full swing, now is the time to combat sunburn and restore healthy skin. Essential oils, known for their anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties, can be used to soothe redness, burning, and blistering that come as a result of being overexposed to the sun.

Sunburn occurs when one’s skin is overexposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun or an artificial light source, like a tanning bed. Each person reacts differently—some with minor redness, others with more severe blisters or peeling of the skin—so it is important to take necessary precautions both before and after sun exposure.

That being said, if one’s skin has burned, prompt treatment can decrease skin damage and speed up the healing process. There are various essential oils, formulas, and sprays that are particularly useful for the two-part experience of sunburn: relieving pain and healing damaged skin. The following options can serve as a guide.

Relieve Pain
Tea tree oil (Melaleuca oil)
Excellent for post-sun relief, this essential oil comes from the wild tea tree bush native to Australia and New Zealand. Filled with over 98 compounds, and usually clear to pale golden in color, tea tree oil rejuvenates dehydrated skin and alleviates stress with it’s pleasant, camphor-like scent. The cooling properties of tea tree oil are akin to mint and are refreshing in cases of sunburn.

Heal Damaged Skin
Lavender oil
A member of the mint family, lavender’s anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, anti-fungal, and antibacterial properties work to quickly heal damaged skin. Lavender essential oil contains aromatic molecules called esters which work as a tonic for irritated skin cells. Lavender oil increases circulation, prevents blistering, and heals skin so that scars and pain are minimized. For a quick home remedy, you can even make your own sunburn spray using lavender oil.

Homemade Sunburn Spray
Ingredients:
– 1/2 cup water
– 2 tablespoons pure aloe vera gel
– 10 drops pure lavender essential oil
– 10 drops pure peppermint essential oil
– A 4 oz. (or larger) spray bottle

Directions:
Mix ingredients together well and pour into a spray bottle. Spray onto skin, allowing the spray to dry. Re-apply as often as needed.

While using essential oils to treat sunburn, keep in mind that they are extremely concentrated and have the potential to burn or irritate skin when used alone. Utilize a carrier oil—an oil derived from the fat in plants, usually from the seed, nut, or kernel—to use as a base. Some common carrier oils are olive oil, coconut oil, grape seed oil, jojoba oil, and safflower oil. Most essential oils and carrier oils can be bought in health stores or online.

Lastly, while essential oils are useful, preventing sunburn is the easiest way to avoid pain and skin damage. Use sunscreen before and during sun exposure, and cover susceptible areas with clothing.

Written by Nicole Kagan

  • Accorsi, K. (n.d.). Aromatherapy and Essential Oils. WholesomeOne. Retrieved May 21, 2014, from https://wholesomeone.com/treatment/aromatherapy
  • 1. Snyder, R. (n.d.). Natural Remedies for Sunburn. WholesomeOne. Retrieved May 21, 2014, from https://wholesomeone.com/condition/sunburn-natural-treatments
  • Tea tree oil. (2014, December 6). Wikipedia. Retrieved June 14, 2014, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea_tree_oil
  • Treating Burns/Sunburns with Essential Oils. (n.d.). Escents Aromatherapy – Essential Oil Bath, Body, Wellness Products – Burns/Sunburns. Retrieved June 1, 2014, from http://www.escentsaromatherapy.com/Burns-Sunburns_c_794.html
  • What are Carrier Oils?. (n.d.). What are Carrier Oils?. Retrieved May 21, 2014, from http://www.aromaweb.com/articles/whatcarr.asp
  • 20 Great Uses for Tea Tree Oil. (2011, June 26). Care2. Retrieved June 14, 2014, from http://www.care2.com/greenliving/20-great-uses-for-tea-tree-oil.html#ixzz34cTHRbhT

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Natural Remedies for Sunburn