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Wilderness Antiseptics: Indispensable First Aid Knowledge

It has been my experience that whenever I am a tramping around in the wilderness exploring the backcountry, minor cuts, scrapes, and abrasions are a matter of course.

In truth, they appear so frequently that most of the time I don’t even notice them and I often times have absolutely no idea how they got there!

While such minor injuries may be beneath the notice of us macho male figures, the infections that they incur can be far from minor. In fact, even relatively minor cuts and scrapes can easily become infected in the wilderness, and this can lead to blood poisoning and possibly gangrene. Even the most macho of us could benefit from knowing a little bit about natural, herbal antiseptics.

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Antiseptics are substances that cleanse open wounds and kill the germs and bacteria that like to invade them. Thus, they are an absolutely indispensable part of any herbal first aid kit, and they are readily available if you know what to look for.

I have listed several of the more popular natural antiseptics and immune system boosters below and all of them are available in the wild:

  • Myrrh
  • Clove
  • Turmeric
  • Eucalyptus
  • Garlic
  • Burdock
  • Juniper
  • Sage
  • Buchu
  • Red Root
  • Boswellia
  • Marigold flowers
  • Chili
  • Lemon Seeds
  • Echinacea
  • Goldenseal

Most of these herbs can be applied as a poultice by first crushing them to a pulp, applying the resulting pulp directly to the wound, and then using a bandage to hold the poultice in place.

The Echinacea and Goldenseal are best dried, crushed, and ingested in a tisane, or herbal tea.
Have you ever had an infected wound? Know of any other natural antiseptics? Leave your comments below.

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Wilderness Antiseptics: Indispensable First Aid Knowledge