Have you ever wondered what alternative and complementary therapists have in their own first-aid kit?
What Therapy did and so we asked six practitioners in Singapore what they keep on hand to use in emergencies.
① Teas + Creams
Naturopath Andrea Rivers from Herbal Matters recommends stocking your cabinets with teas + creams.
Try Chamomile for insomnia, stress, upset tummies, skin irritations, and even as an eye rinse.
Peppermint tea is good for digestion, nausea, and headache. Or you can use Peppermint essential oil instead.
For cuts, grazes, and wounds, Andrea reaches for Calendula cream and Arnica cream for bumps and bruises.
The best is use loose tea leaves so not to ingest chemicals from the teabag material. One teaspoon of herbs to one cup of boiling water, infuse for five minutes, and serve cool for children. For taste, add honey.
② Jin Shin Jyutsu
Julie Ann is a Jin Shin Jyutsu Self-Help Teacher and shares that this healing art has a whole toolbox of “first aid” sequences that really work.
You can use them for yourself or replicate the exact hand positions to apply to another person.
Here are her three Jin Shin Jyutsu favourites.
To prevent the onset of illness or for fever:
Put your right hand over your left shoulder, just at the top of the left shoulder blade. At the same time, put your left hand into the crease of your left thigh.
Try this tip the minute you feel a cold or sore throat coming on.
For nausea, travel sickness or tummy pain:
Hold the inside of your knees (ie where they touch together). You may find it more comfortable to cross your hands over.
For earache or ear distress when flying:
Hold the little finger on the side opposite to the sore or affected ear (or both). For an earache on the right side, hold the little finger of your left hand.
③ Activa + Nutripuncture
Siew Fan Wong, Co-Founder of Gallery Helios, had this no-nonsense tip.
“At the first sign of a sniffle, take 1 ACTIVA Well-Being Immunity capsule + 1 ACTIVA Vitamin C, lots of water, and go to bed.”
Nutripuncture also has many associations you can take for ailments such as indigestion, car sickness, dizziness, bruises, and cramps.
The ace association for fatigue, anxiety, and overwhelm is Nutri Yin Nutri Yang 21 27 33 34 36 38 (men) and NYNY 28 27 33 34 35 37 (women)
For indigestion: NYNY 10 11 18
For inflammation: NYNY 01 11
An association is taking the regulator Nutri Yin and Nutri Yang Cellular Regulator plus specific nutriments or nutritional supplements, as suggested by the book that comes with the full Nutripuncture kit. This in itself IS a first aid kit. You can also purchase each one separately.
④ Flower Essences
What Therapy Editor Sandra Shih’s tip is always have handy an emergency blend of Flower Essences. Works for animals too!
Try Bach’s Rescue Remedy, the Five-Flower Formula, or the Australian Bush Flower Emergency Essence.
Taking a few drops under the tongue, in a glass of water, or being misted helps tremendously to feel more calm, grounded, and centred to think more clearly in times of emergency.
Studies have also shown that the “Relaxation Response” (versus the Stress Response”) allows the body to naturally repair itself.
Here’s what inside Rescue Remedy and Five-Flower Formula –
Rock Rose to feel grounded during catastrophe, Star of Bethlehem to feel comforted, Cherry Plum for letting go and trusting, Impatiens for lowering stress by increasing patience, and Clematis for bringing more clarity and alertness in the present moment.
The Bach’s Rescue Remedy comes in both the traditional alcohol-based preservative or the kid- and animal-friendly glycerin base. You can also try the creams, pastilles, and sprays.
The Australian Bush Flower Emergency Essence is also very lovely. The formulation is Angelsword to release negative energies picked up while the aura was opened and to cut energetic cords, Crowea for worry and stress, Dog Rose of the Wild Force for fear of loss of control, Fringed Violet for shock, trauma, and aura damage, Grey Spider Flower for paralyzing terror, Sundew for dissociating from the present moment, and Waratah for courage and bringing out survival skills.
⑤ Tinctures + yes, Turmeric!
Ayurveda Lifestyle Consultant, Yoga and Meditation Teacher, and Founder of Satsanga Amber Sawyer added three to the list – Oregon Grape Tincture, Elderberry Tincture and Turmeric, a magic herb of Ayurveda that’s getting a lot of attention these days.
She recommends tinctures made by her good friend, Bear Wallow Herbs and either order organic Turmeric from iHerb.com or local organic shops.
Oregon Grape Tincture – “A Traveller’s Must”!
This mighty tincture harmonizes all sorts of tummy troubles that can really throw a wrench on a trip. It harmonizes diarrhea, vomiting, constipation, indigestion, infection, traveller’s dysentery, and food poisoning. It is also an antibacterial for E-Coli, Staph Salmonella, and Strep.
Elderberry Tincture – “A wonderful immune booster!”
This tincture is high in Vitamin C, bioflavonoids, betacarotene, iron, and potassium. Great for fighting off colds, flus, viruses, and helps to relieve fever, chest or sinus congestion, coughs, and nausea.
Turmeric – “A magic herb of Ayurveda”
This magic herb of Ayurveda comes in capsule, powder, and paste forms. It is an excellent natural antibiotic, strengthens digestion, and helps to improve intestinal flora. It is also effective at cleansing the blood, purifying the subtle channels of the body, and can be used externally for healing bruises, cuts, sprains, and strains.
Ways to Use Turmeric That’s Not Eating It
* Make a Turmeric paste for these emergencies by boiling equal parts water and Turmeric for eight minutes. The paste can be stored in a glass jar in the refrigerator.
* Gargle with warm salt water with a pinch of organic Turmeric to relieve a SORE THROAT and/or swallow a 1/2 tsp of Turmeric paste several times a day.
* Apply organic Turmeric powder or paste to the cut to stop the bleeding and to act as an antibacterial.
* Before wrapping up your bruises and sprains loose gauze, apply a Turmeric paste to the area.
* For skin conditions such as Chicken Pox, eczema, poison oak, and scabies, apply a thin coating of Turmeric paste and cover loosely with gauze.
* To help improve digestion, simply add Turmeric to your dishes or add some of the Turmeric paste. It is best to first cook it lightly in ghee or coconut oil or your own preferred oil.
⑥ Essential Oils
Claudia Hofaimer of Essential Healing has an entire kit of essential oils for her first aid needs.
Here are the Young Living essential oils she recommends for everything from a fever (Thieves) to burns + wounds (Lavender) to a sprained ankle (Panaway)
Lavender is a must-have, all-around good-for everything gentle essential oil. Apply on scrapes, rashes, and sunburns.
The name says it all – sounds like Pain Away, doesn’t it?
Use Panaway for sprained ankles, as a natural bug repellent, and sore muscles.
Skip the pink stuff and use Peppermint essential oil for upset tummies. Rub one or two drops on the stomach for relief. Apply on the bottom of the feet for fevers. For heartaches, dab a drop on the temples and neck. Peppermint is a “hot” oil so be sure not to get too close to the eyes.
This essential oil blend works wonders on mosquito, insect, and spider bites. Sandfly Stings, too. You can also use it as a natural bug repellent.
Apply the Purification oil on the bite/sting several times a day.
The famous Thieves oil has 100+ uses – not surprising it’s in Claudia’s first aid kit!
Thieves is a “hot” oil and may cause discomfort and a burning sensation on sensitive areas take caution.
Here are some ways to use this blend.
Splinters – apply Thieves on the splinter which will slowly and naturally be removed.
Cold/Flu- apply one to two drops of Thieves to the bottom of the feet thrice daily and drink lots of water with lemon. Boost the immune system with when done regularly. You can dilute it with an oil such as olive oil.
Toothache – apply Thieves around the tooth. Careful not to get it on the inside of the mouth.