Arnica is considered as a potent herbal medicine that has been used for many years to help bruises and inflammation. Always remember that the dosage of arnica is a vital factor if it is used as a treatment option. You have to bear in mind that any form of preparation with arnica should not be ingested except for homeopathic pills. When used topically, arnica is considered safe as long as it is properly diluted with oil or water.
Arnica poisoning can cause irreversible damage to the health and even coma or death in severe cases. Arnica should not be used unless a doctor is consulted. If you want to learn more about arnica, click here.
What is arnica?
Arnica is basically an herbaceous perennial plant native to central Europe. The basal leaves are characterized for their smoothness and usually clustered while the stem is hairy and round with opposite-toothed leaves. The plant can grow up to a height of up to 2 feet and it typically has three yellow-colored flower stalks.
The flowers and roots are oftentimes harvested for medicine. Always remember that the whole plant is considered toxic once ingested and less so when used topically.
Toxic components and the possible symptoms
Helanin is a component in arnica that is considered cardiac-toxic and can trigger severe gastroenteritis. The symptoms of arnica poisoning include diarrhea, irritation of the mucous membranes, nausea, fever, dizziness, arrhythmia, erratic pulse rate, paralysis of the cardiac and skeletal muscles and abortion if pregnant. Additionally, arnica can also trigger skin reactions such as dermatitis and necrosis.
Treatment for arnica poisoning
If arnica poisoning is suspected, you have to call poison control right away or emergency assistance. If the poison was ingested, it is recommended to induce vomiting to eliminate some of the poison.
If available, you can provide activated charcoal capsule while waiting for the medical team to arrive. Take note that activated charcoal works by binding to the poison and delays it from harming the body.
When it comes to skin irritation, you have to wash the affected area using water and soap and coat it with aloe vera until the irritation is reduced. The individual should avoid any future contact with arnica.
Always follow the correct dosage to avoid arnica poisoning. Once taken correctly, arnica is an effective healing agent. For the safe dosage, there are considerations to bear in mind. For the washes, you have to dilute the arnica tincture with 3-5 parts water. You can utilize arnica tincture as a mouthwash to help relieve the inflammation caused by canker sores but must be diluted with 10 parts water and should not be swallowed. When arnica oil or salve is opted, you can add 25% arnica tincture and mix it with a carrier oil or ointment.