Readers offer home remedies to deal with aches, pains

The other day, my hubby got a sliver underneath his fingernail. It was in quite deep, and there was no way he could get to it. He remembered a home remedy his mother used. She worked at Weber’s handling wood for many years, and she would occasionally get a sliver.

Hubby got out the jar of honey and put a heavy layer on his fingernail. He asked me to put tape tightly around his fingernail. I did as he requested but must admit, I was skeptical.

The next morning, he removed the tape. I was quite amazed to see the sliver was gone. He was relieved, as he said that a sliver beneath a nail hurts like the devil. Such a simple yet effective method.

Old home remedies are still the preferred choice in many parts of the world, as they are natural, easily available and often less costly than pharmaceuticals and over-the-counter medications.

I personally like getting back in tune with nature and rediscovering the wisdom of the past. Mother Nature provides us with many helpful and useful options. Old-fashioned home remedies are sometimes referred to as old wives’ tales, but modern science has proven many of them to be effective.

Several months ago, I wrote a column about home remedies. Since that time, several of you have called or written to tell me some of your family’s favorites. With the cost of medicine these days, I think more people are looking for natural options.

Today’s column will include some tips. Like most of you, I go to my doctor when I need to, but I have discovered there are many home remedies that work, reducing my trips to the doctor and freeing up his time for those who truly need a doctor’s attention.

One reader told me her grandpa used tomato paste to fix his boils. He covered the boil with the paste as a compress. The acid from the tomatoes soothes the pain and brings the boil to a head.

I learned vinegar is a natural cure for bruises. Soak a cotton ball in vinegar and apply to the bruise. It reduces the blueness and speeds up healing.

This is one I am going to try. I have noticed I have arthritis in my hands. Yesterday when I was peeling potatoes my fingers throbbed with pain. According to one of my readers, it helps to mix 2 cups of oats with one cup of water, put on stove or in microwave until heated, and apply to hands. It surely is worth a try!

Another reader said adding a few handfuls of golden raisins to a couple shots of gin overnight will combine the vitamins from the raisins and the anti-inflammatory ingredients from the juniper berries, which give relief from pain. I might have to try eating a few drunk raisins, can’t hurt!

Squeezing lemon juice onto a Q-tip and letting it rest in your ear for a few minutes stabilizes your ear’s natural pH levels and takes away ear pain.

If you are bitten by a spider, get out a potato. Put a slice of raw potato on the bite and tape it on with a bandage. It will give you anti-inflammatory and anti-itch relief.

If you or your children get motion sickness, try eating olives. They contain tannins that prevent your body from making too much saliva, which causes one to feel nauseous.

One reader told me her grandmother made her own home deodorizer. She would boil a kettle of water on the stove and add cloves, a few sprigs of rosemary and several lemon rinds. She said the aroma from the spicy brew filled her house with a clean and delightful smell.

Another reader told me she uses lavender in a variety of ways. She puts dried lavender in her dresser drawers. It smells good and repels moths and other insects. She said she also found lavender is effective in relieving headaches and anxiety, and it helps her to have a relaxing sleep.

I also learned you can soothe a sore throat by eating three or four marshmallows. It is the gelatin in the marshmallows that relieves the pain.

Rubbing a mixture of pepper and sesame oil under your nose can help clear your sinuses.

A face mask of aspirin and lemon juice will keep your skin looking flawless.

Studies have shown that chewing peppermint or cinnamon gum increases awareness and reduces fatigue as much as 20 percent.

“We have finally started to notice that there is real curative value in local herbs and remedies. In fact, we are also becoming aware there are little or no side effects to most natural remedies, and that they are often more effective than Western medicine.” – Anne Wilson Schaef

I like Kin Hubbaird’s quote, “Of all the home remedies, a good wife is best.” (agreed). Have a healthy week!

Question: In what year was television made available to Shawano residents?

Clothesline Conversation: The year was 1953.

Lorna Marquardt is a former mayor of Shawano.