A poultice, also known as a cataplasm, is a paste made of medicinal herbs, plants, and other things.

To reduce swelling and encourage healing, the paste is put on a warm, wet cloth and placed over the affected area.

On the skin, some can be applied immediately.

For generations, people have used this well-known home medicine to heal inflammation, bug bites, and other conditions.



If your symptoms don’t go away after a week or if you exhibit indications of a severe illness like cellulitis, see a doctor.

These include a rash or increasing region of redness; blisters; swelling; excruciating pain; skin warmth; and fever.

✅ Go to the closest emergency department if you discover a red spot on your skin that is growing quickly or if you have a fever.

You probably already have most of the components necessary to make a poultice to treat inflammation in your kitchen or bathroom.

 Simply combine a little water or coconut oil with them to create a poultice, then apply.


Benefits and uses of poultices

When using a poultice, you gain the advantages of both the substances and the application technique. An essential component of healing is blood flow, which is increased by the warm poultice.

Abscess poultice

A boil or abscess is an accumulation of pus brought on by a bacterial infection. Since ancient times, making a poultice has been a common home therapy for abscesses.

A poultice’s wet heat can aid in naturally draining an abscess and drawing out an infection.

Both in people and animals, an Epsom salt poultice is a popular alternative for the treatment of abscesses. Epsom salt aids in causing the boil to drain by drying off the pus.

Infection-fighting poultice

By eradicating microorganisms and draining the illness, a poultice can treat an infection. Infections have long been treated with poultices consisting of herbs, mud, or clay.

Recent studies have shown that the application of an OMT Blue Clay poultice to wounds may aid in the prevention of some disease-causing germs. Some of these germs were resistant to therapy.

Poultice for use on a cyst

A cyst is a bag that contains a liquid or a fluid-solid mixture. Depending on the type, they can develop anywhere on or under your skin and come in a variety of sizes.

By assisting it to drain, applying a heated poultice to a cyst helps hasten recovery.

Diabetic ulcer poultice

Since the late 1800s, poultices have been used successfully to treat diabetic ulcers. At the time, calluses were softened with a linseed poultice before the diseased tissue was removed and antiseptic was applied.

More recently, a 2016 animal study raised the possibility that treating diabetic ulcers using a poultice produced from the fern Blechnum Orientale could be successful. To comprehend its impacts on humans, more study is required.

Arthritis poultice

You might recall your grandparents or great-grandparents covering their knees in a homemade paste to treat arthritis. It’s still common practice to use herbs for arthritis.

An application of a warm ginger compress to the kidney area reduced pain and stiffness while also enhancing general well-being, according to a 2010 study on 10 persons with osteoarthritis.

It has been demonstrated that ginger and a variety of other herbs have anti-arthritic, anti-rheumatic, and anti-inflammation qualities. Using a herbal poultice to treat arthritic pain may help reduce swelling and discomfort.


Which natural additives are the most effective?

When it comes to the components you can use to make poultices, you have a few choices. What you’re treating will determine which is the best option.


Herbs having medicinal qualities like those listed below can be used to prepare poultices for a range of illnesses, including mild skin irritations or abrasions:

  • turmeric
  • onion
  • ginger
  • garlic
  • dandelion
  • cat’s claw
  • eucalyptus

Other components

Other well-liked components for a homemade poultice are, baking soda, aloe vera, coconut oil, Epsom salt, activated charcoal, milk, and bread.

Guidelines for using a poultice

Any material that is applied directly to the skin has the potential to cause an allergic reaction. Before applying the poultice to the problematic region, test a tiny area on your forearm.

Use a clean cloth while making a compress if you’re putting a poultice on an open wound. Any kind of paste or cloth poultice should not be applied to a wound that appears to be gravely infected. To prevent burning your skin, a heated poultice should only be warm, not hot.


Creating a poultice

A handmade poultice can provide comfort for small skin irritations, cuts, bruises, arthritis pain, and other minor injuries.

Herbal ointment

Here’s how to produce a herbal poultice that can be used for several skin conditions, including minor irritation and abrasions.

You’ll require:

  • 1 teaspoon of powdered turmeric
  • 1/4 small raw sliced onion; 1 chopped garlic clove; 1 ounce freshly grated or chopped ginger; and 2 teaspoons coconut oil.
  • Cotton or cheesecloth bandages

How to: 1. Place a skillet on low heat, add the coconut oil, and then add the remaining ingredients. Cook until the mixture is almost dry but not browned.

  1. Switch off the stove and pour the mixture into a basin to cool until it is warm to the touch.
  2. Lay the fabric down flat and add the mixture in the middle.
  3. Do whatever you like as long as the contents stay within the cloth. Fold the cloth over twice to create a pack, or gather it and knot it with some string or a rubber band to create a handle.
  4. Cover the region with pressure for 20 minutes.

How to make a bread poultice

On an abscess, a cyst, or a splinter, use a bread poultice. Two or three tablespoons of milk and a slice of bread are all you need. This is how to do it:

  1. In a small pan over low heat, warm the milk.
  2. Switch off the stove, take the pan off the heat, and let it cool until it is only warm to the touch—not scalding.
  3. Put the bread slice in the pan and let it a moment to soften.
  4. To produce a paste, stir the milk and bread together.
  5. After applying the paste to the skin, wait 15 minutes before removing it.
  6. Do this twice or three times daily.

How to make a poultice from baking soda

The only ingredients needed for a baking soda poultice are 2 or 3 tablespoons of baking soda and barely enough cold water to produce a paste. For a cooling effect, apply the paste on minor skin irritations such as razor burn or moderate sunburn.

How to make a poultice with activated charcoal

The inflammation brought on by an insect bite, sting, or other mild skin irritation may be reduced by the application of an activated charcoal poultice.

Here’s how to make one:

  • To make a paste, mix one teaspoon of activated charcoal powder with just enough water to moisten the powder.
  • Apply the paste to the area that is harmed.
  • Keep running for 10 minutes.
  • Gently wipe away with a moist towel.

Repeat twice daily until the wound is healed.


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