Herbal Remedies Information - Mullein

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Herbal Remedies Information - Mullein
By: Mercedes Aspland

This article is part of a series giving information about herbs and their medicinal properties. We are going to look at mullein in this article. You will find out what this herb is, how you can use it and the conditions that could be helped by mullein.

What is Mullein?

Mullein is a biennial herb that is native to Europe but can also be found growing in North America and temperate parts of Asia. There are a large number of different names for Mullein and they include flannel leaf, beggar's blanket, velvet plant, felt-wort, tinder plant, candlewick plant, witch's candle, Aaron's rod, lady's foxglove, donkey's ears, hag's taper, candlewick plant, torches, and Quaker rouge. The plant has a tall think stem with a large number of leaves. At the bottom of the stem the leaves are long and wide and get small as they go up the stem. The flower spike can grow to a length of 8 inches and is yellow in colour.

How to use Mullein

You should be able to purchase Mullein remedies and teas from your health food store however there are also a number of remedies that you can create yourself at home using the plant. You can use all of the plant in different remedies and the leaves should be picked before the plant blossoms. The flowers should be picked before they open and the root picked in autumn.

You can make a tea with the plant by placing a tablespoon of the dried leaves in boiling water and allowing to infuse for around 10 minutes before drinking. If you would like a slightly sweeter tea then you can use a combination of leaves and flowers or the flowers on their own.

It is very easy to make an oil extraction and might be something you want to consider. You can use either the flowers or the root for this remedy but whatever you use make sure you crush them up properly then put them in a jar. Cover the crushed plant with olive oil, seal the jar and leave in a warm place for around 2 weeks. After this time strain the oil and you are done.

You can create a syrup by first making a tea and then combining that with equal amounts of honey and brown sugar. You should then heat this up, stirring often until it becomes a syrup. You can then cool and store in a jar in a cool place.

Uses of Mullein

Mullein has been used for medicinal purposes for centuries and in fact was registered as an official medicine in the USA between 1916 and 1936. There are a number of things you may find it useful for, by way of an example the tea can be beneficial in treating bronchitis, sore throat, tonsillitis, dry coughs, and hoarseness.

The flowers of the plant are thought to have the greatest medicinal purposes and some of the conditions they may be useful in treating include earache and headaches. In addition a tea made form blossom is thought to help ease sleep. For external use the plant is also thought to help with the treatment of boils, carbuncles, skin ulcers, chilblains, and haemorrhoids.

Side Effects and Precautions

In terms of side effects, some people have reported suffering from dermatitis in the form of an allergic reaction when taking mullein. It is also worth pointing out that some of the seeds of some varieties of mullein are thought to be toxic and so care should be taken.

There are a number of reports of mullein interacting with other drug, for example they can inhibit the effectiveness of antidiabetic drugs. It is also thought to increase the effect of muscle relaxants and lithium. People taking diuretic drugs should consult a doctor before taking mullein. If you are medication and are in any way unsure then it is always best to discuss taking herbs with your doctor before you begin.

This article has been supplied by alternative therapies directory. You can also find more information on our Herbal Medicine page.

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