Arnica(Arnica montana)Arnica key constituents are sesquiterpene lactones, flavonoids and volatile oil. Sesquiterpene lactones are are a class of chemicals found in many plants. In 1981, they were studied in Germany, and they were found to act as counterirritants. This means that sesquiterpene lactones produce a stimulating sensation that boosts the circulation to the injured area where the Arnica is applied. Flavonoids give the plant their antioxidant activities. The volatile oil, or essential oil is the aroma of the plant.
Arnica has been extensively used in Europe since the 1700's in folk medicine.
Arnica is an effective herbal healing ointment for bruises, sprains, and muscle pain. It improves the local blood supply and speeds the healing process.
Arnica is used mainly as a ointment, cream, or gel. You can use a tincture as a liniment and rub onto affected area. Arnica should be applied 4-5 x a day for best results.
Arnica should not be taken internally except homeopathic dosages. It can be toxic. Arnica should not be applied to broken skin.
Arnica's key herbal healing actions work as an anti-inflammatory, an anti-swelling agent, and as a mild analgesic (pain reliever).