You live during a world where so-called modern wonder drugs, laboratories, and equipment have obscured a lot of primitive yet extremely effective kinds of medication involving determination, common sense, and many easy treatments. This is one thing you need to always keep in mind when thinking about first aid in survival situations. A well-stocked first aid kit can only take you so far, and only last you so long.
When lost in the wild, or in the aftermath of a natural disaster where you’ll be cut off for days, months, years, or forever, for that matter — from the corner pharmacy, let me remind you that I have been in combat in many components of the planet where folks still depend on local Shamans or healers to cure their ailments.
Many of the herbal and botanical primarily based treatments they use are as effective as the most “modern” medication available. In fact, several modern pharmaceuticals you’re taking for granted, owe their origins to the herbs and plants found in the rain forests. Here are many “natural” first aid treatments you need to get to understand.
Antihaemorrhagecs for hemorrhage
You can create medications to prevent bleeding from plantain leaves, or, most effectively, from the leaves of the common yarrow or woundwort (Achillea millefolium). These mostly give a physical barrier to the bleeding. Prickly pear, the raw, peeled part or witch hazel will be applied to wounds. each are good for their astringent properties, they shrink blood vessels.
For bleeding gums or mouth sores, sweet gum will be chewed or used as a toothpick. This provides some chemical and antiseptic properties as well.
Antiseptics to clean infections
Use antiseptics to cleanse wounds, snakebites, sores, or rashes. You’ll make antiseptics from the expressed juice of wild onion or garlic, the expressed juice from chickweed leaves, or the crushed leaves of dock.
You can also create antiseptics by boiling burdock root, mallow leaves or roots, or white oak bark, tannic acid. Prickly pear, slippery elm, yarrow, and sweet gum are all good antiseptics also. Of these medications are for external use only. Two of the most effective antiseptics are sugar and honey. Sugar should be applied to the wound until it becomes syrupy, then washed off and reapplied. Honey should be applied three times daily. Honey is by far the most effective of the antiseptics for open wounds and burns, with sugar being second.
Analgesics for aches, pains, and sprains
Treat these conditions by making a warm compress of the crushed leaves of dock, plantain, chickweed, willow bark, garlic, or sorrel. Sweet gum has some analgesic (pain relief) properties. Chewing the willow bark or making a tea from it’s the most effective for pain relief as it contains salicylic acid, the raw part of aspirin. You’ll also use salves created by mixing the expressed juices of these plants in animal fat or vegetable oils.
Insect bites and stings
You can relieve the itching and discomfort caused by insect bites in the field by applying:
- Cold compresses
- A cooling paste of mud and ashes
- Sap from dandelions
- Coconut meat
- Crushed cloves of garlic
Tips and takeaways
Here are a few other tricks of the trade.
- You will treat diarrhea by drinking a tea from the roots of blackberries. Tea made from cowberry, cranberry, or hazel leaves works too.
- You will reduce fever with a tea made from willow bark, elder berries, linden flower, or aspen or slippery elm bark.
- Tea made from mint leaves or passionflower leaves, has a sedative effect, it can help you, or you kids, get some sleep in a tense survival situation.
I told you the basics you need in a first aid kit – however if one thing that pre-packaged kits never appear to possess enough of is bandages. Keep in mind the very idea of first aid is to merely stabilize someone till you can get them to advanced medical treatment. That may not be for a long time in a survival situation, so you should have extra bandages.
Since space is usually a problem, I recommend you get some hospital grade or mil. spec. trauma bandages, like BloodStopper, or TrauMedic, that can be boiled and reused if you have too.
I always have some female sanitary maxi pads in my kit. They can be used as highly absorbent compresses for dealing with bleeding or seeping wounds. Avoid the type that are scented, or deodorizing.
I have given you some tips that can assist you survive injury or emergencies in the field, but getting yourself some real first aid training is as vital to your survival as learning Self Defense or spending time on a gun range.