Most incidences of cellulitis necessitate antibiotic coverage to cure the bacterial infection. Standard clinical guidelines endorse this convention. Established and critical cases can take at least a couple of weeks to shift or longer. What steps can you put in place in the interim to alleviate pain and discomfort whilst waiting for the magic medicine to do its job?
Some supportive home treatment for cellulitis
Over the counter pain relief, usually, NSAID, Non-Steroidal Anti-inflammatory drugs, calm and cool inflamed skin working internally. Your chemist or pharmacist can advise you. Possible choices include Ibuprofen and Naproxen.
Keep the area as clean and sterile as possible without irritating or roughening already protesting skin. If there is a wound or surgical incision, it is essential this is kept clean and covered with a dressing, changed regularly to maintain hygiene and monitor any deepening of infection.
Topical relief can include cool clean flannels, dipped in cold water, wrung out and applied. Remember, the skin is in crisis so avoid ice packs and chemical freeze gels which are too abrasive or strong, potentially damaging the traumatised skin further.
Elevation can help circulation if the cellulitis is in the lower leg or in the foot. Periods of rest interspersed with light walking assist blood flow allowing the circulation to do its job of dispensing the antibiotics throughout your system and removing infection from the site
These home treatment remedies for cellulitis are supportive of uncomfortable symptoms in parallel with proper, accurate diagnosis and antimicrobial medications. They are not a substitute for what can rapidly become a life-threatening medical condition if not assessed promptly by a doctor. They merely make the patient’s life more comfortable whilst the medicine takes effect.
Why would you want to find a natural home remedy for cellulitis rather than conventional antibiotics?
Some people who experience cellulitis also have, in tandem, long-term, chronic health issues compromising their immune response, for instance, diabetes mellitus. In these situations, antibiotics are utilised long-term often generating other problems probably equally as grave as the alternative scenario, i.e. leaving cellulitis uncontrolled by modern treatments.
Persistent and constant use of antibiotics impacts on gut health and has also contributed to the development of super bugs – antibiotic-resistant bacteria – such as MRSA – Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus – yes, you’ve guessed it, a favourite outcome of which is cellulitis. So continued antibiotic usage not only damages the patient’s health but also contributes in no uncertain terms to the emerging world crisis of antibiotic-resistant infections. The deaths from these are steadily climbing every year. So, what initially may have seemed counter-intuitive, is not quite so left field if you scan the bigger picture and hence why the phrase, ‘home remedy for cellulitis’ is repeatedly typed into search engines like Google.
Alternative options to antibiotics
There are several choices available either via ingestion or topical application. Principal amongst these is garlic, long heralded as a natural anti-viral and anti-bacterial weapon – well, it keeps vampires away so there must be something in it! Joking apart, alternative therapists advocate three or four raw cloves per day by mouth. For skin cream, lightly baste two crushed cloves in a small quantity of coconut oil, cool and strain before application to the affected area.
Manuka honey is the buzzwords that everyone is raving about. Honey has centuries of provenance as nature’s healer and super food. Not all honey is the same and organically derived origin is crucial. Manuka contains phytochemicals which help ward off and deplete staph outbreaks. Simply spread direct onto the skin, leave for a few hours before washing off. Tea tree oil has fallen out of favour a little bit, superceded by the new kids on the block, Manuka honey and turmeric. But tea tree oil has always held a valuable place in the herbalist’s medicine chest. Ideal for applying to small areas on the face, it is strong so may need dilution. Consider also Fenugreek seeds, Echinacea which is a great boost to the immune system and Calendula which promotes blood supply and collagen to help in the repair process.
As with all ‘herbal’ treatments, nature’s bounty is both powerful and sometimes ill-advised for certain combinations of disease and regular medication counter indications. Always take informed advice on both choice and quantity. There are however some impressive online pictures of before and after treatments.
Is there anything which can alleviate the action of antibiotics?
Sometimes, there is no other choice other than antibiotics as best policy but there are numerous measures you can put in place to alleviate the downside of their usage. Purchase a premium grade probiotic supplement. This is all about understanding the distinction between good bacteria and harmful micro-organisms. Unfortunately, antibiotics destroy everything in their path even the good bacteria we need for healthy digestive function. Standard side effects which may include fatigue, nausea, actual vomiting and diarrhoea can be mitigated by regular drug store panaceas and dietary adjustments for the duration of the course. Taking antibiotics versus home remedies is always a tricky one to answer and requires a balanced, considered judgement involving professional guidance.
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