skin

Essential Oils, Self Help, Herbs, Gemstones and Reflexology for Acne.

Acne

Integumentary System

Acne is a common skin disease, especially among adolescents and young adults, characterized by chronic inflammation of the sebaceous glands, usually causing pimples on the face, back and chest. Acne can be a result of either dietary or hormonal causes. It is important to avoid foods that may stimulate the secretion of oils on the skin. Oils plug the pores, allowing the bacteria that live on the skin to infect the plugged pores and create the blemishes. The white head of the pimple is caused by the blockage in the follicle which results in inflammation and infection.

Skin care is extremely important with acne. If the bacteria is removed two times a day and the pores are cleared, one cause is eliminated. Internal cleansing is important; the body detoxifies any chemicals or excess toxins through the liver, and the end products of this detoxification are eliminated through the intestines, kidneys and skin. To help the skin condition – the simplest form is to increase your intake of fresh, pure water and dietary fibre.

Acne is an inflammatory skin disorder resulting from an over-production of sebum. The exact cause of acne is not known, but some factors include stress, diet, monthly menstrual cycles, and the use of cosmetics. If acne is related to hormonal imbalance, it may worsen premenstrually. Acne eruptions can also occur after exposure to heat or the sun. Medication such as corticosteroids, contraceptive pill, antidepressants and epilepsy drugs are also associated with pimple eruptions.

Natural Acne treatment depends on the symptoms that present themselves. The symptoms of acne are the presence of red and/or white pimples and commonly occur on the face, neck and back. There are several types of pimples that may make an appearance, including whiteheads, where the inflammation stays beneath the skin; blackheads, where it rises to the skin's surface; pustules, where it is red with pus on top; papules, where you see small pink bumps; nodules, which are large, rather painful and deep within the skin; and cysts, which are deep, painful and can cause scarring.

Essential Oils

lavender

Essential Oils:

Recommended Oils: Cajeput, Cedarwood, Chamomile, Geranium, Juniper, Lavender, Lemon, Petitgrain, Tea Tree

  • Lavender - antibiotic, antiseptic properties and can be applied directly on the blemishes
  • Tea tree oil - natural antibiotic and antiseptic. Dab full strength (sparingly) on blemishes three times a day, or add one dropper full of tea tree oil to ¼ cup of warm water and pat it on affected area with a clean cotton ball
  • Juniper and Cedarwood essential oils can help regulate sebum production
  • Lemon and Geranium have antiseptic and healing qualities
  • Chamomile and Petigrain can help reduce inflammation

Blends:

Suggestions for Use:

  • Combine essential oil with a carrier oil such as grapeseed and apply to skin
  • Add a few drops of essential oil to a fragrance free and lanolin free cream or lotion and massage into skin
  • Add a few drops to rose flower water, for use as a toner

Topical Treatments for Acne:

  • Add 3 drops of Lavender to 10ml Jojoba or Sweet Almond Oil and apply to affected area 3 times a day.
  • Add 2 drops each of Juniper and Cedarwood to half cup of water and apply to skin every 2 hours throughout the day.
  • Add 2 drops of Juniper oil to a tablespoon of Jojoba or Almond Oil and apply 3 times a day.

For Teenage Acne

Facial scrub:

2 tablespoons ground almonds, 1 teaspoon raw egg white, 4 drops of lemon eo. Mix well. Put a small amount in your hand and apply to a wet face, rub the mixture all over face in a circular motion. Wash with a good natural allergenic soap and rinse well. Any unused portion may be stored in the fridge.

Follow with a...

Lavender splash:

5 drops of lavender to 2 tablespoons spring water. Shake well. Dab over the entire face and leave it

Repeat this procedure daily.

Cautions:

If your skin is sensitive, use the essential oils well diluted in the carrier oil, cream or lotion. If the skin is inflamed, do not massage.

Oils that could be blended and diffused in the air include Bergamot, Chamomile, Geranium, Lavender, Lemon, Myrrh, Rosemary and/or Tea Tree.

Some suggested blends that may be combined in a burner:

  • Geranium 5 drops, rosemary 5 drops.
  • Bergamot 4 drops, chamomile 3 drops, Tea Tree 3 drops.
  • Lavender 4 drops, Lemon 4 drops, Myrrh 2 drops.

Self Help

Self Help:

  • Avoid sugar, chocolate and refined foods
  • Avoid greasy fried foods and cut back on meat consumption, especially beef and pork

Herbs

Herbs:

  • Burdock root and red clover are powerful blood cleansers
  • Milk thistle aids the liver in cleansing the blood
  • Burdock and dandelion contain inulin, which can improve the quality of the skin by removing bacteria

Internal Applications:

  • Burdock: 1-2 grams a day with a maximum dosage of 15gms per week; ideally administered as a Tincture or in capsule/tablet form.
  • Yellow Dock: 1-2 grams a day with a maximum dosage of 15gms per week; ideally administered as a Tincture or in capsule/tablet form.
  • Evening Primrose Oil: 1000 mg 3 times a day with meals. Take Evening Primrose Oil in a capsule form.
  • Dandelion: 500mg dried root equivalent taken in a liquid extract 3 times a day.
  • Cleavers: 2-4 grams dried plant equivalent taken 3 times a day.

External Applications:

  • Aloe Vera: for a natural acne treatment apply gel directly on affected area 2 times a day. Use the juice or gel to fight infection and promote healing of pimples. For acne scars, apply aloe vera juice in the morning and at night for as long as necessary to improve the complexion and to reduce scars. You may want to use a moisturizer when you do this because aloe vera is drying.
  • Basil: boil 2 to 3 teaspoon of dried basil in a cup of water. Cool, strain and apply to clean skin 3 times a day with a cotton ball. This is good for acne that has not responded to other remedies.
  • Tea Tree: apply topically as cream/ointment or lotion. Dab a little tea tree oil on pimples with a cotton swab before going to bed. This will clear up acne fast.
  • Calendula: use in a cream as directed or apply as a compress. To make the compress, mix 5 grams in 1 liter of boiling water for 5 minutes, cool, strain and apply as a compress to the affected area 3 times a day.
  • Nettle: 20 grams dried herb boiled in 750ml water until it has reduced to 500ml approximately. Strain and cool and apply to face area 3 times a day, either as compress or to wash face.
  • Blackberry, strawberry or raspberry leaves: boil the leaves with 1.5 liters of water for 3 minutes. Soak a cloth in the liquid and apply to the skin as a compress. This will soothe the skin.
  • Oats: add fine oatmeal to natural plain yogurt to make a paste. Apply it to the affected area and let it dry. Wash with lukewarm water and pat it dry.
  • Mint: apply fresh juice to acne eruptions every night at bedtime. Alternatively, you can mix turmeric powder with the mint juice and apply it for 30 minutes before washing it off with lukewarm water.
  • Rose water: mix with an equal portion of lime juice and apply nightly after a thorough cleansing of the face. Keep it on for 30 minutes, then wash the face gently and pat it dry.
  • Garlic: rub a freshly cut garlic clove on and around acne eruptions. Do this regularly. Alternatively, you can use pureed garlic. Store in a jar between uses in the refrigerator.
  • Nutmeg: mix ground nutmeg with milk and apply to acne breakouts.
  • Papaya: apply raw papaya to acne for quick results.
  • Lemon: soak a cotton swab in lemon juice and apply to pimples. The lemon juice will dry them up.
  • Lavender: add lavender flowers to boiling water and steep for 10 minutes. Dip a cloth into the solution and apply as a compress to breakouts. Lavender will relieve the inflammation.
  • Neem oil: this is an excellent natural acne treatment. Antibacterial oil can be very useful when treating acne. Apply a 2% neem oil cream to the acne breakout and take 2 neem capsules every day to quicken healing.
  • Oregano oil: add a few drops into a glass of water and dab on acne eruptions. If you notice skin irritation, take a break for a few days, and then use a more diluted solution.

Gemstones

Gemstones for Healing:

  • Amethyst

Carry, wear, or place a cluster at your bedside

Reflexology

Reflexology areas to emphasize:

  • Endocrine glands, especially the reproductive glands and the pituitary reflex – acne is largely a part of hormonal changes
  • Liver reflex – to aid in the body’s cleansing of the blood
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