Have you ever gotten a paper cut? Those things hurt - but would you go to the doctor for it? No, because it's not a serious injury. On the other hand, if you fall and break your leg, you get medical attention because it is serious. This blog is about using common sense in deciding appropriate treatment.
Minor injuries or illnesses, like a paper cut or a cold can often be treated at home using herbs. A mosquito bite is irritating and can be treated with an herbal salve. Small bumps and bruises can also be taken care of with simple strategies, like ice or herbal salves. Herbal teas, fruits, and fruit juices can often help alleviate symptoms of a cold (and may even shorten the duration of the cold).
Essential oils can be used for all of the above, but I prefer to reserve them for the next level of home care and combine them with the use of herbs. Chigger bites and bee/wasp stings (without allergic reaction) fall in this category - a step above the simple and minor. Achy joints, nausea, scrapes and scratches, cuts that aren't too deep fall into this category as well. Essential oil blends mixed in herbal salves work well at this level. Diffusing essential oils to help reduce germs in the house, or to help ease congestion from a cold or allergy work here too.
More serious issues need medical attention. A deep cut that doesn't stop bleeding may need stitches. Flu can quickly develop complications like bronchitis or pneumonia. Severe abdominal pain or sudden, sharp, tearing pain in a joint need evaluation by a doctor. Anaphylactic shock needs emergency medical treatment.
The thing to remember here is to use common sense. Minor illnesses and injuries can be treated at home with herbs. The next step up can use both herbs and essential oils. Serious symptoms, illnesses, and/or injuries require medical attention.