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A is for Apple - AVC is for swelling

Apple Cider Vinegar Poultice: A Natural Remedy for Swelling

If you're dealing with swelling, redness, and heat from an injury, I've got a little trick up my sleeve that we, in the Bowen Therapy world, have been using for many years.

Introducing the Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) poultice! It's a simple home remedy that might help you find some relief. And if you're wondering where it originated go back to your Nursery Rhymes. Jack and Jill went up the hill. Verse 2 goes like this...

Up Jack got and home he trot

As fast as he could caper

He went to bed to mend his head

With vinegar and brown paper!

That rhyme came from the West Country, which is of course, where all the best cider is made! See not all nursery rhymes are about the plague and misery!

Here's how you can whip up your very own ACV poultice:

1. Grab a handful of cotton wool, you know, that fluffy stuff - on a roll or the pleated works better than the cotton balls

2. Dampen the middle of the cotton wool, but don't soak it completely. We want it moist, not dripping wet.

3. Gently place the dampened cotton wool on the swollen area!

4. Now, here's where we get creative. Cut the end off a food bag (yeah, recycling!). Slip it over your arm or leg to cover the poultice. If you have clingfilm in your kitchen drawer, that works too, but let's try to be eco-friendly if we can.

5. Wrap the whole thing up with a cosy towel or something similar to keep it snug. Leave it on for a couple of hours, but no longer, okay?

6. After the 2-hour mark, carefully remove the poultice and give the area a gentle wash with cold water. Ooh, refreshing!

And yes, you might want to do this while eating fish and chips!

Now, a couple of things to keep in mind:

1. Avoid using the poultice directly on open wounds. If you have a small cut, you can apply a bit of Vaseline over it and then proceed with the ACV poultice.

2. Remember, the magic time limit for the poultice is 2 hours. Don't exceed it. if you find this has reduced it but not completely you can repeat after a couple of hours and it only works for swelling that is hot to touch and/or red.

3. It's important to note that this poultice is not a substitute for medical advice. If the swelling persists, and the area is still fiery red, sensitive to touch, and giving off heat, it's time to seek professional help.

But wait, there's more! Movement is key to recovery. Even in the early stages of an injury, very gentle movement can make a big difference. If it's your ankle, knee, or elbow that's giving you trouble, try flexing and extending those joints within your comfort zone. This can help get the lymph moving and aid in the healing process.

And here's a pro tip: if you're looking for more guidance and specialized care, seek out a Bowen Therapist who specialises in gentle lymphatic work. They can provide expert advice on the right exercises and movements for your specific injury. Your body will thank you!

**Remember, while natural remedies can offer some relief, it's always wise to consult with a medical professional for a comprehensive assessment and personalized guidance. Stay safe, keep moving, and here's to a swift recovery!

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