Our skin is the largest and maybe the most unappreciated organ of the body. We often think of it as simply the covering on our body, when in reality, it is a breathable layer that maintains the homeostasis of our internal systems and protects us from outside environmental hazards. This unique organ is waterproof but has semi-permeable layers that allow for the passage of toxins and specific medications–basically how a nicotine patch works.
The amazing ability of hydrated charcoal to adsorb bacteria and other toxins, and to reduce inflammation through the skin, has been mostly based on anecdotal evidence. However, when we consider what we know about charcoal, the results are in harmony with common sense. When charcoal is mixed with water in a poultice, the water provides a medium for the charcoal molecules to interact with the skin and draw out poisons.
Charcoal poultices are used to treat pain from, bruises, inflammation, toxic bites/stings and skin infections–naturally. The ability of the hydrated charcoal to draw poisons and infection out through the skin is remarkable. It is so incredible that you have to try it yourself to believe it!
When a poultice or patch is used, relief from pain comes within half an hour. The poultice can be left on for several hours or overnight without any fear of complication. To increase healing in some cases, it is wise to change the poultice more frequently such as every 2-3 hours during the day.
Skin-related infections like abscesses and boils are also benefited by a charcoal poultice because it draws out the excess fluids and brings the infection to the surface of the skin. Charcoal poultices also work by promoting blood circulation to the affected tissue. Like most other medical treatments, charcoal poultices usually need to be used for several days to be completely effective.
One important caution is in using charcoal directly on broken skin. It is possible for charcoal to have a permanent “tattoo” effect if the dermis is broken. To avoid this complication, simply use gauze between the charcoal powder and the skin.
As you discover the amazing power of charcoal, you will want to learn how to use charcoal poultices as an effective natural remedy in your first aid kit.