Originally from Thailand, the herbal compress was commonly used on soldiers with wounds and injuries inflicted by war. Special Thai herbs were selected, wrapped and compressed to wounds to reduce inflammation, soothe abrasions, ease muscle aches and speed healing. This superior treatment is still practiced around the world in various forms and uses.
Once the compress is to steamed, it can be applied to the body which allows the pores to open and the herbs to be easily taken in through the skin. The heat from the pouch also calms and softens the soft tissue and joints. This prepares the body for a deep massage treatment, stretching or similar activities.
Once heated the herbs create a strong aroma that is inhaled through the nose. This is another effective way to draw in the healing properties of the herbs.
A vegetable steamer among other devices such as rice cookers, boiling water, even microwaves, will thoroughly steam the pouch and allow the aromas into the air. Placing the pouch under running water, either in bath, shower or foot soak is a great way to use the compress a well. best herbs to boost immune system In this case, the compress would be used only one time as the herbs can not dry effectively and mold and bacteria may build up in the pouch.
If it is a home made compress, you may be able to remove the herbs, dry them and repack the poultice for future use. There are many conditions that a herbal compress can be used to help with, such as:
- High blood pressure
- Muscle pain
- Arthritis, joint stiffness & pain
- Blocked energy
- Circulatory conditions
- Bruises & other skin conditions
- Sprains & fractures
- Lymph edema
- Nervous system firing
- Toxin build-up
- Digestive conditions
- Cold symptoms
- Mental disturbances
Some compresses do not require heat and remain at room temperature and others are stored in the freezer and used cold. Compresses used at room temperature are commonly used when hot or cold temperatures are not recommended.
Cold compresses can be used to prevent and treat headaches or reduce pain caused by inflammation throughout the body. Cool temperatures have a stimulating effect on the body while heat usually provides a relaxing effect. When used in conjunction, they can create a push-pull effect on the circulation that stimulates the immune system that can prevent sickness, improve blood mobility and the flow of energy.
Esthetically, a herbal compress can also be applied to soothe and rejuvenate skin. A face compress can be used to cleanse the skin and restore balance, allowing the face to appear fresh. The facial compress may help reduce dark circles, reduce deep lines and wrinkles, soften, firm, and improve PH balance to face and neck. It can also improve circulation and elasticity to neck and facial muscles creating a more relaxed radiating complexion.