Arnica is a perennial herb that is native to Europe. This herb has been extensively used throughout the ages in practices such as phytotherapy (the study of the use of extracts of natural origin as medicines), homeopathy (a system of alternative medicine), herbalism (the use and study of plants for medicinal purposes), and by early Europeans for relief from aches, pains, inflammation, bruising and tired muscles. Long term and short term studies have shown that Arnica Montana has proved to be an effective solution for these ailments and has been accepted into the Homeopathic Pharmacopeia of the United States (HPUS), an accepted standard of homeopathic treatments.
So what makes Arnica effective? Produced in the glandular trichomes that cover the surface of the plant are several chemical constituents called sesquiterpene lactones, helenalin, and dihydrohelenalin. These chemicals have antibacterial and anti-inflammatory qualities that can help reduce pain and swelling, improve healing, and stimulate blood circulation. They work by dispersing trapped fluids from bruised tissue, joints, and muscles and stimulate activity of white blood cells to relieve congested blood cells. Externally, Arnica can be very beneficial for bruises, muscle aches, sprains, tendon and muscle strain, and swelling.
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