Cellulitis is a common problem but it could pose a serious skin infection. It can affect the deeper layers of the skin and the subcutaneous tissues. It is caused due to Staphylococcus and Streptococcus bacteria. However, there are various types of bacteria that may lead to this condition. It usually occurs in areas where the skin has broken open such as,
- Insect btie
- Surgical wound
- Fungal infection
Bacteria are generally present on the skin surface without causing any harm. But when they go deep into the layers of the skin, it causes infections. The only way for the bacteria to get in is through the above mentioned breaks.
Factors Causing Cellulitis
The following are the factors causing cellulitis,
- Weekend immune system
- Chicken pox or shingles
- Poor blood circulation
- Drug misuse
History of cellulitis in a person makes him or her more prone to getting it again. This infection occurs mostly on the lower legs. However it may occur anywhere on the body.
Symptoms of Cellulitis
The area affected by cellulitis usually shows the following symptoms.
- Warm feeling
Mostly, cellulite resolves within several days or few weeks, but when sometimes it may go even longer. It then causes serious infections and other dangerous problems. It may be potentially fatal if left untreated. Hence it is utmost important to properly diagnose and treat the infection before it becomes severe. The doctor may be able to explain the underlying cause of the problem and treat accordingly.
Home Remedies for Cellulitis
1. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has natural anti-bacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties. It is highly beneficial in treating cellulitis.
How to Use?
- Moisten a cotton swab with a diluted mixture of water and tea tree essential oil
- Dab it on the site of infection and leave it for few hours before rinsing it off
- Alternatively, you may also mix a couple of drops of tea tree oil in one spoon of aloe vera gel or raw honey
- Apply it to the affected area and leave it on for few hours before rinsing it off
- Repeat this remedy once or twice daily until the results are noticed
2. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has medium-chain fatty acids, particularly lauric acid which has anti-bacterial property. It helps in fighting bacterial infections and also has soothing and healing properties.
How to Use?
- Apply coconut oil on the affected area
- Leave it on for a few hours and then wash it off
- Repeat this remedy twice or thrice a day until there is improvement
Turmeric is a natural cure for many infections and diseases caused due to bacteria. It has strong antibiotic and antiseptic properties that prevents and treats cellulitis. The active ingredient present in turmeric, curcumin is an excellent anti-inflammatory agent that helps in treating all sorts of inflammations.
How to Use?
- Mix one teaspoon of turmeric powder to a glass of warm milk and add a little honey to it
- Drink this milk once or twice daily, until the infection clears
- Alternatively, you may also take 400 to 600mg of standardized curcumin powder three times a day for several weeks or a couple of months depending on the severity
- Alternatively, you may also make a turmeric poultice by mixing one teaspoon of raw honey, one teaspoon of turmeric powder and three drops of tea tree oil in one or two teaspoon of bentonite clay, just enough to make a paste
- Apply this paste on the affected area and leave it on for 15 to 20 minutes before washing it off
Calendula has soothing properties that heals the tender and inflamed skin and fights infection. It also improves the blood flow to the affected area and stimulated the production of collagen, thereby promoting wound healing.
How to Use?
- Steep two teaspoons of calendula flowers in a cup of hot water for about 10 minutes
- Dip a clean wash cloth in this infusion and apply it on the affected area
- Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and repeat this process three to four times a day for few weeks
- Alternatively, you may also apply calendula cream few times a day until there is improvement
5. Oregano Oil
Being naturally antibiotic, oregano oil has multi-benefits in treating all sorts of bacterial and fungal infections. It is found to be very effective in treating cellulitis as it consists of phenolic compounds such as carvacrol and thymol with antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. A study published in the Journal of Drugs and Dermatology found that the application of 3 percent oregano extract ointment reduced bacterial contamination and subsequent infection in patients with post-surgical wounds.
How to Use?
- Dilute 10 to 12 drops of oil of oregano in two table spoons of any carrier oils such as olive oil, coconut oil or jojoba oil
- Apply it on the affected area and leave it on for few hours
- Wash it off and reapply it several times a day
- This oil can also be consumed by mixing three drops in one tablespoon of coconut oil
- You may also add one teaspoon of honey to the mixture and consume it five times daily for three to four days and then tale it three times daily for seven to ten days
- Another option is to mix five drops of oregano oil in a glass of water or fruit juice and drink it three to five times daily
- After few days, reduce the dosage to three drops as a maintenance dose for about ten days
Be careful not to use full-strength oil of oregano on broken skin. This remedy is not suited for pregnant women as it induced menstruation.
6. Manuka Honey
Manuka honey is a native to New Zealand and is rich in phytochemicals that are effective in controlling staph infections. The active compounds in this honey have also been found to inhibit antibiotic-resistant MRSA (Methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus). It is also found helpful in speeding up the healing process.
How to Use?
- Apply Manuka honey on the site of infection
- Leave it on for few hours
- Rinse it off with plenty of water
- Repeat this process few times a day until the results are seen
If the above home remedies do not show much improvement, it is better to consult a doctor as the conditions may worsen if cellulitis is left untreated.
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