These are easy to read and understand and are beautifully presented.
I decided to post this to the list due to my extreme discomfort with the
casualness with which people appear to be treating herbal remedies. I really
want to emphasize, that although I DO believe that herbal remedies can
be safe and effective, they DO need to be used with caution and under the
supervision/advice of a trained herbalist/midwife.
Emmenagogues stimulate blood circulation to the pelvic area and uterus
and help to stimulate menstruation:
Vitamin C - no buffers or fillers. Dose: 500 mg every hour for 12 hours
up to 5 days. Toxicity: possible kidney irritation, loose bowels.
Ginger - Zingiber officinale, Dose: 1 oz. fresh or dry root to pint of
water. Toxicity: possible light-headedness.
Pennyroyal - Mentha pulegium & Hedeoma pulegiodes, Dose: 1/4 cup of
herb to 1 quart water once a day for no more than 6 days. Toxicity: nausea,
numbness in hand and legs, liver irritation, kidney and bladder irritation,
diarrhea, The essential oil is fatal internally. Contraindications: kidney
Angelica root - Angelica archangelica, Dosage: 1/4 cup herb to 1 quart
water as tea. Tincture - 10-20 drops every two hours. Dried root less toxic
than fresh. Toxicity: irritant to kidney and liver, not studied as much
as pennyroyal. Contraindicated in diabetes as it raises blood sugar levels.
Mugwort Leaf - Artemisia vulgaris, Dosage: 3 teaspoon per cup tea, 3 cups
per day, for no more than six days. Toxicity: higher doses can cause liver
damage and convulsions. Nausea. Contraindications: Uterine inflammation
or recent pelvic infection.
Black Cohosh Root - Cimicifuga racemosa, Dosage: 3 teaspoons per cup, 4
times a day. Tincture 20 drops every 6 hours. Toxicity: Diarrhea, dizziness,
headache, decreased pulse rate, tremors, fatalities can occur in large
Tansy - Tanacetum vulgare. Note: Do not confuse with tansy ragwort, Senecio
jacobaea, which is a poisonous plant known to cause death in cattle through
liver failure. Dosage: Tea, 4-8 teaspoons per qt. sipped throughout day.
10 drops tincture in warm water every two hours til bleeding commences,
for no more than 5 days. Toxicity: breast lumps, possible hemorrhage, liver
irritant. Essential oil is fatal - do not ingest.
They imitate oxytocin in the body to stimulate uterine contractions and
release prostaglandin hormones. All oxytocic herbs are toxic to some degree.
Women can experience very painful contractions. They are generally hard
on the liver. Women with a history of liver disease such as hepatitis may
wish to avoid them all together.
Blue Cohosh root - Caulophyllum thalictroides, Dosage: Tea - 3 teaspoons
herb per cup, 3 cups per day, tincture - 20 drops every 4 hours, for six
days or til bleeding commences. Toxicity: nausea, vomiting, headaches,
convulsions in large doses, kidney and liver irritant, Contraindications:
low blood pressure. Some of the constituents of Cohosh are more soluble
Angelica - see emmenagogues.
Cotton root bark - Gossypium herbacetum, Dosage: 12 teaspoons per quart,
1/2 - 1 quart through day. Tincture 10 drops every few hours til bleeding
commences, for no more than 6 days. Toxicity : seemingly low based on the
New Mexico study. Cotton is a heavily sprayed crop with pesticides that
are only used on non food crops. Those pesticides can cause liver irritation,
and other problems. Organic cotton root bark may be difficult to find.
As you can see, these are not benign. And, just as with ANY drug, they
should be used with caution. Ask your midwife for advice or a referral
to an herbalist before taking herbs of this nature.
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