Castor oil has been used both internally and externally as folk medicine for hundreds of years, according to Grassroots Medicine. The oil is extracted from seeds of the castor bean plant and purportedly has many medicinal uses, including the ability to increase lymphatic circulation, support immune system efficiency, reduce inflammation and assist the autonomic nervous system. Edgar Cayce, known as the "father of holistic medicine," recommended the use of castor oil to treat more than 50 health conditions, including sprains. If you have a sprain, applying a castor oil pack may help reduce pain and inflammation.
Cut a piece of flannel cloth and fold it until it's three layers thick. Make sure it's large enough to completely cover the area of your sprain. It should also be bigger than your heating pad or hot water bottle to protect your skin from direct heat.
Pour a small amount of castor oil into a bowl or pan.
Place the cloth into the bowl until it's saturated with the oil but not dripping.
Cover the cloth with a sheet of plastic wrap to protect sheets, clothes and furniture from possible stains.
Lie down in a comfortable position. Place the cloth soaked in castor oil over your sprain. The plastic wrap should be on top and the exposed cloth placed directly on your body.
Place a heating pad or hot water bottle on top of the plastic wrap.
Leave the pack on your sprain for between 30 minutes and two hours.
Store the cloth in an airtight plastic bag for future use. Keep in a cool, dark area or in the refrigerator.
Items you will need
- Flannel cloth
- Castor oil
- Heating pad or hot water bottle
- Plastic wrap
- Airtight plastic bag
- Before you lie down, place an old towel underneath you to catch any possible drips.
- You can use the cloth several more times. Add more castor oil if it begins to dry out.
- Apply the castor oil pack at least four times per week for the best results.
- Seek medical attention if the castor oil pack doesn't help relieve your sprain.
- Naturopathic Medical: Castor Oil Packs
- Gentle Touch: How to Make a Castor Oil Pack
- Alternative Doctor, LLC: Sprains and Strains
- EdgarCayce.org: How to Make a Castor Oil Pack
- Wayne's Word: The Castor Bean
- Wellsource Naturopathic Medical Center: Ease Your Pain With Castor Oil Packs
- The Traveling Naturopath: Castor Oil Packs for Inflammation
- Association for Research and Enlightenment: Who Was Edgar Cayce?
- Grassroots Medicine: Healing Benefits of Castor Oil
- Hemera Technologies/PhotoObjects.net/Getty Images
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