#HealthBytes: Incredible uses and benefits of witch hazel
Witch hazel is a medicinal plant that is known to have several benefits. The leaves are distilled in water and the concoction is used as a medicine for diarrhea, cold, fever, etc. In addition, topical application of the plant helps in healing a number of skin conditions, allergies, skin inflammation, etc. This article outlines a few of the many uses of this miracle plant.
Helps in reducing symptoms of inflamed and irritated skin
Studies suggest that applying witch hazel to the skin may help in reducing symptoms of inflamed or irritated skin. Witch hazel is also proven to be effective in the treatment of erythema, a condition that causes reddening of the skin due to injury. Topical application of witch hazel is also known to relieve sensitive or irritated skin on the face.
Has anti-inflammatory properties and helps in fighting acne
Witch hazel has strong anti-inflammatory properties and a few studies suggest that it works well against acne. When applied to acne, the extracts help in shrinking the pores and soothes the inflamed skin. To make the most of it, apply it to cleansed face. You can also maximize the absorption by steaming the face. This will help the extract work better on the pores.
Acts as an astringent and helps soothe sore throat
Witch hazel works as an astringent and is a popular remedy to soothe a sore throat. However, there isn't much scientific proof and it is based on anecdotal evidence. Gargling with a mix of witch hazel and water may reduce swelling and pain in the throat. It also helps in relieving dry mucus associated with cold. However, more scientific proof is required on this.
Reduces itching and sensitivity of the scalp
Several scalp conditions like psoriasis or seborrheic dermatitis can cause itching of the scalp or a flaky, irritated scalp. Applying products containing witch hazel has been known to reduce the symptoms associated with scalp irritation. Witch hazel is also used as a natural remedy to treat dandruff. For best results, it is best to leave it on for some time before rinsing the hair.