An Unexpected Gift: Helichrysum and Healing

Cristin McDonnell has studied Ayurvedic medicine and brings her interest in healing to our work here at Harms Vineyards and Lavender Fields. This is one of a series of her blogs on healing.

Leah’s Story

Ever since I came to Harms Vineyards and Lavender Fields, I have been intrigued by the plant helichrysum. We have had so many clients share their beautiful stories of healing, that it made the plant of high interest to me. One of those stories of healing is Leah.

Leah, a poet and retired college professor, was badly burned by steam from an espresso maker.  The second degree burn began at her wrist and went all the way to her elbow. She was treated at the emergency room with an antibiotic ointment and her arm bandaged.

After a few weeks, Leah had a follow up appointment with her doctor. Her arm was not healing as well or fast as her doctor expected.  Leah said that after treating her skin with the antibiotic ointment, her skin still resembled, “a red, oozing, peeling, blistered mess.” Leah’s doctor then recommended that she be treated at the burn center at John Muir Hospital, but she was unable to get an appointment for three weeks. Since the burn was not healing, Leah was worried and felt anxious about having to wait.

Leah went to her monthly women’s writing group, where a friend recommended helichrysum italicum hydrosol. Leah then used both the helichrysum mist and aloe vera gel on the burn. She alternated, using the aloe in the morning and the helichrysum in the evening, and then switching.

The pain, even after the antibiotic ointment, was still awful.  She found more immediate pain relief from the helichrysum than she did any other remedy and was able to see results quickly. She actually saw improvement within a couple of days.  Leah said that emotional relief from the helichrysum and the aloe vera gel was as much of gift as the physical healing.