Wednesday, February 4, 2009
Vitamin C for Burns
The Best Home Remedy for Burns
Caution: for all third-degree burns and large first and second-degree burns, get immediate medical attention!
Vitamin C is an excellent home remedy for burns. A 3% solution (6,000 mg. per cup of water) can be applied directly to a burn. It brings almost immediate relief from pain and helps prevent scarring. The application should be repeated every few hours, though it is safe to use as often as the pain returns, even every few minutes.
You could dip the injured part in a cup or bowl of vitamin C water, or even leave it soaking in the vitamin C if you like. You may lay cloths moistened with the solution on the wound. I usually find it simpler to spray it on, and children are generally more willing to have a wound sprayed than touched.
To prepare the solution from vitamin C tablets, take twelve 500 mg. tablets, crush them, and dissolve the powder in one cup of room temperature water. Since vitamin C destroys germs, I usually use tap water. If you prefer, you can use distilled or sterilized water. If you boil the water before using it, make sure you allow it to cool completely before adding the vitamin C. It is destroyed by heat. Vitamin C is unstable in water, so prepare it fresh every couple of days if you need it for that long. I use 6,000 mg. of vitamin C (ascorbic acid) crystals. It mixes easily with water and no crushing is necessary.
You could put the tablets in a spray bottle marked with a line for the amount of water to be added when needed. That way you'll have what you need together in one place. When you need the remedy remove the tablets from the bottle, crush them and return them to the bottle and add the water to the line you have marked. (Don't crush the tablets ahead of time - vitamin C is destroyed by oxygen.)
You can also get pure granular (powdered) vitamin C instead of tablets. You don't have to crush it, and it has no fillers or additives. If you will also be drinking it in water as a source of vitamin C, be sure to get the ascorbic acid or sodium ascorbate form. If you get the buffered form, calcium ascorbate, it tastes fairly disgusting in water. It tastes OK in juice or smoothies, though it neutralizes some of the juice's acidity. Calcium ascorbate would be fine to use in the solution for burns - perhaps even better than the ascorbic acid, since calcium is a natural pain killer!
This remedy comes from Adelle Davis' book Let's Eat Right to Keep Fit. [link opens new window] I have used it many times over the past 25 years, and have recommended it to friends. The most remarkable experience I have had with it was when I recommended it to my cousin who is a mechanic.
He called me one day in a panic asking what he could do for a severe burn. A hot radiator broke and blasted his chest with hot steam and liquid. He had showered quickly to remove the chemicals and called me right away. I told him how to make the vitamin C spray and he abruptly hung up. I didn't think about it again until a few months later when he related the following story to me.
Several weeks after his burn incident he discovered a lump in his neck and immediately went to his doctor. My cousin removed his shirt and the Doctor examined him carefully, then asked him if he had been burned recently. When my cousin told him what had happened, the doctor was fairly surprised that such an extensive burn had healed so completely - he saw no hint of injury on my cousin's chest though it had been so badly burned.
My cousin was relieved to know that the lump was just an after-effect of the burn. He was absolutely tickled that the vitamin C spray had done such a thorough job that he had forgotten all about the incident until the Doctor asked him!
He also added that the spray had relieved the pain immediately upon application, and that he had reapplied it whenever the pain would begin to return. My children and I have also found the relief to be immediate and complete whenever we have used the spray for kitchen burns or sunburns. We apply it as often as the pain returns.
This is one of the safest, most effective and least expensive home remedies I have come across in over 25 years of experience with natural remedies. I recommend it very highly!
More info on Vitamin C for Burns:
I didn't think this info would be so hard to find! I found one reference to using vitamin as a spray for burns - a basic description of preparing vitamin C spray from tablets - in Smart Medicine for Healthier Living, several with identical formulas for a burn spray with vitamin C and aloe vera, and my own article Burns: Vitamin C - The Best Home Remedy, from which I adapted this post. But nothing authorititative other than the current interest in using it intravenously for healing of severe burns.
In-depth info on Vitamin C, if you're interested:
Observations On the Dose and Administration of Ascorbic Acid When Employed Beyond the Range Of A Vitamin In Human Pathology - lengthy scientific article by Frederick R. Klenner, M.D., F.C.C.P., published in Journal of Applied Nutrition Vol. 23, No's 3 & 4, Winter 1971.
Clinical Guide to the Use of Vitamin C - in-depth article about the work of Frederick R. Klenner, M.D., abbreviated, sumarized and annotated by Lendon H. Smith, M.D. (Dr. Smith was a kind and wise pediatrician with a deep understanding of the importance of proper nutrition. He was author of Feed Your Kids Right and several other books. I was very fortunate to hear him speak in the early '80s at a hospital in New Orleans. We had a poster of him on our kitchen door for many years, advertising a vitamin B supplement, Bio-Strath. In the poster, he's holding a plate with hamburger and fries, has a rather disapproving look on his face, and is saying, "It's fast, but is it food?" I wish I still had that poster!)
Order Vitamin C: