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Home Remedies - Sweet Violets - McDowell's Herbal Treatments

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Viola odorata, Ordinary violet, Common blue violet, Sweet violet, Garden violet

The symbol of ancient Athens, the violet was believed to moderate anger, strengthen and comfort the heart, and promote refreshing sleep. Garlands of its blossoms worn around the heads of revelers were supposed to dispel wine fumes and prevent dizziness and headaches (chemical analysis of the plant reveals the presence of salicylic acid—the "raw material" for aspirin—and thus shows that the Greeks may have known whereof they spoke). The leaves, which have antiseptic properties, can be used in ointments or as poultices for bruises and, when made into a tea or syrup, have been taken for internal inflammations and coughs.

There are even reports of violet-leaf infusions having helped to allay the pain of throat disorders, To make an infusion, pour 1 pint of boiling water over 2-1/2 ounces of fresh, clean leaves and allow the brew to steep overnight. Strain the liquid, which may then be drunk cold by the wineglassful every 2 hours. To be effective, the infusion should be made fresh daily.

Tea made from the entire plant is used to treat digestive disorders and new research has detected the presence of a glycoside of salicylic acid (natural aspirin) which substantiates its use for centuries as a medicinal remedy for headache, body pains and as a sedative. Used externally the fresh crushed leaves reduce swelling and soothe irritations. As a bath additive the fresh crushed flowers are soothing to the skin and the aroma is very relaxing.

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McDowell's staff Herbalists can not diagnose your disease or illness. What they can do is offer a herbal program to assist with healing, after you have had advice from your doctor or specialist. If you have unexplained pain or symptoms, seek medical advice.

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