Saturday, May 4, 2013

Are Herbs for Oral Lichen Planus useful?

When some website claims that their herbal care products are the cure for Oral Lichen Planus, please investigate thoroughly. Don't just take their word for it. They are like a slick snake oil salesman that can make it look like serious medical research has proven their products are the best, take yourself to the source of medical articles at pubmed. This is where you can read abstracts and medical research papers, where you can learn more about Oral Lichen Planus. Here is an example of a search for "herbs lichen planus".

Even though the websites touting herbal treatments look professional with all sorts of colorful charts and pictures, the public can be easily enticed to believe them as real. Please remember to read between the lines. If everything is all positive and rosy, remember that things are not always as they appear. Educate yourself.

If you don't want to use science based medical treatment, and prefer alternatives, don't just take someone else's word for it, even from so-called alternative professionals. Thoroughly check their credentials. Just because someone has a certificate of herbal care specialty, doesn't mean it is real.

Of course many herbs are beneficial. But, can they cure all that ails us? We might want to believe in the superiority of natural substances. But, if they supposedly worked 500 years ago, why are they not the known cures of today that should have come down into our day and age as useful?

Things that work, like willow bark for instance, has been absorbed by today's culture and scientifically recognized as a natural anti-inflammatory. Salicin is the active ingredient in willow bark and is part of the formula for aspirin, long known to be an effective pain killer. It is not, however, considered useful for Oral Lichen Planus.

Many of the ideas being perpetuated by those who benefit most from herbal care products are those who package, advertise and sell them. Unfortunately, when sick people are desperate, there are those who would take advantage them by presenting miracle products and communicating persuasively. Great expense is wasted by investing in such things.


Other examples of herbals that are long held secret magical cures that no one seems to really know are perpetuated as supposedly curing Oral Lichen Planus (and a host of other ailments) are:

Nutmeg (myristicin)

Spanish chamomile (pellitory root)

egg shell calcium (calcium carbonate)

coral calcium

henbane (Hyoscyamus niger)

indian rennet (Withania coagulans)

cow hage (mucuna pruriens)

wattle bark (acacia decurrens)

cloves (syzygium aromaticum)

African rue (peganum harmala)

elephant creeper (argyreia nervosa)

cinnabar - zhu sha (mercuric sulfide)

I thought to go over this list and look at these individually. However, after researching considerably, I found I would be practically having to write a book just on these few ingredients.  I will simply present a little bit about Nutmeg to give as an example of how investigating each item can lead to astonishing results. Make sure when you research effects of certain herbs that you include more than just looking for claims of cure.

The first ingredient listed above is Nutmeg.
Nutmeg is a spice that is the seed of an evergreen tree grown in Malasia, used in cooking food of all sorts around the world. There are so many wonderful ways to flavor the foods we eat with Nutmeg!

It is also used in the perfume industry. Some of our favorite fragrances have nutmeg as part of their formula.

Nutmeg was once used in folk treatments for many different ailments. At one time it was believed to be necessary to cure the plague. Obviously it didn't work. The plague killed millions. Nutmeg was once used to produce abortions and often resulted in death. Cooking with nutmeg is safe when used properly according to recipe suggestions. Nutmeg can be poisonous when used unwisely. And presently proven today to have no medical value. In its freshly ground form (from whole nutmegs), nutmeg contains a psychoactive substance which can cause mental health issues. Nutmeg, in high doses can cause poisoning.

Just want to point out that most of the other ingredients listed above have dire effects, too. This is not to say, that all herbs are harmful. Some are very helpful. What I am saying is that if you have Oral Lichen Planus, please don't fall for fake claims of cures out of desperation. Wasting money on such things causes harm, too. Take the time to educate yourself.

Always seek the advice and supervision of a qualified licensed medical professional!

The information provided on this site has been created as an online journal only. The author is writing from her personal viewpoint and cannot guarantee the completeness or accuracy of the information displayed.

Comments to any of the entries are appreciated.