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Honey, I'm Home!!

Our Panel of Medical Experts answers questions concerning disaster, pandemic and wilderness medicine

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Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby littledoc » Sat Jan 30, 2010 10:25 pm

Danny asked:
How is the best way to use honey in wounds? How to use in different types of wounds? Can it be use for animal bites?


Honey is one sweet substance. (Pun completely intended.) It has been proven in studies done by researchers at University of Waikato, Ohio State University, the Ohio Health System, and Mt. Cermel Health as being very effective in a variety of wounds ranging from burns to ulcers.*

Good Things About Honey. :innocent:

Honey debrides wounds, removing dead tissue painlessly which is essential to healing. Due to its properties inflammation, swelling, and pain subside immediately. It promotes minimal scarring. It increases the speed of wound closure.

High Osmolality: :wave:
The glucose oxidase, found in the saliva of bees, (yes, you have been eating bee spit)contributes to the osmolitic state of the golden sweetness.

Honey is a supersaturated solution of sugars that has a strong interaction with water molecules. The lack of free water molecules inhibits the growth of bacteria.

Hydrogen Peroxide:

This is produced via the glucose oxidase enzyme reaction when diluted by wound exudates. This is slowly released, so that there is a cleansing process that occurs, but does not damage tissue.

Antibacterial Phytochemicals: :gunshooting:

These antibacterial properties are more related to the acidic nature of the honey, as well as the types of plants that the bees take the pollen from.

Studies have shown that the most antibacterial forms of honey are those derived from the Manuka plants (Leptospermum scoparium) in New Zealand, from Austrailia, and the honeydew honey from central Euprope.

These honeys are effective against MRSA and beta-lactamase producing bugs. Staphylococcus aureus is especially sensitive to honey's antibacterial properties.

Problems with Ordinary Honey :thumbdown:
Some scholars argue against using food grade honey on wounds due to the high amounts of pollen still within it as well as the possibility of it containing botulism spores. Hence, the reason why pediatricians suggest that you avoid giving honey to infants until they are one-two years old.

Other scholars indicate that there have been no problems utilizing food grade honey, except for the possible allergic reactions to local pollens or the bee saliva itself in people with hypersensitivities to hayfever and to bee stings.

Truth be told, ordinary local honey does not have the same antibacterial properties to that of Manuka honey, but still it is useful nevertheless, especially if used in higher quantities.

Different Types of Wounds.

Leg ulcers, pressure ulcers, diabetic foot ulcers, bed sores, rashes, burns, infected wounds

How to Use Honey.

The manner that you use honey to apply to different types of wounds is pretty much the same except for minor details that will be discussed below.

1. Wash the wound with sterile water or saline first.

2. Spread honey on a thick or multi-layered dressing. 4x4 gauze pads are the best. The are medihoney pads in New Zealand, or honey impregnated dressings that have been irradiated by gamma.
-1 oz honey on a 4x4 gauze pad
-4oz honey on a 8x8 gauze pad
-2oz honey on a 4x8 gauze pad

3. Apply an amount appropriate to body fluids. The more exudate (fluid oozing from the wound), the more honey is needed. Wound fluids will dilute the honey, decreasing its acidity and effectiveness.

Personally, if the wound is an especially oozing wound, I would apply a day's worth of sugar to the wound first then on day two, apply honey. Too wet of wounds, need to be made drier. To dry of wounds need to be made wetter.

4. Deep wounds. Apply honey into the wound, filling up the hole to the surface then add the honey covered dressing.

Note: Be careful not to get the honey on the intact good skin.

5. Cover the honey pad with a waterproof barrier dressing, such as a large adhesive bandage.

Cover the bandage with a plastic bag when showering or bathing.

6. Check the wound every 3-4 hours. A dressing that sticks to a wound, needs to be changed. Dressings need to be moist.

7. Change dressings up to 3 times a day at first. As honey works, you will need to change the dressings less and less. For instance, due to the anti-inflammatory action of honey, the amount of exudate decreases, thereby decreasing the need for frequent changes.

8. Throw away old dressings. Little kids and pets tend to find these and lick your wounds.


------------
Here is the link from one of the research groups on honey that you may find very useful:

http://bio.waikato.ac.nz/honey/honey_intro.shtml

*Honey was proven to have an 80% heal rate in partial- to full-thickness burns above the current medical standard of Silver Sulfadiazine. :clap: :tank:
Please visit my wilderness medical blog:

http://disastermedicine-christine.blogspot.com/ Image
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby kymber » Sat Jan 30, 2010 10:49 pm

oh i love this post!!! i am a honey fanatic! we probably have 9 years worth the honey stored in the basement!!! i use honey for chapped lips, small wounds, burns, scrapes, etc.

Littledoc - i love the way that you write these posts. you really should be writing a book!!! you have an amazing way of making the information fun and informational (ok thats a little redundant but whatever!)

oh and thanks for the awesome link!!!

(as an aside - when we move to our homestead i hope to have an apiary and raise 700 kajillion honey bees!!!)
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby tigger2 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 11:26 am

Active Manuka Honey is supposed to be the best. It is made by bees in New Zealand and parts of Australia. I have 2 jars of it. It's not sticky like regular honey. It reminds me more of a grease than honey.
I ordered it to try on my psoriasis. Manuka honey is pricey.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby Danny62 » Sun Jan 31, 2010 5:27 pm

Thank you Little Doc. Now I know for sure
Wish you had wrote the link also but I'll get through it.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby ToolOfHis » Fri May 07, 2010 6:53 pm

Here is something some of you may not know. When a jar of honey turns to sugar DO NOT throw it out. Just take the jar of honey and set it in hot water. The honey will turn back to its original state if you keep setting it in hot water and is good as new. I had my own honey bees for several years and never wasted a jar of honey after learning this little tidbit.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby IceFire » Fri May 07, 2010 7:11 pm

ToolOfHis wrote:Here is something some of you may not know. When a jar of honey turns to sugar DO NOT throw it out. Just take the jar of honey and set it in hot water. The honey will turn back to its original state if you keep setting it in hot water and is good as new. I had my own honey bees for several years and never wasted a jar of honey after learning this little tidbit.


My mother, who grew up during the Great Depression, taught me that particular trick. I've been doing it ever since. I NEVER throw out honey that has crystalized.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby Earthbound » Fri May 07, 2010 10:17 pm

littledoc wrote:Personally, if the wound is an especially oozing wound, I would apply a day's worth of sugar to the wound first then on day two, apply honey. Too wet of wounds, need to be made drier. To dry of wounds need to be made wetter.


No way would I use plain sugar - it's the favorite food of bad bacteria, fungi, and cancer cells. What about an herbal tea - most are astringent and some are antibacterial - with a little honey dissolved in it.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby kymber » Wed May 12, 2010 1:46 pm

earthbound (love the moniker, btw!) - when we were kids and had cuts or scrapes or oozing wounds....(stop reading Littledoc!)....my dad would put raw sugar on/in the wound and then have our dog lick out the sugar. and he would do this to us several times a day until the wound healed.

i know - the man should have been jailed for child abuse. but it worked. i have scars on my arms and legs that should have gotten stitches. but no...we just got the sugar/dog licking treatment.

as for herbal tea....a better method is to get some pine needles and make your own pine tea. pine needles are astringent and antibacterial. sure wish i had of known this when the dog was licking sugar out of my wounds. sigh.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby ikean » Mon Sep 06, 2010 6:08 pm

thank you, ive always wondered how honey healed wounds
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby roolu » Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:50 am

I know honey is great for sore throats and the use for asthma as well. But I've heard, and littledoc hopefully you can help with this, that during an attack that honey can be put on a clean clothe and held against a persons mouth to act as a filter for the allergens causing the attack. It also supposedly helps with the inflamation? Is this true or just some weird ole wives tale?
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby CajunDaddys_girl » Fri Nov 19, 2010 7:56 pm

roolu wrote:I know honey is great for sore throats and the use for asthma as well. But I've heard, and littledoc hopefully you can help with this, that during an attack that honey can be put on a clean clothe and held against a persons mouth to act as a filter for the allergens causing the attack. It also supposedly helps with the inflamation? Is this true or just some weird ole wives tale?


OK Seriousley Now.... Think about what you have said.... :eek: My head is reeling at the thought of this...

You really want to kill someone painfully, thats the way to do it to a person with chronic lung issues..

Why in the world would you want to further impede the ability to breath in someone who is in a severe state of respiratory distress? Not to mention all the systemic and cardiac effects due to lack of oxygenation.
Asthma is when the lungs passages are and have narrowed quiet significantly thus causing severe difficulty inhaling and exhaling what little air can travel through..
Cover your mouth and nose with a honey soaked cloth the next time your having a coughing fit and please share what it is like..

I am a severe chronic asthmatic and let me tell you, if someone tried that with me before, during or after an attack that person would definetly not like what I would do to stop them and I am talking just from a panic reaction to literally being further suffocated by some ignorant person. The best way to possibly describe an asthma attack is this....Shove wet gauze down your throat then Imagine a tightnening in your chest and throat, like someone tightening a corset or ace bandage your from your mid throat region down to the bottom of your ribcage... Now cover your mouth and nose and try to breathe all the while your chest now feels like something heavy is sitting on you and getting tighter and tighter, to the point you feel major panic..
Now think about that statement...
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby RightWingMom » Fri Nov 19, 2010 9:36 pm

We recently bought a gallon from one of my DH's co-workers. We divided it into pint sized Mason jars, vacuumed sealed the lid w/ a Food Saver adapter, and placed them in the bottom of our pantry.

Can anyone tell me if this is adequate storage, or is there a better method?

BTW ~ Thanks for all the uses! Honey is a miracle! I'd love to buy another gallon ASAP! :thumbsup:
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby mombear » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:31 pm

Rightwingmom, that is the corret way to store it. I do hope you steralized the jars and lids before you filled them.
Your failure to prepare, does not make it an emergency for me!!
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby RightWingMom » Fri Nov 19, 2010 10:43 pm

mombear wrote:Rightwingmom, that is the corret way to store it. I do hope you steralized the jars and lids before you filled them.


Yep, I'm golden! Thanks for the reply.
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Re: Honey, I'm Home!!

Postby roolu » Sat Nov 20, 2010 6:05 am

CajunDaddys_girl wrote:
roolu wrote:I know honey is great for sore throats and the use for asthma as well. But I've heard, and littledoc hopefully you can help with this, that during an attack that honey can be put on a clean clothe and held against a persons mouth to act as a filter for the allergens causing the attack. It also supposedly helps with the inflamation? Is this true or just some weird ole wives tale?


OK Seriousley Now.... Think about what you have said.... :eek: My head is reeling at the thought of this...

You really want to kill someone painfully, thats the way to do it to a person with chronic lung issues..

Why in the world would you want to further impede the ability to breath in someone who is in a severe state of respiratory distress? Not to mention all the systemic and cardiac effects due to lack of oxygenation.
Asthma is when the lungs passages are and have narrowed quiet significantly thus causing severe difficulty inhaling and exhaling what little air can travel through..
Cover your mouth and nose with a honey soaked cloth the next time your having a coughing fit and please share what it is like..

I am a severe chronic asthmatic and let me tell you, if someone tried that with me before, during or after an attack that person would definetly not like what I would do to stop them and I am talking just from a panic reaction to literally being further suffocated by some ignorant person. The best way to possibly describe an asthma attack is this....Shove wet gauze down your throat then Imagine a tightnening in your chest and throat, like someone tightening a corset or ace bandage your from your mid throat region down to the bottom of your ribcage... Now cover your mouth and nose and try to breathe all the while your chest now feels like something heavy is sitting on you and getting tighter and tighter, to the point you feel major panic..
Now think about that statement...



Wow, I did not mean to p..s you off with that and I am an asthmatic as well, had you read some of my other posts. I'm well aware of what an attack feels like, and I know quite well the panic of it.
I was asking a professional if this would help in the event that MY inhaler was readily available in a post-tshtf situation.
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