Herbal liniment is a medicated topical ointment that is meant to
be applied to the skin and is sometimes synonymous with the term balm. So, what are these liniments and what are
First off, their feeling and texture is similar to that of other
lotions and have similar viscocities but are less vicious than cream. Another big difference to keep in mind is
that all herbal liniments must be rubbed in and not applied with friction like some lotions.
The primary purpose and use for liniments is to relieve pain or stiffness in muscles and
joints. Arthritis is commonly known to produce repeated use of herbal liniments which are usually formulated from
alcohol, acetone, or other quick evaporating solvents.
There are five main forms of topical medication, and the
ointment takes a different approach than the creams,
gels, pastes, and powers that make up the other 4 forms of medication. The composition of the ointment is 80%
oil and 20% water, which creates the ointment as an effective barrier against moisture loss.
Additionally, most herbal liniments evaporate quickly as to not
attack the skin for a permanent or long period of time; another important and notable difference between a liniment
and a cream or powder. Therefore, depending on the use or needs of your patient or yourself, consider this when
choosing between what type of topical medication you need; the results and degrees of severity of a medication
depend on this choice.
While everyone has a personal preference, using an herbal liniment
that is designed specifically for arthritis, achy joints, or whatever else is ailing you is a great way to spare a
trip to the doctor’s office and hopefully a little money! Often available at any drug store or supermarket, herbal
liniments are a unique and effective source of relief.
An interesting side note is that not all herbal liniments should
be used on humans. In fact, the use of herbal liniments on
horses is almost necessary in order to keep the animal healthy and fit.
Their primary purpose is to cool to horse down when the summer sun
heats up the farm and makes it very uncomfortable for the animals. Generally, they are applied via a water bucket
and scrubbed into the horse’s skin and hair – the liniment should never be used on the head, groin, or other
recently injured or sensitive areas!