Fri | Apr 19, 2019

Kelly's World | I should use what to cure what?

Published:Monday | April 23, 2018 | 12:00 AM

Like many people, I have dry scalp and eczema (you wouldn't know it by my roguishly good looks).

Once I have my medication - a combination of creams and a soap (along with good old dandruff shampoo) - working, my skin is fine.

But every now and then, due to varying circumstances, I'm not always able to be as meticulous with my skincare.

So whenever my skin 'breaks out', it's noticeable. I'm also a chronic sinusitis sufferer and when I'm congested, trust me, you know.

One thing I've noticed, however, is that whenever my various issues afflict me, someone suggests the use of some sort of natural remedy.

I swear there is a home remedy for anything and everything under the sun.

Regardless of the ailment/condition/situation, somebody you run into will tell you about some naturally grown element, usually a plant, that can be used.

From sniffing small amounts of ammonia, to honey, to turmeric and garlic, there appears to be nothing that Mother Nature can't cure.

So the obvious question is: why don't the pharmaceutical companies monetise these things?

That's where the conspiracy theories kick in. The cynics will say that if these multinational corporations expose the natural remedies, they will go out of business because people will no longer need their products.

On the face of it, that makes perfect sense. But that's another column for another time.

My issue though, being a great cynic, is I wonder if some of these 'remedies' might be no better than the placebos people get from 'real' doctors.

Just because the remedy might be coming from grandma and grandpa or Auntie M and Uncle Baz doesn't make it true.

Let's face it, the people telling you about these remedies are the same people who might tell you that you will catch a cold if you go outside when your hair is wet.




That particular 'fact' has been scientifically disproved. People who live in countries that have a legitimate winter will point out cold and flu season does overlap with cold weather.

But reputable scientists have proven you won't get an infection simply because your hair is wet.

Or how about the Jamaican myth that if you cut a child's hair before a certain age, the child won't speak?

Think we all know that one doesn't hold much water either. So forgive me if I ignore the same people telling me to use this plant and that root to 'cure' my skin issues.

Now, I will meet the natural remedy fans halfway on one thing.

Whenever the sinuses overload on me, I have started to take the advice of an older gent, ironically a doctor.

I simply heat some water, add a couple of teaspoons of salt, stir it up, and then inhale the salty concoction through my nostrils.

Now let's be clear, it hurts like a word that rhymes with stitch. But it works; and depending on the severity of the sinusitis, that's all I need. No Panadol, no DPH, nothing.

But as for all that other stuff, hmmm, maybe I'll give them a chance one day. For now, pharmacist it is.

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