The first time I heard about Arnica was at a Midwife appointment.  At 30 weeks of pregnancy with Fibromyalgia, the chronic pain was setting in for good.  I mentioned that Tylenol wasn’t working anymore, and she asked “Have you tried arnica?”

I was only slightly crunchy then, and had never heard of arnica.  Too bad I hadn’t, as it appears to offer some real hope for those seeking an effective natural pain-relieving and emotion-easing alternative.  Arnica is the broad term for remedies made with the European yellow-flowered herb Arnica montana.  Whether in herbal form or homeopathically, arnica has a long list of applications.


The top uses for arnica include: treating emotional shock and trauma, sore muscles (sprains and strains), burns, bruises (including black eyes), rashes such as eczema, and even bone fractures!  A research study showed that arnica (manufactured in a gel form), applied 2 times a day for six weeks, relieved stiffness and pain for mild-to-moderate knee pain.

Arnica is also a beauty-enhancing agent that is growing in popularity.  Eye cream manufacturers have begun adding arnica to eye creams to help reduce puffiness.  Homeopathic remedies include arnica for the treatment and prevention of acne.

As shock therapy (for physical or emotional trauma), arnica offers valuable support, according to Vinton McCabe, author of The Healing Enigma: Demystifying Homeopathy. “People suffering from shock who feel wounded, seem disoriented, and/or are worse from any jarring or sudden movements respond well to arnica.”


According to Better Nutrition, (August, 2014), arnica gel or cream in homeopathic or ointment preparations may be used on the skin, but never should be applied to an open wound or bleeding area, as it is toxic if it enters the body.  The only safe way to take arnica internally is via homeopathic pellets.  Some people are sensitive to a compound called helenalin in arnica, so stop taking it if you develop a rash.  Carefully read packaging on arnica products and follow the instructions.


Have you tried arnica products? Did they work for you? We’d love to hear your comments.

(Image courtesy of Frank Vassen via Flickr)