Natural Remedies For Wounds That Won't Heal!
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Holistic Treatment For Wounds
The wounds on our body are similar to the rips and scuffs we get on our clothes or in our homes and vehicles. Imagine a tiny hole in your jeans. It’s small and it’s not bothering you, so you ignore it. But every time you wear the jeans and every time you wash the jeans the hole grows bigger. Now it’s becoming a problem – the fabric is frayed, the hole is noticeable, but still, you decide not to fix it – it’s just too time consuming to stop and take care of it. By the time you’ve finally stopped to examine the damage, you realize that the hole has nearly split your pants in two. Now, it’s going to take more time and examination to stitch up. If you would have taken care of it from the beginning, it may have been an easy fix. But now, it’s anything but easy. The good news is that there are natural remedies for wounds that won’t heal or have an issue healing!
Ignoring a wound won’t make it go away – it will only make the situation worse and can lead to more drastic consequences. In the example of the hole in the jeans, the solution was to stitch the jeans up. But with wounds on the body, waiting to deal with the problem is much, much more serious. Waiting can lead to amputation, gangrene, hematoma and even death.
When you work to prevent and treat chronic wounds that won’t heal, you are protecting your body against disease and maybe even death. This is far more of an incentive to work quickly than a hole in your jeans, and yet, some people wait until it’s too late.
Why Won't Your Wounds Heal?
Many different factors combine to make a wound chronic. There are a few different factors that can contribute to it, which we’ll explore below.
High blood sugar or diabetes
Diabetes attacks the body’s natural ways of healing, which is why, for diabetics, rapid wound treatment is extremely necessary. For diabetics, diabetes is the root cause of chronic wounds such as diabetic ulcers – and this is because of the body’s inability to regulate blood sugar.
For people without diabetes, and similar conditions, getting a wound will trigger your body to respond naturally with blood flow, clotting and scabbing. “Normal” bodies, without diabetes, will fight off bacteria and infection. Blood vessels work to pump fresh oxygen into the wound, giving your body the influx of healthy blood cells it needs to support rapid healing.
For people with diabetes, or blood sugar that can’t be controlled, the natural healing response is impaired. High blood sugar levels in a diabetic’s body impede white blood cells from functioning properly, thus preventing the body’s natural ability to stop bacteria from forming. This is why diabetics are more likely to get unanticipated infections and chronic wounds.
There’s another reason that diabetes impedes the body’s natural healing process: diabetic neuropathy. Diabetic neuropathy is a type of nerve damage that causes tingling, pins-and-needles and numbness in the hands and feet. It is also caused by high blood sugar, which disrupts nerves’ ability to send signals.
For diabetics with neuropathy, even walking around can become a hazard. For example, you could step on a nail, and because of the numbness caused by neuropathy, never feel it. For some diabetics, monitoring their hands and feet for injury is a nightly or weekly ritual – if they don’t, wounds can quickly become chronic. Some diabetics don’t notice simple wounds until they’re already infected – sometimes to the bone. In very severe cases, amputation becomes the only treatment left.
Poor circulation is another issue most diabetics experience, and it makes the issue of chronic, non-healing wounds even worse. This happens because blood cells can only bring nutrients to the wound when blood circulation is flowing properly; proper blood circulation makes that job easier. If diabetes, or another disorder causes blood to flow more slowly, wounds therefore become more prone to infection because they are lacking the nutrients it takes to heal. Wounds that don’t get proper blood flow are less likely to heal – and when they do heal, it takes twice as long.
Eating good, healthy foods is important for blood flow. When we eat junky, bad foods this will slow the healing process because healing and repairing tissue takes calories and energy to achieve. Protein is very important in this process; not eating enough protein will stop your body from possessing the physiological functions it needs to heal properly. When your body is healing from a wound, it may even be a good idea to eat more protein than you usually would.
Improper wound care
In addition to diabetes and poor circulation, improperly caring for a wound will interrupt its healing process. Below, we’ll discuss this further:
Lack of offloading
We’ve all either used crutches in the past or known someone who has. Crutches are how patients with foot, ankle and leg injuries stay off their injury – and it is extremely important in the healing process. Crutches are used to alleviate pressure from the injury – because injuries can’t take pressure, it stops healing. This is called “offloading”. If a wound is not offloaded properly, it will not heal properly.
In regard to foot ulcers, the principle is the same. Staying off the wound will lead to better healing. If someone has a foot ulcer and they walk around all day, with their full body weight on the wound, they’ll crush the healthy cells, and healing won’t occur. If offloading isn’t done properly, especially for patients with circulation disorders, healing might not ever occur.
Lack of Compression
Compression is about the reduction of swelling. There are many benefits to compression, including that it:
- Stops the veins from expanding
- Helps better blood flow and circulation
- Increases the flow of oxygen to a wound
- Makes wound healing faster
Not using proper compression can lead to chronic, non-healing wounds.
Poor wound dressing
Although dressing wounds sounds like a simple task, it is absolutely critical in healing wounds. All wounds require different dressings. The array of dressings available help:
- prevent infection from spreading
- support tissue repair
- help fluid drain properly
Also, not dressing wounds properly can lead to damage on the skin surrounding the wound.
Failure to control infection
Any open wound runs the risk of getting infected. Symptoms of infection are pain, swelling, redness or warmth. The more bacteria gets into a wound, the more difficult it will be for that wound to heal.
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How To Treat a Wound That Won't Heal
If you want a wound to heal, it’s about more than just using some antibiotic ointment. To truly heal a wound you’ll need to take a holistic approach to healing, blending the different factors that contribute to your body healing quickly and properly.
Chronic, non-healing wounds are especially susceptible to the damage that’s caused by infection. Following antibiotics as prescribed is crucial to healing, as is avoiding sources of infection. For example, swimming pools can be a gateway for bacteria to get into a wound – so you may want to avoid pools while you’re healing. Also, make sure to dress the wound properly so that bacteria doesn’t find its way in.
Get your blood sugar under control
Work with your doctor on ways to treat your diabetes and get it under control. You may want to look into diet, exercise and medical treatment. Being healthy and having your diabetes under control is a foundational step to wound healing.
Contact Us Today For Wound Treatment In Orange County, CA
Dr. Faried Banimahd is a board-certified physician specializing in emergency medicine, wound care, and pain management. Our team at Wound Care OC will work with you to create an individualized treatment plan that meets your needs and unique conditions. Our clinic includes highly trained and experienced physicians, registered nurses, and certified medical staff who work together to provide you with the highest standards of wound care treatments.