What Is Arnica?
Arnica has been used for medicinal purposes since the
This is applied as a cream, ointment, liniment, salve, or tincture. Europeans and Native Americans historically used arnica in order to soothe muscle aches, reduce inflammation, and to heal wounds. This remedy is often the first that is used to treat injuries such as sprains and bruises. In its herbal form, arnica is only allowed to be used topically (externally) because it can have serious side effects when it is taken internally.
Arnica is a perennial plant that grows to a height of one to two feet with yellow orange flowers that appear similar to daisies. The stems are round and hairy, and flowers are two to three inches across. The leaves are bright green. The upper leaves are toothed and slightly hairy, and the lower leaves have rounded tips. This plant is native to the mountains of Europe and Siberia, and it is also cultivated in North America.
When preparing this plant for medicinal purposes, fresh or dried flower heads are used.