Goldenseal is a member of the buttercup family; it grows wild in many parts of North America, especially in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Goldenseal is endangered, however, because of overharvesting. For this reason, it should not be used unless absolutely necessary. Goldenseal is a very strong herb with a solid reputation among healers. It can be used topically, as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, or it can be taken orally for its benefits to the immune system.
Goldenseal remedy for vaginal itching
- To make an infusion of goldenseal, pour one cup of boiling water over ½ to 1 teaspoon of dried goldenseal root. Let the mixture steep for 10-15 minutes.
- To take goldenseal topically, use it as a douche or as a wash for the vaginal area.
- To take goldenseal orally, use it as a tea and drink three times per day.
- Alternatively, you can buy goldenseal in capsule form, and take as directed.
Why It Works
Goldenseal contains a compound called berberine, which is antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal. There are no studies showing that berberine is helpful for vaginitis, but it is known to be helpful in treating other kinds of infections, such as diarrhea and eye infections. Berberine is used in traditional Chinese medicine as a natural antibiotic. Goldenseal is also a powerful stimulant for the immune system; it has been shown to increase the white blood cell count.
Do not use goldenseal internally, on a daily basis, for more than a week at a time. If symptoms continue longer than that, consult a doctor. Side effects from taking goldenseal are rare, but may include nausea or vomiting. Pregnant or breastfeeding women should not take goldenseal. Goldenseal can cause uterine contractions, and can also pass into breastmilk, causing liver problems in babies. Babies and young children should not take goldenseal. Also, be cautious about using goldenseal if you are allergic to ragweed. Do not use goldenseal if you are taking antibiotics or medication for a liver disorder.