By Liz Kelchak, M.S., L.Ac.
We’ve all experienced a burn at one time in our lives, and we all know what a pain they can be to treat, literally. Some people run it under cold water, some grab the ice pack, some pop the blister, some grab pain relievers, some clean it, gauze it, do a little dance, scream profanities (add your solution here…) and after all of this, still feel the pain, don’t get relief and try not to aggravate while it’s trying to heal.
Luckily, Chinese Medicine has an extremely effective solution for burns: Ching wan hung.
Ching wan hung is a Chinese herbal ointment that most acupuncturists refer to as “burn cream”. According to Chinese herbal classics, Ching Wan Hung ointment stops pain, cools heat, decreases inflammation, and promotes the regeneration of damaged tissue. It can be used to treat any kind of burn on the body surface, including burns caused by steam, hot water, flame, hot oil, chemical burns, sunburn, rug burn, and electrical burns. Use it topically for first, second and third degree burns with blistering, redness and pain. Not only is it used for burns but also is effective in healing: hemorrhoids, acne, poison oak/ivy dermatitis, scraps, scratches, and bedsores.
So what is in this burn cream that makes it so effective?
The ingredients include:
- Menthol 1%,
- Dong Quai (Angelica sinensis) root
- (Pistacia Lentiscus L.) evergreen resin
- (Chaenomeles spp.) fruit, safflower flower
- (Sanguisorba officinalis L.) root
- sesame oil, beeswax
Pistacia Lentiscus is the main herb in its treatment of burns and has been found to reduce bacterial activity and promote healing. Laboratory tests show the Sanguisorba officinalis decreases the amount of exudation from a burn wound and helps drying out the wound, thus decreasing the rates of infection. Chaenomeles is rich in organic acids that inhibit bacteria growth. The herb is used internally and topically to treat pain, especially arthralgia and spasms, but also for skin irritations and swellings. I
How to use: For first or second degree burns, first clean the area carefully, then rub the ointment directly on the surface area of the burn and cover it loosely with a bandage. For a severe second-degree burn, apply a thick layer of the ointment and then cover it with a light and loose gauze bandage. Change the ointment and gauze twice a day. Make sure to keep the wound covered, but not tightly. The area must be able to breathe.
- This product can discolor clothes.
- Avoid contact with the eyes or mucous membranes.
- Wash hands thoroughly after each use.
- Do not add heat.
- Discontinue use if skin irritation develops.
- External use only
This ointment should be a staple in everyone’s first-aid cabinet. It can be found online or at your local Chinese herbal pharmacy and of course, at East Wind.
by Liz Kelchak, M.S.O.M., L.Ac.