Very Basic explaination of Herbal Remedy Methods  

Posted by HerbalJournal in

For those of you who are not familiar with the terms Tincture, Infusion, Compress, or Poultice I'm posting a very basic explanation of each term and what you do to make them.

I can not give exact amounts or times as it will depend on the tincture your making, what ingredients your using (herbs), and how strong you need it.

These are just basic little outlines to give you an idea of how to create each one of these herbal Remedy Methods.


Tinctures are a liquid extract of an herb prepared by steeping the herb in an alcohol. Usually vodka and most always 100 proof although some use 80 proof. The brand of vodka really doesn't matter, the proof does. You will be drinking this though so you may want to go with a step up from cheapest brand.

Typically you would use between 1/4 cup - 1/2 cup dried or fresh herbs in a sterile glass jar with an air tight lid.

You would then cover the herbs with 100 proof vodka.

Be sure to leave a little room in the jar for shaking as you shake most tincture daily to stir up the ingredients.

You then let your tincture set for a specified amount of time. The time frame can be very short (around two weeks) or very long (6 weeks for some). It depends on the strength of the tincture you making. The stronger you want or need it, the longer you let it set. It is not always a good idea to make your tinctures set for the strongest strength. You could accidentally 'overdose' yourself on the herb.

Doses are very important. Try starting out with the lowest dose possible, evaluate the results, and adjust accordingly. A few drops daily is average. I strongly recommend you search out typical doses for the tincture you making.

Tincture can usually be stored for varied amounts of time. Usually 6 months to 1 year. Seek out proper storage information for your tinctures.


An infusion is steeping or soaking herbs in liquid, usually water or oil, to extract the herbs health properties. Tea is an infusion.

Infusions are much quicker than tinctures but not near as concentrated, or strong. Since infusions are made using water or oil they are also easier to take for some people, especially older children obviously.

Typically you use 1 teaspoon of dried or fresh herb and cover with 1 cup boiling water. You adjust those measurements based on how much of an infusion you will need and how strong you need it to be.

You will let the herb steep for usually 10-15 minutes, then strain, and drink.

Typically dose are usually drinking 1 cup 3 times a day.

Search out typical doses for the specific infusion you are making.

It is best to make an infusion as you need it.


A compress is usually used to treat external wounds, or bruises. You make a compress much the same way you make an infusion except you don't drink the infusion. Instead you soak a cloth in the infusion and apply the compress you the affected area. Repeating as often as necessary.


A poultice is a pack of dried or fresh herbs, enclosed in a muslin cloth, cheese cloth, or wrapped in a thick linen. The poultice is then warmed by soaking it in boiling water and applying it to the affected area of the body like a compress.

This entry was posted on Friday, July 03, 2009 at 12:06 PM and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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