Activated Charcoal – A Good Home Care Remedy for Emergency Purposes
A medical emergency can any time arrive; after all it is an emergency. You should be fully equipped to handle it especially in the extreme situations where even a doctor’s timely visit seems unlikely. For example, in case of a person consuming poison, he/she will be treated with the very first aid that is available at hand to overcome the crisis before doctor comes and takes charge of the situation. Activated charcoal is one such home-based first aid that is used to treat poisoning.
Understanding Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal is also called activated carbon. This is how it is made capable of absorbing the gases and particles in the digestive system of the body quickly and efficiently: activated charcoal takes the shape of a tasteless, fine black powder when wood and other materials are exposed to high temperatures in an enclosed space with no air. Thereafter, comes its activation and treatment; its ability to absorb a variety of substances is enhanced. To obtain this effect, oxidizing gases and other chemicals are reheated with it to break it into a fine powder. The powder you see after processing is pure carbon.
Activated charcoal is most importantly used for the treatment of poisoning. This apart, this carbonaceous material has also proven effective in rabbits, dogs, rats and other animals. It is also a good home remedy to treat gas and diarrhea for its ability to absorb gas in the bowels. When mixed with water, this powder can be externally applied to alleviate itching and pain from stings and bites in the form of paste. If we talk of treating toxins and drug overdoses, there is hardly anything that can beat this black powder.
Activated Charcoal can be Used this Way too
This form of processed charcoal is useful in several other conditions as well. You can clean skin wounds and if you have toxins accumulated in your gastrointestinal track, you can use activated carbon to absorb these waste materials since this substance is known to able to bind with other substances. It also helps in keeping ulcerative colitis symptoms under control when it is used with remedies like psyllium, aloe vera and acidophilus.
How to Use Activated Charcoal?
Activated charcoal if available at home makes an excellent first aid for the treatment of drug overdoses and poisoning. It is either administered through the tube leading to stomach or is given orally by mixing it with a liquid. You can get it in a container to which you can add soda pop or water or in the form of slurry already diluted with water.1.1 oz(33m) and 0.5 oz (15m) are two types of liquid bottles you can buy activated charcoal in.
Though you must call doctor’s office, emergency poison control center or hospital emergency room to know what you should do in case of drug overdoses or accidental poisoning. If you are told to use both charcoal and ipecac syrup, use ipecac syrup first to treat the condition. Wait for minimum half-an-hour and when vomiting from ipecac stops, give charcoal. For severe poisoning, you may need to administer several doses of charcoal.
Charcoal capsules and tablet are also available which you can take either with water or split or open them to sprinkle in foods. For adults, the total dosage is 5 g per day which you can divide in 520 -975 after each meal.
Activated charcoal harbors you from the most haphazard health hazards hence, keep it handy at home and remember to notify your doctor if the condition seems to go out of control.