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No one likes to get a cut. It can happen out of nowhere, from the garden to the kitchen. There are so many over-the-counter ointments to help wound healing – but what about natural remedies?
Coconut oil is one of the best options. It can benefit healing skin without the mysterious chemicals. Once you learn about these five ways coconut oil can help cuts, it’ll be the new star of your medicine cabinet!
1. Antiseptic Properties
It’s crucial to protect a cut from infection. Otherwise, the healing process will slow down, causing even more problems. Infections can also be super painful.
Coconut oil can prevent this. It’s primarily made of lauric acid, an antiseptic fat with powerful antimicrobial and antifungal activities. This means that it can kill bacteria and fungi before they cause trouble.
On healing skin, coconut oil will protect a vulnerable wound. It’ll also encourage a speedy recovery without extra complications.[ref]Dayrit, Fabian M. “The properties of lauric acid and their significance in coconut oil.” Journal of the American Oil Chemists’ Society 92, no. 1 (2015): 1-15.[/ref]
2. Pain Relief
It’s no secret why we hate cuts and scrapes. They can hurt a lot.
Thankfully, coconut oil is a natural analgesic. This means it can relieve pain, stinging, and soreness from the injury. And thanks to this anti-inflammatory benefit, wound healing will be a little more comfortable. It also beats using a numbing cream that’s full of mysterious chemicals.
3. Anti-Inflammatory Abilities
After you get a cut or scrape, it will feel like it’s on fire. This is perfectly normal and means that your wound is starting to heal. In fact, inflammation is the first step of patching up.
When this happens, it’s common to have pain, swelling, and redness. You can speed up this step with coconut oil, a potent anti-inflammatory agent. It’ll soothe these symptoms and make the healing process more bearable.
The sooner inflammation ends, the sooner it can begin the regeneration stage.[ref]Collier, M. (2002). Understanding wound inflammation. Nursing times, 99(25), 63-64.[/ref]
4. Increases Skin Growth
In order to heal, skin needs to regenerate. This will close up the wound with a layer of brand new skin. Coconut oil can lend a hand by encouraging epithelization, the process that builds it back up.
Plus, applying coconut oil increases the production of collagen, the fibrous protein that gives the skin tissue structure. It’ll also treat your skin to antioxidants that keep it nice and strong.[ref]Nevin, K. G., and T. Rajamohan. “Effect of topical application of virgin coconut oil on skin components and antioxidant status during dermal wound healing in young rats.” Skin Pharmacology and Physiology 23, no. 6 (2010): 290-297.[/ref]
5. Moisturizing Effect
Coconut oil can help wound healing until the very end. When the scab forms, it often gets itchy, but the moisturizing effect of coconut oil can be a lifesaver. Its emollient properties are so significant that it can even treat dermatitis.[ref]Verallo-Rowell, Vermén M., Kristine M. Dillague, and Bertha S. Syah-Tjundawan. “Novel antibacterial and emollient effects of coconut and virgin olive oils in adult atopic dermatitis.” Dermatitis 19, no. 6 (2008): 308-315.[/ref]
This benefit is useful if you have a bad habit of picking scabs. Coconut oil will ease irritation and itchiness, so you’re less prone to touch it. It will let the wound fully heal and allow the scab to fall off on its own.
How To Use Coconut Oil
Using coconut oil for skin healing is extremely easy. With a spoon, scoop out a tablespoon and rub it in between clean hands. Your body heat will turn it into a liquid that’s easy to spread.
Apply it directly to the wound. If you don’t want to use your hands, reach for a cotton ball or cloth.
Coconut oil can be used as a carrier. Essential oils, like tea tree[ref]Flores, Fernanda C., Julia A. de Lima, Cássia R. da Silva, Dalila Benvegnú, Juliano Ferreira, Marilise E. Burger, Ruy CR Beck et al. “Hydrogels containing nanocapsules and nanoemulsions of tea tree oil provide antiedematogenic effect and improved skin wound healing.” Journal of nanoscience and nanotechnology 15, no. 1 (2015): 800-809.[ref] and lavender[ref]Djemaa, Ferdaous Ghrab Ben, Khaled Bellassoued, Sami Zouari, Abdelfatteh El Feki, and Emna Ammar. “Antioxidant and wound healing activity of Lavandula aspic L. ointment.” Journal of Tissue Viability 25, no. 4 (2016): 193-200.[/ref] can be added for extra wound healing benefits.