Chilblains: discover the most effective natural remedies for hands and feet

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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What are the most effective natural remedies for chilblains? From compresses to essential oils to be applied to the skin, here are the solutions to be applied to both hands and feet

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What are the most effective natural remedies in case of chilblains? From compresses to essential oils to be applied to the skin, here are the solutions to be applied to both hands and feet

Along with the bitter cold, the feared returned chilblains. A chill is a skin irritation that usually presents with redness and swelling. The most common cause is skin exposure to intense cold accompanied by moisture.

Intense cold slows down the skin microcirculation. Chilblains can particularly affect the tips of the fingers or toes, the nose or ears.

Blisters, sores, itching, and severe pain may occur.


Chilblains, prevention

The first weapon against chilblains is prevention. Remember to wear heavy gloves, socks and suitable footwear if you know you need to spend a lot of time outdoors in the winter. It may be useful to insert thermal soles or foot warmers in the shoes. Also cover your ears with a warm hat.

Chilblains, proper nutrition

In addition to physical protection against chilblains, we can also act in prevention from within the body with the right diet. It is important to take foods that are particularly rich in vitamins every day, in particular beta-carotene (we find it in carrots, pumpkin but also spinach and cabbage) which helps to maintain the elasticity of the skin. The right amount of vitamin E is also essential, which improves the situation of skin redness and vitamin C which is functional to the health of blood vessels. In general they are excellent, and should be put on the table more often, all those foods capable of improving blood circulation such as red fruits.

Chilblains and physical activity

What does physical activity have to do with chilblains? This is always important and also in this case to prevent the occurrence of the problem. For example, doing gymnastics improves circulation and consequently the tendency for chilblains to form due to the cold that closes the small blood vessels will be less.

There are some natural remedies that you can try to put into practice, waiting for you to contact an expert. For example, a herbalist could recommend a suitable herbal tea against circulatory problems.

Herbal compresses

The encyclopedia “Health without medicine. Let's cure ourselves with medicinal herbs ”suggests specific herbal compresses against chilblains. These are herbs rich in tannins, resins and essential oils with a decongestant action. Among them arnica, nettle, rue and lavender are reported.

Cayenne pepper

Il cayenne pepper è among the spices which help improve circulation. It may be helpful to apply cayenne pepper powder to the frostbitten area. Do not use this remedy if the skin is cracked or injured, in order not to increase the burning.


Among the grandmother's remedies for chilblains we find turnips. You can alleviate the problem by rubbing slices of turnip on the skin. Or, according to another home remedy, you can try to relieve chilblains by immersing the affected parts in boiling water with a few slices of turnip for a couple of minutes.


Another home remedy, which promises to lead to the complete disappearance of chilblains, consists in gently rubbing slices of horseradish on the areas affected by redness and swelling. You can also apply the sliced ​​horseradish on the part, wrap loosely, and leave it to act to alleviate the problem.

Lemon juice

This is the simplest natural remedy to apply in case of chilblains. Lemons are among the ingredients, which together with other citrus fruits, we should consume even more in winter to enrich our diet with vitamin C. Among the natural remedies against chilblains we find the advice to rub the fingers and toes with some lemon juice.

Celery decoction

Here is another ingredient that comes directly from the kitchen and is present in our winter and autumn shopping: celery. You will need to cook a few stalks of celery in half a liter of water for at least an hour. In this way you will obtain a sort of decoction in which you can immerse, once warm, the fingers affected by chilblains two or three times a day.


Potato slices are among the best known remedies for relieving redness in case of sunburn. Their use can also be useful in case of skin irritated by the cold and chilblains. You will have to gently rub some potato slices on the affected parts. The starch in potatoes should help alleviate the problem.

It was all over Erbe

Massages on the fingers and chilblains affected areas with herbal oils may be helpful in finding relief. You can use flavored oils prepared at home, or by the herbalist, with rosemary, mint or eucalyptus, with the recommendation not to apply them in the presence of wounds or abrasions. Oils - or oleolites - prepared with arnica or calendula can also be useful.


Among the herbs particularly suitable for the treatment of chilblains is sage. If these affect the feet, they can be treated for example with warm water-based foot baths in which sage leaves have previously been boiled. Hands can also be immersed in the same solution. Also excellent is a healing massage to be performed with sage essential oil diluted in vegetable carrier oil a couple of times a day until complete healing.


Onion is a vegetable with numerous healing properties. It is a real natural antibiotic, known as a beneficial remedy since ancient times. Against chilblains it is suggested to apply fresh juice obtained from onion, onion slices or chopped onion on the parts affected by the problem.

Horsetail and dog rose

A herbal tea made from horsetail, also known as horsetail, it might be useful to reduce chilblains caused by circulation problems. Horsetail can help the body tissues damaged by chilblains return to normal. Another useful remedy is rosehip herbal tea. Ask your herbalist for more information on this.


Another grandmother's remedy that you can experiment with is ethyl alcohol. As soon as the first traces of chilblains appear, for example the typical itching on the hands or feet, the area must be dabbed with alcohol, this remedy is in fact able to stimulate circulation, preventing the symptoms from worsening. You can rub on the affected area a couple of times a day using a small dose of alcohol to prevent the skin from drying out too much. Immediately afterwards it is good to spread some moisturizer.

Do you know other natural remedies for chilblains?

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