It was a perfect day. Clear, bright and sunny with a high of 60-degree weather. We had loaded our van the evening before with all sorts of exciting things for a family picnic and fun afternoon in the mountains! Armed with sweat-shirts, warm coats, and fuzzy blankets we climbed into the van… all matching in this year’s family-picture-colors.
That was yesterday – Sunday! We had such a glorious, restful day driving through the mountains, picnicking in a sunny field, playing games (throwing the football and frisbee), taking pictures (yes, if you were driving down the Blue Ridge Parkway that afternoon you would have seen all 9 of us setting up at different pull-offs along the road), and relaxing in a quiet park above a rushing river.
But as it happens, most challenges and difficulties are unforeseen… they often happen rather suddenly, in the midst of such ‘perfect’ moments. And as I was flipping through pictures from the day and watching a fun video my brother took of us throwing the football, someone yelled “watch out!”
It happened in a single second. There was zero reaction time. I don’t know what I thought because I didn’t really think anything. But I did look up. And the second I did, something hit me in the mouth – a flying frisbee??
Ouch…. that hurt.
Honestly, it hurt. It stunned me – I completely did not see it coming at all! But it didn’t hurt *that* badly – it wasn’t a huge deal … I was going to be fine! I grabbed my mouth, and naturally everyone gathered around to see how I would react. “I’m fine, I’m fine…” Seconds later I took my hands away from my mouth and someone saw blood. “Oh no… I think it knocked her tooth loose!”
Wait… WHAT!! Reality had hit me just a second before she said it – “something has to be messed up (with how hard it hit)… there’s no way my mouth is still whole…”. At that moment my first thought was that I would have a gap in the front of my mouth for the rest of my life. No… this is terrible!!!! That knocked a few tears out of me. “Ahhhh… someone please tell me that my teeth are still firmly in place!”
And on second though, “How on earth am I going to eat the pumpkin pie we’ve been looking forward to all day!?”
Someone gave me a wet paper towel to try and stop the bleeding. My mom was trying to make sure my teeth were still in tact… and thankfully they were! The underside of my lip was split and bleeding, and rather painful. I was laughing and crying… trying to assure everyone that I was perfectly fine – just so long as my teeth were all still there, and firmly stuck where they belonged… 😉
I was talking about it with my sisters later on. What is it that makes us cry over some things and not over others?! I tried SO hard! I seriously wasn’t going to cry at all – it didn’t hurt *that* badly! The tears just sort of … happened? LOL 🙂
So there I was with my wet paper towel, thankful that the bleeding had slowed, and it wasn’t too painful. Somewhere around 10 minutes later it came to my attention that my lip was feeling a little larger than normal. “Is my lip swelling?” Ahhh… of course! 🙂
I rubbed some Healing Salve on that I had in the van (At that moment I was thinking Plantain for swelling and Comfrey for binding up the break, both of which are in the Healing Salve – which is all I had with me anyway!), followed by ice from the water cooler, and then went in search of some wild Plantain leaves which I chewed up and stuffed between my teeth and top lip. At that point my lip was already very swollen. I was having trouble talking, and at dinner time I had to take very small bites at the back of my mouth.
On the way home I applied more ice and Healing Salve, and 3 hours later when we got home I rubbed plantain-infused oil all over my lip before bed.
This morning I applied more Healing Salve and plantain oil before heading out for part of the day, and later on everyone commented on how the swelling had gone down considerably. I am personally convinced that these not only helped prevent further swelling, but helped reduce the swelling overnight and throughout this morning!
My lip is still feeling a little swollen, and there’s a nice bloody, bruised area with loose skin on the underside of my lip. But I’ve been able to eat and drink carefully, and healing has/is definitely taking place!!
So taking notes for next time (I should know this by now!)… apply Plantain *first thing* to help prevent the swelling in the first place!! 🙂
Plantain is my number one go-to herb for swelling and pain. The little leaves grow wild *everywhere* (just about!). You probably have this ‘weed’ growing all over your yard – I found an abundance of it in the shadier, muddier areas of the park. 😉
You can chew the leaves up and rub them straight on to a bug bite, sting, or area that is swelling/swollen or inflamed. It offers almost immediate pain relief, and is a wonderful herb for healing! While I *love* the healing salve because it contains other important herbs (such as comfrey for binding up broken skin, and herbs to soothe, calm, slow bleeding, etc…), there is a place and time for plain Plantain – in the glory of it’s full undiluted strength! And that is why I ran for the Plantain infused oil when we got home. I wanted the full strength of Plantain at that moment to treat the swelling! And then today I used the Healing Salve again (yes, I put it inside my mouth, on the underside of my lip!) because I wanted those other herbs to help quick healing take place.
So there you have it! Remember the power of that little plantain ‘weed’. It is the herb you want when you are trying to quickly prevent or reduce swelling, and help soothe pain quickly and effectively – whether a bug bite, sting, bump, wound, etc… 🙂
P.S. My sister came up with the brilliant idea to take this video… 😉
Update (the following day): After applying more plantain oil in the evening before bed, the loose white skin on the underside of my lip was gone this morning, and the swelling is reduced so that my mouth appears normal from the outside (with only a little tenderness/soreness from the inside where it is bruised and slightly purplish in areas). I can see a line where the split was, but everything is completely bound up/sealed, and healed. Happiness!! 🙂