Mugwort (Artemisia vulgaris) is a versatile plant with various traditional uses. It has antiseptic and antifungal properties and is used as a tonic, expectorant, and digestive aid. The leaves can be eaten raw or cooked and used as a flavoring agent in dishes. Mugwort is also used as an insect repellent and can be grown from seeds.
In traditional Asian medicine, mugwort or wormwood is used in a process called moxibustion. Mugwort or wormwood leaves are formed into sticks or cones about the size and shape of a cigar, and then burned on or over an acupuncture point to release energy.
Moxibustion has been practiced for more than 3,000 years in China, and advocates claim that it can strengthen and warm your blood and life energy, and treat inflammations and cancers. This study shows how moxa smoke can improve the autonomic nervous system and induce a relaxing effect on the body.
Treating Fever,Skin Problems and Injuries
Indigenous peoples of North America used mugwort for a number of medicinal purposes. Strong, bitter-tasting pasture sagewort tea was taken to treat colds, and fevers. Mugwort was used in washes and salves to treat bruises, itching, sores, poison ivy, eczema and underarm or foot odour. The leaves were dried, crushed and used as a snuff to relieve congestion, nosebleeds and headaches. Tarragon plants were boiled to make washes and poultices for treating swollen feet and legs and snow blindness. Some tribes called western mugwort ‘womens sage’ because the leaf tea was taken to correct menstrual irregularity. It was taken to relieve indigestion, coughs, and chest infections. Western mugwort smoke was used to disinfect contaminated areas and revive patients from comas. Northern wormwood tea was taken to relieve difficulties with urination or bowel movements, to ease delivery of babies and to cause abortions