Ozark Encyclopedia – B – Black Cohosh

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Mountain Man Traditional Healing

Black Cohosh, Black Snakeroot – Actaea racemosa

Parts used: root

Traditional uses: Alcohol tincture used for rheumatic pains. Infusion taken to stimulate menstruation, and to help with symptoms of premenstrual tension, menopause and other gynecological problems.

“Astringent, emmenagogue, diuretic, alterative, expectorant. The root of this plant is much used in America in many disorders, and is supposed to be an antidote against poison and the bite of the rattlesnake. The fresh root, dug in October, is used to make a tincture. In small doses, it is useful in children’s diarrhoea. In the paroxyms of consumption, it gives relief by allaying the cough, reducing the rapidity of the pulse and inducing perspiration. In whooping-cough, it proves very effective. The infusion and decoction have been given with success in rheumatism. In infantile disorders, it is given in the form of syrup. It is said to be a specific in St. Vitus’ Dance…

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