Benefits of American Wormseed

This plant is also called Jerusalem oak. An indigenous plant, American wormseed grows in almost all parts of the U.S. but most vigorously and abundantly in the southern states. It is known in New Zealand as California spearmint.

The whole herb has a strong, peculiar, offensive, yet somewhat aromatic odor, which it retains when dried. All parts of the plant are occasionally employed, but the SEEDS only are strictly official. The seeds should be collected in the fall, when they are ripe.

They have a bitterish, somewhat aromatic, pungent taste and are possessed in a high degree of the peculiar smell of the plant. They abound in a volatile oil, upon which their medicinal virtues depend. This oil impregnates, to a greater or lesser extent, the whole plant.

Refer Here for the Abbreviations and Measurement Units

Wormseed is one of our most efficient American anthelmintics, chiefly used to expel intestinal worms. It is particularly adaptable to children. The powdered seeds are taken in doses of 20 to 30 gr. for a child and 1 to 2 dr. for an adult, given in honey, jam, or syrup before breakfast in the morning, or at bedtime in the evening for 3 or 4 days successively, this followed by a brisk cathartic such as senna tea. If the worms are not expelled, the same plan is repeated. The dose for a child 2 or 3 years old is from 1 to 2 samples.

The seeds are rich in a valuable OIL which is perhaps more frequently given than the seeds in substance, though its offensive odor and taste sometimes render it of difficult administration. The dose for a child is from 5 to 10 drops and an adult 10 to 20 drops on sugar each morning and followed after 3 days by a cathartic. An infusion with milk is also often given in wine-glassful doses. As the oil is a strong emmenagogue, it should NOT be used during pregnancy.

An excellent formula for worms is the following: oil of worm-seed 30 drops, oil of anise 6 drops, sugar of milk 1 dr. Mix and divide into 6 powders. Take 1 or 2 powders every 3 hrs., followed at night by a cathartic.

An infusion of the LEAVES is a far more pleasant, stimulating, aromatic anthelmintic.

A hot infusion may be used to relieve and increase the menstrual flow in case of cold.

A tablespoon of the expressed juice of the leaves or a wine-glassful of a decoction prepared by boiling 1 oz. of the fresh plant in 1 pt. milk, with the addition of orange peel or other aromatic, is sometimes used instead of the ordinary dose of the seeds and oil.

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