Quick Fixes for Your Biggest Complaints

Black Eye Treatment

Liz Vaccariello, editor-in-chief of Prevention, shares a useful home remedy to reduce swelling and bruising resulting from a black eye.

Black Eyes

A black eye is the result of bleeding beneath the skin around the eye. Although most black eyes are not serious, bleeding within the eye, also known as hyphema, is a serious condition that can cause corneal damage and impair vision. In some cases, the damaged tissue from a black eye causes excess fluid retention, which can lead to glaucoma, abnormally high blood pressure inside the eyeball.

Traditional treatments for black eyes include applying a cold pack or a cloth filled with ice to the area around the eye. This should be done as soon as possible after the injury to reduce swelling and should be continued periodically for 24 to 48 hours. Do not press on the eye itself.

Seek medical care immediately if the injury is causing blurring or double-vision, if the pain is constant and severe or if there is any bleeding in the eye or from the nose as this can be a sign of hyphema.

The Five Kinds of Warts

  • Common warts: found most often on the hands.
  • Plantar warts: grow on the soles of the feet.
  • Flat warts: usually grow on the face, arms or legs.
  • Filiform warts: usually grow around the mouth, nose or beard area.
  • Periungual warts: grow under and around the fingernails and toenails.

Warts are benign skin tumors caused by various strains of the human papillomavirus (HPV). Warts can grow anywhere on the body, and 25 percent of people will get one in their lifetime. An estimated 40 to 50 percent of warts disappear on their own, but there are several different treatments to remove them.

Traditional treatments for warts include topical over-the-counter or prescription medications, cryotherapy, laser treatments and surgical removal. The most common of these treatments are topical medications, which contain salicylic acid, and cryotherapy, which involves freezing the wart with liquid nitrogen so it will dry up and fall off on its own.

Plastic surgeon Dr. Drew Ordon then demonstrates how to use a vitamin C paste to
treat warts.

“Rashes are simply changes in the color or texture of the skin”, E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork says.

The most common cause of rashes is contact dermatitis, which is inflammation of the skin through contact with everyday materials. Skin irritation can also be triggered by a particular substance that causes an allergic reaction, which is known as allergic contact dermatitis. 

The most common rash-producing allergens are nickel, rubber, preservatives, additives found in hand creams and lotions, as well as urushiol, the oil found in plants like poison ivy, poison oak and poison sumac. 

The Big Doctors Book of Home Remedies

Check outThe Big Doctors Book of Home Remedies by the editors of  Prevention and enter for a chance to win a copy!

Click here for a chance to win a one-year subscription to Prevention!

Rashes can also be caused by insect bites and stings as well as medical conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, impetigo, shingles and childhood illnesses such as chickenpox, measles, rubella and scarlet fever. 

Hydrocortisone, oatmeal baths and medicated calamine lotion are the most commonly used treatments to relieve the symptoms of rashes, although antibacterial creams and oral antibiotics can also be prescribed. In addition, to help with skin irritation, practice gentle skin care methods, avoid irritating substances and fabrics, and expose the affected areas to air whenever possible.

“In serious scenarios where there is a sign of an underlying, significant infection, you really do need to talk to your doctor”, Dr. Travis advises.  In cases where the rash is mild, Dr. Travis demonstrates how a solution of 50 percent olive oil and 50 percent honey will naturally soothe the irritated area.

Non-Toxic Defense Against Germs

Parents try to keep their homes germ-free to fight colds and flu but may be concerned about using toxic chemicals to clean. OB/GYN Dr. Lisa Masterson shares
tips for sanitizing your home using non-toxic products.

Showerheads can become moldy or discolored over time, and dirty showerheads can be sources of infection and disease, as they may harbor bacteria that can be inhaled. To address the problem, Liz Vaccariello of Prevention shows how a simple solution of equal parts white vinegar and water will effectively
clean a showerhead and stop the buildup of harmful bacteria.

Cellulite Treatment

Liz Vaccariello, editor-in-chief of Prevention, and E.R. physician Dr. Travis Stork demonstrate an unusual way to reduce the apprearance of cellulite!

"Soak it for about 15 minutes to an hour in there. If you can't get the showerhead off", Liz explains, "you can put the solution in a plastic bag, hang it from the showerhead and twist it with a twist tie."

“The microbes really like plastic much, much better than they like metal,” Dr. Lisa adds, “so you may want to get a metal showerhead if you have a lowered immune system.” 

Sandra in Addison, Vermont inquires about the safety of antibacterial wipes and whether the harsh chemicals pose a danger to young children.

“Sometimes the chemicals [in the wipes] don’t agree with some people’s skin”, Dr. Jim explains. “You can actually make your own at home using two really great ingredients -- basically baby lotion and rubbing alcohol.”

See how to
make homemade antibacterial wipes!

Prevention Home Remedy Lab

Dr. Travis selects two volunteers from the audience as test subjects for do-it-yourself home remedies using unexpected ingredients.

“We’re going to take some foods that you would normally throw away and use them for quick beauty treatments,” Liz says.

The first remedy is an all-natural hair conditioner that uses brown bananas. The fruit is a great source of vitamins and is also rich in natural oils. In addition, bananas contain tryptophan, which is one of the amino acids found in hair that shields it from UV light.

The next home remedy is an alternative to body lotion. Facial exfoliation at a spa can be rather pricey, so Liz shows how a solution of white cane sugar, oil and aloe vera gel is an easy way to create super-soft skin. 

Check out the home remedies!

Olive Oil for Pets

From removing ticks and ear mites to a doggy massage, olive oil is a natural and effective means to keep pets happy and healthy. 

Home Health Tips for Man's Best Friend

Liz demonstrates some easy solutions to common pet problems on plastic surgeon Dr. Drew Ordon’s bulldog, Lulu.

To combat fleas, Liz explains that applying Avon Skin-So-Soft bath oil acts as a bug repellent on both dogs and humans. Researchers suspect that fleas, which have a keen sense of smell, do not like the fragrance and will stay away after an application of the Avon bath oil. 

Prevention Health Hearsay

Can eating too much sugar cause diabetes?
Liz Vaccariello, editor-in-chief of Prevention, answers in Prevention’s Health Hearsay!


For more information about the products mentioned on this show, please go to Related Resources
Sign Up for the Newsletter| Show Page |Talk about the Show! | Join The Doctors Social Network

OAD 11/30/09