How to Use Mullein for Respiratory Health and More

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Muellin

Mullein is a versatile herb used for centuries to treat various ailments, especially respiratory problems. We will discuss how it works and how to use it for different purposes. You will also discover some of mullein’s benefits and side effects and how to make your mullein tea and oil at home.

What Is Mullein?

Mullein is a common name for over 300 species of plants in the genus Verbascum, which belong to the snapdragon family. The most widely used species is Verbascum thapsus, also known as common mullein or Aaron’s rod.

It is a biennial or perennial plant that grows up to 7 feet tall and has large, velvety leaves and yellow flowers. Mullein is native to Europe, Asia, and Africa but has been naturalized in many parts of the world, including North America.

How Does Mullein Work?

Mullein contains various medicinal compounds, such as flavonoids, saponins, glycosides, mucilage, and minerals. These compounds may have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antiviral, antibacterial, and expectorant effects, meaning they can help reduce swelling, fight free radicals, kill viruses and bacteria, and loosen mucus.

Mullein may also have diuretic, sedative, and analgesic effects, which can help increase urine output, calm the nerves, and relieve pain.

How to Use Mullein for Respiratory Health

Mullein is one of the most popular herbs for respiratory health, as it can help ease coughs, colds, asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, and other lung-related conditions. Mullein can be taken internally as a tea, capsule, extract, or oil or applied externally as a compress, poultice, or salve.

Here are some of the ways you can use mullein for respiratory health:

Mullein Tea

Mullein tea is a soothing and nourishing drink that can help relieve sore throat, cough, hoarseness, and bronchitis. To make mullein tea, steep 1-2 teaspoons of dried leaves or flowers in a cup of boiling water for 10-15 minutes. Strain and drink up to 4 cups per day. Add honey, lemon, or ginger for extra flavor and benefits.

Mullein Capsule

Mullein capsule is a convenient and standardized way to take mullein internally. You can find mullein capsules in health stores or online or by filling empty gelatin capsules with dried and powdered mullein leaves or flowers. The typical dosage is 500 mg, taken three times daily, but you should follow the instructions on the product label or consult your doctor before using.

Mullein Extract

Mullein extract is a concentrated liquid form of mullein that can be taken by mouth or added to water, juice, or tea. You can buy mullein extract in health stores or online or make your own by soaking mullein leaves or flowers in alcohol for several weeks. The usual dosage is 1/4 to 3/4 teaspoon taken 3-4 times per day, but you should follow the instructions on the product label or consult your doctor before using.

Mullein Oil

Mullein oil is an herbal remedy for ear infections, pain, and inflammation. For several weeks, you can buy mullein oil in health stores or online or make your own by infusing mullein flowers in olive oil. To use mullein oil for ear infections, warm the oil slightly and put 1-2 drops in the affected ear 2-3 times daily.

For ages 1-10, use 1 drop, and for ages over 10, use 2 drops. Do not use mullein oil if your eardrum is perforated or if you have an allergic reaction to the oil.

Mullein Compress

Mullein compress is a warm and moist cloth that can be applied to the chest, throat, or sinuses to help reduce inflammation and congestion. To make a mullein compress, soak a clean cloth in hot mullein tea and wring out the excess liquid. Cover the cloth over the affected area with a towel or plastic wrap. Leave it on for 15-20 minutes and repeat as needed.

Mullein Poultice

A mullein poultice is a thick paste of mullein leaves or flowers that can be applied to the skin to help heal wounds, burns, bruises, and hemorrhoids. To make a mullein poultice, crush fresh or dried mullein leaves or flowers and mix with enough water to form a paste. Spread the paste over the affected area and cover with a bandage or cloth. Leave it on for several hours or overnight and change as needed.

Mullein Salve

Mullein salve is an herbal ointment that can be used to moisturize and protect the skin, as well as treat skin infections, rashes, and irritations. You can buy mullein salve in health stores or online or make your own by melting beeswax and adding mullein oil and other essential oils. Pour the mixture into a jar or tin and let it cool and harden. Apply the salve to the skin as needed.

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Other Benefits and Uses of Mullein

Mullein Benefits
Mullein Benefits
Besides respiratory health, mullein may also have other benefits and uses, such as:

Digestive Health

Mullein may help improve digestive health by soothing the stomach, relieving constipation, and treating diarrhea. Mullein tea or capsule can be taken internally for these purposes.

Urinary Health

Mullein may help improve urinary health by increasing urine output, reducing inflammation, and fighting infections. Mullein tea or capsule can be taken internally for these purposes.

Nervous System Health

Mullein may help improve nervous system health by calming the nerves, reducing stress, and promoting sleep. Mullein tea or extract can be taken internally for these purposes.

Musculoskeletal Health

Mullein may help improve musculoskeletal health by relieving pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the joints and muscles. Mullein tea, capsule, extract, oil, compress, poultice, or salve can be used for these purposes.

Immune System Health

Mullein may help improve immune system health by boosting the body’s defenses against viruses, bacteria, and other pathogens. Mullein tea, capsule, extract, or oil can be taken internally for these purposes.

Skin Health

Mullein may help improve skin health by softening, moisturizing, and protecting the skin, as well as healing wounds, burns, bruises, rashes, and irritations. Mullein oil, compress, poultice, or salve can be applied to the skin for these purposes.

Hair Health

Mullein may help improve hair health by adding shine, color, and strength to the hair. Mullein oil or tea can be applied to the hair for these purposes.

Side Effects and Precautions of Mullein

Mullein is generally considered safe and well-tolerated, but some people may experience side effects or allergic reactions, such as:

    • Skin Irritation: Some people may develop skin irritation, rash, or contact dermatitis from applying mullein to the skin. To avoid this, do a patch test before using mullein on a large area of skin, and discontinue use if you notice any adverse reaction.
    • Throat Irritation: Some people may experience throat irritation, coughing, or choking from drinking mullein tea or taking mullein capsule or extract. This may be due to the fine hairs on the mullein leaves or flowers, which can irritate the mucous membranes. To avoid this, strain the tea well before drinking, and choose products that are made from finely ground or filtered mullein.
    • Drug Interactions: Mullein may interact with certain drugs, such as antidiabetic drugs, diuretics, muscle relaxants, and lithium. Mullein may enhance or reduce the effects of these drugs, which can lead to unwanted or dangerous consequences. To avoid this, consult your doctor before using mullein if you are taking any medication, and monitor your blood sugar, blood pressure, and mood levels closely.
    • Pregnancy and Breastfeeding: There is not enough evidence to determine the safety of mullein during pregnancy and breastfeeding. To be on the safe side, avoid using mullein if you are pregnant or nursing, or consult your doctor before using.

How to Make Mullein Tea and Oil at Home

    • If you want to make your own mullein tea and oil at home, here are some simple steps to follow:

 Mullein Tea:

      • To make mullein tea, you will need dried mullein leaves or flowers, boiling water, a teapot or a mug, a strainer, and optionally, honey, lemon, or ginger for flavor. Here is how to make mullein tea:
        • Place 1-2 teaspoons of dried mullein leaves or flowers in a teapot or a mug.
        • Pour 1 cup of boiling water over the mullein and let it steep for 10-15 minutes.
        • Strain the tea through a fine-mesh strainer or a cheesecloth to remove the fine hairs and any debris.
        • Add honey, lemon, or ginger for flavor if desired, and enjoy your mullein tea.

Mullein Oil

  • Hot Oil Extraction:
    • Combine 1 cup of mullein flowers with 1/2 cup of olive oil in a glass double boiler over a low flame.
    • Heat the mixture slowly for about three hours, stirring occasionally.
    • Allow the oil to cool and then strain it using cheesecloth to remove all plant parts.
    • Pour the strained oil into dark glass bottles and seal tightly.
    • Store the oil in a cool, dark place and use it as needed for ear infections, skin problems or other conditions.
  • Cold Oil Extraction:
    • Cover the mullein flowers with olive oil in a glass jar with a lid, making sure the flowers are completely submerged.
    • Set the jar on a sunny windowsill and let it steep for 7 to 10 days, shaking it daily.
    • Strain the oil using cheesecloth and transfer it to dark glass bottles.
    • Seal the bottles tightly and store them in a cool, dark place.
    • Use the oil as needed for ear infections, skin problems or other conditions.

The above procedure can be also used to make mullein garlic oil

Final Thoughts

In summing up the multifaceted aspects of mullein, it’s clear that this herb, known scientifically as common mullein, offers a wealth of benefits. The mullein plant, with its distinctive mullein flower, has been used in various forms, from mullein leaf tea to mullein extract. Each part of the plant, be it the mullein leaf or flower, contributes to its holistic utility.

Mullein tea benefits, derived from the infusion of its leaves, are well-regarded in herbal circles, often celebrated for respiratory support. Similarly, mullein leaf benefits extend to its use in smoking blends, providing a smoother experience. Mullein garlic oil, a unique combination, leverages the properties of both garlic and mullein, making it a popular choice for ear-related issues.

Mullein pills and mullein drops offer a more convenient way to incorporate this herb into daily wellness routines. Additionally, the soothing properties of mullein herb have been encapsulated in various products, like mullein extract, enhancing its accessibility and ease of use.

Overall, mullein stands out as a versatile and beneficial herb, adaptable in various forms, from teas to oils, catering to a range of wellness needs.