Horsetail (Equisetum arvense) is a traditional herb used as a natural source of silica to help strengthen hair, nails and bones. It also helps the body process calcium. It is also used to stop bleeding and to treat ulcers and wounds. It is used to treat tuberculosis and kidney problems. It is being studied for use in helping those with osteoporosis. It is an aid in removing kidney and bladder stones. The Greeks and Romans used it to treat edema (fluid retention) and as a diuretic. Chinese herbalists use it for woulds, skin problems and frostbite. It helps itchy skin problems, even when there is blistering and scabbing. Some herbalists use it in treating hemorrhoids and nosebleeds. It also helps bladder infections and other problems of the urinary tract. It has been used to treat incontinence, especially bed-wetting in children. It helps remove polyps from the intestines. 
    Only the part of the plant that is above ground is used. The plant can be burned and the ashes used to treat excessive stomach acidity and acid reflux. It kills some types of germs. Added to a hair rinse, it can help get rid of fleas, lice and mites. It helps gout, arthritis and rheumatism. It is sometimes used to treat an inflamed or enlarged prostate. It can speed up the healing of broken bones. It can be used as a gargle for sore throats. It helps prevent fat deposits in the arteries. It inhibits tumor growth. As a poultice, it can be used to help draw pus and infection out of wounds. As a foot soak, it helps sooth tire feet and treats athlete’s foot.  When combined with Yarrow and Nettle, it is used to treat depression, delusions, and fits of rage. 
    Horsetail contains a small amount of nicotine, so should not be taken internally by small children or others sensitive to nicotine. Note: few, if any, of the traditional uses of horsetail have been scientifically tested and verified.

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