Epsom Salts are Magnesium Sulfate and we are still discovering stuff that they are good at addressing – whether it be household, garden and even survival uses.
Here are just six of many uses for Epsom Salts.
When it comes to relaxing muscles, Epsom salts work best when dissolved in warm water. They do not dissolve or work as well when mixed with oil or lotion, so it is best not to combine them with these carriers. There are many ways to use Epsom salts as a muscle relaxer. My two favorites are:
Take 1 ½ cups of Epsom salt and mix them in 4 – 6 cups of hot water (you can speed this up by getting hot water from the coffee maker) and then adding the Epsom salts into a bowl of hot water. Next, run enough water into the bathtub for soaking. The water should be warm and comfortable long enough so that you can stay in the water for about 15 minutes. Add the Epsom salt solution to the tub, get in, and soak for no more than 15 minutes. If you have arthritis or other long-term pain, you may have to soak once a day for a few days. Follow manufacturer instructions so that you do not use Epsom salts longer than what might be safe.
Take 1 cup of Epsom salts and add them to a foot bath full of warm water. Soak for about 15 minutes to ½ hour.
To reduce inflammation in swollen or sore muscles, you can soak in an Epsom salt bath, or simply use a moist compress over the affected muscles. To make an Epsom salt compress, mix 2 cups of Epsom salts to one gallon of warm water, and then let it get cold. Soak a towel in the cold water, and then loosely wrap the region with the moist towel for 15 minutes.
As noted above, you need to be very careful when taking Epsom salts internally. That being said, the magnesium in these salts is well known for relieving constipation. You can use Epsom salts in two ways to resolve this problem:
If you do not want to ingest Epsom salts, try soaking in a mixture of warm water and Epsom salts. Just use 5 cups of salt in the water instead of just 1 ½ cups as you would to relieve sore muscles.
When ingesting Epsom salts to treat constipation, try dissolving 2 – 4 level teaspoons of Epsom salt in 8 ounces of water. If you are treating someone between the ages of 6 and 12, drop the
Epsom salt amount down to 1 – 2 level teaspoons in 8 ounces of water. If you do not have a bowel movement after 4 hours, you can try a second dose. Do not take more than two doses in a 24 hour period, and do not use Epsom salts for more than 5 days.
Soothe Insect Bites
Epsom salts can be used to relieve redness, itching, and irritation associated with mosquito and other insect bites. You can bathe in Epsom salts as you would for relieving sore muscles, use a cold compress, or apply an Epsom salt paste. To make the paste, just dissolve one teaspoon of
Epsom salts into 1 cup of hot water, and then put it in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes to speed up the process. Apply the paste to insect bite once you clean it and pat the area dry. You can also use these three solutions for poison ivy, poison oak, rashes, and sunburn.
Plants are no different from other living things in the sense that they need magnesium in order to remain healthy and carry out many functions necessary for life. Unfortunately, many soils and old garden plots do not have enough magnesium. You can correct this problem by adding
Epsom salts at a rate of 1 cup per 100 feet when you turn the soil over prior to planting.
You can also fertilize plants with Epsom salts during the growing season by drenching them.
Use a mixture of 1 – 2 teaspoons of Epsom salt to 1 gallon of water. Just pour the mixture at the base of the plant so that it goes straight to the roots. This is especially useful for tomatoes, and peppers which always need more magnesium. For these plants, apply the mixture every two weeks. You can also use Epsom salts for roses. Instead of using a liquid mixture, apply one teaspoon of Epsom salts per foot of plant growth to the soil, and then water the plants.
Fruit trees, your lawn, and flower beds will also do better if you apply Epsom salts to them. Be sure to look up each species of plant or tree so that you know how much Epsom salt to use.
Typically, if you see yellow or curled leaves and don’t have anything else on hand, you can try to revive the plant with Epsom salt.
Easily Clean Pots and Pans
Have you ever baked or fried something and wound up with a mess at the bottom of the cooking vessel? If so, then you also know that soaking, scrubbing, and scouring can be frustrating tasks.
Epsom salts can help with loosening grease and grime so that it is easier to clean heavily soiled pots and pans.
Start off by mixing ¼ tablespoon of Epsom salt and ¼ tablespoon of dish detergent in warm water. Let them sit and soak in the pot or pan that needs to be cleaned. When you are ready to start scrubbing, you can also add some Epsom salt onto troublesome areas, as it will release the grime faster. If the pots or pans are not heavily covered in grime, grease, or burnt food, you can simply add the Epsom salts directly to the soiled surface and scrub.
Epsom Salts are not a “miracle drug” in the traditional sense, but their many uses can come in handy around the homestead.
From soothing sore muscles to help fertilize your garden, there are literally dozens of uses for Epsom Salts.
To see even more uses, please visit Backdoor Survival.