July 26, 2016

Wintergreen

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What other names is Wintergreen known by?

Boxberry, Canada Tea, Checkerberry, Deerberry, Essence de Gaulthérie, Gaulteria, Gaultheria Oil, Gaultheria procumbens, Gaulthérie Couchée, Ground Berry, Hilberry, Huile de Thé des Bois, Mountain Tea, Oil of Wintergreen, Partridge Berry, Petit Thé, Petit Thé des Bois, Spiceberry, Teaberry, Thé de Montagne, Thé de Terre-Neuve, Thé du Canada, Thé Rouge, Thé des Bois, Wax Cluster.

What is Wintergreen?

Wintergreen is an herb. Wintergreen oil is made by steam processing of warmed, water-soaked wintergreen leaves. The leaves and oil are used to make medicine.

Wintergreen leaf is used for painful conditions including headache, nerve pain (particularly sciatica), arthritis, ovarian pain, and menstrual cramps. It is also used for digestion problems including stomachache and gas (flatulence); lung conditions including asthma and pleurisy; pain and swelling (inflammation); fever; and kidney problems.

Some people use small doses of wintergreen oil to increase stomach juices and improve digestion.

Wintergreen leaf is sometimes applied directly to the skin as a wash for achy joints (rheumatism), sore muscles, and lower back pain.

Wintergreen oil is applied to the skin as a "counterirritant" to relieve muscle pain. Counterirritants work by causing irritation that reduces pain and swelling in the underlying tissue. Wintergreen oil is also used to kill germs on the skin.

In manufacturing, wintergreen is used as a flavoring agent in food, candies, teas, and in pharmaceutical products.

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...

  • Headache.
  • Minor aches and pains.
  • Stomachache.
  • Gas (flatulence).
  • Fever.
  • Kidney problems.
  • Asthma.
  • Nerve pain.
  • Gout.
  • Arthritis.
  • Menstrual cramps.
  • Achy joints (rheumatism).
  • Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of wintergreen for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).


Therapeutic Research Faculty copyright

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