Arnica cream, made from the Arnica Montana plant, is a product that has been used for hundreds of years to help to alleviate pain and aches in muscles. The Arnica Montana plant grows to a height of about 2 feet, and is also sometimes called 'Leopards Bane,' or 'Mountain Tobacco.' The plant is related to the sunflower, and is adorned with flowers of a beautiful yellowish orange color.

Ever since the middle ages, and right on through to today, both chemists and doctors have been aware of the soothing relief that this plant can offer. It can be used in many different ways, and can be easily located in your local health food store in a large variety of formats, such as creams, ointments, oils, pills and tinctures. Traditionally, it was combined in a mixture that would be used to help reduce the aches and pains of both muscles and joints. Another attribute is its anti-inflammatory properties, and it can be found in both internal and topical formats. Although you can purchase it as an over the counter herb, it is not recommended to be used internally, unless you are advised to do so by your naturopath.

The cream has been found to be extremely useful in helping to relieve headaches that are caused by neck and back pain. You would just apply the cream to the aching muscles in your back and neck, and it can cause the muscles to relax, easing the headaches that are as a result of these tight muscles. Another use has been to help aid in the healing process after suffering a bone fracture, as it helps to relieve the swelling, and helps soothe the area surrounding the fracture, providing temporary relief from pain.

The active components of Arnica based products are derived from the blossom extract. Sesquiterpene lactone is the main active component of Arnica, and it is responsible for its anti-inflammatory properties as well as helping to relieve pain. Tannins, flavonoids, inulin, cartotenoids, and thymol, which is an essential oil, are other active components which can be found in Arnica.

This wonderful plant is just one more example of the ability of mother nature to provide natural remedies to help relieve muscle pains and aches. There are hundreds of creams, ointments and medicines out there right now that are created with Arnica extract, and if you count both its aid in pain relief and its anti-inflammatory properties, it is truly quite an extraordinary plant!