Herbal Relief for Soldiers with PTSD

When the American Psychiatric Association officially added Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) to its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders in 1980, they couldn’t have foreseen the impact that official gesture would have. The 2001 terrorist attack on the World Trade Center sparked the largest spike in PTSD cases over the next two decades.

Soldiers returning home from the Middle East were exhibiting symptoms such as irritability, angry outbursts, excessive fear and worry, headaches and fatigue, depression and apathy, loss of appetite, and sleep disorders. Lack of proper medicinal care led 30,177 soldiers with PTSD to commit suicide between September 11, 2001, and 2021. Those who chose not to suffer silently yet found no medicinal relief, turned to illegal substances to calm their minds.

In January 2022, 58.5% of veterans in one health group sample self-reported the use of cannabis to treat their PTSD. With the rise of military PTSD cases, came new state legislation that allowed for the use of cannabis with a medical card.

However, the Department of Defense and the VA have both prohibited the prescription use of cannabis. Therefore, soldiers looking for PTSD relief often face the penalties of administrative separation and potentially other-than-honorable discharge.

Bear Blend Herbal blends include powerful ingredients that are beneficial to those with a PTSD diagnosis but are unable to use cannabis. Bear Blend is located in a USDA-certified organic facility in Southern California, and all products are handcrafted from biodynamic, fair trade, and USDA-certified organic herbs.

Our blends are made up of a wide variety of organic herbs – some may sound familiar, others not so much. Here is a list of the herbs we use and their healing properties:

Calaums eases such conditions as: depression, anxiety, nervous spasms, arthritis, gout, rheumatism and epileptic fits. It is also known to stimulate blood circulation and hormone secretion.

Calendula flower petals are traditionally used to promote better dreams; they also act as an anti-inflammatory, calm muscle spasms, heal ulcers, wounds and hemorrhoids, ease menstruation cramping, improve oral health and sooth dry or irritated skin.

If you have felines, then you are probably familiar with Nepeta cataria, or Catnip. Brewed as an herbal tea or as a culinary ingredient, it can be consumed by humans as a stress reliever, sleep aid and anti-inflammatory – as well as a treatment for digestive issues, menstrual cramps, headaches and skin conditions.

Cloves give pumpkin pies their flavor, but they also have antibacterial properties and can aid in liver protection, diabetes control, bone preservation and as an immune booster.

Damiana has a history of aphrodisiac, but it’s also used as an antidepressant, tonic, diuretic, cough-suppressant, and mild laxative. It has been used for such conditions as depression, anxiety, sexual inadequacy, debilitation, bed-wetting, menstrual irregularities, gastric ulcers, and constipation. In Mexico, the plant also is used for asthma, bronchitis, neurosis, diabetes, dysentery, dyspepsia, headaches, paralysis, nephrosis, spermatorrhea, stomachache, and syphilis.

Ginkgo biloba improves memory and increases energy. It is also used to treat asthma, ADHD, dementia, lower blood sugar, help fight anxiety and depression, and ease migraine headaches.

Gotu Kola lowers inflammation, improves memory and increases the potency of THC, caffeine and sex hormones. It may also aid in healing wounds and reducing anxiety.

Holy basil is harvested for its essential oil. It is thought to be beneficial to those suffering from diabetes, cancer, stress, fever and respiratory ailments.

Hops are used primarily as a flavoring and stability agent in beer. First documented in the 9th century, the herb is thought to help improve sleep, heal acne, prevent cancer, and aid in weight loss.

Lavender is known to aid in reducing stress and anxiety, sleep issues, skin and hair care, as well as having anti-inflammatory and antiseptic qualities.

Lobelia can give relief to respiratory ailments, alleviate muscle pain, improve blood flow and eliminating toxins from the body.

Marshmallow, or A. officinalis, can treat coughs, bacterial infections, digestive complaints, skin issues, water retention and leaky gut syndrome.

Motherwort can help with anxiety, heart palpitations, panic attacks, blood pressure and insomnia.

Mugwort contains triterpenes, flavonoids and coumarin derivatives which give it sedative and hallucinogenic properties. It is used to soothe the mind and ease stress.

Mullein is used for the treatment of various inflammatory diseases, diarrhea, asthma, coughs and other lung-related ailments — making it one of the top herbs for healing.

Passion Flower leaves and roots are used to make a tea that is used for insomnia, hysteria, and epilepsy. It has a wide variety of uses, including balancing one’s mood, promoting restful sleep, eases muscle contractions, and ease withdrawal symptoms.

Peppermint helps to heal various skin issues, athlete’s foot, and it has astringent, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties.

Raspberry leaf is useful to overcome various diseases such as diabetes, menstrual disorders, fertility disorders, diarrhea,  high blood sugar, and as a sedative, pain reliever and muscle relaxant.

Rose petals can be used as a skin cleanser, facial toner, soothing moisturizer, exfoliator and skin inflammation reliever.

Skullcap can relieve anxiety and pain, soothe nerves, remove toxins, and help manage diabetes and heart health.

St. John’s Wort is used to help depression, PMS and menopause symptoms, inflammation and skin irritations, OCD symptoms.

Tarragon is known to stimulate the digestive system and enhance the appetite, boost the immune system, ease rheumatic arthritis, cure insomnia, oral health issues, and remove toxins from the body.

Arctostaphylos Uva-Ursi produces a small red berry, called the Bearberry, and known by Native Americans as “kinnikinnick.” Its benefits include easing urinary tract infections, relieving diarrhea, aiding kidney and liver health; use topically for back sprains and as an astringent wash to treat cuts and scrapes.

Valerian has been used as a medicinal herb since at least the time of ancient Greece and Rome. Hippocrates described its properties, and Galen later prescribed it as a remedy for insomnia. It also helps to calm anxiety, lower blood pressure, ease menstrual cramps, and improve stress management.

Vanilla Bean is indicated for the treatment of a great diversity of diseases, including digestive, respiratory,

Wormwood is used for various digestion problems such as loss of appetite, upset stomach, gall bladder disease, and intestinal spasms. Wormwood is also used to treat fever, liver disease, and worm infections; to increase sexual desire; as a tonic; and to stimulate sweating. It can be used to treat malaria, Crohn’s, SIBO, and parasites.

Yerba Mate is known to provide a smooth increase in energy, boost mental functions and the immune system, and as a digestive and elimination tonic.


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