Experts document 20 effective asthma remedies.
Of particular note are inhalations of dust, especially when sweeping an enclosure, of smoke from frying or the burning of grass.
The symptoms of persons with asthma differ greatly in frequency and degree. Some have a mild cough and wheezing much of the time, punctuated by severely increased breathlessness following exposure to known allergens, viral infections, exercise, or non-specific irritants.
Children, in particular, may notice an itching sensation over the neck or upper chest as an early sign of an impending attack, and dry cough, particularly at night.
Traditionally, a number of herbs that are good for the respiratory organs are good for asthma. Now, scientists have also documented herbal remedies used in the treatment of asthma in Ogun, Oyo and Osun States.
The ethnobotanical survey recorded 20 recipes herbalists and traditional medical practitioners used for the treatment of asthma in 20 markets.
The survey was carried out by Drs M. A. Sonibare and Z. O. Gbile and published in the 2008 edition of the African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines.
The markets visited in Ibadan town include Bode, Oranyan, Ojaoba and Oremeji. In Iwo town, Idiomo and Araromi markets were visited while markets visited in Oyo town include Akesan and Sabo markets.
In Osun State, markets visited in Ife town include; Ita-Akogun and Enuwa markets. In Ijebu-Ode, a town in Ogun State, Oke-Aje market was visited while in Ijebu-Igbo town, Station and Atikori markets were visited.
Although the survey found diversities in the preparation and use of the herbal medicines in the different markets surveyed, plants commonly used to treat asthma included Tetrapleura tetraptera (Aidan in Yoruba), Crinum jagus (Ogede-odo in Yoruba), Olax subscorpioidea (Ifon in Yoruba), Chasmanthera dependens (Ato in Yoruba), Allium ascalonicum (Alubosa elewe in Yoruba) and Euphorbia lateriflora (Enu-opiri in Yoruba).
So, what are the recipes for asthma that the scientists documented? One of the recipes indicated soaking washed pieces of Olax subscorpioidea, Euphorbia hirta( Emi-ile in Yoruba), Euphorbia lateriflora, Securidaca longipedunculata, Crinum jagus, Allium sativum (Ayuu or garlic) and, Tetrapleura tetraptera in water.
This is soaked in a covered glass jar for three days. A small tumbler full is taken three times daily while children are to take a small tumbler full daily.
Another recipe is made from Olax subscorpioidea, Chasmanthera dependens, Calliandra portoricensis (Tude), Mimosa pigra, Securidaca longipedunculata (Ipeta in Yoruba), Crinum jagus, Allium ascalonicum and Tetrapleura tetraptera that are also soaked in water.
The third recipe involves mixing scrapped portion of Tetrapleura tetraptera with pieces of Crinum jagus in a mortar. This is mixed with Chasmanthera dependens, Picralima nitida (Erin), Allium ascalonicum and alum and soaked in water. An adult takes one tablespoonful daily, while children take a spoonful of it diluted with water.
The fourth recipe involves a cold maceration of pieces of Olax subscorpioidea, Crinum jagus Tetrapleura tetraptera, Chasmanthera dependens, Gongronema latifolium (Madunmaro), Xylopia aethiopica (Eeru), Euphorbia lateriflora, Nauclea latifolia, Gossypium barbadense, and Allium ascalonicum.
In the fifth recipe, a concoction is made from Tetrapleura tetraptera, Chasmanthera dependens, Crinum jagus, and Allium ascalonicum that have been left for about 10 days. An adult is supposed to take three tablespoonsful twice daily while children take a tablespoonful twice per day.
Another recipe entails washing, cutting into pieces and soaking in water Tetrapleura tetrptera, Crinum jagus, Xylopia aethiopica, Gossypium barbadens, Olax subscorpioidea, and Securidaca longepedunclata for three days.
Also, in another recipe, washed Crinum jagus, Chasmanthera dependens, Olax subscorpioidea, Tetrapleura tetraptera, and Allium ascalonicum are cut into pieces and soaked in water for a day.
Another involves soaking pieces of bitter kola in cashew juice that is mixed with sugar. An adult is to take a tablespoonful daily and a teaspoonful once in three days by children.
In addition, Olax subscorpioidea, Mimosa pigra and Calliandra portoricensis are either chopped into pieces or soaked in water for three days.
Similarly, a collection of Khaya ivorensis (Oganwo in Yoruba), Terminalia ivorensis (Idigbo in Yoruba), Piliostigma reticulatum, Xylopia aethiopica, Uvaria chammae (Gbogbonse in Yoruba), Allium sativum can also be prepared the same way.