Sunday, February 27, 2011

Mouthwash for stinky feet?  10 surprising home cures - Health - Health care - More health news -

By Amanda Pressner
updated 2/25/2011 8:03:22 AM ET 2011-02-25T13:03:22

When minor medical issues crop up (nosebleeds, insect stings, dandruff!), chances are your medicine cabinet already contains some effective—and surprising—fixes for what ails you. Here are 10 common household items that all do double duty, saving you a trip to the pharmacy—and cash in the process!

1. Antacid tablet
It's for: Heartburn

The effervescent type with sodium bicarbonate helps neutralize the acid that causes painful heartburn symptoms.

But try: Soothing insect bites

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"Antacid formulations such as Alka-Seltzer contain aspirin, an anesthetic that can help ease the sting and itch of insect bites," says Howard Sobel, MD, a clinical attending physician in dermatology and dermatologic surgery at Beth Israel Medical Center in New York City.

He recommends making a paste with a crushed Antacid tablet, a pinch of oatmeal (also a skin soother), and water and applying it to the skin. Results are immediate—and this DIY formula has a healing bonus that other anti-itch salves lack. "Calamine lotion contains zinc oxide, which can be drying to the skin," Sobel explains. "Effervescent Antacid tablets provide quicker relief from pain and itching—without the dehydrating side effects."


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