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When I first started working with herbs for my health I was very uneducated and had the idea that since they are "natural" I could do no wrong. Over the past few years as I have learned more I have come to have a profound respect for herbs and their medicinal properties. It is really important to research an herb before you use it especially on young children.

The good news is that it is relatively easy to research herbs and there are tons of easy to read herbals and how-to books out their. I recommend anything by Susan Weed. She explains how to prepare herbal infusions and decoctions (medicinal teas) and gives lots of ideas and recipes. In her book geared for the childbearing years she discusses the different level of herbs. The first being herbs used as daily tonics. These herbs, like red raspberry and nettles are completely safe and can be used daily to nourish and support your body. These herbs work best when taken overtime. The second group of herbs consist of plants that are used for a specific illness over a short period time and are safe when used properly. The third level are toxic herbs which may be used in extreme cases most usually under the supervision of an herbalist.

I have read a lot of books but it is also helpful to find an herbalist in you area. We have one who runs a little shop and it is really easy to go in and say "REally bad sinus cold...any suggestions?" She will make us some tea especially for the sysmptoms, maybe a steam and some other general well being suggestions.

I am not sure where you live but in the growing season there are usually plant walks you can take and these are great things to do with kids and it also is helpful with starting a relationship with plants. One of the most important things I have found in my journey with herbs is getting away from the idea that I am taking medicine via capsule or tincture and actually knowing the plant the medicine was made from. I think this stregnthens the healing powers.

Good luck with your journey.
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