Toxic shock syndrome (TSS) is a type of infection caused by Staphylococcus aureus, the bacteria commonly referred to as staph. This rare (and sometimes fatal) condition usually affects females who are in their late teens or early twenties. Toxins (poisons) are released by the bacteria into the blood stream causing an immediate decrease in blood pressure.
During the 70s and 80s, there was a high incidence of TSS from staph infections. It was identified to be related to the use of tampons by menstruating women at that time. Because of changes in the manufacturing process of tampons, the incidence of TSS attributed to tampon use has gone down.
Causes of TSS
TSS may be caused by any of the following:
- Frequent use of super-absorbent tampons
- Wounds from recent surgery
- Skin infection
- Deep tissue infection
- Use of diaphragm and/or contraceptive sponge
- Childbirth or abortion
Signs of TSS
There are many symptoms of TSS. Some symptoms are the same as with other types of infections. The most common of these are:
- fever above 102.0o F (38.9o C)
- red flat rashes in various parts of the body
- low blood pressure
- shedding of large patches of skin especially over the palms of the hands and soles of the feet
- muscle pain
- increased blood flow to eyes, mouth, and vagina making these areas look flushed
- decreased liver function
- low urine output
- sediment found in urine
- bruising brought about by low platelet count
- confusion and disorientation
TSS treatment with herbs
There are herbs and other plants that can help you recover from TSS.
- Red clover. Studies have shown that red clover, commonly used by homeopathic practitioners as an effective expectorant, aids in the relief of menstruation as well as TSS related symptoms. Take red clover in the form of tea or as pills. Steep dried red clover (about 2-3 teaspoons) in one cup of hot water for a few minutes before drinking. Red clover pills should be taken as recommended by the homeopathic medical practitioner.
- Echinacea. A natural way to strengthen your immune system is by taking echinacea. This herb contains natural compounds that fight viruses and bacteria much like the human body's immune system. You can find echinacea in both liquid and tablet form. Take this when you have TSS or even just to boost your immune system.
- Tea tree oil. Used as a topical compound against bacteria such as staph, tea tree oil comes in the form of raw oil or as part of special body soaps. Washing frequently with soaps containing this ingredient will help get rid of staph bacteria normally found on the skin.
- Garlic. This natural antibiotic has been in use for a very long time. Eating half a clove of this aromatic antibiotic will give you an extra boost against your battle with TSS. Garlic helps get rid of harmful bacteria found in your body.
- Other medicinal herbs and plants. Rosemary, ginkgo Biloba, and Burdock root show promise in the treatment of toxic shock syndrome. However, before ingesting these herbs for TSS, consult with a Naturalist Doctor or Holistic Doctor for medical advice.
Even if you have been cured of Toxic Shock Syndrome before, expect that it may recur anytime. This is why you should boost your immune system with herbs that can help you fight off bacterial and viral attacks. Seek medical attention if you have infected wounds or are showing signs of TSS.