Bizarre Home Cures That Work

If you are a do-it-yourself person and don't want to always rely on a doctor to cure your health issues, you may be in luck. You can use duct tape, baking soda, and an assortment of other bizarre home cures, depending on your ailment, to improve your health.

Check out the following bizarre home cures that really work:

Problem: Warts
Home Cure:
Duct Tape

What to Do: Clean the area. Then cut a piece of duct tape to a size slightly bigger than the wart. Apply the duct tape to the site and rub into place. Every 3 days, remove the tape and file down dead skin with a pumice stone or nail file. Repeat until the wart disappears.

How it Works: In a study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, covering warts with duct tape eliminated them better than freezing them off. In the study, the duct tape eliminated 85 percent of the warts after 2 months, compared with 60 percent with the freezing method. The reason? Chemicals in the tape suffocate and kill the wart.

Problem: Foot Odor
Home Cure:

What to Do: Wipe your feet down with a vodka-soaked washcloth to get rid of the smell.

Why it Works: Vodka contains alcohol, which is antiseptic and drying, so it destroys odor-causing fungus and bacteria and dries out the moisture that lets these organisms grow.

Problem: Cold Sores
Home Cure:
Lemon balm tea

What to Do: Prepare lemon balm tea by brewing 2 to 4 tablespoons of the herb per cup of boiling water. Let it cool, then dot with a cotton ball on the cold sore several times a day.

Why It Works: Cold sores are caused by a herpes simplex virus (HSV). Lemon balm has antiviral properties that work to tame herpes outbreaks.

Problem: Eczema
Home Cure:
Olive Oil

What to Do: Apply olive oil directly to the irritated area. Rub 1 teaspoon per square inch of skin, which creates a seal that prevents skin from drying out. For serious cases, cover oil-slathered skin with plastic wrap overnight to lock moisture in.

Why it Works: Olive oil is packed with antioxidants that can reduce the inflammation associated with eczema. Olive oil is actually the base used for many moisturizers. When used alone, it lacks chemical irritants that you may find in store-bought creams.

Problem: Hiccups
Home Cure:

What to Do: Swallow one teaspoon of sugar (dry) to stop hiccups.

Why it Works: The sugar is believed to modify the nerve muscles that would otherwise tell the muscles in the diaphragm to contract spasmodically and contribute to hiccups.

Problem: Nausea
Home Cure:

What to Do: At the first hint of nausea, suck on a lemon.

Why it Works: Motion sickness causes you to produce excess saliva, which can make you nauseated. Lemons help dry out your mouth and can help soothe the queasy feeling.

Problem: Stained Teeth
Home Cure:

What to Do: Eat an apple a day.

Why it Works: Apples have a gentle malic acid that works on cleansing tooth enamel and helps dissolve stains.

Problem: Urinary Tract Infections
Home Cure:
Baking Soda

What to Do: At the first sign of symptoms, drink a solution made with ¼ teaspoon of baking soda mixed in 8 ounces of water. Continue this once a day until you can get a culture done at a doctor's office and start antibiotics.

Why it Works: Baking soda makes the bladder environment more alkaline, which reduces bacteria's ability to multiply.

Note: If your health issue does not improve with one of the recommended home cures, contact your doctor for an appointment to discuss other treatment options.


Gelman, L. 19 Bizarre Home Cures that Really Work. Prevention. Accessed January 29, 2010.

Kearl, M. Our Favorite Home Remedies. AOL Accessed January 29, 2010.

Lemon Balm, Information Page. University of Maryland Medical Center. January 29, 2010.

Olive Oil for Eczema. Accessed January 29, 2010.

O'Neill, J. Vital Signs: Treatments; For Warts, The Duct Tape Cure. The New York Times. Oct. 15, 2002. Accessed January 29, 2010.