I experienced and conquered the symptoms of tetanus (by the grace of God) after stepping on a rusty nail. Tetanus symptoms began to show up within a short time of this deep puncture wound, and I sought out natural remedies and herbal or holistic alternatives to treat it. Since, I lived to tell the story, I thought someone else asking the question, “How do I know if I have tetanus?” or “How do you treat tetanus?” might benefit from what I learned. Here’s the story:
I stepped on a rusty, dirty nail in a board hidden under leaves in the woods. The rusty nail punctured deep into my foot, right between my two smallest toes. The nail made such a deep cut, it nearly poked out of the top of my foot. Looking back, I wish it had. After I pulled the nail out, I did not realize it had left flakes of rusty metal and pieces of leaf inside. The moral of this story is: Clean deep wounds thoroughly with hydrogen peroxide.
This was the last day of moving, and I had been cleaning up the edge of the yard when this happened. I had kept first aid supplies on hand until the day before, but since I had nothing on hand at that moment, I pulled off my shoe and sock to let the wound bleed. I had heard that if the wound bled enough it would wash out most bacteria and be less likely to get tetanus. I do not bleed very well in general, but this time I really bled. Still, I got tetanus. It took me an hour to get somewhere I could tend the puncture wound. By then, it had begun to heal and I could not get peroxide very deep into the cut. What I should have done at this point was dug a pointed object into the wound and opened it back up so I could flush it out with water and then peroxide. Then I should have soaked it in boric acid water and Epsom salts. The main failure here, however, was not getting the wound thoroughly clean, right away.
By evening, my left foot felt weird. I could see a red area on top of my foot, but it was not hot. It felt agitated and bruised more than infected. I could feel activity in my lymph vessels like something was surging through my lymphatic system on the side where I had stepped on the nail.
I had a hard time concentrating on writing and study. Physical labor seemed to help distract me. I felt nauseous and vomited later on. By evening, I felt okay. I considered getting a tetanus shot, but shrugged it off, having endured many nails in the past that never led to anything serious (I used to roofing).
I noticed pulsations in my hand like my muscles were flexing on their own. That night I was trying to finish remodeling a bedroom, and began to feel strange. My heart would race and my shoulders began aching. I am not overweight, and I have never had blood pressure or pulse problems before, so this alarmed me. I worked until 2 AM and decided to do a web search on my symptoms. I read that muscle spasms and cramping were tetanus symptoms.
Worse yet, I learned that tetanus lives everywhere—in the dirt, on wood, in the dust on the furniture. I also grimaced to learn that tetanus is more than just lockjaw, but it locks up all the skeletal muscles with severe cramping and seizures. People die in convulsions, gasping for air.
Now, I could not tell if my heart was beating rapidly from an infection or from fear. What I read told me that a high pulse was an early sign of this deadly disease. I told myself I was imagining things, and too much coffee, not tetanus, was to blame for my symptoms. Caffeine did not explain the pings and twitches in my muscles or the recurring chills I felt. I had not told my wife my concerns and did not think I should wake her at that moment. I finally went to bed at 4 AM. Unfortunately, I did not get much sleep from having to visit the bathroom multiple times as my body cleaned out all food and liquid.
At 7 AM, I called a friend who is a midwife and former nurse. She told me to go to a walk-in clinic. She knew I should not play around with this disease. I called an express-care clinic and a nurse told me the tetanus shot was effective only within 72 hours of the cut or puncture wound (there is another shot you can get when hospitalized that will work after the 72 hour limit). My last tetanus shot had been 20 years before. My wife and I had taken my pulse by now, so I told the nurse my heart rate was over 120 beats per minute. She did not think I had tetanus but told me to come in anyway. I did not go in.
I found that walking helped slow my pulse and calm my nerves. That evening, I dug open the scab from the rusty nail wound. A gob of stuff came out of the deep wound. I saw no puss and felt no pain when I sprayed the peroxide. However, the hydrogen peroxide foamed a lot when I spray it inside. I tried to keep that foot bare and exposed so I would not have to wear a bandage. This allowed it to heal from the inside out. While cleaning out the deep wound like this, I should have probed further (in spite of the pain it would have caused). I missed a clump of leaves and dirt way up inside which would cause me problems later.
I expected the worst when I woke up, but had no dramatic symptoms. I felt physically drained and uncomfortable with the idea that something else was living inside my body. After, lunch, my colon emptied itself right away along with something that looked like green bile.
Another restless night. My calf muscle cramped up suddenly when I awoke. It felt like a Charlie horse, but when I stretched my leg the cramp went away. I had been fighting off little cramps like these all weekend. Once, when my infected foot cramped in the arch, I just let it constrict to see what would happen. It started to hurt, and then I flexed and it went away. Muscle twinges agitated my face. My eyelids felt like they wanted to flutter if I did not hold on, and my cheek muscles jerked and flexed. I figured this was lockjaw symptoms and I would lock up soon. All my strength was gone and I could not even undo a garden hose connection.
I went out to pick up natural remedies I had read about online. I tried Aconite, a homeopathic remedy. I got the 30C strength of the Aconite and held six or more of them under my tongue every fifteen minutes. My pulse slowed after a little over an hour of this, and my jaw stopped twitching. I talked to several natural and herbal health practitioners who said they had never dealt with tetanus. Online, I learned that only 50 people get tetanus per year. Most take the dT shot.
I started having trouble with fingers and limbs going numb—as if my blood was not circulating properly. Sometimes I would wake up and not feel much of a heartbeat and then suddenly my heart would pound like a logger’s boot kicking down a door. I woke up this morning to a stiff neck and shoulders as if I were suffering whiplash. When I tried to move my head, it ached badly. I finally knew for sure I had tetanus.
While crying out to the Lord in prayer later that morning, I was interrupted by a return call from a naturopathic doctor who said, “Get some good colloidal silver and take a tablespoon three times a day. And get the NOW brand Beta Glucan, and take two capsules twice a day.” I tried to explain to him what I was taking and he said, “I don’t care. A tablespoon of the best colloidal silver you can find—three times a day, and two caps of Beta Glucan, only from NOW.”
I drove out and bought these items and added what he had recommended to what I was doing already. My wife massaged my tight neck and shoulders with aromatherapy lavender oil in olive oil (I would probably use coconut as a carrier oil now).
I woke up to much less stiffness in my shoulders and neck, but the mid-section of my back had locked up now. Two read lines arched away from the spine and seemed to follow the ribs a bit. Any muscles that had cramped up on me got swollen or puffy.
We learned that tetanus systematically locks up the body muscles starting with the jaw, then the neck and shoulders, the back, the buttocks, the back of the legs, the front of the legs, and usually stops with the abdominal muscles and the diaphragm (breathing muscle). It stops here, of course, because a person suffocates by not being able to breathe any longer. We tried massaging the next muscle groups in advance to keep them from getting hit so hard.
I could only process fruits and fruit juices because all other foods would purge out immediately at this point. New constriction on lower right side of my back and buttocks.
Constriction came to my lower left back and upper legs. I kept taking aconite and hypericum to offset the symptoms of my high pulse. Aconite seemed to help a little, but the hypericum did not seem to do much. My heart felt mushy and uncomfortable.
My heart hurt for a while this morning. My appetite returned at this point and began eating more grapefruit.
My pulse returned to 70 and my heart felt more normal. My extremities had poor circulation still and would go numb if I sat in one position too long. Movement and stretches promote better blood flow, but nighttime made me nervous.
Pain in my abdomen indicated that my kidneys were hurting. This disease seemed to do a roll call my whole body.
I had a recurrence of all the symptoms: stiff neck, sore back, mini spasms, and minor cramping in muscle groups for about an hour each, in succession.
Two weeks later
Had a bad itch between my toes near the area where the dirty, rusty nail punctured my foot and gave me tetanus. I looked and saw what looked like athlete’s foot (which I had not had seen since teen years). When I went to treat it, I found it was like a water blister. It popped open and let out pieces of leaves and dirt. This area had become a pocket of infection above where the wound had healed on the surface of the skin. This is why I say wound care is the most important part of preventing tetanus (most tetanus victims have been vaccinated).
Cleaning out the wound must have stirred up more tetanus toxins because I had another run of symptoms for a day or so. The tetanus disease is not the cause of the symptoms, but the toxins it creates. Those toxins affect the brain, as I understand it, and trigger certain nerves to make the muscles contract (the opposite of botulism toxins, which paralyze a person).
I am not giving medical advice to anyone. I am sure there are things you might be able to add to this to help someone else in the future. For reference, my daily supplements included:
Colloidal silver – 3 tablespoons of 50 ppm
Beta Glucan from NOW – 2 capsules
Vitamin C – a few tablets because studies show Vitamin C can prevent death from tetanus,
Garlic – 5 capsules to fight infection
Olive leaf extract – 2 capsules to fight infection
Grapefruit Extract only from NOW
Bromelain and Calcium to reduce muscle pain
Fish Oil – 2 caps to clean the arteries and heal the heart
Milk thistle – 1 capsule daily to cleanse the liver
Also, Glucosamine sulfate with MSM, Colostrum, Oregano, and Echinacea.
I give all thanks to my Lord Jesus Christ who brought me through this ordeal and spared me from what could have been much worse. I also thank my wife for her moral support. I started by asking, “How do I know if I have tetanus?” and then “How do you treat tetanus?” Now I know how important it is to clean a puncture wound with hydrogen peroxide. I have also learned to soak deep wounds in warm water with a tablespoon of boric acid.
Please share your experiences or insight in the comment section below.
If you have trouble keeping your livestock inside the fence, you probably are not feeding them enough. Sheep, goats, pigs, and even horses, donkeys, and cows will fly the coop if you do not feed them enough. It should not take much of a fence to keep cows. Five strands of barbed wire fencing will keep cows in indefinitely, as long as they have plenty to eat. Go by an overgrazed cow pasture and you will see the fence leaning over where the bovines have pushed their heads through, trying to get the proverbial greener grass on the other side of the fence.
Use quality fence materials
Some of the best fencing is the sheep and goat fencing rolls. These rolls stretch 330 feet and have 4-inch-by-4-inch openings. This tight-weave fence is tight enough to keep goats from getting their heads through and stuck. If you use the cheaper field fence (also called hog wire), you will keep smaller pigs in, but goats will get their heads stuck if they have horns. Some goat owners walk their fence line daily to pull out the goats’ heads. Save time and frustration and prevent an animal from getting dehydrated by getting the right fencing material to hang on your wooden posts or metal T-posts. For particularly troublesome animals you may try the 2×4 wire made for horses since they cannot climb it. If you buy 2×4 wire, get the woven type not the cheaper welded version, as it will break apart after a few years. One of the best sources for fencing products is Red Brand, but the price is a bit higher than others. Make sure you keep any wire fence tight by building quality H-frame ends.
Hogs will get through any fence that is not set in concrete. If they can get their nose under it, they will push through if they get hungry. Many homesteaders build their hog pens with hog panels (very thick wire) and concrete floors.
Downsize your herd or flock
If you have trouble keeping your animals in with good fencing, you have to either start buying them hay or downsize your flock. In our area, we can have a drought from July through August and have to start feeding hay. One year, my neighbor had to start feeding hay in August and kept feeding all the way through to April the next year. One of our goats decided she did not want to eat any more of the brush we were trying to get her clear, so she developed the ability to run, jump, volley off the middle of the fence, and jump over the fence. She should have been a gymnast. We sold her the day she jumped into the garden.
Get quality fencing material (for sheep and goats) like this.
Grapefruit Seed Extract can serve you well or it can be an utter nightmare. Taking someone’s recommendation for a disease I was fighting, I took large quantities of the grapefruit seed extract I picked up at the health food store. Since it tastes so horrible, we put the grapefruit seed extract inside capsules so I could swallow it without gagging or burning my throat. Instead, I burned out my innards. You do not want to know the details, but it convulsed my intestines and cleaned me out. I doubt I retained enough of it to do any infection fighting.
Later, since we could not take this form of GSE (grapefruit seed extract) internally, I figured I could use it topically. However, it literally burned my skin. The areas I had rubbed with it turned red within an hour and hurt so bad I wanted to punch a hole in the wall. Relief came about twelve hours after I washed the burned skin and treated it with Vitamin E and fresh Aloe Vera plant leaves. I have determined that the Grapefruit Seed Extract by Nutribiotics is junk. I was using it to treat an outbreak of impetigo on my face and it worked well to kill it initially, but then all the burned areas got infected and this skin infection took over my face for a few days until I got it under control again (more on that later).
The best form of grapefruit extract we have found is by NOW Foods. This company consistently produces some of the best supplements for almost every health concern. We only buy NOW Foods Grapefruit Complex which comes from grapefruit bioflavinoids. I used it on my skin and it helped kill the impetigo without destroying the good skin. I can even mix it in fruit juice and it does not burn my throat or have too strong of a flavor (although it is not pleasant either).
My wife and I have used NOW GSE for a variety of conditions, taking whole droppers full in a capsule without any discomfort or upset to the intestinal tract. However, GSE is such a powerful antibiotic it will clean out the good bacteria. Follow any internal treatment of Grapefruit Seed Extract with acidophilus and other blood-type friendly bacteria to restore a healthful balance in your intestines. By the way, we recommend acidophilus from NOW as well. Save yourself some frustration and start with Now’s Grapefruit Complex.
Grown and produced in Japan, we are honored and delighted to offer this exceptional product, Mr. Itaru’s Special Green Tea Blend, “Gen Mai Cha”. The secret to getting great health benefits from green tea comes down to a single, simple concept…use the highest quality green tea leaves in order to maximize consumption of health promoting compounds. The search to provide the finest green tea to our patients at D’Adamo Naturopathic Associates culminated with our finding this special green tea. “Gen Mai Cha” literally translates as brown rice tea. It is a traditional favorite in Japan and combines toasted brown rice with the finest premium green tea leaves.
The history of green tea in Japan begins with the introduction of tea by Zen Buddhist monks in the 9th century. Because of its relative scarcity, only monks, members of the imperial court, and eventually, wealthy landowners were able to enjoy this prized beverage. The famous Japanese “tea ceremonies” evolved as a means of sharing this exclusive beverage. In the 18th century, novel processing and growing methods resulted in the introduction of green tea and its spread into all corners of Japanese society.
Green tea is actually the same plant as its more well-known cousin black tea; however, special processing retains a far greater antioxidant profile in green tea leaves, resulting in a far and away superior beverage for supporting health. Numerous scientific studies now document the tremendous benefits of drinking green tea. Some of the numerous health benefits of green tea include:
- Green tea provides powerful antioxidant polyphenols (estimated as 25X the antioxidant activity of vitamin E and 100X that of vitamin C)
- It promotes growth of friendly intestinal bacteria
- Green Tea decreases toxic bowel metabolites (like polyamines)
- Promotes cardiovascular health, prevents blood cell aggregation and improves cholesterol metabolism
- Inhibits toxin and carcinogen producing enzymes like ornithine decarboxylase
- Epidemiological evidence suggests regular consumption of green tea reduces the risk of many cancers
Mr. Itaru’s Blend is mildly caffeinated, but it is important to realize that many of the anti-cancer properties of green tea are lost if it is de-caffeinated.
MAKING GREEN TEA:
When making green tea it is not necessary or desirable to use boiling water. Moderately warm to hot water is best. Tea leaves should be placed in the water for about 30 seconds (45 seconds at the longest) and removed. Superior quality green tea should look light green when prepared in this manner.
My Aunt (sister to my widower uncle) left for Alaska leaving Uncle to, more or less, fend for himself. Now, low and behold, he made his very own bread! I am surprised.
Since he really likes the yeast flavor, so he added extra. He told my aunt on the phone that if she hears an explosion all the way up in Alaska, she will know what happened!
The doctors have been giving him fits about his medications, but he is supposed to be coming up on some doctor’s visits soon. We are hoping to find out more details on how the cancer is coming along… or not. Stay tuned.
Most do-it-yourselfers do not know how to install flooring, especially vinyl flooring (what used be called linoleum). Vinyl flooring installation has become easier than ever now since you do not have to have to glue it down or use complicated tools to install it.
Tools you need for installing roll flooring
– Utility knife (like a Stanley with a changeable blade)
– Framing square (the big kind that measure 16” by 24” in an L shape)
– Tape measure (a simple 25’ tape will do fine)
– Pencil (sharpened, of course)
– Vinyl flooring (enough for the area you will be doing)
– Building paper (a roll of red rosin paper or sturdy construction paper)
– Masking tape (the cheap tan-colored stuff will work fine for this project)
– Double-sided flooring tape (made especially for vinyl floors)
Prepare the floor
If you are working with an old floor, consider leaving it there. If the new vinyl you are buying has a foam backing, it will cover up the bumps and grooves underneath. If the old floor has rips or holes, consider pulling it up. Unfortunately, many old vinyl floors have glued holding them to the plywood floor. This can be an exhausting removal project. On the project you see pictures from here, we started to take up the old floor but it was too heavily glued. We scraped and tapered it down around the edges, leaving the bulk of the old floor in the middle. The new floor covers it so well, you would never know.
At this point you will want to remove the commode (if in a bathroom) or refrigerator and stove (if in a kitchen) and whatever else the floor will need to go under.
Measure the floor
With your tape measure, you want to make two long measurements: one across, the other the length. For our church kitchen, the largest parts of the floor spanned 11’6” by 19’6”. So, we bought a piece of flooring 12 foot by 20 foot. At this point, you do not want to roll out the new floor and try to carve it around the cabinets. This is where most homeowners make a disaster of their project from not knowing how to install a vinyl floor best. Set the new roll of flooring in the garage or other safe place for now.
Bring in the construction paper, and unroll it in the area where the new flooring will go. Get it close to the wall and up under the cabinet toe areas, but it does not have to touch. In fact, try to keep the paper about an inch away from all the edges of the floor. This paper will be the pattern for when you install the vinyl flooring. On the kitchen floor in the picture, we had to run about three widths of paper, which we taped together. Cut around cabinet edges and other protrusions, keeping your cuts within an inch of all interruptions. You may have to cut strips of paper to fill in doorways or other odd spots.
Once you have laid out the paper and taped it together, cut half moon circles in the floor. Stick a piece of tape through the slice to hold down the paper to the old floor so the paper pattern does not float around while you make your marks.
Once the paper lies in place, set the long edge of your framing square against the wall or cabinets and scribe alongside with your pencil. This will put a mark exactly 2 inches from the finished edge. Keep moving your framing square, being sure to always use the long side, and trace the outline of the whole room. When you go to cut out the new flooring, you will hold this same tool on the same line and cut the outside edge with your knife. This will save you from hacking your way around walls and corners, trying to work with the flooring in place (a sure-fire disaster).
Transfer the pattern
Find a large flat surface to lay out your new flooring such as in the garage or even in the driveway. For the church kitchen, I carried the new flooring to the church gymnasium and let it lie flat there. Once that is in place, detach the paper pattern off the old floor (just loosen the tape in the moon-shape cuts). Roll it up and carry it to the new flooring (which should be showing the finished surface—do not attempt to cut it upside down). You can probably reuse the same anchoring tape (in the moon-shape holes) to stick it to the new flooring. If your new floor has a straight pattern (woodgrain, tile) line up your longest edge with one of those straight patterns. Or, hold the longest line on the pattern 2” from the edge of the roll. This will give you a perfectly straight line to start with. Unfortunately, our project did not allow us to use the factory edge in any spot.
Now, grab the same framing square you used to make your marks, and set it against the pencil mark you made. Now cut on the opposite side of the square (not the pencil mark) and this will give you a perfect finish cut that will snug right up to the wall or cabinet in the room. If you are working over another finished floor, protect it from knife marks by putting another piece of roll flooring or a few layers of construction paper under it. Do not do this over carpet unless you lay down sheets of plywood for a solid surface to cut against.
Just a few minutes of careful cutting will leave you a perfect duplicate of the room’s footprint. When finished, remove the paper and roll it up. Now, roll up the new flooring and carry it to its destination. Sweep thoroughly to be sure absolutely no dirt remains in corners or anywhere it will leave bumps in the vinyl surface.
If you have uneven flooring with chunks missing or knotholes, buy a flooring lever. This product works like drywall mud for the floor, but it is waterproof. Spread it smooth and evenly and let it set until has cured completely (usually 24 hours). Do not worry about cracks or shrinkage as thick vinyl flooring can span cracks as big as 1/4 inch.
You can buy flooring up to 15’ wide. Anything larger, you will have to seam down the middle. Join the two pieces of flooring with double-sided tape. First, however, make sure the pattern of your floor will match up at the joint to look like one solid piece (ask the sales clerk to help you find some that does). Wood-grain flooring works very well for a floor that needs a seam. When laying out the pattern, join the two pieces of vinyl with masking tape; only put the double-sided tape under the two pieces once you have set them in place (you do not want to have to carry two taped pieces from one room to another).
Put the flooring in place
Carefully unroll the cut flooring and jiggle it into the corners. If you have followed the instructions correctly, you will have a masterpiece floor in the easiest way possible. Pull back sections where heavy appliances will go and put an X of double-sided tape. Add a strip of double-sided tape in front of the sink or other high-traffic area. Cut out your air vent holes now by slicing an X into the hole (you can feel it through the flooring) and pop the vents into place. Where the flooring meets another floor surface (in the doorway for example) buy a flooring edger (a.k.a. floor transition plate) and tack it down. Now you can see why a floor like this does not need glue with all the vents, tack strips, and appliances holding it in place.
For the best laser printer, you will have to try the Okidata. Walking through an office supply store, I started pushing the demo button on all the printers. I was just tire kicking, not planning to buy anything. Then I pushed it—the big red button on the Okidata printer. Out came a shiny picture of paint cans. I was shocked. This laser printer put out a photo quality picture on normal paper. I could not believe the glossy quality from such a common-looking printer. I pushed the button again to be sure it was not just a fluke. I decided I had to have it.
That day was seven years ago. I have only grown to love my Okidata glossy printer through the years. I have printed hundreds of thousands of pages, labels, booklets, and books on this machine. It has paid for itself many times over and boosted my public image at the same time. You see why I think the Oki color printers are the best laser printers in the business.
After trying a few toner refill companies, I gave up on cheap refills. Then I found uninetimaging.com. These people make toner refilling a noble profession. With their perfectly-matched toner, I get the same great printouts for less than a penny per page. The refill process is a snap with the Okidata glossy color laser printers. I also rebuild my own toner drum units, too. Uninetimaging.com sells the drums for this printer, and they last longer than the original drums from Oki.
I had owned my Oki printer a few months when I realized my need for a duplexing unit. I bought the optional duplexer so I could print on both sides of the page (essential for booklets and trifolds). I suggest you save a little money by purchasing your printer with a built-in duplexer.
The letters on the Oki model number tell everything. Take my Oki c5150dn for example. The letter C stands for “color.” The D stands for “duplexing” (printing on both sides). The N stands for “networking” so you can hook it up to a server and print from several computers.
Sizes and options
If you are printing for regular use, try the Okidata C6150dn or the Oki C5550n in the $600-700 range. For daily use, look into the Oki C5650dn in the $1000-1500 range. Most people will settle for something like the Okidata C6150dn, a great multipurpose unit that prints up to legal size (8.5 by 14) and does card stock and envelopes, too.
If you are doing industrial grade printing all the time, plan on spending $2000 or so. This Oki C830n unit prints tabloids and banners: