Aloe vera is a medicinal plant that’s been used to treat various health conditions for thousands of years. It’s usually safe to use also vera directly from the plant or you can buy it in gel form.
Aloe vera creams, gels, and ointments contain the clear gel found in aloe veraleaves. These products can be applied topically to treat various skin conditions. Aloe is sold in capsule or liquid form to take internally to promote health and well-being.
Read on to learn how to use aloe vera and the potential benefits and risks.
There are plenty of ways you can use aloe vera, both topically and internally.
1. Heals burns
Due to its soothing, moisturizing, and cooling properties, aloe vera is often used to treat burns.
A 2013 studyTrusted Source with 50 participants found that people who used aloe vera gel to treat superficial and partial thickness burns showed better results than the group that used a 1 percent silver sulfadiazine cream.
The aloe vera group showed earlier wound healing and pain relief. Plus, aloe vera had the benefit of being inexpensive.
More research is needed, but the available evidenceTrusted Source suggests that aloe gel can be beneficial for burn wound healing.
If you have a sunburn or another mild burn, apply aloe vera a few times a day to the area. If you have a severe burn, seek medical help before applying aloe.
2. Improves digestive health
Consuming aloe vera may benefit your digestive tract and help to soothe and cure stomach ailments, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
A 2018 review looked at three studies with 151 people. Results from the studies showed that aloe vera significantly improved symptoms of IBS when compared to a placebo. No adverse effects were reported, though more research is needed using a larger study size.
Additionally, aloe vera may help inhibit the growth of H. pylori bacteria, which is found in your digestive tract and can lead to ulcers.
Keep in mind that this advice is for aloe vera only. Other aloe plants may be poisonous and should not be taken internally.
3. Promotes oral health
Aloe vera toothpaste and mouthwash are natural options for improving oral hygiene and reducing plaque.
Results of a 2017 studyTrusted Source found that people who used an aloe vera toothpaste showed significant improvements to their oral health.
The study included 40 adolescents who were divided into two groups. Each group used either an aloe vera toothpaste or a traditional toothpaste containing triclosan twice daily.
After 30 days, the aloe toothpaste was found to be more effective than the triclosan toothpaste in lowering levels of candida, plaque, and gingivitis.
People who used the aloe vera toothpaste showed better overall oral health without experiencing any adverse effects.
4. Clears acne
Using fresh aloe on your face may help clear up acne. You can also purchase aloeproducts designed for acne, including cleansers, toners, and creams. These may have the extra benefit of containing other effective ingredients, too.
Acne products made with aloe may be less irritating to the skin than traditional acne treatments.
A small 2014 study found that a cream combining conventional acne medication with aloe vera gel was significantly more effective than acne medication alone or a placebo in treating mild to moderate acne.
In this study, improvements were seen in lower levels of inflammation and fewer lesions in the group who used the combination cream over a period of eight weeks.
5. Relieves anal fissures
If you have anal fissures, applying an aloe vera cream to the affected area several times throughout the day may help promote healing.
A 2014 studyTrusted Source found that using a cream containing aloe vera juice powder was effective in treating chronic anal fissures. People used the aloe cream three times a day for six weeks.
Improvements were shown in pain, hemorrhaging upon defection, and wound healing. These results were significantly different from those of the control group. While this research is promising, further studies are needed to expand upon this research.
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