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Glossary of Therapeutic Terms
Antibiotic/Antibacterial - Prevents bacterial growth.
Antioxidant - Capable of inhibiting free radial damage in the cells of the body.
Antifungal - Prevents fungal growth.
Anti-infective - Prevents the growth and spread of infections.
Anti-inflammatory - Reduces excess redness and swelling in damaged tissues.
Antimicrobal - Prevents or inhibits the growth of microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi or protozoans.
Antirhuematic - having to do with not inflaming the joints and pain of rhuematism.
Antiseptic - Destroys microbes on surfaces and prevents their further development.
Antispasmodic - Prevents or relieves muscle spasms, convulsions, contractions, and coughs.
Antitussive - A substance which relieves coughs.
Antiviral - Prevents viral growth.
Aphrodisiac - Acts to increase sexual desire or pleasure.
Astringent - A substance that constricts and tightens body tissues.
Balsamic - Soothes the irritation of sore throats, coughs, etc.
Bronchial dialator - Opens the bronchial tubes in the lungs for relief and ease of breathing in respiratory infections.
Calmative - Sedating, calming agent
Cardiovascular Tonic - Tones and strengthens the heart and veins.
Carminative - Relieves flatulence, easing abdominal pain and bloating.
Catarrhal - Inflammation and phlegm in mucous membranes that has resulted from infections or allergic reactions.
Cephalic - Pertaining to the head, specifically a headache.
Cerebral Stimulant - Stimulating to the brain and central nervous system.
Cholagogue - Promotes the evacuation of bile from the gall bladder and gall ducts.
Cicatrisant/Cicatrisive - Aids in the healing of wounds.
Circulatory Stimulant - Increases the circulation of blood throughout the body.
Coagulation - The ability of the blood to form clots when necessary.
Corticosteroid - Steroid hormones produced in the adrenal cortex. They're involved in the stress response, immune response and the regulation of inflammation, carbohydrate and protein metabolism, blood electrolyte levels and aspects of our behavior.
Cortisone-like - A substance with properties similar to cortisone. Cortisone suppresses undue immune response, thus reducing inflammation, pain, and swelling at the site of an injury.
Cytophylactic - Promotes cell regeneration at the site of an injury., which speeds healing and reduces scarring.
Depurative - Eliminates toxins and purifies the system.
Diaphoretic - Induces a sweat. Used when the immune response of fever and sweat by the body has been insufficient to kill infectious microbes.
Disinfectant - Destroys harmful micro-organisms.
Diuretic - Promotes the removal of excess water from the tissues of the body. This usually increases urine output by the kidneys.
Emmenagogue - Induces or regulates menstruation.
Emesis - Vomiting.
Emollient - A substance that soothes and softens the skin.
Endocrine Stimulant - The endocrine system consists of glands which secrete various types of hormones to regulate body functions. It also includes the information system which communicates hormone needs between different organs and systems. An endocrine stimulant acts to increase the action of some or all of the endocrine system.
Estrogenic - While estrogen is a necessary female hormone, too much estrogen is associated with several unwanted things including breast and cervical cancers.
Expectorant - Promotes removal of mucous from the body.
Febrifuge - An agent that controls fever, keeping it at optimum levels for levels for killing microbes but not too high.
Fungicidal - A substance that acts against fungal infections.
Galactagogue - Induces the flow of milk in nursing mothers.
Hemostatic - Inhibits or stops bleeding and hemorrhage.
Hepatic - Acts on the liver to balance and to cleanse.
Histaminic - A chemical our body produces as a natural response to foreign pathogens. A substance that is antihistaminic neutralizes the action of histamine or inhibits its over-production in the body.
Hormonal - An agent that brings the hormone levels, of the body, back into balance.
Hyper/Hypo-Tensor - Stabilizes the blood pressure, whether the blood pressure is too high or too low.
Immunostimulant - Stimulates the action of the immune system.
Insecticidal - Agents and subtances that control insects.
Laxative - Substances that induce bowel movements or loosen the stool.
Lymphatic Decongestant - A substance that cleanses and drains the lymph.
Menstrual Regulator - Substances that balance the hormones and regulate the timing of the menstrual cycle.
Mucolytic - Agents that liquify mucous and assist the body to dispose of it.
Muscle Relaxant - Relaxes the muscles and calms cramping sensations.
Neuralgic - Neuralgics help heal the nerves and quiet spasmodic pain that runs along the nerves.
Neuro-Muscular - A neuro-muscular agent aids the healing of a muscle and the nerves that feed it.
Nervine - Acts on the nerves; relieves nervous disorders.
Parasites - Micro-Organisms that form a dependent relationship with a host organism or body. Bacteria, viruses and fungi are examples of parasites.They may live within the body or on the skin's surface.
Pectoral - Beneficial for diseases or conditions of the chest and respiratory system.
Putrescent - The decay, decomposition and breakdown of tissues, usually with festering and infection.
Prostate Decongestant - Decongests and strengthens the function of the prostate.
Regenerative - Aids in the re-creation of lost or damaged tissue.
Restorative - Stimulant for nerves and adrenal cortex.
Revitalizer - Providing energy and health to the mind and body.
Rheumatism/Rheumatic - Having to do with the pain or the cause of painful joints.
Rubefacient - Dilates (opens) the capillaries, improving circulation to the extremities and to the skin.
Sclerosis - The hardening of cells and tissues (e.g.- Multiple Sclerosis is the hardening of nerves in the central nervous system; brain and spinal cord).
Seborrhea - Excessive secretion of the microspcopic glands (sebaceous) which lubricate the skin and hair.
Sedative - Reduces mental excitement or physical activity.
Soporific - Induces, or a tendency to induce, sleep and relaxation.
Stimulant - Increases the function of an organ or body system;increases alertness or wakefulness.
Styptic - An astringent that promotes the contracting of tissues and blood vessels for the control of bleeding.
Stomachic - Good for the stomach; gastric tonic, digestive aid.
Sudorific - Produces a sweat or a healthy, germ-killing fever.
Tonic - Invigorates, restores and maintains bodily functions.
Tranquilizing - Relieving anxiety or tension; promoting calm.
Vasoconstrictor - Causes the blood vessels to contract; slows blood flow through capillaries.
Vermifuge - Promotes healing of wounds and sore by external application.
Vulnerary - Promotes the healing of wounds and sores by external application.
Warming - Increases overall circulation and the movement of energy throughout the body.
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