Part Used: Fresh young branchlets
Thuja (Thuja occidentalis) is an evergreen conifer, which can reach a height of 20m in its native habitat. It is indigenous to North America, forming dense forests. The name "Thuja" is a latinized form of a Greek word meaning 'to fumigate,' or thuo ('to sacrifice'), for the fragrant wood was burnt by the ancients with sacrifices. The herb mainly contains the bitter principle, Pinipicrin, and the tannic acid, said to be identical with Pinitannic acid. It also contains volatile oil, sugar, gelatinous matter, wax, resin, and Thujin. It has been used as nerve stimulant, expectorant, stimulant to smooth muscles, particularly the bronchial muscle and the genito-urinary system and vasculature; emmenagogue, antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, diuretic, astringent, counter-irritant, stimulating alterative, and vermifuge. It is mainly indicated in bronchial catarrh, enuresis, cystitis, psoriasis, amenorrhoea, and rheumatism. Its main action is due to its stimulating and alterative volatile oil.
Thuja has a specific reflex action on the uterus and may help in delayed menstruation, but because of this action is should be avoided in pregnancy. Thuja may be used where ordinary incontinence occurs due to loss of muscle tone. It is also used in the treatment of psoriasis and rheumatism. Externally it may be used to treat warts. In some of the studies a marked anti-fungal effect is found if used externally for ringworm and thrush. It should be avoided during pregnancy. Thuja is a smooth muscle stimulant with a specific reflex action on the uterus and thus may help in delayed menstruation. It is of use in cases of enuresis and cystitis. It may also be used where loss of muscle tone causes urinary incontinence. Thuja has a role to play in the treatment of psoriasis and rheumatism; a hot compress eases rheumatic pains. An infusion may also be applied externally to scabies and impetigo. It counteracts the side-effects of smallpox vaccination, and has been used as a constituent of a herbal regime for the treatment of carcinomas of the chest and breasts.
Holistic Online. http://www.holisticonline.com/Herbal-Med/_Herbs/h302.htm
Purple Sage Botanicals. http://www.purplesage.org.uk/profiles/thuja.htm