Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, is a versatile household product with a variety of medicinal and practical uses. It’s used to eliminate bad odor, clean stains, soothe stomachache and even extinguish small fires. Such a multi-purpose product should automatically secure a spot in your survival stockpile. But if you’re still not convinced, here’s a list of some of the medicinal and survival uses of baking soda: (h/t to DoomAndBloom.com)
Treats insect bites and itchy skin
Baking soda is commonly used as a remedy for itchy skin. Insect bites can become common, especially if you’re out in the garden every day tending your crops. Having baking soda around may help alleviate that itch.
Make a paste by mixing baking soda and water and apply it like a balm onto the affected area.
Keeps a wound clean
Baking soda has mild antiseptic properties that may help keep a wound clean. It can also help soften and remove the scab once the wound is no longer painful or draining. When treating a wound, use a baking soda paste and apply it to the affected area. Leave it on for 15 minutes then rinse thoroughly.
Treats stuffy nose
Baking soda is used to clear congested sinuses. It’s said to add moisture inside the nose, dissolving and softening thick or crusty mucus. To make a decongestant, add baking soda to hot water and inhale the vapor.
Heartburn, or acid reflux, is a painful, burning sensation that comes from the upper region of your stomach and often spreads up to your throat. It’s caused by an acidic stomach and is usually treated with baking soda. Baking soda can neutralize stomach acid.
To treat heartburn, dissolve a teaspoon of baking soda in a glass of cold water and drink the solution. Keep in mind that baking soda is high in sodium, so ingesting it regularly may elevate your body’s sodium levels.
A baking soda mouthwash can freshen your breath and reduce bad bacteria in your mouth. Studies also suggest that it can soothe pain caused by canker sores, which are small, painful ulcers that form inside the mouth.
To make an effective mouthwash, dissolve one-and-a-half teaspoons of baking soda in half a glass of warm water. You can also add three percent hydrogen peroxide for a fresher breath.
Neutralizes bad odor
Baking soda is popular for eliminating bad odor. It interacts with odor particles and neutralizes them instead of just masking their smell. The use of baking soda as a deodorizer has several applications. You can use it to get rid of the smell in your refrigerator, shoes, living room, car and armpits.
Cleans fruits and vegetables
Research shows that soaking fruits and vegetables in a baking soda wash could effectively remove pesticides. If you’re growing your own food, baking soda may also help remove dirt and harmful germs. Soak fresh produce in a solution of baking soda and water for 12 to 15 minutes. (Related: Baking soda in the garden: 10 natural remedy uses for this basic household staple.)
Cleans surfaces and household products
Baking soda is an excellent multi-purpose cleaning agent. It can be used for cleaning kitchen and bathroom surfaces, septic tanks, drain pipes and mildewed sponges, among other things. Baking soda can also be used to remove battery corrosion, which is important for keeping your bug-out car and generators in good shape.
Extinguishes small fires
Fire extinguishers used to stamp out oil, grease and electrical fires contain baking soda. That’s because when heated, it produces carbon dioxide, which helps smother the fire. If you encounter a small fire while cooking, throw handfuls of baking soda at the base of the flame to extinguish it.
Preppers looking for a versatile product that can address a lot of their survival needs will find much value in having baking soda handy. Besides its many uses, baking soda is also cheap, so stockpiling it isn’t going to be costly.