How To Use Castor Oil To Treat Knee Pain?

Learn the easiest way to use this multipotent oil to improve joint health.

Medically reviewed by Dr. Benita Perch, ND
Written by Kushneet Kukreja
Edited by Arshiya Syeda
Fact-checked by Dipti Sharma  • 

Use castor oil to treat knee pain if you want an effective home remedy for your aching knees while you wait for your appointment with your healthcare provider. Castor oil’s antimicrobial qualities can help with a variety of ailments. It is not only an antibacterial compound, but also antifungal in nature. Castor oil is frequently applied topically to alleviate painful illnesses, such as arthritic knees, sciaticai, and back pain. The efficacy of castor oil is praised by persons with pain-related disorders and those who suffer from reoccurring knee injuries. It’s an excellent option for over-the-counter pain relievers. For knee discomfort and its better lubrication, you can combine this therapeutic oil with prescribed treatment procedures or other home remedies. Continue reading to learn more about how castor oil works and how to use it to relieve your achy knees.

protip_icon Trivia
The scientific name of castor oil, Ricinus, is a Latin word for tick. Swedish naturalist Carolus Linnaeus named it that because the castor seed looks like a tick.

How Effective Is Castor Oil For Knee Pain?

Woman applying castor oil on knee pain
Image: Shutterstock

Usually, castor oil is applied topically to joint pains, sciatica and knee pain to help ease the pain and provide relief. You can apply a bit of hot castor oil directly to the knee joint and leave it on for maximum benefits, or you can make a castor oil pack. Let’s look at what we need for a castor oil pack and how to go about making one!

What Do You Need To Make A Castor Oil Pack?

Castor oil in a glass
Image: Shutterstock

Required Supplies:

  • High-quality castor oil (preferably pale yellow cold-pressed oil)
  • A heating pad or a hot water bottle
  • Plastic wrap, cellophane tape, plastic sheet, cling film or an empty bin-liner.
  • Three ‘1 square foot’ pieces of cotton or wool, or a piece large enough to cover the knee.
  • An old towel.

How To Prepare:

  1. Take the cloth and soak it in hot water.
  2. Pour some castor oil on it, but make sure the oil is not dripping from the cloth.
  3. Position the cloth on the sore knee, wrap it up with the cling film to hold it in place.
  4. Consider wrapping cellophane to prevent oil from spilling on to the sheets. Alternatively, consider using the old towel to prevent oil spills.
  5. Leave on for 6 to 7 hours.

protip_icon Quick Tip
You may also use black castor oil to treat your knee pain. The difference is that the yellow oil is obtained by cold-pressing fresh beans, while the black oil is obtained by roasting the beans.

This castor oil wrap for knee pain will provide long lasting relief. Soon, knee pain won’t be slowing you down any longer (1).
Man with castor oil wrap for knee pain
Image: Shutterstock

So, How Does The Castor Oil Pack Work?

  1. Castor oil packs usually increase the number of lymphocytes. The T-cell is a type of lymphocytei  XA type of white blood cell in the immune system that is made in the bone marrow and helps the body to fight against infection. that helps increase cell-mediated immunity. The castor oil pack increases the total T-cell count within a 24-hour period. Lymphocytes usually defend the body, creating antibodies for pathogens and toxins.
Castor oil in a glass bottle
Image: Shutterstock
  1. T-cells are a type of WBC, designed to repel disease. The T-cell identifies and kills viruses, bacteria, fungi and in some cases even cancer cells. Castor oil packs boost the healing of injuries sustained. The only thing to note is that castor oil should always be applied to the wound, where the skin is not broken (2).
Castor oil in a glass bottle
Image: Shutterstock
  1. Recently, pharmaceutical organizations came up with a less sticky, non-oily version of castor oil. Castiva arthritis pain relief is a lotion that provides all the benefits of a castor oil pack. It has been recorded as equally effective in combating knee pain. It is available for sale online on many websites (3). Many pharmacies also stock Castiva, and you can get it from either source. It is made from a castor oil base.
  1. Castiva can be either a cooling or a warming formula. Capsaicin is what lends chillies their signature hot flavor. The warming formula in capsaicin has long been used to treat joint pain. Combining capsaicin with castor oil is a popular way of treating knee pain.

The cooling lotion of Castiva is equally effective, yet it has a different chemical composition than the warming lotion. It contains methyl salicylate/menthol. Menthol is known as a cooling agent, and on being combined with castor oil, it forms Castiva cooling lotion. You can buy it online; it’s usually a tad expensive than the warming lotion (4). A recent study on castor oil has helped determine the efficacy of castor oil for knee joint pain treatment (5).

Infographic: How To Use Castor Oil For Knee Pain

Using castor oil for managing knee pain has been an age-old home remedy and natural remedy. You can easily prepare a castor oil pack to ease pain at home. The infographic below gives a snapshot of the things required to make this pack and the steps to use it. Scroll down and check it out.

how to use castor oil for knee pain (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Save the high-quality PDF version on your device now.

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Download Infographic in PDF version

Knee pain can be debilitating and caused due to a variety of factors, including arthritisi  XAn inflammation, swelling, or tenderness of one or more joints, causing pain that worsens with age. , osteoporosisi  XA condition in which bones become weak and brittle due to loss of bone density, which also increases the risk of fractures. , and the buildup of toxins or pathogens. Studies have shown castor oil to treat knee pain effectively when applied in the right method and combinations. Cold-pressed pure castor oil used in a warm compress and left on for several hours can alleviate the pain. You may also opt for cooling or warming formulations in over-the-counter ointments containing capsaicin or menthol and castor oil. Castor oil cannot cure the underlying cause of your knee pain, so it is best to seek medical guidance for recurring or persistent knee pain.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does applying castor oil to the belly button help treat knee pain?

Possibly not. While anecdotal evidence suggests that the traditional method of rubbing the belly button with castor oil may help alleviate knee pain, there is no scientific research to support this.

Does castor oil help treat osteoarthritis?

Yes, castor oil may help with the pain, inflammation, and swelling in individuals with osteoarthritis and other musculoskeletal issues, thanks to its anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties (5), (6).

Are there any side effects of using castor oil for knee pain?

It is safe to use castor oil for knee pain unless you are allergic to the oil. However, ingesting castor oil may cause vomiting, bloating, abdominal pain, and dizziness.

How long does it take for castor oil to relieve knee pain?

It will start reducing in a week’s time. Applying castor oil for one or two weeks continuously may help relieve knee pain completely.

Can castor oil be used in combination with other treatments for knee pain?

There is no harm in using castor oil if you are taking other treatments for knee pain. However, inform your doctor about it before starting.

How often should I apply castor oil to my knee for pain relief?

For best results, you can apply castor oil once daily till the pain subsides. Later, you can reduce the frequency.

Is castor oil safe to use on sensitive or irritated skin around the knee?

Generally, castor oil is safe to use on sensitive and irritated skin. Its anti-inflammatory properties may help heal the skin. However, it is best to avoid applying it if you feel any discomfort.

Should I consult a healthcare professional before using castor oil for knee pain?

Yes, consult a healthcare professional before using castor oil so that you get a proper diagnosis of the pain as castor oil can only alleviate the pain, but it won’t treat any underlying cause if any.

Key Takeaways

  • Since it has antimicrobial characteristics, castor oil can help treat a number of related conditions.
  • You can take a cloth soaked in hot water and castor oil and make a knee wrap with it which will offer long-lasting relief.
  • Castor oil usually increases lymphocytes in the body. Lymphocytes protect the body by producing antibodies against diseases and toxins.
  • Castiva arthritis pain relief is a less sticky, non-oily version of a castor oil pack.
  • You can choose between a cooling or a warming formula of Castiva. The cooling lotion is created with menthol and the warming one with capsaicin.

Discover the remarkable pain-relieving properties of castor oil. Explore the therapeutic benefits and effective techniques to soothe your discomfort naturally by checking out this video.

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