Urtica urens, commonly known as the stinging nettle, proves useful as an oral medicine and topical agent, alleviating symptoms ranging from bladder disorders to skin conditions and digestive ailments. Stinging nettle classifies as a plant, and although unpleasant to touch, serves many valuable uses in the fields of science and medicine. This plant grows throughout the United States, along with many areas of Asia and Europe, and contains a protective layer of tiny, pointed hairs that produce a stinging sensation when touched.
With stinging nettle, as well as most plants and herbal supplements, dosage and treatment method vary depending on age and medical condition. This versatile plant comes in many forms, including powders, liquid extract and gel capsules. People use all parts of the stinging nettle plant; different plant structures provide differing benefits.
Parts of these plants that grow above the ground, including the stem and leaves, enjoy use primarily as an alternative means for combating urinary tract disorders, kidney infections, allergies and even osteoarthritis. This plant slows internal bleeding, making it popular for reducing uterine bleeding, bowel bleeding and nosebleeds, according to WebMD. Although covered with sharp, pointy hairs, the liquids within a stinging nettle plant produce soothing effects. The nourishing oils and minerals in these plants make them popular remedies for reducing muscle aches and alleviating itchy skin and scalps.