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What is DMSO?

DMSO is an acronym standing for dimethyl sulfoxide and it has seen a resurgence in popularity over the past decade not only in Canada, but in the United States and Europe as well.

DMSO is a non-toxic topical application that folks have used for its renowned anti-inflammatory properties. In particular, it can gained a particularly vocal following among those suffering from arthritis, generalized joint pain, and a host of other inflammation-linked ailments.

How DMSO Came to Be

DMSO is not new. In fact, it’s nearly as old as Canada itself is!

In the mid-1800s paper-making factories found that a translucent, oily liquid would be generating from the process of wood pulping. This led to interest as to what this substance was and whether or not it could be sold.

Over the proceeding decades scientists began to narrow in on what the critical components of this oily liquid were and thus came the rise of DMSO.

What Does DMSO Do?

DMSO – when used topically in a gel or cream base – can be used to “alleviate pain, hypersensitivity, and swelling” according to the National Health Service of the United Kingdom.

These gels or creams have been in existence for many decades and the applications they’ve been used for has been varied; from helping wounds heal quicker to reducing the inflammatory pain emanating from arthritis.

Unlike other products, DMSO absorbs quickly once applied; getting into the thorniest areas of inflammation quickly. Like Aspirin, DMSO blocks the production of some prostaglandins that are responsible for the regulation of inflammation and the generalized discomfort or pain that arises from it. Also like Aspirin, the effect of DMSO wear off after 4-12 hours for most people.

How is DMSO Applied & How Often is That Done?

DMSO is applied topically on a clean area of skin. As with any new product you’re testing, a small amount should be tested on your skin to ensure no irritation occurs.

At Pastoral, all our DMSO products contain either distilled water or organic aloe vera gel. This reduces any irritation to sensitive skin and helps avoid DMSO feeling oily on your skin (as DMSO itself is quite oily).   

DMSO gel or liquid can be applied with your hands or via a clean, dry cloth and contact with your eyes must be avoided.

DMSO should be applied broadly around your area of trouble. This is because while pain and discomfort can feel localized, often the areas causing the pain (tendons, muscles, etc.) are not as localized. 

Pastoral’s DMSO gel products can be lightly rubbed in, like any other gel or cream. There’s no need to wash it off or remove it as the aloe vera gel will ensure that there’s no oily residue left on your skin.  

As mentioned earlier, the effects of DMSO – while powerful for most – do not last for days at a time. For most, two applications a day will prove to be the right amount. For those with more acute pain, it may require more frequent applications. As with anything a certain amount of experimentation will be needed to find the right amount and frequency that is right for you.


At Pastoral, we’ve prided ourselves on delivering DMSO to Canadians at reasonable prices while maintaining the highest standards. 

We specialize in utilizing essential oils in our products that not only provide a pleasant smell, but have therapeutic properties of their own.

Helping Canadians has been an incredibly rewarding experience. Having our customers come back to order again, with happy stories of how we’ve helped, is ultimately why we do what we do.

All our products come in thick glass jars (as UV light can diminish the effectiveness of DMSO) and our gels utilize premium organic aloe vera gel to provide soothing comfort. 

We hope to see you soon and continue to serve you for many years.

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