Camphor comes from the Camphor tree which grows in Florida, California, South America and Asia.
Most commercial preparations contain a synthetic version of Camphor.
At one time Camphor was a bug detouring blessing but it’s been mostly replaced by more effective napthalene (moth balls.) The uses for camphor have varied throughout history. For example they used to put Camphor in alcohol as a pick me up but later found out that it causes liver damage.
Used externally Camphor has remained popular. In 1980 Camphorated oil was banned by the FDA following reports of poisoning through ingestion. However, many commercial preparations used topically are still considered safe for use and still readily available today.
Some evidence shows that inhaling vapors of Camphor or using ointments rubbed on the chest can help ease coughing. Other research has indicated that creams can be used to increase blood flow reducing inflammation to soar muscles.
It might be a good idea to buy commercial preparations when using Camphor. Ingesting very small amounts of Camphor can be fatal.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.