The major components of plantain are iridoid glycosides (particularly aucubin), mucilage,and tannins. Together, they are believed to reduce irritation, quell harmful organisms, and exhibit expectorant actions. Plantain leaf acts as a demulcent, relieving minor discomfort and irritation by forming a soothing film over the affected mucous membrane. This property can also make the plantain leaf an effective relief for coughs caused by the flu, cold, and irritation. Since demulcents can cause more mucus production in the lungs, they are more often used to relieve dry coughs. The leaves can also be made into a tea or tincture, and this is said to help with indigestion, heartburn and ulcers when taking internally. Externally, Plantain has been used for insect and snake bites, and as a remedy for rashes and cuts. Its natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties make it great for speeding recover of wounds, and for itching or pain associated with skin problems. A tea made from the leaf leaf can be sprayed on mosquito bites to ease the itch.