How to Use Lavender to Treat Anxiety


Lavender is a natural remedy for anxiety.

Many people use lavender-scented soap and cleaning products because they like the scent of lavender. But this natural remedy is more than just a beautiful purple-colored plant that smells sweet without being overpowering. It has been used for years in bath products and can even be found in baby shampoo and wash because of the calming effect that it produces on those around it.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, lavender is able to calm and soothe, and it has sedative effects when it is inhaled. If you or someone you love suffers from anxiety, you may want to try lavender to see if it is able to relieve your anxiety like it does for many other people.

Lavender oil and tea

The oil from fresh lavender flowers is used for many different purposes. Lavender essential oil is believed to be beneficial in treating hair loss, stress and insomnia, and it is helpful in relieving or reducing anxiety and even postoperative pain. This essential oil is often used in spas for relaxation, massage, acupuncture and other purposes.

Lavender essential oil is used in southern Europe, Australia and North America for its calming effect. There is some scientific evidence that this oil or aromatherapy with lavender may have the ability to slow down the nervous system, helping a person relax and sleep better.

One study found that a test group who received massages with lavender essential oil had reduced levels of anxiety compared with a group that received their massages without lavender. The test group who had lavender massages also felt more positive in their thinking than the group who did not have this essential oil used in their massages.

Of course, you can grow your own lavender bush in your yard if you have the space available. But it is much easier to use the versions of lavender that are available at your local drug store, supermarket, or health store that sells essential oils. You may be able to avoid an anxiety attack by using some of these natural products before an attack occurs. You can switch to bath products that contain real lavender essential oil instead of lavender-scented products that may be artificially scented. Reading the label will tell you if the product contains lavender essential oil.

The power of lavender is still at the early stages of being scientifically studied. In Germany, people drink lavender tea if they feel restless. This tea may calm anxiety before it grows into an attack, but more studies are needed before the medical community accepts this as a standard treatment for anxiety disorders. That does not mean that you can't use it to help yourself with bath gel, soap, lotion and other forms of the herb.

Side effects and symptoms of a lavender allergy

There are few side effects except that lavender essential oil is poisonous if taken orally. Also, pregnant and breastfeeding women should not use it. It is also possible to be allergic to lavender. Someone with a lavender allergy may develop a headache, nausea, vomiting and chills after inhaling the scent or applying to the skin.

How to use lavender

Although lavender is safe for most people if it is used properly, it must be diluted when used for children. They should not be given lavender orally. Adults may benefit in lessened anxiety symptoms by inhaling 2 to 4 drops of lavender essential oil in 2 to 3 cups of boiling water. It is known to improve depression in some people. You can also mix 1 to 4 drops of lavender essential oil with almond or olive oil and then use it for massage or to apply to pulse points on your body. You will have the scent with you for hours if you do this.

Source: University of Maryland Medical Center

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