Topical Tuesday – Lavender Essential Oil
If you’re new to aromatherapy, lavender oil may be the first essential oil that you invest in. I know it is one of the first that I usually recommend. Widely known to be one of the safest essential oils, the benefits of lavender are not a new discovery. Lavender essential oil has been used in for more than 2500 years, and in modern times it’s used for its anti-microbial, antioxidant and sedative properties.
Lavender oil properties
Lavender is usually known for its ability to help with stress and the essential oil appears in many bath preparations, pillow mists and commercial products aimed at people with insomnia. I have recommended it to many for this reason. However some of the most impactful benefits of lavender essential oil is its ability to fight free radicals, dangerous toxins and chemicals. Studies have shown that lavender is a powerful antioxidant with antibacterial and antiviral properties.
What to use Lavender essential oil for
As mentioned above being one of the multi-taskers of the aromatherapy world, lavender essential oil can help to alleviate stress and anxiety, balance sleep patterns and help with insomnia. It can also help boost mental clarity, improve cognitive function and memory.
There has been plenty of research into the stress relieving properties of lavender essential oil, many of which point to it being a potent support for sleep and relaxation. One 2014 study found that lavender essential oil was almost 1.5 times more effective at helping people fall asleep and stay asleep than prescription medications for insomnia. Combined with better sleep hygiene, lavender oil also improved self-reported sleep quality for college students. Another study of the relaxation effects of lavender reported that lavender essential oil reduced cortisol levels in healthy men, as well as potentially improving coronary circulation.
Safety and Precautions
Lavender is one of the safest essential oils and can be used safely on most people, but it’s not recommended for use on women who are pregnant or nursing. Because of its sedative properties, it’s also not recommended that lavender is combined with sedative medication, as this can cause drowsiness.
Lavender essential oil is best used as an inhalation, on its own or as part of a blend. It can also be applied topically, alone or mixed with a carrier oil. Lavender essential oil should not be taken internally, as it can be toxic if ingested. If swallowed, seek medical advice.
All material provided on this website is provided for informational or educational purposes only, and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your healthcare professional or physician.