Lavender is more than just a marvelous fragrance. It is more than just something that helps you relax and calm down; lavender has long been prized for its many curative powers.
The many uses of lavender
Lavender is a well known antidote to stress and is recommended for use by pregnant women to lessen symptoms such as sleep disturbances and minor aches and pains. Since lavender is safe to use, even pregnant women can use it. Home remedies for pregnancy related sleeplessness often suggest the addition of a few drops of lavender oil to the bath water to help relax and soothe the sense and to help in sleeping.
This ability of lavender to induce sleep can be used even other than during pregnancy. An infusion of the flower in a cup of boiling water before bedtime is thought o act as a relaxant and can help one sleep.
Flowers or seeds can also be added to the pillow or a few drops of the oil sprinkled on the pillow case or the bed clothes.
Lavender is used in the preparation of a number of salves, balms, lotions and topical applications. Lavender is known to have certain natural antiseptic and anti inflammatory properties which is why it has been used for medicinal uses for a long time.
Lavender can also soothe minor bites and burns and it is a natural insect repellant. In fact due to this natural disinfectant property, lavender was used during World War I as a floor and wall disinfectant.
Lavender is also known to help heal acne and other inflammatory skin conditions.
Recent research also has shown that lavender has the ability to reduce pain. The study looked at individuals who were undergoing pain caused by the insertion of needles. When the subjects started to use lavender oil however they were seen to experience less pain and stress.
Caution when using lavender
Though lavender may be the most popular in aromatherapy it is cautioned that it shouldn’t be used directly on to the skin but should always be dilated with base oil.
Another reason to be careful about using lavender is the fact that it can be a powerful allergen.
Though lavender added to the bath oil and so on may be beneficial during pregnancy it should never be directly ingested during pregnancy or when breast feeding.
If one is on any medication, one should check with the doctor about possible reactions to lavender before use, so that any adverse reactions can be avoided.