Friday, September 16, 2011

Medicinal Uses of Lavender

The scent of lavender has long been known to promote relaxation. Inhaling lavender's essential oils helps ease anxiety and improves feelings of calmness and well-being in stressful situations. Research also proves that lavender reduces the body's production of the stress hormone called cortisol. Lavender can also be taken to get rid of stress-related headaches.

To relieve anxiety and stress-related headaches:
Buy a good quality Lavender essential oil (which is not for drinking but is for the outside of your body). Massage this essential oil into the shoulders and temples. Or, you can inhale the steam by putting 4 drops of the essential oil into 4 teaspoons of hot water. You can also put some drops of lavender essential oil into a hot bath and soak away the stress.

You can also make a herbal tea infusion with the actual lavender plant. Pour 1 cup boiling water over each 1-3 tsp. dried lavender flowers OR 1-3 tbsp. fresh lavender flowers. Let it steep for 15-20 minutes. Strain and drink 1 cup of the infusion 1-3 times per day.

Another magical usage for lavender essential oil is as a first aid item. Essential oil is expensive. One tiny bottle can cost around 20 dollars. However, if you can only afford ONE essential oil, I recommend the lavender essential oil. It can be useful for not only stress and headaches, but also to take the sting out of insect bites.  Lavender essential oil quickly relieves inflammation and swelling when applied topically to insect bites and stings. It also has antimicrobial properties to help prevent wounds from becoming infected. Simply dab undiluted lavender essential oil onto insect bites and stings as soon as possible. Watch in wonder as the sting of that bee no longer hurts so badly...

For additional information, see: references and warnings

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