Considered to be the most popular Essential Oil, Lavender is well known for its soothing, relaxing properties, wonderful smell and numerous health benefits.
Lavender Essential Oil is derived from the concentrated essence of the Lavender plant. Here you will find information on a variety of Lavender Essential Oil based products and information on its benefits.
The smell of Lavender Essential Oil is known the world over for its nostalgic, soothing, relaxing and subtle sweetness. It is used extensively in aromatherapy to help quell the stresses and anxieties of life. The very flowers and leaves of the Lavender plant easily emanate the sweet aroma by the simple caress of the hand or even the slightest breeze.
Lavender Essential oil is considered and in some cases proven to have numerous health aid benefits. Some of these therapeutic properties include healing, pain relief, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, immunity and much more. It is often used to treat minor cuts and scrapes, burns, acne, respiratory disorders and insomnia.
Many perfumes are known for their use of lavender. Even in the Bible there are many documents medicines, ointments and balms that use scented oils. Various cultures have used scents in a myriad of ways.
Egyptians used these scented oils in burial rituals and buried prized possessions with their dead. They also offered up their favorite scented oils as a gift to the dead.
Romans used the scents for enticing lovers and others.
Greeks used them in religious ceremonies.
No matter what the use, aromatherapy can restore health, energy and well being.
Lavender Oil Uses
Lavender oil is probably the most versatile and useful of all the essential oils. As such, the calming scent of lavender is a favorite among aromatherapists, massage therapists, hospice centers, dental offices, spas and day care practices.
Aromatherapy is often used in long term care and is one of the most popular essential oils used. This is probably due to the fact that it is very safe and versatile. The main goals in using the lavender oil in palliative care settings are to reduce stress, increase physical contact, pain management, increase feelings of well being and improve quality of life. A few drops are added with water to a diffuser and used to calm patients that may be in pain, hallucinating, anxious, delirious, stressed, or depressed. Lavender Oil is often used in Dementia/Alzheimer units to control behaviors and restlessness. It can also be used in a lotion or oil and massaged over particular trouble areas of the patients body.
Lavender Aromatherapy often works as an alternative to medications therefore, preventing many side effects that go along with medication usage. Here are a few common uses of lavender oil:
- Body Care
- Insect Repellent
- Sleep Aid
- Cleaning Products
This may be the easiest way to benefit from the aromas of essential oils in your home or office (by adding water or carrier oil). A diffuser is an appliance that distributes essential oil particles (molecules) into the air. New technology allows for a fine mist of particles, which allows the oils to go farther and be absorbed more easily. These new diffusers are easy to use and fill the room with aroma therapy scents.
Lavender oil added to a vaporizer, humidifier, etc. is often used for children with colds and influenza. Lavender is helpful for many types of respiratory problems including asthma, bronchitis, throat infections, sinus congestion, colds, cough, flu, whooping cough, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. A vaporizer is a beneficial way to treat respiratory distress, especially if you are not looking to scent the entire room. Vaporizers are used when you need a strong dose of aroma therapy.
100% pure lavender oil is applied directly onto troubled areas of the skin for treatment of bee stings, sunburn, pain relief, eczema, etc. Also, lavender oil is beneficial when used in lotions, salves, balms, and other topical products.
In massage, lavender oil is usually diluted with separate carrier oils and massaged directly on the skin to help with aches, pains, chest congestion, relaxation, etc. The blend is applied to large portions of the body and massaged gently for several minutes. The person is usually very relaxed at the end of this experience. Several lavender massage oil blends are also available for purchase at many bath and body shops.
Used as room fragrance or calming body mist. A lavender mist can be prepared with lavender buds soaked in water over a period of time. Strain the water into a spray container and you have yourself a fantastic floral mist.
Lavender oil is often added to a hot compress, then heated and placed on sore muscles and joints. It can also be used on a cold compress.
Body Care Products
Lavender oil is often added to baths, lotions, shampoos, facial products, pedicures, perfumes, deodorants, etc.
Lavender has long been known for its ability to aid in relaxation and sleep. There are herbal pillows on the market that can be heated in the microwave to release the relaxing aroma. Now you can enjoy lavender scented pillows for body, neck and eyes. Try a relaxation CD, spray a lavender mist on your pillow or snuggle up with a plush lavender cuddle bear – it will not be long before you are fast asleep!
Lavender oil is commonly seen as an ingredient in bug repellents to help aid off moths and mosquitoes. Use lavender oil in moth sachets, topical insect repellents, pet skin care sprays and pet flea collars.
Lavender oil is safe to use on infants and the geriatric population. A few drops added to an infant’s bath water can calm a baby with colic. It also can be used as massage oil and rubbed on a baby’s tummy. Some great new baby products have also reached the market, including a microwavable plush animal with a lavender bud pouch, baby bath oils with lavender, and calming baby shampoos.
Lavender Oil is often added to cleaning products due to its antibacterial properties and its aromatic scent. Try lavender oil in hard surface cleansers, floor wash, surface scrubs, and earth friendly odor eaters and all purpose cleansers.
Lavender Oil as a Deodorant
Perhaps you’re tired of those commercial deodorants with exorbitant prices that cause you skin irritation.
Lavender is often used in deodorants for its soft clean scent. You can dab a few drops on your wrist, neck or near your armpits to help reduce odor. You could also add a few drops to your underclothes to help keep you smelling fresh and clean all day long.
Use perfumed sachets in your dresser drawers, cupboards and other areas to keep your clothes smelling clean and fresh.
Aromatherapy scents added to your bath or a diffuser will help alleviate stress from a busy day. They will leave you feeling balanced and calm and ready for anything that may come your way.
- Rub a few drops on your temples to alleviate stress.
- Take a perfumed bath before bed and you’ll sleep better.
- Light a lavender candle after work and escape the rat race.
- Get a massage and have them use lavender on you.
You’ll feel so relaxed and refreshed.
The human body uses all of its senses to survive, but the greatest sense is your ability to smell. A good smell can relieve stress and emotions and help you to feel better ready to tackle just about anything that comes your way.
Aromatherapy is one of the most pleasant and easiest ways to relieve tension.
Aromatherapy can help to improve just about any situation that comes your way.
When you inhale the essence of plants or flowers, your body is absorbing the myriad of benefits that these oils have to offer.
They are treating more and more medical conditions this way in medicine and more and more people are turning to these therapies in lieu of many conventional therapies. They can be added to cosmetics, ointments, lotions, creams and more.
Lavender scented oil is not generally harmful even to those who are highly sensitive. If you do happen to notice any allergic reactions or troubles breathing, stop using the oils right away.
Lavender is one of the more subdued scents in aromatherapy and most people can tolerate it very well.
Keep a bottle of lavender oil handy and add it to your incense sticks as well as to your candle collection. Use it as often as needed and you’ll feel better than ever.
Health Aid Tips and Suggestions
Lavender essential oil offers many physical health related benefits and uses.
Lavender oil is well known for its ability to assist in the soothing and healing of burns. Serious burns should be attended to by a doctor.
Compliment your next deep tissue massage with lavender oil or lotion for an even more relaxing experience.
Use a combination of witch hazel (astringent) and a drop or two of lavender oil. Apply mixture to the affected area with a cotton ball.
Rub a couple drops of lavender oil on and around the blister then apply a small bandage.
Steep a good amount of lavender herb for 10-15 min. Serve and relax.
Cuts and Scrapes
Wash cuts and scrapes with a solution of warm water with a few drops of lavender oil added. If using a bandage, add a small drop of lavender oil to help promote quick healing and minimal scarring.
Having troubles sleeping? Add a lavender sachet to your bedroom or douse your pillow with a lavender linen spray.
Add a drop of lavender essential oil to warm water. Rinse mouth and avoid swallowing.
Combine a few drops of lavender essential oil with a carrier oil and apply a small amount to the temple.
Note: These common lavender remedies are for informational and reference purposes only. Please consult a physician if health related conditions persist.
7 Health Benefits of Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is extracted from lavender flowers, mostly through steam distillation. It is traditionally used in aromatherapy treatments, massage therapies, and for making perfumes. The oil is now widely manufactured thank to its health benefits for human. Some of the common health benefits of lavender oil are briefly outlined below.
The smell of lavender produces relaxing effects for the mind. In aromatherapy, lavender is known to be effective to relief muscle tensions and emotional stress. Massaging the oil around neck and forehead areas will also promote relaxation and relieve headache or migraine. It is not used as an orally-taken medication or drug, but massage therapy with the oil is equally effective to cure general headaches.
Lavender oil can be used for treating common digestion problems including nausea. To relieve this problem, put a drop of lavender oil under the navel, behind the ears, or on end of your tongue. The oil stimulates the production of bile and gastric juice which help the stomach to digest foods. Besides nausea, lavender oil is as well effective to treat stomach pain, diarrhea, flatulence, and colic.
In general, applying lavender oil to wounds helps to quicken the healing process and halt bleeding. Especially for nosebleed, you can pour a drop of lavender on a tissue and wrap it around a chip of ice. Push the tissue to the base of the nose and hold it for few minutes. Please put in mind that if you hold it for too long, the ice may freeze your lip.
As previously mentioned, lavender oil can help to quicken healing process of wounds. It also has antifungal and antiseptic properties to relive skin inflammations and other conditions such as acne and wrinkles. The oil is able to promote or improve the formation of scar tissues thus it halts bleeding and cures minor wounds including cuts and burns.
Anxiety and Depression Treatment
The most popular health benefit of lavender oil is its ability to promote relaxation to cure depression and anxiety. The oil produces calming and sedative yet anti-convulsive effects. The best thing is that you don’t have to apply it directly to your body since you only need its smell. People who have problems with restlessness or depression can simply place lavender plant in their rooms to promote relaxation. The plant will spread its smell all across the room and trigger its relaxing effects. Moreover, the smell repels insects such as mosquitoes.
Helps in Proper Digestion
Drinking lavender tea is a good way to promote healthy digestion. It soothes your digestive tracts and promotes the production of bile. It is also a natural remedy for gas and constipation problems. To make lavender tea, cook 1 tablespoon of lavender buds with water. You will not drink the water, but use it to make your regular tea.
The relaxing effects of lavender oil can treat insomnia and other sleeping difficulty problems. The scent of the oil basically soothes your nervous system to relive exhaustion and restless leg syndrome, which are often associated with insomnia. The soothing effect directly goes to part of the brain responsible for relaxation, so it helps you have a good sleep.
How to Make Lavender Oil At Home
Lavender extract or oil is widely available in most health and food stores or you can even buy it online. Nevertheless, you can also extract the oil by using simple equipment at home. The following instructions describe a step-by-step guide, required ingredients, and the necessary tools to make lavender oil manually at home.
Extracting lavender oil from the flower of lavender plant is easy but there are plenty of processes required. You will need 24 tablespoons of lavender flowers, a mixture of safflower oil, sesame seed oil, and olive oil (14 ounces), large jar or glass container with lid, muslin, plastic wrap, glass bowl, paper towels, and dark bottle. Make sure you get dry lavender flowers ready to chop. Place the flowers on paper towels and chop them finely. You need to get 24 tablespoons of finely-chopped flowers for the extraction.
Pour the mixture of safflower oil, sesame seed oil, and olive oil into the large jar. Please make sure that the mixture is exactly 14 ounces. Now you can add 8 tablespoons of lavender flowers into the jar and stir them well. Close the jar tightly and put a plastic wrap over the top. Place you jar in a place where direct sunlight can come through such as windowsill for approximately 48 hours.
If you are doing this in the cold winter days, you may not get enough sunlight for the infusion. To accommodate this issue, place the jar in cold water and heat it for about ten minutes each day. Do not overheat the water since it may affect the integrity of the oil. Simply heat it until the jar is warm enough for you to touch.
Please remember to shake it every 12 hours. After 48 hours, you have to filter the oil out. Place muslin on top of the jar and strain the oil out through it. You may need to squeeze the muslin to get more amount of oil. For the best result, this extraction requires at least three infusions but you can do more infusions until you get the desired scent.
You have to put the oil into the container again and repeat the processes two more times. Each infusion will use 8 tablespoons of chopped lavender flowers. Since each infusion requires 8 tablespoons of the flower, you will use 24 tablespoons after three times. If more infusions are necessary, you have to get more lavender flowers as well. Once again, you have to chop the flowers finely before using them.
Store the Oil
After 3 x 48 hours and last straining, use the dark bottle to store the oil. It is best to use a bottle with lid or cork. You should keep the bottle in a dark cold place to keep it fresh. When stored properly, the oil should remain fresh for quite long time approximately 6 months to 1 year period. If you extract a considerable amount of the oil from the infusions, you may not need to repeat the processes very often.
6 Lavender Oil Side Effects You Should Aware
Taking medications to treat diseases generally has possible side effects. If taken without precautions, either prescription drugs or herbal medicines possibly trigger unwanted interaction in human body. The same thing applies to lavender oil which actually offers great benefits for human health. The most common side effects of lavender oil are as follows.
Lavender oil is a potential allergen to some people. Allergic reactions may include vomiting, headaches, nausea, and chills. People who are allergic to lavender should avoid using it either topically or through inhalation. If you have sensitive skin, you may need to run a patch test before applying lavender oil topically for any treatment. If any allergic reaction appears within minutes, you must stop using it or call a doctor to prevent more severe reactions.
Not be safe for children
Applying lavender products in young boys who have not reached puberty yet may not be safe. Lavender is known to trigger certain hormonal effects that cause abnormal breast growth in young boys’ bodies called gynecomastia. Running a patch test may not be enough to figure out if your boys are allergic to lavender, so it is recommended to consult doctor before treating your boys with the oil. Side effects of lavender oil to young girls are not known.
Interactions with drugs
Lavender is a natural sedative which produces relaxing effects to human. Certain sedatives such as CNS depressants, barbiturates and chloral hydrate can interact with lavender oil, intensifying the sedative effects. In most cases, the noticeable side effect is drowsiness. It is worth mentioning that lavender oil is basically a traditional medicine thus you will want to check with your health care provider before you start using it.
Either in food or medicinal amounts, lavender oil is generally safe to consume orally for most adults. Everyone may need a different dose, so doctor’s advice is necessary to prevent some common side effects such as increased appetite, constipation, and headache.
Slow down the central nervous system
Lavender oil produces its relaxing effects by slowing down your nervous system. When used at the same time with anesthesia or other drugs during and after surgery, the combination may slow down the nervous system too much. If you are scheduled to undergo a surgical operation, you should stop using lavender oil at least two weeks before the surgery.
Not be safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women
Pregnant women should avoid using lavender oil since it promotes menstruation thus it increases the risk of miscarriage. If you are pregnant, avoid any treatment with lavender oil in any condition unless your doctor allows you to use it. There is not enough clear evidence on how lavender can affect breastfeeding women. However, it is always necessary to stay safe and consult doctor regarding this issue.