Lavender Essential Oil Capsules Have Been Linked To Reducing Heart Rate During Periods Of Increased Anxiety
Theres also a study conducted by United States National Library of Medicine that tested lavender essential oils in capsules, which you ingest orally. When participants watched an anxiety-inducing film, the heart rate variation from lavender was significantly improved in comparison to the placebo. In other words, the study concluded that lavender essential oil capsules may be able to help those with acute anxiety. However, the effects it has on high anxiety is still unknown.
What Did The Research Involve
The researchers analysed the results of five randomised controlled trials that investigated the ability of lavender oil oral capsules to reduce symptoms of anxiety.3
Symptoms of anxiety include difficulty sleeping, excessive worry, panic attacks and poor concentration.
Two studies investigated people with generalised anxiety disorder, one investigated people with mixed anxiety and depression, and the other investigated people with anxiety-related restlessness and subsyndromal anxiety.4-7
- Anxiety disorder: anxiety symptoms that are frequent, persistent and impact day-to-day life.
- Subsyndromal anxiety: a term used by the authors of the study to describe anxiety symptoms that do not meet the criteria for an anxiety disorder.
- Generalised anxiety disorder: a type of anxiety disorder where feelings of anxiety can be triggered by many different factors rather than from one specific cause.
Individually, all of the studies that were analysed had previously shown lavender oil oral capsules to reduce symptoms of anxiety more than a placebo .
The researchers used a statistical test to help further investigate the effect of lavender oil oral capsules in these studies, to give a single overall result.
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From blooming gardens to aromatherapy oils and bubble baths, people have long claimed that lavender has calming and relaxing benefits.
And now, scientists have confirmed that the smell of the purple plant really does help people unwind.
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Study : Lavender & The Immune System
This paper, published in the open-sourced, peer-reviewed journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, sought to study experimental and clinical data on lavenders effect on the nervous system. Researchers found that lavender may help with:
While the degree to which lavender helps with anxiety requires further study, this article found substantive evidence that oral administration could significantly reduce symptoms. But how does lavender oil help with anxiety?
Study : Silexan From Lavender For Anxiety
Of course, aromatherapy is not for everyone. Thus, this study published in the peer-reviewed journal European Archies of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience took another focus and asked: does lavender help with anxiety in oral form?
To answer this question, researchers examined the outcome of several clinical trials that used Silexan, a drug that uses the active ingredients from lavender oil, to treat patients with anxiety. The authors found three randomized, placebo-controlled trials and studied the effects of Silexan on anxiety, restlessness, agitation, and depression. This study found that:
- Silexan significantly reduced anxiety compared to placebos in all three trials
- Silexan significantly improved sleep patterns compared to placebos in all three trials
- Overall psychological impairment reduced with Silexan compared to placebos
Thus, this study shows that it may be possible to use the active compounds in lavender to help with anxiety. This opens up the possibility of using lavender in prescription medication to help with anxiety under the supervision of a licensed medical professional.
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How To Use Lavender
You can inhale lavender essential oil through aromatherapy or dilute it in a carrier oil common ones are sweet almond oil or warmed coconut oil that can be applied to your skin.
Lavender teas, which are made from the lavender plant, can be consumed safely by most people. Loose leaf teas of pure lavender or blends with chamomile or black teas are available in tea bags.
Alternative To Current Anxiolytics
When combined, Dr. Kashiwadani notes, these results suggest that linalool does not act directly on GABAA receptors like benzodiazepines do but must activate them via olfactory neurons in the nose in order to produce its relaxing effects.
He says that further research is now needed to test the safety and effectiveness of linalool, and to find out the exact sites in the brain that the compound targets.
As well as being a potential relaxant for people about to undergo surgery, the compound could also offer an alternative for those who struggle with oral or suppository administration of anxiolytics, such as infants or confused elders, Dr. Kashiwadani adds.
Our study also opens the possibility that relaxation seen in mice fed or injected with linalool could in fact be due to the smell of the compound emitted in their exhaled breath.
Dr. Hideki Kashiwadani
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Study : Effects Of Lavender Oil
This 2012 study, published in the Natural Medicine Journal, provides a secondary view of the scientific literature surrounding lavender. The authors found that lavender oil works in the brain by:
- Expressing GABA-A receptors in the brain
- Inhibiting glutamate binding in the brain
- Reducing and inhibiting acetylcholine release
- Exerting a relaxing effect in the limbic system
Additionally, these authors determined that lavender aromatherapy may work due to a combination of these actions. Furthermore, small- and medium-sized clinical trials found that lavender is effective in the management of anxiety and depression.
Does Lavender Oil Help With Anxiety
Traditional herbal medicine has long associated lavender with sleep, relaxation, and pain relief. However, research into its effectiveness as a treatment for anxiety is still ongoing.
A 2018 study on mice showed that linalool, one of the compounds in lavender, had similar effects on the brain as common anxiety medications, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and benzodiazepines.
This could explain how lavender might reduce anxiety in humans. However, according to the , there are not enough high-quality human studies on lavender to confirm its effectiveness.
While a 2019 systematic review found that lavender had a significant effect on anxiety levels, it also notes that the quality of studies is lower than average in this area and carries a higher risk of bias.
Overall, scientists need to carry out more studies to determine if using lavender essential oil could be a safe, effective treatment for anxiety.
If a person wishes to try lavender oil, and it is safe for them to do so, there are many options to choose from. However, not all are of high quality.
The following products:
- contain real lavender essential oil
- do not contain artificial fragrance
- are quality-checked by a third party
Please note that the statements below are based only on research. No one at Medical News Today, including the writer, has tried these products.
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What Is Lavender Essential Oil
Excellent question! In order to understand the benefits of lavender oil for anxiety, you need to know what it is. Lavender essential oil is basically extracts of lavender put into a bottle. However, not all essential oils are created equally. Its important to opt for 100% extract as opposed to lavender perfume or lavender scent.
Dr Deborah Lee Dr Fox Online Pharmacy Explores How Aromatherapy Is Fast Emerging As A Form Of Alternative Medicine For Many Health Conditions Including Insomnia
There is increasing consumer demand for natural products which promote health and wellness. Many people are turning away from conventional medicines, largely due to concerns about risks and side effects, and are looking for an alternative, natural medicines.
Economists predict the global market for natural products will increase by 18.2% per year until 2024. More than 300 plants are now used as sources for homoeopathic medicines.
Aromatherapy is a holistic, natural therapy, and a type of complementary medicine. The technique uses essential oils, which are pure oils, extracted from plants. These are applied topically to the skin as skin products, used as massage oils, directly inhaled from a diffuser device, or when added to water, they can be used for immersion.
What could be a more natural form of therapy?
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Combining Methods Of Treatment
Although using lavender often is an amazing, natural way to treat anxiety, you may also benefit from combining this relaxing substance with talk therapy. Treating anxious thoughts by combining therapist visits while using lavender daily to physically calm yourself can improve your quality of life much faster than simply choosing one treatment form over the other. Using this combination can help you manage complicated emotions you may have. This combination can also calm you when you’re feeling anxious.
Using lavender can be extremely helpful to you on your path to recovery luckily, it is also much more affordable and readily available than other mental health treatments. In fact, you can start using it right away.
Visit Sunset Health to see the lavender products we offer.
How Effective Is Lavender Oil At Reducing Anxiety
More than 15 clinical trials involving over 2,200 people show that lavender oil capsules are effective for treating anxiety and, unlike when inhaling the oil, there are no unwanted sedative effects. Typically, there was at least a 50% reduction in the severity of anxiety symptoms at the end of each study, with improvements in anxious moods, tension, fears and physical symptoms such as muscular aches and pains, racing heart, breathing changes and gastrointestinal symptoms.
In one study, involving 170 people with anxiety-related restlessness and disturbed sleep, taking 80mg pharmaceutical grade lavender oil once a day for 10 weeks, symptoms was significantly more effective than placebo with 31% achieving total remission. Those whose anxiety was initially graded as moderate to severe responded the best.
Some trials have compared lavender oil capsules with prescribed anti-anxiety medication, such as lorazepam, and shown similar effectiveness in relieving generalised anxiety disorder. Both treatments reduced the physical and psychological symptoms of anxiety, and improved sleep by around 45%.
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What Oils Should You Not Diffuse Around Dogs
Many essential oils, such as eucalyptus oil, tea tree oil, cinnamon, citrus, peppermint, pine, wintergreen, and ylang ylang are straight up toxic to pets. These are toxic whether they are applied to the skin, used in diffusers or licked up in the case of a spill.
The Smell Of Lavender Is Relaxing Science Confirms
- A new review reveals how lavender mellows us out — and why some day psychiatrists and surgeons might be prescribing patients a whiff of the purple stuff.
Lavender works its relaxing magic all around us: from garden borders to bath bombs to fabric softener. But why not in our hospitals and clinics? And what is the science behind the magic?
Research published in Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience shows for the first time that the vaporized lavender compound linalool must be smelt — not absorbed in the lungs- to exert its calming effects, which could be used to relieve preoperative stress and anxiety disorders.
“In folk medicine, it has long been believed that odorous compounds derived from plant extracts can relieve anxiety,” says co-author Dr Hideki Kashiwadani of Kagoshima University, Japan.
Modern medicine has overlooked these scented settlers, despite a need for safer alternatives to current anxiolytic drugs like benzodiazepines.
Numerous studies now confirm the potent relaxing effects of linalool, a fragrant alcohol found in lavender extracts.
“However, the sites of action of linalool were usually not addressed in these studies,” Kashiwadani points out.
A nose for success
Kashiwadani and colleagues tested mice to see whether it is the smell of linalool — i.e. stimulation of olfactory neurons in the nose — that triggers relaxation.
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A Few Warnings Before Using Lavender Oil
We have already mentioned this once, but never use lavender oil without first diluting it. You should also avoid putting it on puppies without consulting with a vet. All dogs will have different reactions to things they are not used to, so it is important to monitor them after applying the oil.
Periodically examine their skin to make sure they arent getting a rash. Also, monitor their mood and behavior.
If you have multiple pets in the same household, it is important to monitor all pets. Even if you are only directly applying the oil to one dog, you want to make sure the other dog isnt having a negative reaction from the scent.
Does Lavender Really Help With Anxiety
Traditional folk medicine maintains that the smell of some plants can calm the nerves. Now, new research is suggesting that one fragrant compound present in lavender can lessen anxiety by stimulating the nose to pass signals to the brain.
Investigators at Kagoshima University in Japan studied the effect of linalool, a sweet-smelling alcohol that is present in essential oils of lavender and other scented plants, in mice.
They showed that exposure to linalool vapor affects the brain through smell and not by being absorbed into the bloodstream via the lungs.
Another key finding was that unlike anxiolytic, or anti-anxiety, drugs , linalool works without impairing movement.
The researchers suggest that their study paves the way for further investigations into how to use linalools calming properties in humans, citing a need for safer alternatives to benzodiazepines and other anti-anxiety medications.
One application that they foresee is to help people about to undergo surgery to relax before receiving general anesthesia.
A paper on the study now features in the journal Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience.
Anxiety can range from short-lived worry or fear about a problem, decision, or stressful situation such as doing an exam, to a lasting, or chronic, condition that does not go away.
When anxiety is chronic, the symptoms can progressively worsen and disrupt daily life, work, relationships, and school.
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How Did The Researchers Interpret The Results
The researchers concluded that the results point toward lavender oil oral capsules being able to reduce symptoms of anxiety.
However, they cautioned that the importance of their findings may be reduced because the clinical trials they investigated differed in the way they were conducted, and they also included people with different clinical characteristics.3
The researchers also cautioned that their findings are based only on a small number of trials.3
Anxious Feelings And Essential Oils
Feelings of unease or worry can be helpful when they motivate you to take positive actions to solve problems. But they can be detrimental if they prevent you from experiencing joy and happiness in your daily life. If you have a difficult time soothing anxious feelings, there are essential oils that can help.
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What Are Essential Oils Good For
Although people claim essential oils are natural remedies for a number ofailments, there’s not enough research to determine their effectiveness inhuman health. Results of lab studies are promising one at Johns Hopkinsfound that certainessential oils could kill a type of Lyme bacteriabetter than antibiotics but results in human clinical trials are mixed.
Some studies indicate that there’s a benefit to using essential oils whileothers show no improvement in symptoms. Clinical trials have looked atwhether essential oils can alleviate conditions such as:
What Scents Relax Dogs
Because barking and excessive activity are typically signs of stress in shelter dogs not to mention being undesirable behaviors in the eyes of many adopters the study concluded that exposure to the odors of vanilla, coconut, valerian, and ginger has the potential to reduce stress in shelter dogs.
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How To Use Lavender Oil For Anxiety
In recent years, numerous studies have demonstrated the role of natural therapies in enhancing health and assisting in the treatment of physical and mental conditions.
People with anxiety disorders are often prescribed one of several conventional medications. Although high-quality evidence has shown these to be effective, they still have their limitations and are often combined with other forms of treatment.
Additionally, it is important to have alternatives to anxiety medications for people without anxiety disorders but who still want to reduce their anxiety and stress levels. These include natural therapies, such as lavender oil, which are suitable and safe for most people.
When choosing a natural therapy for anxiety, you must look for evidence-based information, which lavender oil has.
If you struggle with anxious thoughts from time to time or have a diagnosed anxiety disorder, take a look at how lavender oil can help.
Have you considered clinical trials for Anxiety?
We make it easy for you to participate in a clinical trial for Anxiety, and get access to the latest treatments not yet widely available – and be a part of finding a cure.
Topical Application Of Lavender Essential Oil
When it comes to anxiety and depression, the topical application of Lavender oil is considered as the most effective method.
For centuries, Lavender oil, its dried flowers, and extracts have been used both internally and topically for treating anxiety and depression.
According to the study, the topical application of Lavender oil can be a powerful way to reduce anxiety, as rubbing the oil onto the skin will let the medicinal benefits of oil entered into the bloodstream within as little as five minutes.
Following are the methods that you can adapt to enjoy the benefits of Lavender oil by topical application:
- On the wrists: The easiest place to use lavender oil is your wrist. You can even use undiluted lavender oil by putting just one drop on the wrist and rub both wrists together. You can sniff your wrist anytime, anywhere to reduce depression and anxiety.
- Make a roller bottle: Fill up a 10 ml roller bottle with 20 drops of Lavender oil along with fractionated carrier oil. Whenever you feel stressed-out, roll this onto collar bones or back of the neck to calm your mind.
- On the pillow: For a restful sleep and to unwind the depression from the long working day, you can put a drop of lavender oil onto your hand and rub it on your pillow. This will wipe away all the anxious and depressive thoughts and make you fall asleep easily.
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