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Lavender: Uses, Benefits, and Interactions


photo by: shaloaskincare 

What exactly is lavender?

Lavendula, commonly known as lavender, is a flowering plant native to the Old World, in places such as Africa, Europe, and Asia. It is said to be part of the mint family and is the most widely cultivated species of flowering plants. In ancient times, it was said to be used as a holy herb. Lavender derives its name from the Latin ‘lavare’ meaning ‘to wash”. The Romans used Lavender to scent their baths, beds, clothes and even hair. They also discovered its medicinal properties. [1]

What are some uses of lavender for the skin?

Could Help Treat Skin Blemishes

A variety of essential oils are also excellent for dermatology use, including lavender. In fact, if you have acne, eczema, or skin inflammation, applying lavender oil to affected areas may play a role in treating blemishes and ease inflammation, according to a paper published in May 2017 in the journal Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. [3]

Lavender oil for acne

Lavender oil works to kill bacteria, and this can prevent and heal acne breakouts. It unclogs pores and reduces inflammation when you put it on your skin. To use lavender oil for acne, dilute it in coconut oil or another carrier oil and apply it to your skin after washing your face. [4]

You can also use lavender oil as a facial toner by mixing two drops of lavender oil with one teaspoon of witch hazel. Soak a cotton ball in the blend and then gently rub it over your face. For a particularly stubborn pimple, argan oil can help reduce inflammation. Mix one drop of lavender oil with a drop of argan oil and put it directly onto a pimple twice a day. [4]

Soothes eczema and dry skin

Eczema can show up anywhere on your body. With eczema, your skin gets dry, itchy, and scaly. It can appear mild or chronic and in multiple locations. Since lavender has antifungal properties and reduces inflammation, it can help keep eczema at bay.[4]

Lavender oil can also be used to treat psoriasis. The lavender oil helps cleanse your skin and lessen redness and irritation. [4]

To use this essential oil for eczema, mix two drops with an equal amount of tea tree oil, along with two teaspoons of coconut oil. You can use it daily. [4]

What are some benefits of lavender?

Lavender oil is believed to have antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to heal minor burns and bug bites.

Research suggests that it may be useful for treating anxiety, insomnia, depression, and restlessness. [2]

Some studies suggest that consuming lavender as a tea can help digestive issues such as vomiting, nausea, intestinal gas, upset stomach, and abdominal swelling.[2]

Interactions 

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) warn people to be cautious when combining lavender with the following:

  • drugs that induce sleepiness, such as benzodiazepines, barbiturates, and Ambien
  • drugs to reduce blood pressure, such as captopril, enalapril, and losartan

If you are already taking the above, seek medical advice before adding lavender to your drug regimen. [2] Also, remember to discuss any use of essential oils, herbs, or supplements with your doctor if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

 

 

 

 

 

References

  1. About Lavender. http://www.lavendersense.com/index.php/Lavender/Index . September 19, 2016.
  2. What are the Health Benefits and risk of Lavender?   https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/265922.php#uses  March 4, 2019
  3. What are the Possible benefits of Lavender?   https://www.everydayhealth.com/diet/what-are-possible-benefits-lavender-must-know-facts-about-therapeutic-plant/ July 6, 2019
  4. Lavender oil for the skin https://www.healthline.com/health/lavender-oil-for-skin#fights-acne December 17th, 2018

 

 


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