AnxietyAnxiety is likely to be the most well-known use for lavender oil. In a study of 90 patients waiting for open-heart surgery, there was a significant reduction in anxiety among those inhaling the lavender oil compared to the distilled water placebo. It wasn't just about feeling calmer, as the cortisol levels of the lavender group were, on average, 69% lower than in the placebo group. A German study also found that lavender oil was more effective than placebo in relieving anxiety in a trial involving elderly patients. The researchers then stated that it could be a safe alternative to synthetic drugs.
SleepA better night's sleep is another common use for lavender oil. This study was a clinical trial on the effects of lavender oil inhalation, with 158 post-partum mothers who were either assigned to a treatment or placebo group. As labour and caring for a completely dependent child are very stressful situations, there is a high chance of inadequate sleep. Poor sleep can lead to problems with concentration, judgement and the ability to perform everyday tasks. Every night before going to bed, the women participating in the study inhaled 10 deep breaths of either the lavender oil, dropped onto a cotton ball, or a placebo, and then kept it beside their bed until the morning. This is very similar to use of a diffuser. After eight weeks, women in the lavender group reported significant improvements in sleep, from an average of 8.3 to 6.8 on the Pittsburgh sleep quality index; the placebo group saw a non-significant improvement from 8.5 to 7.6.
|Source: Saffron Blaze|