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People all over the world have used lavender for centuries. The clean, sweet scent has a sedative effect, and traditionally, lavender is known for its calming and soothing properties. It can treat anxiety, reduce arthritis, and ease the discomfort of various aches and pains. The health benefits of lavender essential oil include antioxidant properties; it fights free radicals, lessens oxidation, and helps reduce acne outbreaks. There are many uses for this purple super-flower, and the plant is easy to grow, making it an affordable treatment option for people all over the planet.

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Helps Fight Insomnia

The regular application of lavender oil on your wrists or bedclothes may improve the quality of your sleep. A study at Wesleyan University used brain scans to monitor sleep cycles. The results showed men and women who exposed themselves to lavender oil before sleeping slept better. Further studies with seniors demonstrated progress with their sleeping patterns: a sprinkling of lavender oil on their bedding enhanced their regular bedtime routines. Additionally, a recent study discovered the scent of lavender boosts the time you spend in a deep sleep state, though the effects were more significant for women than for men.

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Decreases Anxiety

Evidence suggests lavender may lessen depression and anxiety symptoms when taken in conjunction with regular medications. The refreshing aroma can eliminate nervous exhaustion and agitation while increasing mental activity. The lavender plant grows well in a variety of climates and is easy to maintain. Try growing lavender in your garden for a natural anti-anxiety remedy.

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Improves Skin Quality

Many dermatologists believe lavender oil is one of the most effective oils to treat problematic skin conditions such as acne, which occurs when bacterial infections near the sebum glands result in a buildup of trapped sebum underneath the skin's surface. The astringent properties of pure lavender oil hinder the bacteria that causes the initial infection. Adding a small amount of lavender oil to skin cream or ointment can help reduce acne outbreaks. In 2003, medical researchers found even inhaling lavender essential oil leads to reduced acne. This treatment isn't for everyone, though; applying lavender to the skin may make acne worse or cause outbreaks to be more prominent.

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Treats Migraines

Roughly 12 percent of the U.S. population suffers from migraine headaches. Women are three times more likely to experience this debilitating condition than men. A study published in 'European Neurology' observed the inhalation of lavender oil could safely decrease migraine pain. Another study showed the use of lavender reduced the frequency and severity of migraines in subjects. Next time you feel a migraine coming on, try applying a couple of drops of lavender essential oil to the upper lip and temple.

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Protects Against Fungal Infections

Candida is a yeast overgrowth in the gut or reproductive organs that can cause stomach upset, decreased immunity, and fatigue. A 2011 study discovered lavender oil's potent antifungal properties: it protects the skin and nails from fungal infections such as Candida albicans. Many fungi have built up resistance to antifungal drugs, so natural options like lavender oil, which has minimal side effects, can help by fighting off antifungal-resistant infections including ringworm and athlete’s foot and restoring bacterial balances in the body. Remember: lavender oil shouldn't be taken orally, and pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid it.

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Pain Management

A 2005 study showed people with arthritis who inhaled an aromatic blend of lavender, eucalyptus, and rosemary experienced less pain than the control group. According to a 2013 study, lavender essential oil may help treat pain after a tonsillectomy. Children who breathed in the scent of lavender required fewer over-the-counter pain medications after surgery.

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Respiratory Health

Lavender oil is beneficial to people with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). Lavender oil acts as a natural antioxidant, helping the body fight the progression of COPD. One study which found people had lower levels of stress hormones after being exposed to the lavender scent. Stress makes COPD worse, and lavender can help combat rising levels of cortisol.

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Rich in Antioxidants

Free radicals, like toxins, chemicals, and pollutants, damage your immune system and cause oxidation inside your body. Free radicals are missing electrons and so attach to healthy cells to complete the bond. This process harms healthy tissue and creates disease. Antioxidant enzymes -- particularly glutathione, catalase, and superoxide (SOD) -- are the body’s defense against free radical damage. Lavender can increase the number of antioxidants in the body.

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Ease Symptoms of Diabetes

A 2014 animal study concluded lavender essential oil could reduce the effects of diabetes and even help reverse the condition by improving fat metabolism, blood sugar stability, and kidney function. The results of this study are intriguing, but more extensive research is necessary to understand the full capacity of lavender oil for treating the symptoms of diabetes. Always talk to your doctor before adding any new or "alternative" remedies to your health care routine.

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Urological Support

Lavender essential oil is an effective treatment against urinary disorders and urinary tract infections because it can stimulate the production of urine. The flower extract can also reduce inflammation in the bladder and painful cramps. However, don't put off seeing the doctor if you are having urinary tract issues.

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Disclaimer

This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.