I would not exaggerate but lavender's floral-herbaceous aroma with its relaxing, cleansing, refreshing and toning attributes would top the list of all other popular oils in aromatherapy. Perhaps lavender is the most versatile herb whose essential oil is used for endless cosmetic and therapeutic purposes. Here are best ten of them:
1. Promotes Good Sleep
In the past people used to fill their pillows with lavender flowers for getting good sleep. Now it is scientifically proved, lavender aromatherapy may help you relax by slowing down your activity of nervous system. Thus, it is a wonderful home remedy to improve your sleep quality if you are suffering from sleeping disorders and insomnia. Massage of lavender essential oil may also stabilise your mood and help you concentrate better.
Put 3 or 4 drops of lavender essential oil on your pillow for inducing good sleep. For babies, you may add 1 drop of lavender oil & geranium oil and massage into your babies' back or simply put a few drops in their bedtime bath.
2. Treating Fungal Infections
Researchers have found that lavender oil is an effective remedy to fight with antifungal-resistant infections and helping to get rid of toenail fungus. Since the compounds of lavender are found to be dangerous for whole range of skin-pathogenic strains, they may help you manage fungal infections by destroying the fungal cell's membrane. Also, herbalists suggest using lavender oil for other skin ailments such as eczema, acne, dry and scaly skin lesions.
Make a paste by adding few drops of lavender oil in any reputed plain cream and use it as a moisturiser or cleanser for your skin. This will inhibit bacteria causing infection, balance the over-secretion of serum and reduce scarring too.
3. Healing Wounds, Canker Sores
If you have got minor cuts or bruises then you may use lavender essential oil to heal them fast. On burning, it will give you relief from pain almost immediately, and the burn would usually heal without scarring.
Apply the few drops of lavender oil to ease pain, prevent further bacterial infection and speed up the scar-free healing. In canker sores by applying two drops of lavender oil to the affected area three times daily may help reduce pain, swelling and improve its healing process.
4. Relief In Anxiety Disorders and Related Conditions
Though this trick will not go with major anxiety disorders, acute anxiety or panic attacks can eventually be re-programmed by using lavender oil aromatherapy. The aromas of lavender oil create stronger, calming memories that help you to come out of the anxiety triggering circumstance for the time being.
You may apply few drops of lavender oil neat to your temples. It will have beneficial effects on anxiety disorders for example, somatic complaints and disturbed sleep.
5. Hair Re-Growth (Treating Alopecia areata)
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that causes hair to fall out of the affected person's head (often in patches). A study suggests that people who massaged their scalps with lavender essential oil for seven months experienced major hair growth once again. However, it was not clear whether only lavender oil was used or other oils were also mixed with it. So, lavender oil may help boost your hair growth too.
There are few evidences suggesting that by applying lavender oil with thyme, rosemary, and cedarwood oils people have experienced an improvement in their hair growth by as much as 44% after seven months of treatment.
6. Help Relieve Your Aching Muscles
If tension in your sore and bruised muscles is bothering you then simply by rubbing few drops of lavender oil over your legs and hands may help relieve tension form them. It is very effective relaxation ingredient for a muscle massage. You may also take a lavender bath to keep aches away. Add Epsom salts in your bath tub along with few drops of lavender oil to soak your tension.
Put 5 drops of lavender oil in your hot foot bath. Soak your feet in it for some time. Lavender will reach your bloodstream quickly through porous soles of your feet. Within few minutes you'll start feeling the stimulating, relaxing and soothing effects of this oil on your body. For more fun, you may play a soft music and light a few candles as you bath.
7. Use as a Natural Insect Repellent, Relief in Bug Bite
Lavender oil may help in keeping insects such as fleas, black beetle, flies, black fly, greenfly and white fly away from you. The best thing is that it's safe and comes without any side effects. Perhaps you might be familiar with so many ill effects of man-made chemical based toxic insecticides. Thus, you should try lavender oil as a unique insect repellent before reaching your traditional over-the-counter bug spray. Besides, keeping insects away it will balance your mood and make you relaxed. It is also known for controlling itching, inflammation and spread of infection caused by bug bite.
Mix few drops of lavender oil in a carrier oil such as sunflower oil and rub on your skin gently. This lotion will act as an insect repellent. You can also add few drops of grapefruit or eucalyptus oil to make an effective bug repellent. Alternatively, soak a cotton ball with few drops of oil and keep it in your closets and linen drawers to put insects and moths away.
8. A Remedy for Stomach Discomfort
The fragrance of lavender oil may be soothing for your stomach. If you are traveling on a car or plane then it can be used to help alleviate symptoms of minor motion sickness, nausea, gas, bloating and vomiting. Of course, you may require a stronger medicine on a long cruise but it can be effective in relieving symptoms at the onset of motion sickness.
Spray a mist of lavender oil on your clothes or simply rub few drops of it near your temples by your palm.
9. Lavender Oil for Headaches
If you struggle with tension headaches or migraine frequently, then lavender oil may be used as a natural alternative to pain relieving drugs. A study suggests that people suffering from migraine headache experienced a significant relief from pain when they inhaled lavender oil for 15 minutes.
Take 2 drops each of lavender oil and peppermint oil. Rub this mixture on the back of your neck, near temples and on the lateral side of your forehead. This natural treatment would work effectively in treating your headache.
10. Relieving Pain After Surgery
A study done on biopsy patients suggests significant pain relief in patients who received oxygen with lavender aromatherapy after undergoing surgery. There are more evidences suggesting that lavender fragrance has helped women in getting relief from pain while they were receiving pain killers intravenously after a cesarean operation.
Though lavender oil is considered safe for most of the people, however there are not enough scientific studies done on its interaction with other medications. So, if you are taking medicines then it's good to consult your medico before using this oil.