The name “Lavender” is originally from the Latin word “lavara” (washing) and that is from the Italian word “lavendola”.
Lavender was added to the bathing water.
“Lavendula Officinalis” is the official Latin name now.
The native range extends across the Canary Islands, North and East Africa, Southern Europe and the Mediterranean, Arabia and India. The specific (smell) qualities depend on the place where it grows. Weather influences, composition of the soil, minerals, clean fresh air, all is a part of the final product.
Aromatherapy and Phytotherapy
Lavender is an etherial oil and it belongs to “Aromatherapy”, the therapy that works with the beautiful smells of flowers. Lavender is one of the most wonderful, healing, and harmonizing medicinal plants. It is immense popular. Its etherial oil is belonging to the aroma therapy and to the phytotherapy as well. It supports the vitality, has a calming and hypnotical effect (somnolent, to fall asleep). It has a relaxing effect on the nerves of the heart, on the entire nerve system. It releases stress.
Therapeutical indications for lavender as a medicinal herb in phytotherapy
Neuralgia (pain in one or more nerves); being nervous; fear; anxiety; insomnia; problems with falling asleep; headache; sinus infection symptoms and sinusitis; problems with the stomach; intestinal problems with a nervous cause; gall problems; meteorism, flatulence;
The antibacterial activities of special essential oils is comparable with antibiotics.
Contra-indications (when NOT to use)
Do not use it internal, so do not take it in the mouth for consumption, with drips, during pregnancy. External use as aromatherapy is allowed (bath, aroma lamp, drips on the pillow, massage oil).
Therapeutical indications for lavender as an essential oil in aromatherapy
Infectious diseases; cold sore; diseases of the lungs and the bronchus; the respiration organs; asthma; cough; migraine; dizziness; hysteria; wounds; burns; acne; insect bites and stings.
As all etherial oils lavender improves the human immune system, the digestion, influences the hormone systems, restores damaged skin and muscle structure, and helps as a diuretic.
Psychological effect: Creates a mental and spiritual balance; diminishes anger; brings back spiritual strength; dissolves depressions; brings mental stability; stops changing of moods, and brings emotional wellness.
If you want to use it internal, then you need an aromatherapist to find out how to use it, and how much.
If you want to use it external, as a smell, with an aroma lamp, a diffuser, or with some drips on the skin (for instance the front head), the pillow, or in the bath then a few drips are enough. But “few” is related to your own wish, your own likes or dislikes.
As each smell is connected with your own likes. I never buy one which I dislike. There are therapists who advise a smell even if you like it or not. I prefer my own intuition. But a little help of where it might help for can also support your choice.
Important add when using the oil on the skin: there are potential safety concerns. Because essential oils are highly concentrated they can irritate the skin when used neat, that is undiluted.
Lavender as a hydrosol
Hydrosols (also known as floral waters or distillates) are a by-product of the process used to make essential oils. Hydrosols contain the essence of a plant in every drop, just like essential oils, but in a milder form.
They can be used as drips, internal, but also for external use pure on the skin. They are a kind of a therapy between the Bach Flower Remedies and the Aroma therapy with her essential oils and often used in lotions, creams and ointments, to be gently rubbed in the skin of face and body, or to be used as a compress.
Hydrosols can be used in baby care, because they hardly cause any irritation of the skin or the mucous membrane. The lavender hydrosol can also be used in a baby bath when a baby has problems to fall asleep: you can add two soup spoons with lavender hydrosol in a bath. For internal use: ask an aroma-therapist.
Lavender in massage oil
It is possible to buy a massage oil, a body oil, but it is very easy and much cheaper to compose one yourself.
You can use all kinds of oils, mostly also used in the kitchen for preparing food.
A very good one is olive oil.
Advice: make an excellent, easy and cheap skin conditioner / massage oil with olive oil and lavender. Take 3 soup spoons olive oil (45 0r 50 ml). Warm this in a small pan. Add 25 drips lavender essential oil.
Rub this in the skin of your entire body, and take a shower after that with just water.
Your skin will look very healthy!
Will be very healthy!
Good in summer and in winter. Every day of the year.
It belongs to the Ayurveda health care. Ayurveda is a system of traditional medicine native to India and practiced in other parts of the world as a form of alternative medicine.
(The original post was published on February 12, 2011)