What Is Lavandula Officinalis?

Lavender oil has antiseptic properties.
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  • Written By: M. Haskins
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 02 December 2014
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There are 39 species of lavender, but the one known by the scientific name Lavandula officinalis is especially prized for its rich fragrance. It is commonly used to produce lavender essential oil, as well as other plant extracts and herbal remedies. The essential oil derived from Lavandula officinalis is a common herb remedy used for various purposes like treating burns, soothing skin irritations and facilitating sleep. In homeopathic medicine and other forms of alternative medicine, lavender is ascribed a wide variety of beneficial therapeutic properties. It is advisable to be cautious when using lavender, because it can cause allergic reactions in some people, though this is uncommon.

Infusions, oil, and dried flowers and leaves from Lavandula officinalis have been used as herbal remedies for centuries. Today, the plant is most commonly used in the form of lavender essential oil to treat a wide variety of conditions such as muscle aches, respiratory ailments, anxiety and insomnia. Current scientific research does not support all these medicinal uses, but lavender essential oil does have antiseptic properties, and some scientific evidence also suggests that it can help reduce anxiety and improve sleep.

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As a home herbal remedy, lavender essential oil is recommended as a treatment for various skin problems because of its anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties, and can be used to treat eczema, psoriasis, ulcers, cuts and various kinds of burns. It is also used to treat respiratory conditions like bronchitis, flu and colds. Essential oil derived from Lavandula officinalis is also thought to have pain-relieving properties, and it can be massaged into the skin to relieve muscle and joint pain or applied to the temples to treat headaches.

The leaves, stems, flowers and seeds of Lavandula officinalis can also be steeped in boiling water to make an infusion of lavender. This infusion can be used to treat the pain and itching of insect bites or as an insect repellent. Infusion of lavender can also be used as a hair rinse to add shine or to get rid of lice. Another home herb remedy is to make an infusion from lavender flowers and drink it before bedtime to facilitate sleep.

Homeopathy is a specific form of alternative medicine. It uses special techniques to produce remedies of various kinds, including herbal remedies. Lavandula officinalis is sometimes used in homeopathic medicine, for example, to treat anxiety, sore throat, coughs and conditions related to the kidneys and urinary tract.

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turquoise
Post 3

There are so many uses for essential oils, especially lavender. But one must shop carefully because every lavender oil on the market is not essential oil. Some contain artificial fragrances and those are not good. Essential oils are not very cheap, so the price is usually a good indicator of whether it's real or not.

I would actually like to grow lavandula officinalis in my garden. I will have to figure out if we have the right climate here first and then look for a plant or seeds. I bet they would make the garden smell and look beautiful. I'm such a big fan of lavender.

ysmina
Post 2

@literally45-- That's a great idea. I have not tried lavender in bath before. I usually use it with a humidifier when I have a cold. It helps me breathe and reduces congestion.

My grandmother was a big fan of alternative medicine and she always made her own remedies for various ailments. She used to make a balm with beeswax and lavender oil among other things that she used for so many different issues. It was "go-to" remedy. She used to put it on our cuts and scrapes to prevent infection. And she used to use it on her knees because she had arthritis. She said it helped with the pain.

literally45
Post 1

Lavender essential oil is wonderful for aromatherapy. It's so calming and relaxing. Those who have a stressful life or who suffer from anxiety must try it.

I usually put a little bit into bath water after a tiring day. I have this issue where I can't sleep if I'm stressed or tense. When I'm very tired, it's actually difficult for me to sleep. Lavender essential oil helps a lot. Having a bath and inhaling the scent before bedtime helps me fall asleep. I also use candles with lavender sometimes.

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