Pain and Lavender:
Lavender oil has been reported to be useful in treating acute pain as well as in chronic and/or intractable pain. It has been shown in 100 patients using Lavender essential oil for foot massage that 50% were receiving artificial ventilation, and was effective in reducing blood pressure, heart rate, breathing rate, wakefulness, and overall pain.
In the treatment of recurrent Aphthous ulcer, using Lavender oil has revealed a significant pain relief in the majority of the 115 patients, and only in the first dose. This resulted in the reduction of the ulcer size, the increased frequency of mucosal repair, and healing within three days of treatment; compared to baseline and placebo groups.
The use of Lavender produced that the stress level, the Bispectral index (a promising sedation monitoring parameter), and the intensity of the pain of needle insertion were significantly reduced after receiving oxygen with a mask covered with Lavender oil. This experiment lasted for five minutes, compared with the control in thirty volunteers. The aromatic oil massage using essential oils mixed with Lavender, sage, marjoram on a 2: 1: 1, in forty-eight outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea, reduced pain, and reduced the duration of dysmenorrhea.
Aromatherapy with Lavender oil, also reportedly worked as a successful and safe adjunctive therapy in reducing pain after caesarean section in 200 pregnant women, and after episiotomy (vaginal surgery) in 60 primiparas (first birth), and in perineal discomfort (reproductive organ system component) after normal delivery, in 635 women.
It has been shown that Lavender aromatherapy through an oxygen mask with two drops of lavender oil at 2% can be used as an analgesic to reduce demand for opiates, in twenty-five patients postoperatively, and immediately after surgery and biopsy. In contrast to these observations, the scent of Lavender essential oil facilitates anxiety but no pain perception, during cosmetic facial injections of botulinum toxin for the correction of the frown lines.
In an eight-session course manual of acupressure with Lavender oil (lavender oil 3%, which is used as a lubricant massage) for a period of three weeks in patients with neck pain subacute nonspecific (32 patients) or pain lumbar (61 patients), significantly relieved their neck and back pain and improved movement of the cervical and lumbar spine. The inhalation of Lavender essential oil is suggested and is a safe treatment against acute migraine pain.
A report dicussed how forty-seven patients suffering from migraine attacks experienced a significant reduction in pain intensity and associated symptoms, fifteen minutes after inhaling Lavender oil (2-3 drops of essential oil of lavender rubbed on his upper lip) in the early stages of the attacks. In aromatherapy, massages accompanied with Lavender geranium, rose, jasmine, almond oils spring, once a week for eight weeks, was reported as an effective treatment for the symptoms of menopause hot flashes, depression and pain, and in climacteric women.
The Cognition process and Lavender:
Using scents to affect one’s mood has been reported by several ancient doctors as well as in Medieval Times, just as the positive effects of various medicinal plants as cognitive enhancers has been reported, as well. To assess the olfactory impact of essential oils of Lavender on cognitive performance and mood in healthy volunteers, it was used the Computerized Cognitive Assessment Battery in the research conducted on 144.
Performance analysis revealed that the smell of Lavender (four drops of oil were applied to a pad diffusor) produced a significant decrease in performance of the ‘main memory’, and reaction times in disabilities, as well as for memory and attention.
Additionally, significant effects were found in Lavender, compared with other control groups, indicating that Lavender is able to raise the mood, or at least maintain a good mood while performing battery challenge tests in laboratory conditions. It was found to improve the emotional states in the work environment as a result of using Lavender oil burners.
The use of Lavender oil burners for a period of three months has shown that almost 90% of respondents (a total of 66 subjects), were believed to cause an improvement in the working environment due to the use of Lavender oil. In the use of aromatherapy, using essential oils such as rosemary and lemon in the morning, and Lavender and orange at night showed significant improvement in personal guidance related to cognitive function in 28 elderly patients that were suffering from various forms of dementia.
It has been shown that the unconscious perception of the smell of Lavender can significantly affect the rate of errors in tests of mathematical counting and letters. In the presence of the smell of Lavender in 108 subjects, individuals made fewer mistakes than in the presence of any odor or smell of jasmine. In comparison, it has been reported that the use of Lavender might deteriorate arithmetic reasoning, but not memory, compared to clove oil, and with no concomitant effect on mood. The oral application of lavender (80 mg / day) for six weeks, in fifty patients suffering from neurasthenia disorder or PTSD, showed significant improvements in their state of general mental health and their quality of life.
Precautions in using Lavender:
Although there is insufficient evidence to recommend Lavender for short-term treatment in some neurological disorders, long-term trials and observational studies have been establishing the safety of long-term and overall effectiveness, in the context of treatment and control, and are need to mitigate these diseases.
Available data suggests that short-term therapy with the Lavender is relatively safe. However, there are some reports of adverse effects after the application of Lavender. Its use in gynecomastia (excessive development of Mammal glands in men) coincided with the topical application of products containing tea tree oils and Lavender. This was reported after use in three children between 7 and 10 years of age. In addition, studies in human cell lines indicated that Lavender oil had estrogenic and anti-androgenic activities.
Lavender should also be used with caution or avoided in patients with known allergies in relation to Lavender. In trials of Lavender in oral use, it was reported few adverse events in the group were related to Lavender than the placebo group, the most common adverse effects were related to infections and infestations, followed by gastrointestinal disorders and nervous system disorders. The physicians Schlafke Woelk reported a higher adverse events in the Lavender groups rather than the group related to Lorazepam, but were not described as serious. Gastrointestinal adverse events like nausea and dyspepsia, after receiving Silexan, were reported. Ingestion should be avoided during pregnancy and lactation. Lavender oil has no potential for drug abuse.
Endnotes about Lavender:
A recent increase in the popularity of alternative medicine and natural products has renewed the interest in Lavender and essential oils, as a possible natural remedy. This view may be useful to increase our knowledge of the Lavender in the pharmacological effects, and improve our future plans for clinical and experimental research.
There is evidence that Lavender can have significant clinical potential either by itself or as adjunctive therapy in the different disorder. However, due to some problems such as the methodological shortcomings; small sample sizes, short duration of application of Lavender, the lack of information regarding the portion of the dose variation between trials efficiency and effectiveness, the variability of the methods of administration, the absence of a comparator placebo, or the lack of control groups; is necessary research experiments and more standard rhythms, to confirm the beneficial effect of Lavender in neurological disorders.
Methodological problems identifying some oils, has also hampered the assessment of therapeutic importance the Lavender research. Dried lavender flowers used in some trials were obtained from a local herbal store, and although taxonomic identification was confirmed in these studies, no quantification of the key components of the herbal product quality, may be questionable.
Although some studies defining the content of Lavender is excellent, it is essential that all future clinical studies specify the exact derivation of the oils used in the study, and preferably include a profile of the liquid or the percentage composition of the main constituents. In addition, several factors such as temperature; skin type, quality and size of the treatment area, which can affect the level and rate of absorption of Lavender after massage or aromatherapy; were not considered in several investigations.
Many discrete compounds in Lavender oil have shown a large number of potential therapeutic effects, and researchers continue to search for new treatments for various diseases.
Only few clinical research on Lavender are available using different methods of administration (eg, orally, in aromatherapy, and as a massage oil). Evidence of the oral Lavender is promising; however, until independent studies with follow-up data appear in a long-term studies, will not be conclusive. The administration and uses of Lavender (aromatherapy, inhalation, massage, etc.) is not currently supported with good evidence of its effectiveness yet.
Future clinical trials, well informed and adopting a standard and rigorous methodology, in combination with the experimental pharmacological research, would help to clarify the therapeutic value of the Lavender in neurological and psychological disorders.
The apparently low reporting of adverse reactions could involve safety and tolerability. However, most studies did not provide details that may have been masked, and the studies involved only had a small number of individuals. This is crucial for safety and tolerability data on all modes of Lavender application. Thus the longer term follow-up would be required, especially for oral Lavender in neurological and / or psychological treatment.
However, the tremendous benefit of Lavender in our daily life cannot be denied and both oral and olfactory aromatherapy uses has been demonstrated. Only further research could open the scientific door for using Lavender in the medical field.
Peter Hossein Koulivand, Maryam Khaleghi Ghadiri and Ali Gorji.
Shefa Neuroscience Research Center, Tehran 1996835911, Iran
Klinik und für Neurochirurgie Poliklinik Germany, Universitätsklinikum Münster, 48149 Münster,
Neuroscience Research Center Razavi, Mashhad 9198613636 Iran
Research Center epilepsy, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, 48149 Münster, Germany
Institut für Physiology I, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, 48149 Münster, Germany
Department of Neurology, 48149 Münster, Germany