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Lavender.

Botanical Name:
The official species approved for medicinal use  is L. angustifolia.
The common name Lavender also includes
Lavandula angustifolia  (English or True Lavender)  
Lavandula dentana  (French Lavender)
Lavandula latifolia  (Spike Lavender)
Lavendula viridis, Lavendula vera, Lavendula officinalis, as well as other Lavendula species
Lavendula consists of  about 400 species.

 

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Click on thumbnail to see pictures for identification.

Name  
Lavender

Botanical Name: 
The common name Lavender also includes
Lavandula angustifolia  (English or True Lavender) Lavandula dentana  (French Lavender)
Lavandula latifolia  (Spike Lavender)
Lavendula viridis, Lavendula vera, Lavendula officinalis, as well as other Lavendula species
Lavendula consists of  about 400 species.

The official species approved for medicinal use  is L. angustifolia .

Family:
Lamiaceae, All species of Lavender are from the Mint (Labiatae) family.

Parts Used 
Flowers, Leaves

Description
Lavender is a perennial aromatic subshrub native to the low mountains (8001,800 meters) of the Mediterranean basin
with branched, crooked, woody stems.

Overview
  and Mythology.

The name Lavender is derived from the Latin lavare, meaning 'to wash', as it was added to baths for its therapeutic properties and delightful fragrance that helps lift the spirits.
Lavender was used as an antiseptic and as a means to get rid of parasites in ancient Arabian, Greek, and Roman medicines and up to world war 2 to disinfect hospitals and sick rooms.
Lavender was also used for this purpose during the Bubonic Plague in the middle ages.
The ancient Greeks called the plant nardus and later the Romans called it asarum

The Gyu-zhi, or Four Tantras, by Chandranandana is the earliest Indian medical text to be translated into Tibetan (eighth century B.C.E.). In it, lavender (Pri-yangku in Tibetan) is included in psychiatric formulas, still used today in Tibetan Buddhist medicine, for treating insanity and psychoses, in an edible ointment or medicine butter dosage form.
In the book Makhzan-El-Adwiya, it is called the broom of the brain, because it is reputed to sweep away all kafa impurities (Nadkarni, 1976).
The smell of Lavender helps to lift the spirits.  It is a helpful fragrance to have present at birth and death since it has calming properties.  

When corsets were the fashion, ladies would tuck some Lavender oil in a bottle around their necks to revive them when they were feeling faint. 

Distribution
It is cultivated in France, Bulgaria, Italy, Spain, the former Yugoslavia, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Australia.

Constituents.
Essential oils
At least 1.5% with
Linalyl acetate[2555%], Linalool,[2038%], b - Ocimene,26% Camphor,
Geraniol, Eucalyptol, Limonene, and 1,8-Cineole as its main components.
The neurophysical effects of its essential oil (Tasev et al, 1969), its choleretic and cholagogic actions (Gruncharov, 1973), its use as a bath additive for perineal discomfort and repair following childbirth have all been researched.

Tannins  12% unique to the Lamiaceae.
Coumarins
Flavonoids(Luteolin)
Triterpenoids
Phytosterols
Lipids

 Dosage Recommendations
Infusion: 12 teaspoons (approximately 0.81.6 g) in 150 ml water (Note: 1 teaspoon flower = 0.8 g).
Bath additive: 20100 g for a 20 liter bath.

Medicinal Actions
Analgesic, Antibacterial, Antidepressant, Antifungal, Antirheumatic; Antiseptic, Antispasmodic, Aromatic, Carminative, Cholagogue, Digestive Tonic, Diuretic, Nervine, Rubefacient, Sedative, Stimulant, Stomach Tonic, Tonic.

Applications.
Tea, Tincture, Capsules.

Used in the following internal illnesses
Asthma, Colic, Cough, Depression, Exhaustion, Fainting, Flatulence, Headache, Insomnia, Nausea, Nervousness, Pain, Stress, Sunburn, Vertigo, Vomiting
Lavender exhibits activity against Diptheria, Typhoid, Pneumonia, Staph, Strep and many Flu viruses.

Lavender is a good nerve restorative and also useful as an antibacterial agent.

Health Benefits of Lavender
The herb mascerated or as an infusion has  similar effects as the oil.
Digestive System
Lavender (leaves chewed) alleviates Hiccups.          
Lavender (tea) alleviates Nausea. 

Excretory System
Lavender (diluted oil applied as a douche in females) alleviates Cystitis.

Immune System
Lavender (small quantities of essential oil ingested orally) helps to prevent several types of Cancer (due to the Limonene and Perillyl Alcohol content of Lavender oil).  
Lavender suppresses some forms of Detrimental Bacteria (according to folklore).
Lavender inhibits some types of Detrimental Fungi.
Lavender (oil soaked in a cottonwool ball and packed into the outer ear) alleviates Earaches.
Lavender (diluted and consumed internally) reduces Fever.
Lavender (fumes from Lavender oil inhaled) alleviates the symptoms of Influenza.

Nervous System
Lavender Oil (five drops added to a sugar cube and swallowed twice daily or two drops of Lavender Oil applied topically to the temples) is a folk remedy for the prevention of Migraines 

Respiratory System
Lavender (tea) alleviates Sinusitis.

External Medicinal Use
Acne, Burns, Cellulite, Cold Sores, Eczema, Edema, Fatigue, Halitosis, Headache, Infection, Insect Bites, Insect Repellent, Insect Stings, Irritability, Joint Pain, Lice, Muscle Soreness, Rheumatism, Scabies, Scars, Snakebites, Toothache, Yeast Infection.

Applications.
Use Lavender as a rinse for fragrant hair Essential oil can be used topically on venomous bites such as bee stings, mosquitos, black widow and brown recluse spiders, wasps and snakes.
Cardiovascular System
Lavender (oil applied topically to the back of the neck) alleviates Shock.

 Eyes/Vision
Lavender (cooled tea applied topically as an eye bath) alleviates Bloodshot Eyes

Musculoskeletal System
Lavender (tinctures applied topically or added to bath water) alleviate muscular Cramps. alleviates Gout.
Lavender (added to bath water) alleviates Muscle Pain (myalgia).
Lavender (oil massaged onto the site of affected areas) alleviates Psoriasis eruptions.
Lavender (added to bath water) alleviates Rheumatism.

Respiratory System
Lavender (oil vapors inhaled) alleviates the symptoms of the Common Cold.
Lavender (oil massaged onto the Throat) alleviates Coughs.
Lavender (compress applied to the chest) alleviates the symptoms of Whooping Cough.

Nervous System
Lavender (aroma from oil inhaled when Lavender is utilized in Aromatherapy) increases the generation of Alpha Waves by the Brain (Alpha Waves are associated with relaxation).
Lavender (vapors from Lavender oil inhaled via Aromatherapy) sedates the Central Nervous System (CNS).
Lavender (oil applied topically to the temples)
alleviates Depression (according to anecdotal reports).
Lavender (oil applied topically to the temples) alleviates Headaches.
Lavender (oil applied topically to the temples or oil used in Aromatherapy) alleviates Insomnia. 
Lavender (oil used in Aromatherapy) improves the quality of Sleep
Lavender (oil used in Aromatherapy) increases the duration of Sleep in Dementia patients.  
Lavender (applied topically as a massage) alleviates the symptoms of Stress.
Lavender (oil applied topically to the temples) alleviates Travel Sickness.          
Skin
Lavender (oil applied topically to affected areas) alleviates Acne (due to its ability to inhibit the Detrimental Bacteria implicated in Acne and also due to its ability to control the excessive secretion of Sebum that occurs in Acne).  
Lavender (oil applied topically) accelerates the healing of Bruises .
Lavender (oil applied topically) accelerates the healing of first and second degree Burns.
Lavender (added to bath water) alleviates Eczema.
Lavender (oil as an ingredient in Shampoo) alleviates Itching of the Scalp.
Lavender (oil applied topically) helps to control the excessive secretion of Sebum that occurs as a result of Seborrhea.
Lavender (oil applied topically) is an effective Skin cleanser.
Lavender (applied topically to affected areas) very effectively alleviates the pain associated with Sunburn.

Energetics.
Bitter, Cool, Dry.

Contra indications and side effect
None known.  

Use During Pregnancy And Lactation.
No restrictions known

Interactions with Other Drugs.
None known.

Doctrine of signatures
The flowers and smell convey a sense of well being and harmony.

Astrology.
Being influenced by the planet Mercury it is a herb affecting Gemini.

Chakra
Affects positively, the first, fourth, fifth and sixth chakras.
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