Lavender Aromatherapy for Insomnia
Clinical studies show that lavender aromatherapy has excellent and positive effects on insomnia, especially with women in their mid-life stages.
Most of us have experienced insomnia at one point or another in our lives and this is especially true for women in mid-life. Insomnia is a disorder that stops you from getting adequate sleep, which includes difficulty in falling asleep and as well it can cause you to have a hard time staying asleep. Insomnia can also mean that you are not getting past the REM level of sleep into the deeper rejuvenating sleep your body and mind requires.
People suffering from insomnia may:
- take 30 or more minutes to fall asleep
- get less than six hours of sleep per night several time a week
- trouble staying asleep/wake up far too early
- don’t fall into the deep sleep levels and not feel rested after sleeping
- feel sleepy or drowsy throughout the day
Over time this affects your health in several ways such as:
- other health issues such as gastrointestinal problems
A study published 2011 by the US National Library of Medicine on the National Institutes of Health had an objective to determine the effects of lavender aromatherapy over a period of 12 weeks. The study looked at the heart rate variability (HRV) in the midlife women that were suffering from insomnia. In the study there were sixty-seven women all aged from 45 to 55 years.
Test groups were set up, one of which received lavender via inhalation for a period 20 min each time, two per week, for a total of 12 weeks. The study showed that lavender inhalation had persistent short-term effects on HRV. Specifically, the test group of women that were receiving lavender aromatherapy had a significant improvement in sleep quality.
Because sleep problems are reported in 39% to 47% of pre-menopausal women and 35% to 60% of post-menopausal women the study sought to develop possible strategies for these groups in the arena of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) as natural solution instead of western medicine methods.
Aromatherapy has been widely used to induce and produce better sleep for thousands of years. Specifically, inhalation of lavender has long been known in alternative medicine to induce a better state of mind in order to encourage better, deeper sleep.
Results of Lavender Aromatherapy Study:
The study found a significant decrease in mean HR after 20 min of lavender aromatherapy/inhalation and that after 12 weeks of lavender aromatherapy midlife women suffering from insomnia had substantial improvements to the quality of their sleep.
Since this study there have been numerous others all showing the positive effect of lavender aromatherapy to treat insomnia.
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