Long term exposure to stress may cause a variety of health issues.
STRESSED NATION ¾ of Americans experience health symptoms due to stress each month. 90% of doctor’s visits are for symptoms that are related to stress. 43% of Americans take mood altering prescriptions daily. Anxiety Statistics.2013. Stressed in America. 2011.
MEDICATION RISKS Impaired judgment and thinking Drowsiness and clumsiness Loss of memory/ confusion Nausea /upset stomach/diarrhea Depression Headaches Sexual dysfunction Irritability Nightmares Addiction Smith, Melinda. 2013.
There are other treatments that help relieve stress that do not require the use of prescription medications.
Herbs have been used as a treatment for stress for thousands of years.
CHAMOMILE Has been used to relieve stress and anxiety for thousands of years. Both tea and capsule forms are effective. Chamomile is considered to be a safe herb but should not be used by people with asthma, pregnant women and those with aster or daisy allergies. Miller, Ashley.2010.
VALERIAN ROOT Has been used for 1000 years as a sedative. Used today to treat anxiety and panic attacks, promote sleep, relieve headaches, help relieve digestive and menstrual cramps, and to help relax the body. May be taken as a capsule, tincture, extract, or as a tea. Has been heavily researched and considered to be safe and effective. Spivey, Kelly.2010.
VERVAIN Ancient Romans used vervain for various ailments. Relaxes muscles, calms nerves, eases anxiety. May be taken as an infusion or tincture. Should not be used by pregnant women since it causes uterine contractions. Taken in excess amounts will cause vomiting. Vervain. 2013.
CATMINT Also known as catnip, has a sedative effect on people. Calms anxiety and induces sleep when taken internally. Catnip may be taken as a capsule or as a tea. Pregnant women should avoid taking catmint. Braun, Dee. 2013.
Herbs can be used to help relieve stress in many different ways.
HOW HERBS CAN BE USED FOR STRESS RELIEF Herbs used to relieve stress may be taken orally as capsules, tinctures, or as an infusion or tea. Herbs may also be added to slaves, lotions, and oils and used in stress relieving massage and baths. Many herbs may help relieve stress as aromatherapy.
Lemon Balm, Rose, and Lavender are all herbs that reduce stress as teas, when added to baths, used in oils, and lotion, and as aromatherapy.
USING HERBS SAFELY Natural does not mean safe. Herbal remedies are medicine. Knowledge is key. When in doubt talk to a professional. Be cautious. Do not believe “miraculous” claims. How to Use Herbs Safely.2013 Do not exceed recommended dosage. Do not use herbal remedies if pregnant. Purchase herbs fro a reputable business. Know what you grow. Be aware of herb/ medicine interactions. Keep up on regulation issues and studies.
When used correctly herbs can be a wonderful and safe way to relieve stress. We have finally started to notice that there is real curative value in local herbs and remedies. In fact, we are also becoming aware that there are little or no side effects to most natural remedies, and that they are often more effective than Western medicine. - Anne Wilson Schaef
References All pictures retrieved from Google Images. Anxiety Statistics. (2013). http://www.anxietycentre.com/anxiety-statistics-information.shtmlhttp://www.anxietycentre.com/anxiety-statistics-information.shtml Braun, Dee. (203). Your Cat’s Catnip May Help Anxiety. Natural Holistic Health. http://www.natural-holistic-health.com/cats-catnip-anxiety/http://www.natural-holistic-health.com/cats-catnip-anxiety/ Chamomile. http://www.livestrong.com/article/240729-anxiety-chamomile/http://www.livestrong.com/article/240729-anxiety-chamomile/ How to Use Herbs Safely. (2013). Master Herbal Remedies. http://www.masterherbremedies.com/herbsafety.html Miller, Ashley. (2010) Anxiety and Smith, Melinda, Robinson, Lawrence, and Segal, Jeanne.(2013). Anxiety Medication. http://www.helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_medication_drugs_treatment.htm http://www.helpguide.org/mental/anxiety_medication_drugs_treatment.htm Spivey, Kelly. (2010) The Use of Valerian Rot to Relieve Stresshttp://www.livestrong.com/article/321310-the-use-of-valerian-root-to-relieve-stress Stressed in America.(2011). American Psychological Association. January 2011. Vol. 42, No1. p. 60. Vervain. (3013) http://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_vervain.htmhttp://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_vervain.htm