The two types of chamomile plants most commonly used for healing and fragrance are German Chamomile, also known as wild chamomile, and Roman Chamomile, a species native to the wildflower fields of Britain.
Soothing and Healing Benefits
Considered a universal remedy in ancient civilizations, chamomile is used today to relieve aches, promote calm, soothe anxiety and for its anti-inflammatory effects. This edible and medicinal plant has a variety of uses and is available as teas, tinctures, creams, ointments, capsules, essential oil, dried herbs, homeopathic preparations and fresh plants.
The altruistic chamomile is even beneficial to other plants; the antiseptic oils from the chamomile ward off a number of fungal disease from other plants.
The powerful essential oil of chamomile is derived by steam distillation of both the plant’s flower and leaves. Another key healing ingredient is derived from the flower head. This volatile oil is called bisabolol and has beneficial anti-irritant and antiseptic qualities. Other organic compounds from the herbal plant add to its range of uses as a sedative, anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant and more.
After a long, stressful day reach for a cup of chamomile tea to ease your muscles and calm your nerves. The sweet Roman Chamomile is the main source of chamomile tea, which is available as dried herbs and teabags. For optimum health, everyone needs their beauty sleep and chamomile flower teas are mildly sedating to relieve troublesome insomnia, restlessness and anxiety. Chamomile tea is also used for its anti-inflammatory properties which reduced symptoms of rheumatism, arthritis and other painful joint swellings.
Chamomile also has anti-spasmodic effects for menstrual cramps, muscle tensions and muscle aches. For stomach bloating and intestinal cramps try chamomile teas and capsules to aid digestion, relieve gas pains, act as a very mild laxative. Studies have shown that chamomile is effective in treating gastritis and ulcerative colitis. The herbs calming properties can offer relief from acid indigestion, intestinal gas, diarrhea and constipation.
For fevers, sore throats, aches and pains due to colds and flu try chamomile teas and oil-infused steams. This herb has shown to relieves allergies much as an antihistamine would. It is remarkably anti allergenic and is useful in the treatment of asthma and hay fever. Homeopathic chamomile liquid drops can be used to soothe teething and colic in babies and calm children who have been in a highly emotional state for an extended period. Dried chamomile flowers can be made into refreshing potpourri and herb pillows and burned for aromatherapy and as an insect repellent.
Although chamomile is usually non-irritating, small amounts of pollen residue in Chamomile teas may cause dermatitis or other allergic symptoms in people sensitive to ragweed, aster and members of the daisy family. Pregnant and nursing women should consult a doctor before using herbal preparations.
Uses for Chamomile
- Soothes and relaxes
- Relieves teething problems and colic in infants
- Relieves allergies
- Aids digestion
- Aids healing of skin ulcers, wounds, and burns
- Treats gastritis, ulcers, indigestion and other digestive ailments.
- Makes a relaxing and healing bath or footbath.
- Cleanses and conditions skin complexion
- Treats dandruff and oily scalp
- Herb can be dried and used for aromatherapy
- Essential oil can be used as an insect repellent