Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) has analgesic, antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic, carminative, cicatrizant, deodorant, detoxifying, diuretic, emmenagogue, insecticide, nervine, parasiticide, rubefacient, sedative, stimulant, sudorific, vermifuge and vulnerary properties and here are a couple of studies that have been done exploring its calming and relaxing effects.

Study 1 

International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Volume 17, Issue 4, April 2002, Pages 305 – 308

Lavender oil as a treatment for agitated behaviour in severe dementia: a placebo controlled study

Clive Holmes, Vivienne Hopkins, Christine Hensford, Vanessa MacLaughlin, David Wilkinson, Henry Rosenvinge

First published: 11 April 2002 https://doi.org/10.1002/gps.593

Abstract

Objective
To determine whether aromatherapy with lavender oil is effective in the treatment of agitated behaviour in patients with severe dementia.

Design
A placebo controlled trial with blinded observer rater.

Setting
A long‐stay psychogeriatric ward.

Patients
Fifteen patients meeting ICD‐10 diagnostic criteria for severe dementia and suffering from agitated behaviour defined as a minimum score of three points on the Pittsburgh Agitation Scale (PAS).

Intervention
A 2% lavender oil aromatherapy stream was administered on the ward for a two hour period alternated with placebo (water) every other day for a total of ten treatment sessions.

Assessments
For each subject 10 total PAS scores were obtained. Five during treatment and five during placebo periods.

Results
Nine patients (60%) showed an improvement, five (33%) showed no change and one patient (7%) showed a worsening of agitated behaviour during aromatherapy compared with placebo. A comparison of the group median PAS scores during aromatherapy showed a significant improvement in agitated behaviour during aromatherapy compared with placebo (median PAS scores 3 c.f. 4; Wilcoxon Signed‐Ranks test p = 0.016 (one‐tailed)).

Conclusions
Lavender oil administered in an aroma stream shows modest efficacy in the treatment of agitated behaviour in patients with severe dementia. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

Study 2

The Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research
Volume 38, Issue 5, May 2012, Pages 817 – 822

Pain relief assessment by aromatic essential oil massage on outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea: A randomized, double‐blind clinical trial

Ming‐Chiu Ou, Tsung‐Fu Hsu, Andrew C. Lai ,Yu‐Ting Lin, Chia‐Ching Lin

First published: 22 March 2012 https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1447-0756.2011.01802.x

Abstract

Aim: This study assessed the effectiveness of blended essential oils on menstrual cramps for outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea and explored the analgesic ingredients in the essential oils.

Material and Methods: A randomized, double‐blind clinical trial was conducted. Forty‐eight outpatients were diagnosed with primary dysmenorrhea by a gynecologist and had 10‐point numeric rating scales that were more than 5. The patients were randomly assigned to an essential oil group (n =24) and a synthetic fragrance group (n 24). Essential oils blended with lavender (Lavandula officinalis), clary sage (Salvia sclarea) and marjoram (Origanum majorana) in a 2:1:1 ratio was diluted in unscented cream at 3% concentration for the essential oil group. All outpatients used the cream daily to massage their lower abdomen from the end of the last menstruation continuing to the beginning of the next menstruation.

Results: Both the numeric rating scale and the verbal rating scale significantly decreased (P <0.001) after one menstrual cycle intervention in the two groups. The duration of pain was significantly reduced from 2.4 to 1.8 days after aromatherapy intervention in the essential oil group.

Conclusion: Aromatic oil massage provided relief for outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea and reduced the duration of menstrual pain in the essential oil group. The blended essential oils contain four key analgesic components that amount to as much as 79.29%; the analgesic constitutes are linalyl acetate, linalool, eucalyptol, and β‐caryophyllene. This study suggests that this blended formula can serve as a reference for alternative and complementary medicine on primary dysmenorrhea.: This study assessed the effectiveness of blended essential oils on menstrual cramps for outpatients with primary dysmenorrhea and explored the analgesic ingredients in the essential oils.

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