Taking Charge of Your Health

What are the Best Herbal Remedies for Anxiety? Among the best or most popular herbal remedies
for anxiety are Chamomile, St. John’s Wort and Valerian. These herbal remedies are not new; Chamomile,
for example, has been around for thousands of years. Similar to the other above-mentioned herbs,
one of Chamomile’s most popular uses is promoting calmness and curbing mild anxiety. As a general rule, most herbal remedies are
not governed by regulatory food and drug agencies. This means the effectiveness of the herbs
is sometimes anecdotal and not scientifically proven. Similar to prescription drugs, herbal remedies
can have side effects. Some of these side effects can be quite serious
or even fatal. When herbal remedies are used with caution
and in moderation, however, some people swear by their effectiveness in reducing anxiety. Chamomile is perhaps one of the most well-known
herbal remedies for anxiety. The flowers of the chamomile plant are often
used in making teas, liquid extracts or pills. Chamomile is known as a remedy for insomnia
and anxiety, and it is used as a treatment for an upset stomach and other gastrointestinal
problems. Rare allergic reactions to Chamomile include
throat swelling, shortness of breath, skin rashes and a life-threatening allergic reaction
called anaphylaxis. Allergic reactions to herbal remedies are
most likely to occur in people with allergies to the daisy family. In addition to daisies, this plant family
includes chrysanthemums, marigolds and ragweed. St. John’s wort also is among the well-known
herbal remedies for anxiety. It has been used for centuries. This flowering top of this herb is commonly
used in tea and capsule form. Scientific studies have shown mixed results
for the effectiveness of St. John’s wort. A study by the National Center for Complementary
and Alternative Medicine in the United States found that St. John’s wort was not effective
in treating moderate depression. Some evidence was found that it could be effective
in treating mild to moderate depression. Some side effects to watch for include sensitivity
to sunlight, fatigue, headache, dry mouth and even increased anxiety. The root of the Valerian plant is another
well-known herb for reducing anxiety. Valerian is often taken in the form of a tea
or in capsules. Valerian is known for its sedative effect
and is commonly used to treat insomnia, with some indications that it is effective in treating
anxiety. Significant and long-term side effects of
Valerian are generally not known. Similar to St. John’s wort, Valerian might
actually increase anxiety and excitability in some people. Other possible side effects include irregular
heartbeats and headaches. When using any herbal remedies for anxiety,
one should carefully follow all dosage recommendations under the guidance of either a trusted herbalist
or a physician. A physician should be consulted if any other
herbs or medications are being taken, as interactions can occur. As with prescription drugs, some people will
feel an improvement in their condition while using herbs, and others will not. Prolonged anxiety can indicate a serious condition
and might require psychological treatment or other forms of treatments

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