It is used in everything from bath bombs to fabric softener, as it states that its fragrance helps you relax.
Now scientists have confirmed that the smell of lavender really helps you relax.
Japanese researchers discovered that mice that were exposed to the flower's aroma had less signs of anxiety.
The study suggests that the purple bush may have potential as a safer alternative to the 'benzos & # 39; of the sleeping pills.
Benzodiazepines have been linked to a number of side effects, including memory problems, male breast growth and even birth defects.
According to research (stocks), from bath bombs to fabric softener: lavender is really relaxing.
Lavender could also be used to calm patients before surgery or for those struggling to take medications, such as young children or the elderly.
Scientists at Kagoshima University analyzed whether the odor of vaporized lavender compound linalool helps mice relax.
"In folk medicine, it has long been believed that odorous compounds derived from plant extracts can relieve anxiety," said co-author Dr. Hideki Kashiwadani.
"As in previous studies, we found that the smell of linalool has an anxiolytic [anti-anxiety] Effect in normal mice.
However, this effect was not observed among rodents without olfaction. Linalool must, therefore, trigger "odor signals" that lead to relaxation.
This contradicts previous theories that suggested that linalool is absorbed as psychoactive benzodiazepine drugs.
Benzos, such as Xanax and Valium, enter the bloodstream through the respiratory tract and then have a direct effect on the receptors of brain cells known as GABAARs.
But when the mice were previously treated with the medicine flumazenil, which blocks the drugs, they did not experience calming effects.
The study was published in the journal Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience.
"When combined, these results suggest that linalool does not act directly on GABAA receptors as benzodiazepines do," explained Dr. Kashiwadani.
But you must activate them through the olfactory neurons in the nose to produce their relaxing effects.
"Our study also opens the possibility that the relaxation observed in mice fed or injected with linalool may, in fact, be due to the odor of the compound emitted from their exhaled breath."
He adds that more research is needed to determine the safety and efficacy of linalool when it is taken through different routes before it can be tested in humans.
"However, these findings bring us closer to the clinical use of linalool to relieve anxiety," added Dr. Kashiwadani.
In surgery, for example, where previous treatment with anxiolytics can relieve preoperative stress and, therefore, help to place patients under general anesthesia more easily.
"Vaporized Linalool could also provide a safe alternative for patients who have difficulty with oral administration or for suppositories of anxiolytics, such as confused babies or elderly."
Up to 40 percent of people suffer from anxiety around the world at some point in their lives.
This comes after research published earlier this year suggested that sleeping less than eight hours a night is related to mental health disorder.
According to the study of the University of Binghamton, New York, insomniacs are less able to overcome negative thoughts than those with enough closed eyes.