Are you thinking about using herbs to help your insomnia? Here’s one herb that you should use with caution.

Herbal remedies for insomnia have a long tradition stretching back throughout human history.

Recently, they’ve been getting some press as a gentler and more effective alternative to insomnia medications. Unlike sleeping medications, most herbs used for insomnia are not addictive, do not promote overuse and have little or no side effects.

There is one herb, however, that is commonly used for insomnia relief that you should take care when using. It’s called Valerian.

Valerian is a perennial plant native to Europe and Asia and naturalized in the Americas. It has a strong odor that many people find unpleasant.

Valerian has been in use since at least since ancient Greek and Roman times, especially to relieve stress, anxiety and tension.

For sleep disorders, most people take a valerian capsule or tincture that is made from the roots and the leaf stems of the plant. The typical recommended dose is about 1 teaspoon in water 1/2 hour before bed.

Few serious problems have been reported from using Valerian, but there are a 2 major side effects to be aware of if you plan to use this herb as a sleep remedy.

1. Valerian is a natural mild depressant and can interfere with your mood. It also has the tendency to make some people feel lethargic or sluggish in the morning.

2. Valerian can become addictive especially if used with alcohol. Be careful not to combine Valerian with alcohol use.

And of course, Valerian should not be used by women who are pregnant or by children under 5 years.

Valerian use gets best results for occasional insomnia.

Author's Bio: 

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From Mark Ament - Natural Healing Advocate - Healthy Living Expert