Is your child stressed out lately? Or perhaps your child is suffering from a chronic issue?
Sometimes, the reason your child is anxious isn’t quite clear. It could be an external factor, or it could be a chemical imbalance.
Giving kids pharmaceutical anxiety medication may be the best course, but it may be possible to help your child with a gentler, natural remedy.
Five Safe and Effective Anti-anxiety Herbs for Children
Ashwagandha, or Withania somnifera, is an herb native to northern Africa and India. It has been long used in Ayurvedic medicine, and its name translates to “smell of a horse”, symbolizing the plant’s odor and its restorative properties which were believed to make one feel as strong as a horse.
Ashwagandha promotes well-being by reducing stress hormone levels, thus boosting overall health. Cortisol is associated with a plethora of health risks including, but not limited to circulatory problems, weight gain and low immunity.
Ashwagandha is astoundingly effective even for people with high levels of anxiety. A 60-day regimen in adults has been shown that it’s incredibly effective in combatting the effects of stress.
On top of that, Ashwagandha can also improve memory and cognitive abilities.
Ocimum tenuiflorum, also known as tulsi or holy basil, is an adaptogen herb that is native to Southeast Asia. Holy basil promotes general health and has been long used as a natural remedy for hypothyroidism, adrenal fatigue, acne and unbalanced blood sugar.
Holy basil keeps hormone levels balanced. It also has positive effects on memory and cognitive abilities.
Like ashwagandha, holy basil is an adaptogen herb, meaning that the substances present in the plant help the mind and body be more resilient to stress.
Bacopa monnieri, or brahmi as it is also known, is a perennial herb native to south India that also grows in the warm wetlands of Asia and America.
Like Ashwagandha, brahmi is an adaptogen herb with nootropic properties that was used for centuries in Ayurvedic medicine. Studies have proven its effectiveness in relieving anxiety, making it one of the most effective herbs when it comes to reducing anxiety and stress.
Bacopa monnieri improves both memory retention and recall. Studies on animals under stress have shown that it improves learning capacity. Hence, Bacopa monnieri is an effective study aid for your young one.
Chamomile is a daisy-like plant part of the Asteraceae family. It’s been used therapeutically for hundreds of years.
Even though it’s not as strong as other herbs on this list, it’s still effective in relieving anxiety.
Studies suggest that using chamomile long-term “will significantly reduce moderate-to-severe symptoms of general anxiety disorders.”
There are around 500 species of passion flower, yet there is one species, Passiflora incarnata, that is especially effective in treating anxiety and insomnia.
Native Americans have used passionflower to treat liver problems, earaches and wounds.
Passionflower increases GABA, which is the main inhibitory neurotransmitter of the brain.
A study published in Anesthesia and Analgesia has reported that patients scheduled for surgery consuming passionflower felt less anxious than those receiving a placebo.
Are Anxiety Relieving Herbs Enough for your Child’s Anxiety?
Ashwagandha, holy basil, brahmi, chamomile and passionflower are effective in relieving and helping to cope with anxiety.
All five herbs also have other health properties which benefit your child’s overall health.
Of course, brewing a cup of tea or telling your child to take a capsule every day isn’t necessarily enough for him to properly face his fears. Proper nutrition, physical activity and the love that you provide should be at the top of your list, regardless if anxiety is present or not.
Can you think of any other way in which you could help an anxious child?
We’d love to hear about it!
Ashwagandha safe in kids 8 and up for up to 4 months daily use
Holy basil used historically, safely, no records of adverse events in kids. Should be used with caution in infants, pregnancy, and lactating mothers. No studies on children except for topical use (mouth rinse).
Brahmi safe to use in children 6 and over for up to 6 months (ADHD)
Chamomile safe in babies, infants, children, lactation, and pregnancy
Passionflower safe for kids 6 and over for up to 2 months, kiddos with sleep problems lasting much longer need to have them checked out
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