Lavender is a fragrant herb that has been used for centuries for its alluring floral scent and potential health benefits. But did you know some people smoke lavender? In this blog post, we’ll explore the question – can you smoke lavender? And if so, what are the potential benefits of smoking lavender and the risks?
What is Lavender?
Lavender has a long history of medicinal use for conditions like anxiety, insomnia, depression, and pain. Today, the herb is still popularly consumed as a tea, essential oil, or aromatherapy treatment. However, smoking lavender has recently grown trendy. It further claims to produce a mild calming high in the users.
But are the effects of smoking lavender buds really safe or beneficial? Could smoking lavender carry health risks like other smoke inhalation? Let’s analyze what science says so you can weigh the potential pros and cons if you’re curious about whether you can smoke lavender.
Effects of Smoking Lavender
When smoked, lavender can impart a soothing, calming sensation similar to smoking cannabis. The relaxation effects likely stem from the hundreds of active phytochemicals like linalool, linalyl acetate, and ocimene. Some smoking lavender pros one can expect from using it are anxiety and stress relief. It may also act as a mild sedative when smoked before bedtime to promote sleep.
Smoking Lavender Pros
Some suggested benefits of smoking lavender include,
- Reduced anxiety, stress, and depression symptoms
- Mild sedative effects to improve sleep troubles
- Analgesic effects to relieve headaches or body pain
- Improved mood and sense of calm and relaxation
- Antispasmodic effects to alleviate muscle tension or cramps
- Anti-inflammatory effects to soothe sore throats or lungs
However, most evidence for lavender’s therapeutic effects comes from oral dosages, topical use, or aromatherapy rather than smoking. Again, more studies are still needed on lavender smoking itself.
Benefits of Smoking Lavender
While smoking anything carries risks, some potential smoking lavender pros include:
One of the most touted effects of smoking lavender is imparting a sense of relaxation. The calming scent compounds may trigger neurotransmitters like serotonin to be released. This can ease anxiety, distress, and restlessness when smoked.
✅ Improved Sleep
Lavender is often used to promote sleep and treat insomnia. Smoking lavender, particularly in the evening, may help lull you into a deeper, more restorative sleep.
✅ Pain Relief
Some pain sufferers smoke lavender for its analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Lavender smoking may alleviate recurring headaches, body aches, joint pain, or cramps.
✅ Decreased Nausea
The anti-nausea effects of lavender may also apply when smoking the herb. Nausea sufferers report relief of upset stomach, motion sickness, or migraine-related nausea from lavender smoking.
Risks of Smoking Lavender
Despite potential upsides, smoking anything carries health hazards to be aware of. Risks possibly associated with lavender smoking include:
✅ Lung Irritation
Inhaling lavender smoke may irritate the airways or lungs. Smoke exposure always carries oxidative, carcinogenic, and toxicity risks. Those with asthma, COPD, or lung conditions should avoid it.
✅ Increased Infection Risk
Hot smoke contact can damage protective airway cilia cells and suppress immunity. This raises infection susceptibility to pneumonia, bronchitis, colds, flu, etc.
✅ Throat Irritation
Smoke inhalation often leads to cough, sore throat, or hoarse voice from inflammation. Lavender has antispasmodic effects but its smoke may still irritate.
Components in lavender like linalool, linalyl acetate, and others may interact with certain medications like sedatives, antidepressants, or anticonvulsants.
✅ Burn Risk
Mishandling dried lavender flowers during the smoking process raises the risk of accidental skin burns. Proper handling is critical.
✅ Increased Cancer Risk
While lavender itself does not cause cancer, smoke contains carcinogens and toxins that accumulate over time and are implicated in lung, throat, mouth, and other cancer forms.
As you can see, considerable uncertainties and health risks exist when it comes to smoking lavender. Always exercise caution and consult your doctor before use, especially if any medical conditions exist.
So, can you smoke lavender? As we explored above, technically lavender can be smoked in rolled cigarettes or pipes like other smoke-able herbs. However, considerable gaps in safety research remain. Lavender smoking comes with plausible upsides like calming anxiety or aiding sleep.
Yet as a form of smoke inhalation, it also introduces health hazards like lung inflammation, infection susceptibility, and even raised cancer risk from exposure. Essentially, the positive and negative effects are still speculative without controlled studies specific to lavender smoking itself.
I hope this post outlined helpful information if you were curious whether lavender smoking is safe, beneficial, or carries hidden downsides. We weighed decent anecdotal evidence of relaxation, analgesic, and sedative effects against considerable smoke exposure risks.
Given the uncertainties, it may be wisest to avoid it irrespective of the benefits of lavender smoking without your doctor’s input. Ultimately more research is still needed to establish appropriate lavender smoking dosages and safety profiles. Verifying any therapeutic effects scientifically before the practice is also recommended.
In conclusion, can you smoke lavender flowers? Yes. But considerable personal risks may come with it. Pending further data, lavender may be better enjoyed through safer ingestion methods like teas, tincture extracts, aromatherapy, or topicals where its effects are already well studied.
What are your thoughts after learning more about lavender smoking safety? Do you feel informed on the potential pros and cons now, or still have additional questions? Let me know in the comments!
- Smoking and cancer. (2021).
- Secondhand smoke. (2021).