There are a number of herbs out there that help people relax and have a better night’s sleep. So, if you’re having trouble taking it down a notch, maybe consider these.

1. Lavender

This herb is native to the Mediterranean and is valued for it soothing and calming effects. This essential oil is inhaled for its mood-stabilizing, pain-relieving, and anxiety-reducing effects. In a 2012 European Neurology study, the oil was found to significantly reduce the severity of migraine headaches. In another study, lavender aromatherapy was responsible for decreasing agitation in patients in nursing homes.

Adding lavender to your relaxation routine:

Lavender is suited in its fresh or dried form for using in a bath. Take a mesh bag and fill it with lavender flowers. Now add this to your bathtub. Soak in the tub for twenty minutes.

2. Chamomile

This is another popular western herb that is used for relaxation purposes. It calms muscle spasms and nerves, relieves gas and bloating, cures morning sickness and dizziness, and can be safely used to promote restful sleep in infants and kids. This was revealed in the Molecular Medicine Reports in 2010.

Adding chamomile to your relaxation routine:

A cup of chamomile tea before bed will do the trick.

3. Lemon Balm

This plant has a pleasant citrus taste which helps reduce anxiety, elevates the mood and calms digestion. Lemon balm was traditionally used for nervous indigestion and restlessness. The plant has shown to improve cognitive performance due to its work on the acetylcholine receptors of the brain. This was revealed in a Pharmacology and Biochemistry study in 2002. Add lemon balm oil to your relaxation routine: One tablespoon of hot or dry lemon balm oil should be added to one cup of hot water. This makes a soothing and delicious drink. This oil can interfere with thyroid hormones. Hence, you should not take it in high doses for longer periods if you have hypothyroidism.

4. Hawthorn

The fruits, leaves, and flowers of this plant are regularly used to relax blood vessels, strengthen the cardiovascular system, and lower blood pressure. This was revealed in a 2010 study published in the Pharmacognosy Review. Hawthorn is also used to soothe emotional stress and facilitate by opening the heart. Since this herb can alter the requirements for certain heart medications, any heart patient taking this herb should consult their physician first. This was revealed in a study published in the American Journal of Health-System Pharmacy in 2002.

Adding Hawthorn to your relaxation routine:

Use a teaspoon of this herb per cup of hot water to make a tea. You may take 1/8 teaspoon of solid extract of hawthorn (syrup like consistency) before bed if you do not like to take a lot of fluids at night.

5. Passionflower

Passionflower promotes relaxation and restful sleep. It is considered a beautiful flower of a vine which is native to the tropics and sub-tropics. A study published in 2010 in the Phytomedicine: International Journal of Phytotherapy revealed that passionflower works by impacting the gamma-aminobutyric receptors of your central nervous system.

Adding passionflower to the relaxation routine:

Add the dried leaves, flowers, and roots to a small pouch to create an herbal sachet which can be kept near your pillow or added to a warm bath. It also tastes great as a tea - mixed with hawthorn. The flower should not be taken by people who are already taking a sleeping medication.

6. Kratom

Kratom is an herb that is originally found in South East Asia. It has been used in cultures there for centuries to help people relax and sleep, as well as to stay alert. For those looking to relax there is plenty to suggest kratom can help with sleep and also in a range of other areas.

Adding Kratom to a relaxation routine

Kratom can be ingested in a number of ways and the one you prefer is often down to personal preference. There are a list of common ways to use it here.