What is Davana Essential Oil?
Davana essential oil has been revered in India for thousands of years where it is widely used in Ayurveda (traditional Indian medicine) to treat various physical and emotional conditions. It may not be as well known in the West but in India, it has long been used for its fragrance as well as the treatment for an array of complaints including colds, coughs, infections, depression and nervous disorders.
Davana essential oil comes from a fragrant herb known scientifically as Artemisia pallens which belongs to the same Asteraceae family as the daisy. Also known as davnam, the herb is originally native to southern areas of India.
The essential oil itself is extracted by a process of steam distillation from the plant’s leaves and stems. The fragrant oil is growing in popularity worldwide but its roots are very much a part of Indian folklore, religious ceremony and Ayurvedic medicine.
It was not until the mid 20th century that davana oil gained attention outside the Indian subcontinent. In the U.S and Japan, it was originally used as a perfume ingredient and a flavoring in baking products, tobacco and beverages.
However, a global market is now becoming more aware of its many medicinal properties that have plenty of applications for your health. If you would like to find out more about this wonderful, exotic essential oil, please read on.
Medicinal Properties of Davana Oil
Davana essential oil is chock full of beneficial constituents. Among its many chemical components, it contains sesquiterpene ketones, linalool, farnesol, ethyl cinnamate, methyl cinnamate, terpinen-4 oil, nordavanone and isodavanone.
These compounds confer davana oil with a wide variety of medicinal properties including antiseptic, antimicrobial, antiviral, anti-fungal and antioxidant actions. It also has expectorant, nervine, stomachic and decongestant properties giving it a very wide range of applications in physical and mental health.
This article will look at some of the main ways that you can use davana oil for your health and well-being.
Health Benefits of Davana Essential Oil
1) Antimicrobial Actions
Davana essential oil has been used in Ayurveda, the traditional Indian medicine, for centuries to treat infections both internally and externally. The oil has powerful antiseptic properties that can help cleanse wounds and prevent the spread of bacterial infection. It is also used in traditional medicine to treat internal infections of the kidney, urinary tract and bladder.
If traditional use does not convince you, a study published in 2009 found that extracts derived from davana had powerful antibacterial activity against Bacillus cereus bacteria. (1)
As well as its antibacterial qualities, davana essential oil has excellent natural antiviral properties. That makes davana oil extremely useful against common viruses such as the ones responsible for the common cold, the flu and various other viral conditions.
Do not take davana essential oil internally to treat these conditions. The best way to employ the oil is to combine it with virgin coconut oil and massage it into your body. Ayurvedic practitioners recommend following the massage with a relaxing bath containing a few drops of the essential oil. The combined effects of the massage and bath soak allows the therapeutic compounds to penetrate your skin and heal your illness.
For external cuts, scrapes and minor wounds, dilute a drop or two of your davana oil with a carrier oil like olive or coconut then apply it to the affected region. This will help clean the wound and prevent infection from spreading but do not apply this oil to an open wound.
2) Emotional Well-being
As well as its benefits on a person’s physical health, davana essential oil is regarded as a natural treatment for the mind. In Ayurvedic aromatherapy, davana oil is a popular choice to relax the nerves and bring calm to the mind.
Essential oils are growing in popularity for the positive effect they can have on a person’s mental well-being. They are a great, natural alternative to powerful prescription medications that so many people in the West have become dependent on.
Davana essential oil can help soothe your mind and bring a feeling of calm during periods of stress or anxiety. It can help relax the mind and clear away troubling thoughts.
Many people suffering from stress or anxiety also have trouble getting to sleep or staying asleep through the night. This puts added strain on your mind and body and may cause a never ending vicious circle. Davana oil can help ease your troubled mind helping you relax and sleep better through the night.
According to Ayurvedic practice, this essential oil also has uplifting qualities that make it a useful natural treatment for sadness, grief and depression.
If you are feeling stressed out, nervous or depressed, try diffusing the oil at home or at work. Alternatively, add a few drops of this calming oil to your bath and let its uplifting qualities wash over you.
Davana essential oil has traditionally been used to help women deal with various problems related to menstruation. The oil has natural emmenagogue properties meaning that it can help regulate a woman’s period which is especially useful for women suffering from irregular menstrual cycles.
Proponents and Ayurvedic practitioners recommend diluting a few drops of davana essential oil with a sesame oil (or another oil) then massaging it into the lower abdomen. It is a great natural remedy for many of the problems women suffer from each month including abdominal cramps, nausea and fatigue. It can also have a relaxing effect on the mind at a time when many women are prone to anger and mood swings.
4) Skin Health
Given its excellent antiseptic and anti-microbial properties, you will not be surprised to learn that davana essential oil makes for a great skin treatment.
You can apply topically simply to give your skin a healthy boost but it is also a very good natural remedy for various chronic skin conditions. Many people find it effective as a treatment for acne, eczema, psoriasis and blackheads.
It also has antioxidant properties that can help rejuvenate the skin and slow down those nasty signs of aging like wrinkles and crow’s feet. It may even help diminish the appearance of scars and stretch marks when used consistently for several months or more.
It also makes an especially good remedy for dry or sun damaged skin. Simply add a few drops of davana oil to your regular skin cream or mix it with a skin friendly carrier oil like virgin coconut oil and apply it to your skin each day.
5) Respiratory Health and Congestion
Davana essential oil may be relatively new to the West but it has been used to treat coughs, colds and congestion in India for a very long time. It has excellent expectorant properties which help it to clear out mucus or phlegm from the respiratory tract and lungs. This clears congestion and helps you to breathe much more comfortably.
We have already mentioned that the oil has antiviral properties which may help to treat the cause of the condition and prevent it from recurring.
Inhaling davana essential oil directly or from a diffuser can help treat a respiratory issue or congestion but the best way to use it is by way of a steam inhalation.
Add a few drops of davana oil to a bowl or sink full of very hot water. Cover your head and your shoulders with a towel and lean over the water being very careful not to scald yourself. Breathe in the rich, healing vapors for 5 minutes or as long as you can tolerate the steam and your congestion will quickly ease. Repeat the treatment twice each day for as long as needed.
Precautions and Side Effects
- Do not use take davana essential oil internally.
- Always be sure to dilute davana essential oil with a suitable carrier oil before you apply it topically.
- Perform a patch test to ensure you have no adverse skin reactions.