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I’ve mentioned more than once that I struggle w/chronic insomnia: not only do I have difficulty falling asleep, but it’s hard for me to stay asleep… most of the time a cuppa chamomile tea (steeped for 1-1/2 hours — yes, HOURS) before bedtime will do the trick; but my wacky hormones regularly render that little assistance ineffective, and I usually end up popping 5mg of Ambien a few nights every month…

the chamomile working as well as it usually does (when my hormones are behaving relatively normally) and generally being classified as a mild sedative, I’ve decided to experiment w/two EOs — sweet marjoram (Origanum majorana) and tangerine (Citrus reticulata) — identified (by one or more reference sources) as having strong sedative properties… for clarification, the tangerine is described as being good for inclusion in formulations intended to combat insomnia — I’ve included it primarily for its sweet, orangey scent, but I wanted any scent enhancer to have sleep-supporting benefits as well (most other members of the orange family probably would’ve sufficed, but the tangerine EO happens to be one of the more affordable)… sweet marjoram, on the other hand, is described as having a strong sedative effect, and general cautions for safety (don’t drive or operate machinery, etc.) s/b followed when using it; judging from my experience last night, I’d say those cautions hardly go amiss: using a very diluted 2.5% solution of 2 drops of sweet marjoram and 1 drop of tangerine (remember, I added this primarily for smell) dispersed in nearly a full dram (1/8 fl oz) of sunflower oil, I was able to fall sleep quickly, and even to return to sleep — also quickly — after being wakened several times during the night by our children, for one reason or another…

this is NOT all in my head, as the goings-on inside my head are frequently what keep me awake at night (my brain just won’t shut off), and more often than not, once I’m wakened from slumber (regardless of what stage), I’m unable to return to sleep… additionally, I didn’t wake feeling groggy, drugged, or irritable:  side effects that I usually escape w/the chamomile tea but at least one of which intrudes upon my morning when I take the Ambien… it’ll be another couple of weeks before I can find out exactly how effective this EO combination and concentration is when my hormones are run completely amok, but in the mean time, I do believe I’ve found a replacement for Rx drugs to help me sleep… 🙂

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