Lavender bath oil reduces stress and crying and enhances sleep in very young infants

Early Hum Dev. 2008 Jun;84(6):399-401. doi: 10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2007.10.008. Epub 2007 Nov 28.


Very young infants were given a bath with or without lavender-scented bath oil. The mothers in the lavender bath oil group were more relaxed, smiled and touched their infants more during the bath. Their infants looked at them a greater percentage of the bath time and cried less and spent more time in deep sleep after bath. The cortisol levels of this group of mothers and infants significantly decreased, confirming the behavioral data showing increased relaxation of the mothers and their infants. These findings support a body of research showing the relaxing and sleep-inducing properties of lavender aroma.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aromatherapy*
  • Crying*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / blood
  • Infant
  • Infant Behavior / drug effects
  • Infant Care / methods
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Lamiaceae*
  • Male
  • Oils, Volatile / therapeutic use
  • Plant Oils / therapeutic use*
  • Sleep / drug effects*
  • Stress, Psychological / blood
  • Stress, Psychological / drug therapy*


  • Oils, Volatile
  • Plant Oils
  • Hydrocortisone