Does chamomile help with anxiety?

Chamomile and Anxiety: What is the Connection?

Chamomile tea is widely considered to be a soothing remedy for a variety of medical conditions, including anxiety. But does chamomile really help with anxiety, or is it just another natural remedy myth? In this article, we will explore the scientific research behind chamomile and anxiety, and examine whether or not it is an effective treatment option for those dealing with this common mental health disorder.

What is Chamomile?

Chamomile is a plant that is native to Europe, North Africa, and some parts of Asia. It has been used for centuries to treat a variety of medical conditions, including inflammation, insomnia, menstrual cramps, and gastrointestinal issues.

How Does Chamomile Help with Anxiety?

While chamomile has historically been used as a calming agent, it wasn’t until recent years that scientific research began to examine its effects on anxiety. Studies have shown that chamomile can help reduce symptoms of anxiety, including feelings of restlessness and excessive worry.

One study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology found that chamomile extract had a significant effect in reducing symptoms of anxiety in people with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD). The study concluded that chamomile extract could be a useful remedy for individuals dealing with mild to moderate anxiety symptoms.

Types of Chamomile

There are two main types of chamomile used in medicinal purposes- Roman chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile) and German chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla). Both types have similar health benefits, but Roman chamomile is known for having a sweeter aroma, while German chamomile is often used for its anti-inflammatory properties.

Forms of Chamomile

Chamomile can be consumed in various forms, including tea, tincture, essential oil, and capsules. Chamomile tea is the most popular form for treating anxiety, and it is often recommended to drink a cup in the evening before bed.

Does Chamomile Have any Side Effects?

In general, chamomile is considered to be a safe herb with minimal side effects. However, some individuals may be allergic to chamomile, which can cause symptoms such as hives, swelling, and difficulty breathing. In addition, chamomile can interact with certain medications, such as blood-thinners, antidepressants, and sedatives. It is important to speak with a healthcare professional before consuming chamomile to ensure it is safe for you to use.

Other Natural Remedies for Anxiety

While chamomile is an effective natural remedy for anxiety, there are several other herbs and supplements that have similar calming effects. These include:

  • Valerian root
  • Kava
  • Lavender
  • Passionflower
  • Lemon balm

It is important to speak with a doctor or naturopath before taking any new supplement, especially if you are on any medication or have a pre-existing medical condition.


Overall, chamomile has been shown to be an effective natural remedy for anxiety. While it is not a substitute for professional mental health treatment, it can be a helpful addition to a comprehensive treatment plan. If you are considering using chamomile for anxiety, be sure to speak with your doctor or mental health professional to determine if it is safe for you to use.

FAQs: Chamomile and Anxiety

  • Is chamomile better than prescribed medication for anxiety?

    Chamomile can be an effective remedy for mild to moderate anxiety, but it is not a substitute for prescribed medication for more severe anxiety disorders. Always speak with a mental health professional to determine the best treatment plan for you.

  • How long does it take for chamomile to start working?

    Chamomile tea can start working within 30 minutes of consumption, but it may take longer for other forms of chamomile, such as capsules or tinctures, to take effect.

  • Can chamomile make anxiety worse?

    While chamomile is generally considered to be safe and effective for anxiety, it is possible for some individuals to have an allergic reaction or experience adverse effects. Always speak with a healthcare professional before using chamomile to ensure it is safe for you to consume.

  • Is chamomile tea safe for pregnant women?

    Chamomile tea is generally considered safe for pregnant women, but it is important to speak with a healthcare professional before consuming any herbal remedy while pregnant.

  • Can chamomile help with other mental health disorders?

    While chamomile is mostly studied in relation to anxiety, it may also be helpful in managing symptoms of depression and schizophrenia. More research is needed to determine the extent of its effectiveness in these areas.


  • Amsterdam, J.D., et al. (2009) A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of oral Matricaria recutita (chamomile) extract therapy for generalized anxiety disorder. Journal of Clinical Psychopharmacology, 29, 378-382.
  • Ehrlich, S.D. (2019) Chamomile. University of Maryland Medical Center. Last reviewed: August 2018.
  • Miraj, S., et al. (2016) The Effects of Chamomile Extract on Sleep Quality among Elderly People: A Clinical Trial. Complementary Medicine Research, 23, 1-6.