What is it?
Roman chamomile is a plant. The flowerheads are used to make medicine.
Roman chamomile is used for various digestive disorders including indigestion, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and intestinal gas (flatulence) due to mental stress. Women use it for morning sickness and painful menstrual periods. It is also used for pain and swelling of the lining of the nose and mouth, sinus pain (sinusitis), and joint (rheumatic) disorders.
Roman chamomile is applied directly to the skin for pain and swelling (inflammation) and as a germ-killer in ointments, creams, and gels used to treat cracked nipples, sore gums, and irritation of the skin. It is also used topically for wounds, burns, eczema, frostbite, diaper rash, bedsores (decubitus ulcers), and hemorrhoids.
Roman chamomile is sometimes mixed with other herbs and taken by mouth for liver and gallbladder disease, gallstones, fatty liver, chronic heartburn, loss of appetite, digestive disturbances, a heart condition called Roemheld's syndrome, indigestion in infants, and certain types of constipation. It is used as a "blood purifier" and general female tonic; and to prevent menstrual cramps and irregular periods.
Some people put Roman chamomile in a steam bath and inhale it for sinus inflammation, hay fever, sore throat, and ear inflammation, and as a painkiller.
In foods and beverages, the essential oil and extract are used as flavor components.
In manufacturing, the volatile oil of Roman chamomile is used as a fragrance in soaps, cosmetics, and perfumes; and to flavor cigarette tobacco. The extract is also used in cosmetics and soaps. Teas have been used as a hair tint and conditioner, and to treat parasitic worm infections.
How effective is it?
Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
The effectiveness ratings for ROMAN CHAMOMILE are as follows:
Insufficient evidence to rate effectiveness for...
- Painful periods.
- Sore throat.
- Sore nipples and gums.
- Liver and gallbladder problems.
- Diaper rash.
- Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of Roman chamomile for these uses.
Roman chamomile contains chemicals that can help decrease gas (flatulence), relax muscles, and cause sedation. Depending on the dose, it can either relieve or cause nausea.
Roman chamomile seems safe for most people when taken by mouth as medicine and in foods. In large amounts, it can cause vomiting. It can also cause an allergic reaction in people sensitive to ragweed, marigolds, daisies, or similar herbs.
The essential oil of Roman chamomile also seems to be safe when inhaled or applied to the skin.
Special precautions & warnings:
Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Roman chamomile is LIKELY UNSAFE when taken by mouth in medicinal amounts during pregnancy. Roman chamomile is believed to cause miscarriages. Not enough is known about the safety of applying it to the skin during pregnancy. Avoid using Roman chamomile if you are pregnant.
It’s also best to avoid Roman chamomile if you are breast-feeding. Not enough is known about how it might affect the nursing infant.
Allergy to ragweed and related plants: Roman chamomile may cause an allergic reaction in people who are sensitive to the Asteraceae/Compositae family. Members of this family include ragweed, chrysanthemums, marigolds, daisies, and many others. If you have allergies, be sure to check with your healthcare provider before taking Roman chamomile.
It is not known if this product interacts with any medicines.
Before taking this product, talk with your health professional if you take any medications.
There are no known interactions with herbs and supplements.
There are no known interactions with foods.
The appropriate dose of Roman chamomile depends on several factors such as the user’s age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for Roman chamomile. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.
Anthémis, Anthémis Odorante, Anthemis nobilis, Babuna Ke Phool, Camomille d’Anjou, Camomille Noble, Camomille Romaine, Chamaemelum nobile, Chamomilla, Chamomile, Chamomillae Ramane Flos, English Chamomile, Fleur de Camomille Romaine, Flores Anthemidis, Garden Chamomile, Grosse Kamille, Ground Apple, Huile Essentielle de Camomille Romaine, Low Chamomile, Manzanilla, Manzanilla Romana, Ormenis nobilis, Roman Chamomile Essential Oil, Romische Kamille, Sweet Chamomile, Whig Plant.
To learn more about how this article was written, please see the Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database methodology.methodology (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/methodology.html).
To see all references for the Roman chamomile page, please go to http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginfo/natural/752.html.
- Buckle J. Use of aromatherapy as a complementary treatment for chronic pain. Altern Ther Health Med 1999;5:42-51.
- Electronic Code of Federal Regulations. Title 21. Part 182 -- Substances Generally Recognized As Safe. Available at: http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?c=ecfr&sid= 786bafc6f6343634fbf79fcdca7061e1&rgn=div5&view= text&node=21:18.104.22.168.13&idno=21
- Subiza J, Subiza JL, Hinojosa M, et al. Anaphylactic reaction after the ingestion of chamomile tea; a study of cross-reactivity with other composite pollens. J Allergy Clin Immunol 1989;84:353-8.
- Robbers JE, Tyler VE. Tyler's Herbs of Choice: The Therapeutic Use of Phytomedicinals. New York, NY: The Haworth Herbal Press, 1999.
- Brinker F. Herb Contraindications and Drug Interactions. 2nd ed. Sandy, OR: Eclectic Medical Publications, 1998.
- Gruenwald J, Brendler T, Jaenicke C. PDR for Herbal Medicines. 1st ed. Montvale, NJ: Medical Economics Company, Inc., 1998.
- McGuffin M, Hobbs C, Upton R, Goldberg A, eds. American Herbal Products Association's Botanical Safety Handbook. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, LLC 1997.
- Leung AY, Foster S. Encyclopedia of Common Natural Ingredients Used in Food, Drugs and Cosmetics. 2nd ed. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons, 1996.
- Wichtl MW. Herbal Drugs and Phytopharmaceuticals. Ed. N.M. Bisset. Stuttgart: Medpharm GmbH Scientific Publishers, 1994.
- Schulz V, Hansel R, Tyler VE. Rational Phytotherapy: A Physician's Guide to Herbal Medicine. Terry C. Telger, transl. 3rd ed. Berlin, GER: Springer, 1998.
Newall CA, Anderson LA, Philpson JD. Herbal Medicine: A Guide for Healthcare Professionals. London, UK: The Pharmaceutical Press, 1996.
- Blumenthal M, ed. The Complete German Commission E Monographs: Therapeutic Guide to Herbal Medicines. Trans. S. Klein. Boston, MA: American Botanical Council, 1998.
- Show more references
- Show fewer references
Last reviewed - 02/16/2012
This copyrighted, evidence-based medicine resource is provided by Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database Consumer Version. Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database disclaims any responsibility related to consequences of using any product. This monograph should not replace advice from a healthcare professional and should not be used for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.
Copyright © 1995 - 2014 Therapeutic Research Faculty
, publishers of Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database
, Prescriber’s Letter
, Pharmacist’s Letter
. All rights reserved. For scientific data on natural medicines, professionals may consult the Professional Version of Natural Medicines Comprehensive DatabaseNatural Medicines Comprehensive Database (http://www.naturaldatabase.com/)