Part Used: Fresh flowering herb
Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) is a perennial herb which grows up to a meter height. It is a powerful medicinal herb commonly used in alternative medicine as an anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, slightly astringent, emmenagogue, febrifuge, nervine, sedative and strongly tonic. It has been used in the treatment of a wide range of nervous conditions including epilepsy, insomnia, hysteria, anxiety, delerium tremens, withdrawal from barbiturates and tranquilisers. It has also a mild sedative effect and is used in the treatment of anxiety and insomnia. It relaxes states of nervous tension whilst at the same time renewing and revivifying the central nervous system. It has a specific use in the treatment of seizure and hysterical states as well as epilepsy. It can be used with complete safety in the easing of pre-menstrual tension.
Historically, Skullcap was used to treat rabies. Traditionally it is known as a nerve tonic and sedative for relieving anxiety, neuralgia, and insomnia. In China it is found in prescriptions for fevers, colds, high blood pressure, hypertension, insomnia, headache, intestinal inflammation, vomiting of blood, and other conditions. Some of the studies have shown that one of its active constituents, scutellarin, has been shown to have mild sedative and antispasmodic properties. In some Chinese studies, Skullcap inhibits bacteria and viruses, shows diuretic property, and lowers fevers and blood pressure. It also relaxes states of nervous tension and has a specific use in the treatment of seizure and hysterical states. It is of value in all exhausted or depressed conditions and may be used to treat pre-menstrual tension. It is useful in insomnia and nervous headaches. Its bitter taste is also strengthening and stimulating to the digestive system.
Holistic Online. http://www.holisticonline.com/Herbal-Med/_Herbs/h291.htm
Purple Sage Botanicals. http://www.purplesage.org.uk/profiles/skullcap.htm
All Naturals. http://www.allnatural.net/herbpages/skullcap.shtml