Skullcap Herb Essay

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Skullcap Scutellaria Lateriflora NURS 370 Skullcap (Scutellaria Lateriflora) Herb Report Scullcap grows in thickets, rich woods, bluffs and along wet ditches and roadsides. “Scullcap is a perennial herb found in New York to West Virginia, and southward to South Carolina, Alabama and Missouri”(Bergeron, 1997-2011). The skullcap is most used in herbal medicine and prefers a moist, shady environment. There are other species of Skullcap that can be found in habitats ranging from deep woods to sunny meadows. “Skullcap is also known as Scutellaria Lateriflora, Scutellaria, Scullcap, Scute, Blue Skullcap, Mad-dog Skullcap and Madweed” (Herbs, 2011). “Skullcap is a perennial mint with rigid leaves and tiny flowers that can range from purple to blue to pink and white. The two-lobed flowers resemble the military helmets worn by the early European settlers, hence the herbs name. This hardy plant can grow 1 to 4 feet (25 cm to 1 m) high, thriving in the woods and swamplands of eastern North America” (Herbs, 2011). This herb was highly valued by the Cherokee and other tribes as an emmenagogue and female medicine herb, sometimes used as a ceremonial plant to introduce young girls into womanhood. “Settlers in the late 1700's promoted the herb's effectiveness as a cure for rabies, giving rise to one of its common names, mad dog weed” (Herbs, 2011). Popular uses for skullcap include treatment of addictions, alcoholism, afterbirth removal following childbirth, colds, convulsions, epilepsy, headache (especially a dull frontal headache with sensitivity to noise, light and odors), hysteria, insomnia, nervous tension, and stress. Skullcap teas, tincture, and alcohol extracts have been shown to lower blood pressure in dogs, cats, rabbits, and humans by dilating blood vessels, potentially lowering risk of heart attack and stroke. Skullcap has shown promise as a treatment for

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