Natural sleep remedies – herbs to help with sleep

There are a variety of herbs which help combat sleep problems. We’ll show you which herbs are good sleep remedies and the right way to use them.

19.01.2021 Lara Brunner

Do you sometimes have trouble falling asleep? Natural sleep remedies can help. Valerian and lavender are known to promote sleep. However, there are other herbs you can use, too. If these do not have the desired effect and your sleep problems last longer than two weeks, you should contact a medical professional.

Which herbs help with sleeplessness?


Valerian root contains essential oil and the ingredients valepotriates and lignans. They increase the release and reduce the reuptake of inhibitory neurotransmitters. This produces a relaxing and sleep-inducing effect.

Pure valerian tastes somewhat bitter, so it is usually taken in tea or as a tincture or tablet. Valerian only really begins to work after two weeks, which is why you should ideally combine it with other herbs that promote sleep.


Hop cones produce a resinous substance consisting largely of hop bitters. Components of hops extract bind to melatonin receptors, thus helping you get to sleep.

The essential oils from hop cones and tea brewed from hop flowers are also effective. Dried hop cones in a little bag under your pillow also have a calming effect.

Lemon balm

Lemon balm leaves contain essential oil and Lamiaceae tannins such as caffeic acid and rosmarinic acid. They have an antimicrobial and antiviral effect and relieve cramps.

Brew lemon balm leaves in a tea with valerian for the best possible effects.

How lemon balm calms the nervous system


Lavender flowers contain essential oil and tannins. They have a calming effect that eases anxiety.

Sometimes a couple of spritzes of lavender oil on your pillow or a little bag of lavender under it can improve sleep. The purple herb is also fast-acting and effective when consumed as a tea.

Lavender’s many uses

Passion flower

Passion flowers contain aromatic compounds – also known as flavonoids – and a small amount of essential oil. When dried and brewed in tea, passion flowers promote sleep and help with anxiety and nervousness. It is still unclear exactly which components are behind their therapeutic effect.

The effects of passion flower


Oats contain avenin. The protein is rich in glutamic acid and proline, but low in essential amino acids. Naturopaths believe this ingredient to have a calming effect.

Oats are available as an extract in drops, as a tea, or as a bath product.

How oats work

Need tips on a better night’s sleep

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Is it safe for children to take these natural sleep remedies?

Children should generally drink the herbs as a tea. There’s no problem with that at all. It can also help children to develop a bedtime ritual, such as massaging their feet or temples with an oil. As a general rule, it’s very important to find out why children are having trouble sleeping and see whether there may be any organic causes.

Is it safe for pregnant women to take these natural sleep remedies?

Sleep problems often go hand-in-hand with hormonal changes, such as those occurring during pregnancy. However, pregnant women should take care when using valerian, lavender and passion flowers. In large quantities, these can stimulate the womb. You will find special tea blends you can drink safely during pregnancy in your local pharmacy.

If you have trouble falling or staying asleep in future, the herbs specified here can help you. You’ll find more tips on a better night’s sleep in our blog.

Practical tips for a better night’s sleep

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