How does Valerian work?
Valerian seems to act like a sedative on the brain and nervous system.
Are there safety concerns?
Valerian is safe for most people when used short-term. It can cause some side effects such as headache, excitability, uneasiness, and even insomnia in some people. A few people feel sluggish in the morning after taking valerian, especially at higher doses. The long-term safety of valerian is unknown. To avoid possible side effects when discontinuing valerian after long-term use, it's best to reduce the dose slowly over a week or two before stopping completely.
Some information suggests that valerian might be safe when taken by children for 4-8 weeks.
Do not take valerian if:
- You are pregnant or breast-feeding.
- You are scheduled for surgery in the next two weeks. Valerian might cause excessive sedation if combined with medications used during and after surgery.