How to sleep: Chamomile tea improves the quality of sleep when taken for a short time.


Poor quality of sleep is a common problem that disproportionately affects older people. It can be made worse by fatigue and depression, which can also make your quality of life worse when you wake up. Teas with sedative effects, such as chamomile, improve the quality of sleep, including a study published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing. Research is conflicting as to whether the effects persist when taken for a long time and whether it can help other sleep-related conditions such as insomnia.

The method used to take chamomile differs, but the medicinal effects seem to occur regardless of how it is taken.

One study focused on twice-daily capsules containing chamomile extract.

The active ingredients in chamomile are a group of plant chemicals called terpenoids, which are also used in perfumes and cosmetics.

Other studies have looked at the use of chamomile in herbal teas.


Many of these studies looked at the effect of chamomile on people who already suffered from insufficient sleep or a related condition such as depression.

Much of the research is also conducted on specific demographic groups, such as occupants of nursing homes or mothers with postpartum depression.

This means that the results may not be perfectly applicable to other groups.

One study found an initial positive effect after using chamomile for two weeks, but found a decrease in effects after testing, with no effect four weeks later.

Sleep problems are on the rise in the UK and around the world.

Half of people in the UK reported having difficulty falling asleep at least once a month, with a third reporting this to happen on a weekly basis, according to survey data collected by Formulate Health.

Sleep disturbances are more common in women and people aged 45 to 54.

Almost one in five people say they have difficulty falling asleep at night.

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