Updated: Sept 12, 2023

How Skullcap Can Be Helpful

Skullcap benefits are aplenty in this herb, such as:

  1. Reducing Anxiety and Stress
  2. Aiding Sleep
  3. Relieving Symptoms of ADHD
  4. Reducing Inflammation
  5. Supporting Liver and Heart Health

These benefits, along with its calming effects, make skullcap a promising natural remedy with potential for wider use in the medical community.


KENPEI, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Benefits of Skullcap Explained:

Let’s start with the most well-known benefit of skullcap: its ability to reduce anxiety and stress levels.

This herb is known to interact with the nervous system in a way that reduces tension and promotes relaxation, making it a popular choice for those who struggle with anxiety or insomnia.

But recent studies have also shown that skullcap may have benefits beyond its anxiolytic effects. Let’s dive a bit deeper into the health benefits of skullcap and how it can help you improve your overall well-being.

1. Reduces Anxiety and Stress

Skullcap is known for its calming properties on the nervous system. Research has suggested that it can help regulate mood and reduce anxiety levels.

A study found that participants who received a 500-mg dose of skullcap extract worked better under pressure without showing any signs of cognitive impairment or increased fatigue.

While you can take skullcap supplements, consuming it as a tea has also been found to be effective in reducing anxiety and stress levels.

2. Helps with Sleep

Many people can attest to the effectiveness of skullcap in helping them fall asleep and stay asleep.

It is suggested to have sedative effects, which helps to calm the mind and body, making it easier to drift into sleep.

Consuming skullcap tea about an hour before bed can help improve the quality and length of your sleep.

3. Treats Symptoms of ADHD

One of the most promising areas of research on skullcap is its potential as a treatment for ADHD symptoms, such as hyperactivity and impulsiveness. .

Recent studies suggest that skullcap extract can improve both cognitive and behavioral symptoms of ADHD, especially in children.

In fact, a study published in the Journal of Child Neurology found that a combination of skullcap and valerian root was just as effective at reducing symptoms of ADHD as a commonly-prescribed medication.

This is great news for those who are hesitant to try prescription drugs and are looking for a natural alternative.

4. Reduces Inflammation

Skullcap also has powerful anti-inflammatory properties, making it a potential treatment for a variety of inflammatory conditions.

Inflammation is thought to play a role in a number of chronic diseases, from arthritis to heart disease to cancer, so anything that can help to reduce inflammation in the body is a good thing.

Studies have shown that skullcap extract can help reduce the production of inflammatory markers in the body and may help with conditions such as arthritis and asthma. However, more research is needed to confirm these benefits.

5. Supports Liver and Heart Health

Another lesser-known benefit of skullcap is its potential as a treatment for liver problems.

Traditional Chinese medicine has long used skullcap as a liver tonic. Recent studies have shown that it may be effective at reducing liver inflammation and oxidative stress. This could make it a useful treatment for conditions like hepatitis or fatty liver disease.

Skullcap has been found to have antioxidants that help protect the liver against oxidative stress. These properties can help to protect the body from the damaging effects of free radicals.

This may make it a useful supplement for those looking to support their overall health and prevent chronic diseases. Furthermore, skullcap has anti-inflammatory properties that may help to lower blood pressure.

Skullcaps benefits are due to its active constituents:

  • The Scutellarin present in skullcap is known for its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It can help to boost the immune system and protect against free radical damage.
  • Baicalein is another flavonoid present in skullcap that also has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. It can help to protect cells and reduce inflammation.
  • Tannins are astringent compounds that can help to fight infections and soothe the digestive tract.
  • Flavonoids are plant-based compounds that have many health benefits, including reducing inflammation and protecting against cell damage.
  • Terpenoids are compounds that can help to fight infections and reduce inflammation.
  • Saponins are plant-based compounds that have foaming properties and can help to fight infections.
  • Alkaloids are plant-based compounds that have many health benefits, including reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation.
Skullcap Benefits

Rolf Engstrand, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Skullcap Plant

Skullcap is a perennial herb that belongs to the mint family. It has small blue or purple flowers and can be found growing in woods and shady areas. The plant is native to North America but can also be found in Europe and Asia.

Proper Dosage for Skullcap Benefits

This herb is most commonly used in tea form, but can also be found in capsules or tinctures.

Skullcap can be brewed into a tea by adding 1-2 teaspoons of the herb to 8 ounces of boiling water. Steep for 10-15 minutes and drink 3 times daily.

For those who prefer not to drink tea, capsules or tinctures are also available. The recommended dose is 300-400 mg per day.


Skullcap supplements are generally considered safe when taken in appropriate doses. When taking skullcap, it is important to be aware of the possible side effects and interactions.

  • may cause drowsiness, so it is important not to operate heavy machinery or drive after taking it
  • avoid alcohol while taking skullcap
  • may also interact with other medications

Therefore, it is important to speak to a healthcare professional before taking it.

There are potential for side effects, especially when taken in large doses. The most common side effects include drowsiness and dizziness. Skullcap may also cause an upset stomach, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea.

More serious side effects include liver damage, seizures, and coma. These side effects are more likely to occur when skullcap is taken in large doses or when it is combined with other medications. If you experience any of these side effects, stop taking skullcap and seek medical attention immediately.

Other herbs with skullcap benefits

Some other herbs that are similar to skullcap include valerian, chamomile, and hops. Like skullcap, these herbs can cause drowsiness and should not be taken before operating heavy machinery or driving. They may also interact with other medications.

FAQ / Quick Overview if Skullcap Benefits

Q: What is skullcap?
A. Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora) is a traditional herbal remedy for a variety of conditions, including anxiety, insomnia, ADHD symptoms, and seizures. The plant is a plant in the mint family that is native to North America.

Q: How does skullcap work?
A. Skullcap is thought to work by increasing levels of gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. GABA is a neurotransmitter that helps to regulate nerve activity.

Q: What are the skullcap benefits?
A. Skullcap is traditionally used as a relaxant and has been shown to be effective in reducing anxiety and insomnia and symptoms of ADHD. Skullcap is also sometimes used to treat seizures.

Q: Are there any side effects of skullcap?
A. Skullcap is generally safe when taken in small doses. However, it can cause some side effects including nausea, vomiting, and dizziness. Skullcap should not be taken by pregnant or breastfeeding women.

Q: Where can I find skullcap?
A. Skullcap is available online and at some health food stores.

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