Although the whole plant can be used, most products use only the Chamomile flowers.
Chamomile tea is popularly recognised as a soothing nighttime drink that helps you get off to sleep.
Many things contain Chamomile for both internal and external use.
Chamomile has more than 120 components, giving it a wide range of activity.
Externally, it is used to treat wounds, ulcers, eczema, gout, nappy rash, cracked nipples, rheumatic pain, chicken pox and in hair conditioners.
It is used as a mouthwash for infections, swallowed for indigestion, wind, diarrhoea, nausea and travel sickness.
Children are given it for colic, croup and fever.
Chamomile tea can be taken several times a day, while the normal dose for tablets or capsules is 800 mg taken three times a day.
Creams and ointments can be applied three or four times a day, but be sure to check the Chamomile content before you buy. There should be at least 3% Chamomile for it to be effective.
Side effects are rare, but there is a possibility of allergic reactions. It can make hay fever worse.
There is a theoretical concern that it could affect anticoagulant therapy.
Chamomile essential oil is used to make a relaxing bath (see Aromatherapy Guide).