Roman chamomile, a medicinal herb, has an extensive history of use as a mild sedative and as a treatment for anxiety and stomach pain. When used cautiously, Roman chamomile is generally safe and does not cause any major side effects. However, susceptible individuals may be more prone to the dangers associated with Roman chamomile supplements. There are several Roman chamomile contraindications– circumstances that make its use unacceptably risky. Do not take Roman chamomile if you are in any of the following high-risk categories.
Pregnancy is regarded as a Roman chamomile contraindication. In medicinal amounts, Roman chamomile can trigger contractions in the uterus, leading to an increased risk of miscarriage and preterm labor. If you are interested in using Roman chamomile or any other medicinal herb during pregnancy, consult your obstetrician, midwife or other antenatal healthcare provider about the possible benefits and risks. Do not use Roman chamomile during pregnancy.
People who are Allergic to Chamomile
Roman chamomile and its relative, German chamomile, can both cause allegic reactions in people who are sensitive to them. Roman chamomile is member of the Asteraceae/Compositae botanical family, which also includes common allergens such as chrysanthemum and ragweed. You may be at a greater risk of having an allergy to Roman chamomile if you are also allergic to related plants. If you have a ragweed allergy, use Roman chamomile with caution. If you know you are allergic to chamomile, avoid the product entirely.
Roman chamomile has not been specifically studied for use in children under one year of age. Although it has been used historically as a holistic remedy for teething pain and insomnia in babies, many mainstream practitioners advise against its use. Any sedative, including chamomile, could theoretically increase the risk of sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. Chamomile can also cause an allergic reaction in sensitive babies, necessitating emergency treatment.
Roman chamomile is associated wit several other risks and side effects. Visit the National Institutes of Health for more information about Roman chamomile contraindications.