Valerian Side Effects

Some of the possible side effects of valerian include headaches, morning drowsiness, and vivid dreams. The herbal supplement has also been reported to cause insomnia, excitability, and uneasiness when it was used for several months. You should seek immediate medical attention if you develop more serious side effects, such as signs of liver damage or allergic reactions.

Does Valerian Cause Side Effects?

As with any medication or supplement, side effects are possible with valerian. Like most drugs or supplements used to treat insomnia, valerian is more likely to have bothersome side effects if you take it at the wrong time of the day (usually, it should be taken at night).
 
(This article covers many, but not all, of the possible side effects with valerian. Your healthcare provider can discuss a more complete list of valerian side effects with you.)
 

Possible Side Effects of Valerian

Possible bothersome (although not usually serious) valerian side effects may include:
 
  • Headaches
  • Vivid dreams
  • Upset stomach
  • Dry mouth
  • Morning drowsiness.
 
Surprisingly, valerian can also cause some unexpected side effects. Although the herb is often claimed to be useful for treating insomnia and anxiety, it can sometimes cause insomnia, excitability, and uneasiness, especially if it is used for several months.
 

Side Effects to Report

Some side effects with valerian, while occurring infrequently, are potentially serious and should be reported immediately to your healthcare provider. These include but are not limited to:
 
  • Signs of liver damage, such as:
 
    • Yellowing of the whites of the eyes or skin (jaundice)
    • Upper-right abdominal pain (stomach pain)
    • Elevated liver enzymes (found using a blood test)
 
  • Any unusual side effects after suddenly stopping valerian (cases of valerian withdrawal have been reported)
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, such as:
 
    • A rash
    • Hives
    • Itching
    • Swelling of the mouth or throat
    • Wheezing
    • Difficulty breathing.
 
 
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