Why Has Jamaican Dogwood become so Popular?

Updated on March 4th, 2020
jamaican dogwood

We have heard of Jamaican Dogwood Tree’s medicinal properties, but it’s the bark of the tree that offers health benefits!

The tree belongs to the bean family. The bark, which is the primary source of therapeutic benefits, has an acrid and bitter taste that causes a burning sensation in the mouth. Yet, the dogwood bark has been used for its sweat-producing, narcotic, and analgesic properties since 1844.

It is quite popular and used extensively in South and Central America as a fish poison. Its medicinal uses bring along safety concerns. However, it is used to treat nerve pain, sleep problems, cough cold, etc.

Nutritional Profile

The chemical constituents of the plant vary depending on the geographic regions.

  • It comprises organic acids like mono-and diethyl esters, piscidic acid, fukiic acid, and 3-0 methyl ester.
  • The components found in Jamaican Dogwood are isoflavones, lisetin, Jamaican, ichthyoses, millstone, rotenone, and tannins.

Jamaican Dogwood Benefits You Must Know

1. Antispasmodic

Research shows that Dogwood has isoflavones and boosts of antispasmodic properties. It is reliable and is a strong uterine analgesic and antispasmodic for treating dysmenorrhea(1) as it functions like an antispasmodic. It prevents and also relieves the frequency of muscle spasms and keeps your body at ease. Jamaican Dogwood has been traditionally used for muscular pains, sprains, and spasms. It encourages sweating and reduces the occurrence of painful muscle cramps.

[Read: Best Treatments for Muscular Dystrophy]

2. Treats Insomnia

Treat insomnia
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It has sedative properties that treat insomnia and provide uninterrupted sleep. It is a reliable herb that can treat migraine, sleep-related issues, tension, and nervousness.

It is usually taken in combination with valerian and hops.

3. Reduces Pain

This herb reduces pain as it has analgesic and spasmolytic properties. Ellingwood stated that along with the analgesic effects, it was helpful in reducing uterine pains caused during labor, and has a relaxing effect.

It has been traditionally used post-surgery to treat related-pain and is recommended as a natural alternative to pain killers.

It is useful to treat menstrual pain, pelvic pain, pain caused due to endometriosis(2), UTI related pain, etc.

[Read: Effective Ways to Get Rid of UTI in Men]

4. Reduces Fear and Anxiety

Anxiety has become a prevalent mental health issue. While the root cause of this has been traced down to a changing lifestyle and unhealthy sleep habits, anxiety continues to be a concern for many.

It is useful in treating anxiety and reducing fear. It is a well known ancient remedy used to treat nervous breakdown, fear, anxiety, and insomnia.

5. Treats lice


Lice can cause social embarrassments. It can cause irritation in the scalp and cause itching too. While there are several topical methods to treat lice, it is advisable to try out natural methods.

This herb contains rotenone that is effective against lice. It controls larvae, fleas, and lice. It is non-toxic to humans and also other warm-blooded animals.

What’s the Right Dosage?

Jamaican Dogwood Tea

  • You can opt for Jamaican dogwood tea and drink it thrice daily. This helps treat back pain effectively. It works as an analgesic.
  • Jamaican Dogwood also helps treat endometriosis. You can consume tea twice daily.

Jamaican Dogwood Tincture

Jamaican Dogwood is an antispasmodic and helps treat menstrual problems. Add ten drops of tincture to 30 ml of water and drink this twice daily.

[Read: Olive Oil to Kill Head Lice]

Possible Side Effects

Although it can prove to be very useful, there are some side-effects that you must know of-

  • Lactating women and pregnant women should avoid it as it may prove to be toxic if over consumed.

Avoid overusing it, as it could result in numbness, shivering, palpitation, sweating, and excess salivation.

  • This herb could cause nausea, gastric trouble, and depression.

Avoid using this herb on children. Also, it must be used under the supervision of a health practitioner only.


Many research studies emphasize the therapeutic effects of this herb on humans, and the reports don’t state its interactions with conventional medications. The dosage must be administered and prescribed by a herbal practitioner who understands its functioning, effectiveness, and toxicology.


1. How to Prepare Jamaican Dogwood Tea?

The bark doesn’t immediately release the constituents when immersed in water. Thus, it is important to boil it.

Take four gms of dried bark root and add it to boiling water. Allow it to simmer for 15-20 minutes. Allow it to steep, strain, and drink it.

2. What Is the Best Way to Prepare This Tea?

Avoid preparing medicinal tea aluminum or non-stick plastic containers. Herbal teas must be made in a way so that it doesn’t get contaminated, which is why glass and ceramic vessels are highly recommended.

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