Common Name : Sandalwood
Latin Name : Santalum album
The most valuable part of the sandalwood tree is the scented heartwood. One sandalwood tree in a forest makes the whole forest smell of sandalwood as the scent clings to other trees.
Sandalwood is a root parasite and extracts nutrients from the host plant by means of special formations called haustoria.
The tree is fully grown in 50-60 year range at which point the tree will be about 2-3 feet in girth, and up to 60 feet high. The trees having reached this stage and considered ripe for harvest are uprooted not cut, as the roots are highest in oil content.
The divine fragrance of sandlewood is said to be most pleasing to the Gods, hence used in the Pooja (worship). Traditionally, in India, a paste of sandlewood is applied on the forehead due to its cooling effect and contemplation properties.
Therapeutic Uses :
- Sandalwood can be helpful for treating the disorders of the nervous system, general chest complaints and urinary tract infections.
- Its also useful in reducing the fever and sunstroke because of its cooling properties.
- Skin care – it has wonderful moisturizing and hydrating properties, which are great for anti-ageing skincare. The toning effect is useful when fighting the oily skin. Thus useful for both dry and oily skin type. Its astringent, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and pain relieving properties have been put to good use in healing wounds, scars, and acne.
- Very useful for skin ailments such as eczema, psoriasis and dermatitis.
- Traditionally, sandalwood oil acts as anti spasmodic agent. It provides relief to the nerves, blood vessels and cramps. Menstrual cramps are also relieved by applying sandalwood paste.
- Sandalwood has a harmonizing and calming effect which reduces tension and confusion and is ideal for use in depression, hectic daily lifestyles and states of fear, stress, nervous exhaustion, chronic illness and anxiety.
Researchers found that it even relaxes brain waves.
(Sandalwood is one of the main herbs used in the Siddha Inner Beauty oil.)