Latin: Lactuca virosa
Parts Used: Aerial
Taste/Energetics: Bitter, cold
Properties: Anxiolytic, analgesic, sedative, galactagogue,
Actions: This is a strong nervous system relaxant and pain relieving herb that has been used historically for insomnia, anxiety, muscle spasms, arthritis and general pain. It has long been considered an alternative to opium containing poppies with a similar milky latex that can be extracted fro its medicinal properties. That latex is known as lactucarium. Wild Lettuce also is useful for spasming coughs, cramps and stomach griping. This is a potent herb that can cause severe respiratory distress in high doses and should be treated with the respect.
Dosage: 1-2 tsp infused for 10 minutes to 3 x/day. 1-3 gram as powder/capsule. Tincture 1-2 ml to 3x/day. Can be smoked.
Contraindications: Use with caution. Poisoning is rare but has happened with this plant. Avoid with most pharma drugs, respiratory conditions, pregnancy.