Aromatherapy or essential oil therapy refers to alternative medicine that uses natural plant extracts to promote a person's health and well-being. Aromatherapy can be defined as an art and a science, and it helps both physical and emotional health. Aromatherapy uses essential oils medicinally to boost the health of the body, mind, and spirit. It is applied to relieve pain, mood enhancement, and increased cognitive function.
Essential oils may be the backbone of aromatherapy, although there is a wide range of products that have aromatic benefits like candles, soaps, diffusers, lotions, and fragrances. Most of these products are manufactured from essential oil blends, thus enhancing their curative properties. Conforming to the essential oils, they are made from; these aromatherapy products may help to relieve stress, boost energy, or even improve physical health.
- regulate pain
- enhance sleep quality
- reduce stress, agitation, and anxiety
- relieve sore joints
- treat headaches and migraines
- ease the side effects of chemotherapy
- ease discomforts of labor
- fight bacteria, virus, or fungus when putting on the skin
- Improve digestion
- Boost immunity
enhance hospice and palliative care
Some essential oils can spark off physical or emotional effects on their own. For instance, lavender is extensively known as a calming agent, while peppermint is a mood booster. Other essential oils are blended to achieve a desired physiological or psychological effect. For instance, mixing ylang ylang with grapefruit alleviates stress.
Peppermint, Basil, Bergamot, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Ginger, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Lemon, Patchouli, Rosemay, Sandalwood
Bergamot, Chamomile, Orange, Lavender, Lemon, Patchouli, Vanilla, Ylang Ylang
Basil, Cypress, Lemon, Peppermint, Rosemary
Grief and Sadness
Bergamot, Rose, Chamomile (Roman), Clary Sage, Lavender, Frankincense, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Lemon, Orange, Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang
Anxiety and Fear
Bergamot, Sandalwood, Neroli, Chamomile (Roman), Cedarwood, Frankincense, Jasmine, Lavender, Patchouli, Rose
Bergamot, Cypress, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Orange, Rosemary
Chamomile (Roman), Bergamot, Clary Sage, Frankincense, Rose
Aromatherapy works through inhalation and topical application using products such as:
- aromatic spritzers
- bathing salts
- body oils, creams, or lotions for massage or topical application
- facial steamers
- hot and cold compresses
- clay masks
The oils dissolve into the air using oil droplets, a diffuser container, or spray. The oils can also be inhaled in a steam bath. Molecules entering through the nose or mouth go to the lungs and aid in the treatment of respiratory infection and congestion.
Massage oils, baths, and skincare products are absorbed through the skin. Massaging boosts circulation and increases absorption. It is important to note that essential oils must always be mixed with carrier oil before application. Conduct an allergy test, and if an allergic reaction does not occur within 24 to 48 hours, it is safe to use.
1. Hot and cold compresses
Mix drops of essential oil with warm or cold water, depending on the condition that needs to be treated. Using a washcloth apply the mixture to areas of the body that need pain relief, such as the muscles, forehead, and stomach. Hot compresses are also used to ease menstrual cramps.
2. Lotions and creams
Add a few drops of essential oil to your lotion or body cream to stimulate therapeutic properties.
Mix a few drops of aromatherapy oils to your bath water to realize their health benefits. Mix it well before taking a shower. The smell triggers the olfactory sense, which in turn boosts circulation and helps to bring about physical balance.
4. Aromatherapy Vapor Inhalation
The vapor technique is whereby essential oils are applied to relieve sinus or respiratory issues. Simply add a few drops of aromatherapy oils to steaming water and inhale the scent using a towel tent. Wrap the towel around your head to stop the smell from escaping as you inhale it.
Conditions aromatherapy may treat
- peripheral neuropathy
- menstrual issues
- erectile dysfunction
Safety with aromatherapy oils
Aromatherapy is considered safe. It has many benefits, but safety measures must be taken when handling essential oils since they can cause side effects. They can irritate the eyes, skin, or mucous membranes in your nose and can also cause mild allergic reactions. If you ingest some essential oils by mouth, they can hurt your kidneys or liver. It is uncommon for people to take essential oils by mouth, and one should not do so unless a doctor recommends.
It is essential to work with an aromatherapist or your doctor if you are new to aromatherapy.
- Go through all label warnings and precautions to be taken.
- Keep essential oils away from your eyes. In case it gets into the eyes unexpectedly, flush it out with considerable amounts of warm water, and seek medical attention.
- Always store essential oils away from children, as they can ingest them.
- Use only the recommended amount; misuse can lead to headaches or nausea. If you you exceed the consumption, drink plenty of water and get some fresh air
- Essential oils should be diluted before application. Avoid rubbing essential oils directly to the skin because they are highly concentrated. They should be mixed with a carrier to avoid causing redness, burning, itching, and irritation to the skin surface. In case the oil comes into contact with the skin, coat the area in a cream or vegetable oil and then rinse with warm, soapy water.
- Avoid the consumption of essential oils, unless called for in specific recipes. In case you ingest the oil mistakenly, drink and rinse the mouth with milk then seek medical attention.
- Go through all the warnings and instructions on essential oil packaging; some oils should not be diluted with other medication or alcohol or taken if you have certain medical conditions. For instance, low blood pressure and epilepsy.
Essential oils have remarkable therapeutic benefits, and utilizing it enhances your wellbeing immensely. However, it is important to note that failure to use it properly can bring about hazardous effects to your health. It is advisable to always seek guidance from a professional before consumption.