What is Aromatherapy?
Let’s start out by simply explaining what aromatherapy is. I actually had no idea about aromatherapy until I got into using essential oils and started exploring the health benefits and the different ways they can be used.
Aromatherapy is the art and science of using naturally extracted aromatic essences from flowers, bark, stems, leaves, roots, or other parts of a plant to promote health of the mind, body, and spirit. It is widely believed that by inhaling aroma from essential oils the brain function can be stimulated. Aromatherapy is used for numerous reasons, including pain relief, mood enhancement, and increased cognitive function.
The combination of aromas from massage, aromatic baths, and other treatments such as topical use, all help bring balance and heal and maintain your entire being. Instead of loading your body up with chemicals to assist your body with any issues you might have, essential oils work WITH nature, assisting your body holistically.
The Natural Healing Approach
Aromatherapy has become incredibly popular as of late. The word is getting out there that you can deal with a wide range of issues, both acute and chronic, with highly effective essential oil treatments.
I personally use essential oils every day, in one way, shape or form. For example, when I am incredibly sore from an intense workout, I’ll take an aromatic bath and include oils such as lavender to help relax my muscles. Or I will combine some eucalyptus, peppermint and ginger with a carrier oil and massage that directly onto my sore muscles.
When I get a tension headache, which I’m prone to, I massage some peppermint on the back of my neck as it’s a natural muscle relaxer.
One of the reasons that aromatherapy is so successful is because using essential oils compliments all aspects of your being, from emotional to stress to physical ailments. Sometimes you end up with physical health problems due to stress alone. Addressing the root of the problem, such as stress, is one way to heal physical ailments. Many issues that we have today are the direct result of stress! It Aromatherapy is an effective way to promote physical and mental balance, which in turn should take your stress levels down, preventing your body from creating health problems from stress.
Here are just a couple of amazing benefits of using aromatherapy:
Reduces Stress: Aromatherapy is RELAXING. The aromatic compounds found in a variety of essential oils are known to work as relaxants, and can soothe your mind and alleviate anxiety. Some of the best essential oils for stress relief are lemon, lavender, peppermint, vetiver, ylang ylang, roman chamomile, geranium, clary sage, and frankincense.
Boosts Energy Levels: Who doesn’t need an energy boost? I know do, which is why often diffuse essential oils at work during the day. I stopped drinking coffee on the daily about a year ago, so essential oils have been incredibly helpful in helping to boost my energy level, especially around the 3 PM slump. There are many essential oils known to raise energy levels, increase circulation, and stimulate the mind and body naturally. Some great essential oils known to help increase your energy levels are black pepper, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, rosemary, sage, peppermint, basil, thyme, lemongrass, and wild orange.
Restful Sleep: I’ve personally never been a good sleeper. I’ve always had trouble falling asleep and I tend to wake up once or twice during the night. Once I started using essential oils, you can bet I added them to my nighttime routine! I diffuse them before bed and keep it going into the night. As I’ve never been one to take sleep aids, I’m so glad to have found the option of aromatherapy. Aromatherapy helps provide a more balanced and restful sleep. There are many essential oils that are natural sedatives (and no negative side effects like waking up feeling groggy), such as lavender, cedarwood, sandalwood, ylang ylang, roman camomile, and marjoram.
Immune System Support: Aromatherapy is a great preventative option to use to help support your immune system. Many essential oils are antimicrobial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial, which in turns helps protect your from a number of illnesses and infections. Some of the best essential oils to use to help give your immune system a boost are oregano, melaleuca, rosemary, clove, frankincense, geranium, lemon, thyme, lavender, and lime.
Pain Relief: As I mentioned above, aromatherapy and essentials oils are my go to for pain relief. Essential oils have been used for pain relief all throughout history. You’d be amazed at how massaging a little peppermint oil onto the back of your neck can reduce a tension headache, or how taking an aromatic bath can seriously reduce muscle soreness. Essential oils can be used to relieve for so many issues from menstrual pain to back pain to chronic pain (such as arthritis or fibromyalgia). There is a wide variety of essential oils that can be used for pain relief, such as lavender, clove, rosemary, white fir, helichrysum, frankincense, wintergreen, peppermint, cypress, and marjoram.
How to Use Essential Oils
- Diffuse essential oils into the air. You can diffuse a single oil or a combination of oils.
- Inhaling essential oils from a cloth, the bottle, or even by cupping your hands over your nose and mouth and inhaling.
- Massage therapy using essential oils.
- An essential oil infused bath.
- Applying directly onto the skin (dilute with a carrier oil)
If you’re looking for natural remedies for your overall health, consider trying essential oils. The benefits of including essential oils into your life are so amazing as they can be used for both preventative and for healing the body in the most natural way. They are amazing to help support emotional balance and mental clarity as well.
Please remember that Not all essential oil brands are created equal. There are many brands out there that won’t be effective for health or healing.
When choosing essential oils, it’s so important to choose pure, high quality oils that are naturally safe and effective. Brands, such as doTERRA, gently and carefully distill from plants that have been harvested properly by experienced growers for ideal extract composition and efficacy.
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Have you tried essential oils before? Please comment below.