There’s no escaping the fact that we live in a world full of stress.
Stress can, and likely will lower your body’s defense mechanism, leaving a person without the necessary resources to fight against the tribulations of life. Knowing this, countless people are willing to spend vast sums of money searching for ways to alleviate stress.
To help relieve stress there is a growing trend of people turning to non-traditional methods of healing and alternative methods like aromatherapy and essential oils.
What Is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is a pseudoscience based on the usage of aromatic materials, including essential oils, and other aroma compounds, for improving psychological or physical well-being. (Def: Wikipedia)
Aromatherapy involves the use of essential oils, herbs, and fragrances that are known to have the power of lessening stress and tension or enhancing mood. It was also well known that well-being could be attained by inhaling essential oils and fragrances or using them topically. (Source: Aromatherapy: Do Essential Oils Really Work? Hopkins Medicine)
Even though there hasn’t been conclusive evidence based on a scientific study showing definite proof, many practitioners who used essential oils for many years insist that aromatherapy has been an important factor in reducing their stress and promoting relaxation.
Since there is no medical evidence showing aromatherapy can prevent or treat medical conditions you shouldn’t solely rely on essential oils to fight anxiety, stress or depression. If your levels of stress are severe you must seek professional help.
The best use of essential oils is in conjunction with more traditional treatments and therapy.
There have been initial studies and they appear positive and have shown that the smell of some essential oils can work alongside traditional therapy to reduce anxiety and stress. (Source: What Are Essential Oils, and Do They Work? Healthline.com)
What Are The Best Essential Oils For Stress Relief
For example, lavender is acclaimed as one of the most universally recommended essential oils for stress relief. It’s well documented that lavender has relaxing properties and can also aide in the healing process of wounds and burns.
Another notable herb used in the area of aromatherapy for stress relief is chamomile. This essential oil is believed to calm over-stimulated nerves. It is also widely accepted as a natural antiseptic and disinfectant.
Rose, neroli and sandalwood are widely used to treat tension and anxiety. Geranium is said to be relaxing, and basil it typically used in aromatherapy to treat nervous fatigue and migraines.
* Lavender – our great-grandmothers knew how effective this lavender essential oil could be and they used it often. It has a calming and mildly sedative effect and is wonderful on the pillow when you can’t sleep.
* Chamomile – chamomile can be used as a tea or as an aromatherapy oil. It is frequently used in herbal medicine because it is calming to the stomach and the nerves.
* Sandalwood – this is an ancient Middle Eastern essential oil that is renowned for its seductive scent and its calming and relaxing properties.
* Patchouli – is often used in conjunction with sandalwood to enhance the mood and relax.
* Vanilla – is a clean homely fragrance that has a calming effect.
How to Reduce Stress with Aromatherapy and Essential Oils.
You can smell the oil from the bottle or sprinkle a few drops onto a handkerchief. These methods are good to have on hand in case you have a sudden panic attack. There are other ways to use the oils:
Oil diffusers – these are small pottery lamps that burn a tea light candle under a dish which holds some water and a few drops of essential oil. As the water warms, the oil is diffused into the air, releasing its therapeutic properties.
Baths – add a few drops of essential oil to a warm bath, and soak in it to relieve tension, headache and anxiety.
Massage – massage is used to relax tight muscles and an aromatherapy massage has the added benefit of the therapeutic essential oils. The combination of the two therapies is very effective at providing relief from stress, anxiety, headaches and to lift the mood. A carrier oil is used as the massage oil and several drops of essential oil are added. Carrier oils may be almond, avocado or apricot oil.
Essential oils should not be ingested and must always be diluted before being applied to the skin. Oils can be used in conjunction with 2 or 3 other oils to increase the effectiveness of each one.
If you find yourself constantly bombarded by stress you need to find ways to lower it. The excessive amount of daily stress if not treated will lead to numerous health problems. Aromatherapy is one of the tools you can use if you want to lower the stress and anxiety in your life.