Aromatherapy Oil Benefits – Essential Oils Good For Insomnia and Stress!
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is one of the available alternatives to medicine. The practice involves using essential oils extracted from plants and herb that are believed to have healing properties.
Aroma and fragrances from the plants and the herbs are responsible for the healing benefits of various medical conditions in a patient.
Essential oils extracted from these natural sources are applied on the skin or inhaled to relieve various medical conditions.
Herbs and plants naturally contain chemicals that the plants use for self-protection from insects and other predators as well bacterial and viral microorganisms. These chemicals which make up the key ingredients in essential oils are obtained from the plants through a complex distillation process. The result is a formula with in high concentrations of essential oils.
After the extraction process, the oils are preserved in alcohol to maintain the concentrate. The concentrate is basically oil in a strong formulation.
This essential oil formulation is too concentrated and cannot be use in this form by humans. A carrier oil such as coconut or almond oil is added to it before any form of application.
How is Aromatherapy performed?
- Using a diffuser/humidifier to release one or more combinations of the essential oils into a room
- You can use a bottle or cloth containing the oils, one can inhale the oils using the respiratory system
- Massage therapy using essential oils.
- Applying or rubbing the oils directly into the skin referred to as topical application
Common sources of essential oils
- Resin which is obtained from frankincense trees
- Ginger roots
- Pine or cedar wood and bark
- Rose and geranium flowers
- Orange, lemon and grape zest
- Lemon grass
- Herbs such as thyme, oregano, mint
Benefits of Aromatherapy Essential oils.
There are several medical benefits of aromatherapy as we shall discuss in depth below:
- Acts as pain reliever
Pain relievers are commonly referred to as analgesics. Pain killers are known to cause vast side effects when ingested into the body. Other than relieving pain, the analgesics cause other unwanted effects in the system.
Medical drugs leave behind chemical deposits and residue in the kidneys and the liver. This causes the excretory organs to work beyond their ability and capacity to remove the waste material as well as try to ease pain in the body.
How does aromatherapy aid in pain relief then? Essentials oils have been shown to ease pain without causing any harm or damage to body organs or the body system as a whole. The pain may be of various types. Pain relief has been shown to be one of the most effective uses of aromatherapy
- Improve the digestion of food in the gut
Individuals with digestive problems can use aromatherapy essential oils to relieve these problems.
Studies have shown that the oils aid in digestion of food. How does the essential oil work? Once inhaled or infused into the body, the oils trigger bowel movement relieving constipation. The oils also stimulate the release of digestive juices that help break down undigested food relieving an individual from bloating and indigestion. The oils also trigger the metabolic rates in the body ensuring that any food available in the stomach is digested faster.
Some of the oils used for improving digestion include oils from citrus fruits such as lemon and orange.
Dill and ginger among others have been shown to aid digestion as well.
Stress relief is one of the most common uses of aromatherapy in the world. It is also widespread with many countries incorporating it into personal use for this reason.
Essential oils contain aromatic components that are as a result of several oils. These oils are referred to as relaxants. They help the individual by soothing the mind and calming nerves.
Another way through which the relaxants work is through relieving anxiety or even eliminating it completely. The mixtures can be easily made at home and using the simple instructions on the labels or advice from a practitioner or an aroma therapist, one can use the oils as need be.
Oils that aid in stress relief include lemon oils and lavender.
- Aid in memory enhancement
Memory loss is becoming vey common in recent times. This is the case is many adults above a certain age. The condition is widespread and characterizes itself as either total memory loss or total inability to create short-term memories from events. This condition is refereed to Alzheimer’s, a term that many people shudder with fear by just hearing it. The condition has no cure and falls in the in category of incurable diseases.
Despite this, experts in the medical field have come up with ways to retard the disease progression rate in an individual.
Aromatherapy is one often the main ways of curbing effects of dementia as well as Alzheimer’s. The essential oils boost the memory function of the brain. Regardless of one’s age, aromatherapy works its magic perfectly.
One of the main herbs used for this purpose is sage.
Depression has been mistaken for stress in many patients. This is not the case and they should be treated as two different medical conditions. As an alternative to medical treatment using drug prescriptions, aromatherapy is being embraced for treatment of depression.
The essential oils are used to curb any feelings that result from a depressed mental state.
Another reason as to why essential oils are preferred as antidepressants is that there are no major side effects from use of the oils. It is advisable that aromatherapy be accompanied with professional counselling. This will eliminate the feelings result from depression completely.
Peppermint, jasmine and lavender are commonly used essential oils for this purpose.
- Enhances the rate of the healing and recovery process
Essential oils are well known for their stimulant properties. This property from the oils stimulates and enhances the overall recovery of the body from illnesses as well as surgical operations both internal and external.
Increase the amount of oxygen carried in the blood and increase the rate of flow of blood to the injured areas by using Essential oils. This speeds up the healing process of the wounds or any other injuries in the body. In case the injured area is exposed to possible contamination from microorganisms such as bacteria and viruses, the antimicrobials present in the oils will ensure that the microorganisms do not contaminate and interfere with the healing process.
Individuals suffering from skin conditions such as psoriasis can use the oils to relieve itchiness and overall discomfort from the conditions.
Lavender and buckthorn essential oils are commonly used for stimulating the healing processes.
- Give the body a boost of energy
Energy release in the body is one of the main factors that keep us going through the day. Whether you are working, exercising or on adventure, energy is the fuel that you need.
Modern day lifestyle has interfered with how the body functions. Using substances like coffee causes the body to temporarily shut down as the main organs are affected.
Change in lifestyle is one of the key alternatives to ensuring that this does not happen.
Eating a healthy and balanced diet and regular physical activity can positively aid the body. Aromatherapy also comes in for the same purposes.
As discussed earlier, essential oils have stimulant properties. The stimulants in the oils boost blood circulation in the body which increases the energy levels in an individual. Unlike other stimulants that have lethal side effects, the oils enhance the performance of the brain and the body as a whole with no side effects.
There are several essential oils that individuals can embrace to boost bodily functions without any side effects as long as they are taken as per prescription from a qualified professional or an aroma therapist.
They include clove, cinnamon, rosemary, sage and cardamom.
Any risks from use of essential oils used in aromatherapy?
Essential oils do not necessarily benefit everyone due to their potential to cause reactions in the body. This occurs especially if the user is combining medication along with essential oils. What results is reduced efficiency of the medicine or adverse reactions from the drugs.
Concentrated formulations are toxic if used without dilutions.
Users should be keen to always follow instructions on the labels before using the products. Certain oils have been known to produce toxins that may be lethal to the liver, kidneys and the nerves if ingested.
Like any other drug, essential oils also have side effects upon use. This should not worry the patient as the effects are very mild and only last for a short period of time.
Examples of side effects from these oils include nausea and headaches. In some cases allergic reactions may occur.
Use during pregnancy is discouraged especially during the first trimester. The oils may be harmful to the developing fetus.
During breastfeeding, peppermint essential oils are discouraged as they are passed out through breastmilk.
Aromatherapy has been proven to eliminate certain medical conditions in ailing patients. However, the oils should be used correctly with utmost caution.
Ensure you talk to your aromatherapist or a medical practitioner before purchasing any oils or even before using them.