11 Sep Aromatherapy, and How to Use Essential Oils Daily
So what actually is Aromatherapy? Is it no more than a branch of herbal medicine? And do you wonder how to use Essential Oils in your day to day life?
Little fact: Aromatherapy is sometimes called – Essential Oil therapy.
Aromatherapy does attempt to heal through medicines of botanical origin but it differs from Herbal Medicine in that:
- essential oils have a much more pronounced effect on the mind and emotions than herbal medicine. The properties of herbs and their essences may be much the same, but the therapeutic action itself is different.
- Diffusing – Aromatherapy usually allows for diffusing oils, and so releasing the essential oil properties into the air for inhalation (kind of like those old Vicks vaporisers). There are a large variety of diffuser blends available on the market today, and you can check out my diffuser blends here.
Inhalation is an extremely effective way to reap the benefits of your essential oils. Fine hairs in the lining of the nose lead directly to the brain, and there is an almost immediate reaction within the body. It’s really no wonder smell can evoke some strong memories.
- Topical application – This means using either massage oils/lotions, or bathing to dilute the oil so that it can be applied directly onto your skin.
For topical use the essential oils are diluted in what is called a carrier oil, or a cream, or other similar substance. It is an extremely effective way to treat sprains/strains, skin problems, congestion from colds, or any other myriad of imbalances in the health of your body. You can use any bland oil or cream you have on hand, but it is certainly nice to have a high quality vegetable oil to use.
- To create an “aromatic” environment – essential oils are gently heated, by either a candle or with electricity. The scent, or aroma, is released into the air to infuse the area with your chosen oil blend. Water is usually added to protect the fragile essential oil particles from being burned by an excess of heat. See more information on the oils I have available on my website, or contact me for additional supplies.
- Lavender is great in bedrooms to create a relaxing ambience.
- Try Sweet Orange to generate feelings of goodwill.
- Maybe you need Basil and Rosemary to enhance a productive study/work area.
If you do not have an essential oil diffuser, why not try placing a few drops of your oil combination onto a tissue or cotton pad, and then placing them around the house – windowsills, cupboards/wardrobes. Or even on your person – pockets, pinned to under collars.
- Cleaning – a few drops are effective in cleaning buckets when washing the floor or bathroom area, or on a cloth for wiping over surfaces. Eucalyptus and Lemon are great air fresheners and germ busters, and leave the house with a clean, fresh smell!
- Natural Perfume – Why not create your own natural “perfume” daily by having a small dish with a tablespoon of carrier oil close by after a shower. Place 3 drops of your chosen essential oil into the carrier oil in the dish, mix gently, and smooth over your body (arms, legs, torso) and then let your essential oils subtly work through the day or evening.
- Try Geranium to balance your emotions if you’re feeling fragile.
- Frankincense is grounding and will support your immune system.
- And a touch of Ylang Ylang and Clary Sage are perfect for a sensual evening.
Due to the high potency of essential oils, topical use is generally a 3% dilution and is limited to a combination of 3 oils.
Plant essences are very powerful, and you only need small amounts to create an effect. Do not think that if you use more oil you will get quicker or better results.
Sometimes a qualified aromatherapist practitioner will treat conditions using a higher concentration, or using more oils for their combined synergistic action. This is usually preceded by a consultation with the client, and the whole body is assessed and addressed before a blend is formulated.
Aromatherapy and the use of essential oils can be stimulating or sedating, uplifting or relaxing, and can have significant effects on your body and state of mind. It can be a whole lot of fun to discover and dabble with, but a healthy regard for the essential oils themselves needs to be maintained.
It is also why it is important to ensure the oils you use are of high quality. See my selection online. If you would like something different, please contact me with your requirements.
My information is based on over 30 years experience as an aromatherapist, and is supported by training and extensive reading.
My preferred author is Robert B Tisserand, and I feel his knowledge is unsurpassed in the current realm of aromatherapy.
I also use information gained from my numerous aromatherapy text and reference books.
The information is also readily available on the world wide web.