The sense of smell is our most sensitive sense. It is the first to develop and it influences our emotions, mood, memory and behavior. This is where aromatherapy comes in.
Aromatherapy, derived from the French word “aromatherapie”, is the use of fragrant essential oils extracted from plants to promote physical and psychological health and wellness.
The most commonly used oils are lavender, lemon, peppermint and tea tree but there are about 150 essential oils in total.
The healing properties of essential oils have been studied since the 11th century. Science has shown over and over again that aromatic essential oils can relieve stress, improve memory, sleep and energy levels.
When you inhale air that is infused with essential oils, your nose sends a message through your nervous system to the part of your brain where emotions are processed. This triggers the release of “feel good” chemicals like serotonin in your brain. These chemicals help you feel more relaxed.
Some experts also believe that putting essential oils in your bath, or massaging them into your skin, relaxes your muscles and joints. Some of the best oils for stress relief are basil, lavender, frankincense, rose and chamomile oil.
If you are suffering from insomnia and looking for something to help you sleep like a baby, aromatherapy might just be the thing for you. Essential oils like lavender, bergamot and chamomile calm your nervous system so that you can sleep better.
No More Colds
Aromatherapy strengthens your immune system and keeps colds at bay. If you already have a cold, essential oils can relieve your symptoms and support the recovery process.
The best essential oils for strengthening your immune system include clove, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus and rosemary. Clove oil, for instance, has strong antibacterial and antiviral properties whereas eucalyptus stimulates antibodies to help fight infections.
Aromatherapy At Home
You don’t have to go to an expensive spa and pay and arm and a leg for aromatherapy. You can do it at home.
All you need to get started is essential oils. The most versatile ones are lavender, clove, lemon, rosemary, eucalyptus, tea tree, sandalwood, peppermint and eucalyptus oil. Just pick one or two to get started and you are good to go!
The easiest way to get started is by adding the oils to your bath. But if you are more of a shower person, just add a few drops to your shower gel. If all you want to do is smell the essential oils, spring for a scent diffuser.
Consider giving aromatherapy a try and start smelling your way to better health with essential oils this week!