Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits
Aromatherapy offers a variety of uses and benefits. It has been increasing in popularity in North America over the last 20 years, and is a continually growing trend across the globe.
What Is Aromatherapy and How Does it Help You?
What is aromatherapy? Aromatherapy is a treatment that uses plant extracts – essential oils – to promote health and wellness. For years, the benefits have mostly been considered anecdotal by the medical community. It is said that our sense of smell is far stronger than our other senses and as the popularity of essential oils increases, more research is being done and more medical benefits are being recognized.
How long has it been around? There is evidence that shows that aromatherapy has been in existence for thousands of years, specifically used in balms, resins, and oils for medical, cosmetic and religious purposes. In the 1900s era when western medicine became more mainstream, many European medical practitioners continued the use of botanical medicine as an actively used methodology due to its efficacy and natural origins.
How does it work? Aromatherapy is theorized to work via inhalation and transdermal application. Inhalation is said to be effective due to the volatile aromatic compounds within the essential oil. These interact with the smell receptors in the nasal region which then communicate with the limbic system through the body’s nervous system. The limbic system, located within the brain, is the body’s emotional regulatory center and it is theorized that – when essential oil components come into contact with the inner nasal cavity – it directly influences emotions and the individual’s state of mind.
In transdermal application, it is theorized that essential oils do double duty. They provide benefits to the outer skin layers such as helping to reduce inflammation and speed healing, and they are also absorbed into the skin. They are then transported via the capillary network and circulatory system through to the rest of the body, delivering beneficial properties to the body along the way.
Aromatherapy benefits: There is no doubt that people love aromatherapy. It is tried, tested and true for many families who use it to help boost general health and wellbeing. While most medical aromatherapy evidence is anecdotal, newer research is starting to show more promising scientific results. The majority of anecdotal evidence and some new research show that essential oils can provide the following benefits:
- Help reduce pain
- Improve quality of sleep
- Aid in reducing stress and anxiety
- Defend against microbes
- Help boost immunity
- Aid in promoting healthy digestion
- Help reduce the appearance and speed healing of skin irritation
Most popular oils: There are many available essential oils through reputable vendors, and it can often be a bit daunting to the new essential oil user to know where to start. Below is a list of some of the most popular essential oils:
- Bergamot Essential Oil
- Cinnamon Essential Oil
- Eucalyptus Essential Oil
- Fennel Essential Oil
- Frankincense Essential Oil
- Geranium Essential Oil
- Grapefruit Essential Oil
- Lavender Essential Oil
- Lemon Essential Oil
- Lemongrass Essential Oil
- Patchouli Essential Oil
- Peppermint Essential Oil
- Sandalwood Essential Oil
- Sweet Orange Essential Oil
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
Aromatherapy – An Overview:
Aromatherapy offers a variety of uses and benefits. It is a treatment that uses plant extracts – essential oils – to promote health and wellness. There is evidence that shows that aromatherapy has been in existence for thousands of years, specifically used in balms, resins, and oils for medical, cosmetic and religious purposes and it is theorized to work via inhalation and transdermal application. Essential oils are taking the world by storm, and there are many available essential oils that can be purchased through reputable vendors, such as Zenvea.