relieve anxiety and depression
Aromatherapy is a type of alternative medicine practice utilizing fragrant/aromatic essential oils that are derived from a wide variety of healing plants. When inhaled or applied to the skin, therapeutic-grade essential oils (also sometimes called volatile oils) have been shown to help people overcome various health problems without the need for medications.
Here’s some facts about how essential oils work:
- Plants contain certain beneficial chemicals as a means of protecting themselves, including to ward off insects or rodents, and to defend themselves from bacteria or viruses.
- The active ingredients within the oils are taken directly from high yields of medicinal plants or herbs through a process known as distillation, then mixed with alcohol to preserve their strength. The finished result is a very concentrated oily formula that can be mixed with other substances.
- Because they’re very strong, essential oils used in aromatherapy practices are usually combined with a carrier oil, such almond, jojoba or coconut oil, before being applied directly to the skin.
Aromatherapy can be performed in several different ways:
- Diffusing a combination of essential oils into the air (or just one single oil)
- Inhaling oils through the nostrils directly off of a cloth or from the bottle Receiving massage therapy utilizing oils
- Soaking in an oil-infused bath
- Rubbing oils directly onto the skin
Research shows that when used at home, most people use aromatherapy oil candles, apply natural products containing oils to their skin or add oils directly to a soaking bath/warm shower. What types of plants produce popular essential oils used in aromatherapy? These include:
- Herbs like rosemary, thyme, oregano or peppermint
- Leaves from eucalyptus plants
- Grasses, such as lemongrass
- Fennel seeds
- Zest from fruits such as oranges, grapefruit or lemon
- Flowers, including rose or geranium
- Wood or bark from trees including cedar or pine
- Roots from ginger
- Resin from frankincense trees
- And many more