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Archive for October 2017

10 Amazing Benefits of Aromatherapy That Everyone Should Know

A healthy individual needs to have his or her body and mind working in perfect harmony. However, our modern day living that mostly remains detached from nature often comes in the way of achieving this. The result of leading a hectic lifestyle can manifest itself in many ways ranging from stress, insomnia, depression, and poor metabolism to severe afflictions like dementia, Alzheimer and cancer.

The role of alternative therapies in preventing the onset of such afflictions along with providing numerous health benefits has become popular across the world. And among the various alternative therapies, the science of using aromatic oils aka aromatherapy stands out.

Let’s discuss the 10 amazing benefits of this amazing therapy.

Fights Stress:

Modern lifestyle changes have led to increased levels of stress in a large number of people. And if not managed properly it can lead to severe ailments like diabetes, heart diseases, and strokes. Aromatic compounds present in extracts of lemon, lavender, chamomile, bergamot, peppermint, vetiver and others are known to have a calming effect on our sympathetic nervous system – the part of brain the activation of which leads to stress symptoms like sweating, racing of heart etc. In fact, one of the best ways to get relaxation and fight stress is to add a few drops of essential oils with a soluble into the bathwater.

As an anti-depressant:

Aromatherapy can be of help in patients suffering from depression. Its positive impact on the limbic system, the part of our brain known as the seat of emotion, forms a part of modern aromatherapy education. Oils like chamomile, peppermint, jasmine absolute, or lavender are used here. However, care should be taken to consider aromatherapy as a supportive therapy only along with pursuing the regular treatment.

As an analgesic:

Aromatic oils like sandalwood, peppermint, eucalyptus, and rosemary when mixed with carrier oils such as sesame, avocado, and coconut are known to reduce pain like headache, joint ache, and muscle ache. These can be of help in arthritis patients whose lifestyle gets severely impacted by pain. The oils can either be inhaled, applied on the affected area or as advised by an aromatherapist.

Induces sleep:

Lack of sleep is harmful to our general wellbeing apart from making us lethargic and unproductive at work. It impacts our biological clock and leads to a host of health issues such as lack of libido, hypertension etc. Oils like chamomile, jasmine absolute, lavender etc can help in inducing relaxation and improve our circadian rhythm.

Boosts immunity:

Lack of immunity can play havoc with our ability to fight diseases. However, aromatherapy can be of help in supporting our immune system through inhaling or application of suitable oils like lemon, peppermint, thyme ct linalool, eucalyptus, and tea tree in specific regions of our body as directed by an aromatherapist. The anti-microbial properties of such oils are prescribed or utilized by therapists during the aromatherapy consultation process to help in preventing the onset of diseases.

Improves metabolism:

Oils extracted from lemon, ginger, fennel, lavender, and chamomile among others can help in improving our metabolism. These can benefit people suffering from indigestion, bloating, and constipation as well. However, before using these oils you must consult an aromatherapist or should go through essential oil classes as part of aromatherapy education.

Aids in healing:

Aromatherapy can be used as a part of palliative and supportive care post-surgery. The stress relieving and anxiety that can occur with patients suffering from cancer or other ailments can be benefited by utilizing lavender or rose hydrosols. Aromatherapy has been proven to benefit those preparing for surgery. A blend of lavender and bergamot is very effective for reducing pre-surgical anxiety.

Improves memory power:

Aromatherapy can be beneficial in boosting our memory power. As a supportive therapy it can be of help in patients suffering from dementia. In fact, even though Alzheimer is considered to be an incurable disease as of yet, aromatherapy can be used as a supporting therapy in slowing down its progression.

Beneficial in respiratory distress:

The anti-microbial compounds found in some essential oils can help fight bacteria and fungus by cleansing the ambient air. This can help in the prevention of seasonal ailments like cold and cough. Moreover, the essential oils can stimulate the olfactory system thereby elevating our sense of smell. This can further aid in the removal of nasal congestion.

Improves skin:

Applying oils like lavender, tea tree oil, lemon, orange, clary sage, and frankincense on the skin can be of help in fighting skin conditions like acne, dandruff, cellulite, itching or inflammation resulting from insect bite etc. This is mainly achieved due to the antibacterial, antifungal, and antiseptic properties of essential oils as mentioned above. Moreover, the oils can benefit patients suffering from prickly skin conditions such as psoriasis and eczema,

Given the benefits of essential oils in aromatherapy we should ideally make them a part of our lives to improve the general well-being. Hence, it is better to enrol for aromatherapy or essential oil classes online under the supervision of a certified aromatherapist.

A word of caution!

Even though the aromatic properties of plant extracts are supposed to offer health benefits, using highly concentrated form of such oils can result in side effects as well. Thus, it is better to use it after going through an aromatherapy consultation with experts.

Related Article: 8 Essential Oils That Provide Relief From Muscle Pains

The Chemistry of Sesquiterpene Rich Essential Oils and Its Benefits

As previously discussed, Essential Oils are composed of many chemical components. These components make up chemical families. Today we will discuss sesquiterpene rich oils. Sesquiterpenes have a 15-carbon chain as opposed to monoterpenes which have a 10 carbon chain. Sesquiterpene oils tend to have heavier molecules and also a thicker viscosity. Vetiver is a great example of this. Chemical families such as monoterpenes may possess similar therapeutic properties but the same cannot be assumed with sesquiterpene rich oils. You cannot assume that all the oils in this family will possess the same therapeutic properties.

Essential oils that comprise mostly of sesquiterpenes may have antiseptic, analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties to name a few. Listed below are the names of a few major sesquiterpene rich essential oils. Unlike monoterpene rich oils these oils take longer to oxidize. It is still recommended that you purchase in small quantities to support sustainability. Better opt for an Aromatherapy consultation before you purchase these oils off the shelves of any store. This will help you understand which one to buy and in what amount.

8 Sesquiterpene Rich Essential Oils And Their Uses:

German Chamomile (Matricaria recutita): This blue oil due to the presence of chamazulene is excellent for skin care. This oil has skin healing properties and is great when used in an anti-aging serum. Energetically, this is a cooling oil which makes it useful in clearing energetic heat and for calming feelings of anger.

Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanioides): This is a very rich, deep aromatic oil that is derived from roots. It has anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties. This oil is widely used to support grounding and meditation. It may offer protection when in a state of anxiety.

Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin): This oil possesses a hate it or loves it attitude for the user. Believe it or not, it creates a great synergy when carefully blended with other oils. It provides a great grounding effect when used with the top and middle notes. This oil has immune stimulating properties and is useful in anti-fungal blends.

Black pepper (Piper nigrum): This oil possesses many beneficial therapeutic properties. It is great to use for a massage in a blend to treat pain and inflammation due to its warming effects. Black pepper also has an affinity to support digestion and it is a great addition to use with oils such as sweet marjoram, bergamot, and sweet orange.

Cedarwood (Juniperus virginiana): This oil is excellent for supporting stressful conditions due to its sedative properties. It makes a great addition to a cold and flu synergy due to its mucolytic and decongestive actions.

Ginger (Zingiber Officinalis): This oil has warming and rubefacient properties. It is a great addition to use in a pain and inflammation blend due to its ability to reduce pain. It is widely used as part of an anti-nausea blend. This powerhouse of an oil should be used with awareness and in low dosages. It can be irritating to those with sensitive skin.

Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha): This oil is acquired through steam distillation using the resin. Energetically it is supportive in calming the mind, bringing tranquillity and enhancing meditation. This oil is great in skin care due to its skin healing abilities.

Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata): Ylang Ylang is derived from steam distillation of the fresh blossom. This oil is very soothing for the heart. It makes a great addition to use in a synergy to support stress and depressive states of mind in conjunction with a therapist. It is also good to use in skin care due to its skin healing abilities. This oil should be used in low amounts because it is known to cause headaches and can be irritating to those with sensitive skin.

If you are interested to know more about the world of these aromatic essences, you can take up Aromatherapy education and expand your knowledge of Essential oils. But, be careful before you choose any course randomly. It is better to do some market research to find out the best ones available.

Also Read: Can Essential Oils Help Us Gain Clarity Of Thought?

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