Essential oils and aromatherapy are used for so many different things. Someone you know is probably using essential oils to treat some type of problem they have.
How do you know if natural aromatherapy actually does anything or not?
Truthfully, aromatherapy is more effective for some issues than others, but it can work for almost anyone.
If you’re interested in natural aromatherapy, keep reading to learn what it is, how you can get started, and what you need to know before you begin.
What is Aromatherapy?
The term “aromatherapy” was created by a French perfumer and chemist named René-Maurice Gattefossé.
He wrote a book about it in 1927 and discussed the potential healing power of lavender to treat burns. The book talked about using essential oils and holistic healing for medical conditions.
In reality, aromatherapy has been around for thousands of years. It is holistic healing through the use of plant extracts, which promote your health and overall well-being.
Some people call it essential oil therapy, but these terms are interchangeable.
Aromatherapy uses the aromas from essential oils to improve the health of your body, mind, and spirit. You can find benefits in your physical health and your emotional health from proper use.
For many people, aromatherapy is considered a science. It has started to gain more recognition in science and medicine for its impact on overall health in regular users.
History of Aromatherapy
Ancient civilizations in China, Egypt, India, and other countries used to use aromatic plants in their balms, oils, and resins. These substances were meant to be used for religious purposes, but also for medical purposes in some instances.
Essential oils began to be distilled in the 10th century. The practice may have been done before this.
Essential oil distillation started to be published and recorded in Germany during the 16th century. French physicians in the 19th century saw that there was potential for essential oils to treat diseases.
Since the 19th century, medical doctors have become more established by using chemical drugs and studying their impact. French and German doctors during that time still recognized the potential in using botanicals for treatment.
Using Natural Aromatherapy Methods
Aromatherapy is based on your sense of smell and your skin’s absorption of products.
You can use a lot of different methods to get the essential oils into your body. Some of the most popular options include:
- Bathing salts
- Facial steamers
- Body oils or creams
- Aromatic spritzers
- Clay masks
If you want to use one or more of these products at a time, you can do that! There is no harm in mixing and matching as long as you know what you are doing and patch test your skin first for topical application.
Any of these methods will allow you to use whichever essential oils you prefer as well.
There are almost one hundred different essential oil types that you can choose from. Different essential oils do different things. You can combine different oils to achieve the effect you want.
If you’re just getting started, it may be helpful to begin with some of the more common essential oils. These are available in many health stores, online, or in general supermarkets. To get your collection off on the right foot, look for:
- Lavender oil
- Eucalyptus oil
- Peppermint oil
- Rosemary oil
- Tea Tree oil
- Frankincense oil
Be sure that the essential oils you choose are coming from reputable sources. Essential oils are not regulated per the FDA, so you need to be careful to avoid synthetic ingredients and additives.
Benefits of Aromatherapy
There are many things that people using aromatherapy get out of it, but it depends on which method and essential oils you choose.
If you choose to use tea tree oil, for example, you’re going to get different results than you would if you used lavender oil for the same thing.
In addition to that, people struggling with different things will get different benefits! For instance, if you are trying to treat headaches, using aromatherapy can help you manage your pain and improve your overall well-being.
If your child is struggling with things like sleeping, digestion, sunburn, or even a bad cough, aromatherapy for children may be something you want to try.
Always consult with a doctor for serious medical conditions, but for mild discomfort, essential oils can give you the relief you’re looking for.
Some of the things that aromatherapy can do for you are:
- Reduce stress
- Reduce anxiety
- Manage your pain
- Increase immunity
- Alleviate the side-effects of medications
- Soothe soreness in joints
- Fight off bacteria or viruses
- Improve the quality of sleep
- Decrease agitation
- Improve digestion
- Ease general discomforts
Ready to Give Natural Aromatherapy a Try?
Now that you know more about the origins of natural aromatherapy and what to expect, you may be excited to buy some essential oils for yourself.
Remember that you should always allergy test anything that you plan to use on your skin by patch testing first. This is to ensure you are not going to have a reaction if you use it in large amounts.
Some oils also require the use of a carrier oil, so know what you are doing before you start. If you have questions, you can always check online or even consult an aromatherapist for more information.
To check out some more lifestyle and health tips, you should look on our blog and read some of the other articles we have to offer!