Aromatherapy, or essential oil therapy, is a holistic treatment that uses natural plant extracts to promote health and well-being. Aromatherapy has been used by humans for thousands of years and has been shown to have a number of health benefits, including alleviating pain, improving focus, promoting restful sleep and aiding in digestion, among others.
Aromatherapy uses aromatic essential oils made from plants and flowers to improve the health of the body, mind, and spirit. Each essential oil has an array of unique properties, uses and benefits. Combining essential oils can create synergistic blends with a multitude of benefits.
How Does Aromatherapy Work?
Essential oils are normally inhaled or applied topically and can be used alone or in combination with each other.
When an essential oil is inhaled, the smell receptors in your nose send signals to your brain's limbic system, which affects your emotions, memory, learning, and appetite.
It's also common to apply essential oils topically - for example, massage therapists often incorporate essential oils into their massage oils and lotions. It's important to note that essential oils should never be applied directly to your skin. They must always be diluted in a carrier oil or other product to avoid any negative reactions your skin may have.
Common Essential Oils Used In Aromatherapy
- Lavender: Lavender oil is often used to help reduce stress and anxiety and to promote good sleep.
- Eucalyptus: Eucalyptus oil is known to have a number of respiratory benefits, including relieving coughing, as an expectorant, and helping relieve conditions such as asthma and sinusitis. Some research also suggests that eucalyptus can ease joint pain from conditions like osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
- Tea Tree: Tea tree oil is commonly used to treat acne, athlete's foot and insect bites.
- Lemongrass: Lemongrass is particularly effective at eliminating mental fatigue, aiding in recovery after physical activity, and promoting pure, toned skin.
- Jasmine: Jasmine essential oil is popular for its calming and uplifting properties, making it a natural mood booster.
- Peppermint: Peppermint oil is a common cure for headaches when applied topically and can boost your mood and energy when inhaled.
While scientific evidence on the effectiveness of aromatherapy is limited, some clinical trials and studies have shown that aromatherapy may have several benefits, including:
- Easing anxiety and depression
- Helping to reduce stress
- Improving the quality of your sleep
- Fighting bacteria
- Managing pain
- Treating migraines and headaches
Aromatherapy for Stress Relief
Aromatherapy can be a great natural remedy for stress relief. Lavender, chamomile, and sandalwood are all popular choices for reducing stress. Aromatherapy can also be used in tandem with other stress relievers, like massage, meditation, or a soothing bath.
How Can I Do Aromatherapy At Home?
While aromatherapy should never replace a doctor's visit for serious symptoms, there are some great ways to practice aromatherapy at home.
Aromatherapy shower steamers or sprays, like our ShowerSpa Mists, are a great way to enjoy some aromatherapy as part of your daily routine. Whether you need a little energy boost in the morning, or something to help you wind down at night, just a few sprays into your shower can transform your bathroom into an aromatic haven.
Diffusers are an easy way to inhale the vapors of an essential oil - simply add a few drops of your essential oil of choice to your diffuser and enjoy as it fills the air with a soothing (or energizing!) scent.
Room sprays are another safe and effective way to diffuse essential oils in a room. Just a few spritzes around the room and you can feel the mood change almost immediately.
Bath Soaking Salts
There are a variety of bath soaking salts that offer aromatherapy benefits - including lavender scented salts to promote relaxation. Simply add a cup to your bath and let them work their magic!
Is Aromatherapy Safe?
Generally, aromatherapy is very safe. It's important to note that the quality of essential oils available varies greatly. Since essential oils are not regulated by the FDA, it's important to look for pure essential oils.
A small number of people may experience an allergic reaction to essential oils, especially if you have a history of reactions to topical products. Essential oils should never be ingested - this can damage your liver or kidneys. If you do experience negative side effects after inhaling or applying essential oils, see a doctor.
Ready To Get Started With Aromatherapy?
European Spa Source offers a variety of essential oil blends in their ShowerSpa Mists, allowing you to select the spray that best suits your goals. Unlike most aromatherapy products, European Spa Source is proud to sell only the purest and most consistent essential oils anywhere. Try one of our signature shower sprays to transform your shower into an aromatic steam room or as a safe and effective room spray. We also offer a lavender pillow spray that promotes deeper, more restorative sleep.