Guest Author - Cara Newman
Aromatherapy is a wonderful healing modality using pure essential oils derived from natural botanicals. These pure concentrated oils offer different healing properties ranging from the soothing effects of stress relief to the much stronger medicinal use of antiseptic properties. Since many of these pure essential oils are highly concentrated, you don’t need very much in volume in working with aromatherapy.
There are so many different essential oils available today. Here are the two most commonly used essential oils in aromatherapy:
Lavender is the most versatile, gentle and pleasant smelling essential oil. It is calming to the nervous system. It helps to relieve stress, headaches and even minor depression. Lavender is also one of the best aids for insomnia.
How to use:
A basic way to practice aromatherapy with lavender oil is to burn the oil in a ceramic oil burner. Remember to put a little bit of water (about 1-2 table spoons) in the burner dish prior to adding essential oils for burning. This way, you will be able to keep the essential oils burning longer as well as to prevent your beautiful oil burner from looking “burnt” very quickly.
If you choose not to use a burner, your can still experience aromatherapy by using an electric diffuser. Simply put a few drops of essential oil on the absorption pad, then plug the diffuser into the wall. You have yourself a little piece of aromatherapy heaven!
For headaches and stress relief, you can simply put a drop or two on your temples given that you do not have allergy or skin sensitivity towards lavender. For insomnia, simply take a bath with drops of lavender essential oils an hour before bedtime. You will feel so wonderfully relaxed afterwards and will soon be falling asleep naturally. You can also put a drop or two of the lavender oil on your pillowcase at night to aid sleeping.
Lavender oil is also one of the best essential oils to be used in massage lotion to offer additional relaxation effect during a therapeutic massage.
Tea tree oil has been documented for its antiseptic properties. It can be used as a bactericide as well as fungicide. Some people use it to treat fungal infection of the nails and also athlete’s foot. Others use tea tree oil to treat acne. Some say that tea tree oil has helped them decrease dandruffs.
How to use:
Tea tree oil can be used on the skin, but it should never be taken internally. For hair care, you can put drops of tea tree oil in the shampoo. For nail or foot care, you can directly apply the essential oil on the infected areas given that you do not have sensitivity towards tea tree oil. Always try tea tree oil on a very small area of the skin first to see if you have any allergic reactions. Tea tree oil is one the strongest essential oils so please always read manufacture directions on how much to use it.
To practice aromatherapy, please make sure that you always get the pure essential oils, and not the synthetic kinds even though the pure essential oils cost slightly higher. Synthetic fragrant oils are for scent only. They do not provide any healing properties and they contain artificial chemicals!
There are many more kinds of essential oils available such as peppermint, bergamot as well as chamomile, geranium and eucalyptus…etc. Have fun experiencing the benefits that aromatherapy can offer. Remember, aromatherapy can never replace any medical treatment, but it serves as one of the modalities to enhance your choice in living a holistic lifestyle!