In this first week of November, reality is setting in that autumn is truly here and winter is approaching. Mood and sleep quality may be affected as the hours of daylight grow shorter. For those with joint and muscle concerns, dropping temperatures frequently signals an increase in pain and stiffness. For many, this change in seasons also means colds–stuffy noses, coughs and headaches. While finding relief for these ailments has often been time-consuming, costly, and frustrating, now it can be as simple as lying down and letting your nose do all the work.
Aromatherapy is a pleasant way to tap into a person’s olfactory system with scent, triggering a healing response in the brain and throughout the body. “Aromatherapy is a natural, non-invasive modality designed to affect the whole person not just the symptom or disease and to assist the body’s natural ability to balance, regulate, heal and maintain itself by the correct use of essential oils,” writes Jade Shutes in an article published to the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy.
There are many essential oils that are commonly used to help alleviate insomnia, pain, congestion, anxiety, stress, nausea and more. As the environment around us begins to change, let’s take a close look at a few specific essential oils that can help us tackle many of the effects these changes can have on our body:
- Oregano is typically the first essential oil turned to when looking for immune support for adults. Highly concentrated, it is suggested to dilute with other oils such as olive or almond. Nonetheless, being diluted and applied using certain methods can prove to have a great benefit on pain, inflammation and infections, as well as warding off unwanted smells.
- Lavender oils are obtained from the flowers of the plant and have been used as perfumes as well as in aromatherapy. Lavender helps to induce sleep and sleep regularity so is used as a form of treatment for insomnia,. Lavender is also known to assist in issues such as depression, headaches, acne and pain relief. “People have used lavender and its essential oil throughout history to ease mental, emotional, and physical ailments,” notes Jan Hirsch, a provider of Aroma Home® aromatherapy treatments.
- Frankincense, best known for its debut in the Bible as a gift from the three wise men, is widely known to help prevent acne. But what you may not know is that, mixed with coconut oil, it can be rubbed into the soles of your child’s feet and will not only help them sleep at night, but will help boost their immune system.
- Eucalyptus oils are extracted from the fresh leaves of a eucalyptus tree. Newer to the aromatherapy world than others, its most well known use is to assist in respiratory problems. Runny noses, congestion, sore throats, are all ailments that eucalyptus oils are used to relieve. In addition, eucalyptus is anti-inflammatory in nature, so don’t dismiss its abilities to assist those muscle pains!
- Sandalwood is extracted from an evergreen tree and releases a woody fragrance. Often used in yoga for calming and hydration for the skin, it is also known to help the mucous membranes in the chest wall helping to alleviate chest pain.
The usage of essential oils may vary based on the type of oil itself and the reason you are attempting to benefit from it. Oil mixtures can also be created by blending several oils together to achieve their highest benefit for your ailment: For example, two drops of eucalyptus, two drops of lavender and one drop of thyme oil can be added to hot water to create a steam inhalation for a sore throat.
This video from Aromatherapy in the Home is a great way to start looking for ideas on how to infuse aromatherapy in your life for a healthy change: