Beginners Guide: Aromatherapy

Aromatherapy is more popular than ever, yet there is so much misinformation and misunderstanding about essential oil use. That's why we're here to give you the breakdown of how these oils work to help stabilize your mind, body, and soul.   

If you're new to aromatherapy, you may be wondering what essential oils even are in the first place. These oils come from plants, flowers, barks, and other natural materials through a process known as extraction. For centuries, many cultures have been using essential oils for their known health benefits, especially the mental, physical, and emotional benefits they have provided through Holistic Aromatherapy. 

The oils can be inhaled in several ways:

  • Diffusion– essential oils can be used with a diffuser. The diffuser allows the oils to evaporate, producing the scent in the air. Simply fill a pot, or a diffuser, with water and add 2-3 drops of essential oil!
  • Spray– using essential oils in a water solution makes a simple spray. This spray can be used to freshen a room, help boost good feelings, increase alertness and concentration, and illicit positive moods. Just be sure to give it a good shake before spraying!
  • Dry Evaporation– a few drops of essential oils can go a long way when placed on the collar of your shirt or even your mask! This allows you to inhale the scent of the oil directly from the material for a more intense and immediate effect. Many people add a few drops of a calming oil, such as lavender, to their pillowcase for a better night's sleep.

The inhalation of essential oils has been shown to improve mood and alleviate depression and anxiety. Inhaling the scent of the oils travels very quickly to the brain, the respiratory system, and the limbic system. This system is connected directly to the brain's areas in charge of controlling memory, stress, blood pressure, heart rate, and the balance of hormones. This connection is what makes certain smells trigger specific memories and emotional experiences.

This then brings us to mental health and essential oils. Certain oils are renowned to uplift and charge a positive spirit. Giving them anti-depressant qualities. While essential oils will not be a cure for all your problems, they certainly can impact the way you feel! 

Finding the right oil for you will take knowing your inner desires, as all oils have varying components that can aid you in differing ways. Below is a list of the top recommended essential oils for depression, anxiety, insomnia, and energy prepared by our knowledgeable Production Manager, Judith. 

Winter Blues: 

Seasonal Active Disorder or "Winter Blues" is different than depression, as when you're depressed, your olfactory system is weakened. However, when you have Winter Blues, your sense of smell heightens- meaning you are more likely to benefit from aromatherapy. Citrus oils are the most commonly used to help relieve SAD symptoms because when they are inhaled serotonin and dopamine levels of the brain increase. The best citrus essential oils for practice are Bergamot, Lemon & Orange. Not a citrus fan? No need to worry; Cedarwood and Eucalyptus are other clinically proven uplifting oils.

Insomnia & Anxiety:

Stress is one of the many reasons for sleepless nights, yet it is inevitable. Sometimes, or frequently, stress can even present itself in the form of anxiety. We've all been there before, sweaty palms shaky by your sides during a presentation, with your heart beating so loudly you think others can hear. When our brain is stressed and restless, we have linalool to trust. This is a calming and sedative constituent that is found in Lavender essential oil. Although lavender is the most popular and effective oil used for anxiety and insomnia, other oils that are proven to calm your mind, body & emotions include Frankincense, Patchouli, and Grapefruit.

Energy:

Sometimes 8 hours of sleep isn't enough to help us gain the energy to get out of bed, let alone raise the kids and go to work. When energy is needed, Citrus oils are the right path to head towards. They stimulate the limbic system area of your brain, which promoted happiness and controls emotions. So need an energy boost? We recommend Orange, Lemon, Bergamot, and Grapefruit as the most effective oils. If you aren't a citrus fan, other oils like Peppermint, Rosemary, and Eucalyptus can also help by encouraging deep breathing, creating more oxygen to the brain, making us feel more energized.

Never hesitate to reach out to us for help finding the best essential oil for you & Remember, your nose knows best!