Can the right smells calm you down?
Stress is all around us and it can have a truly negative effect on our health. Since stress is so prevalent in our lives and the root causes can be hard quickly remove - it's hard to find a new job, fix our money situation or disentangle from a toxic relationship - it's a good idea to find short term coping mechanisms while we work on the bigger issues.
Today, we're going to focus on the small stuff and found why aromatherapy may be the perfect way for you to chill out.
As I write this, I have my focus blend essential oil going in my diffuser, scenting the air with a light peppermint scent.
Am I more focused? Calmer? I don't know but the office sure smells good.
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the practice of using scents to create certain outcomes. One of its most prevalent uses had been to decrease stress through the use of scented essential oils. These methods are completely safe and without side effects, as long as the patient does not have a allergy to the particular component used.
Different Smells for Different things
Lavender is probably the most popular essential oil to help with stress. It has a long track record of being safe and totally effective. Most also find that it not only reduces their stress, but it also elevates their mood.
Rosemary and sandalwood are also other popular choices. These two have a particularly pleasant aroma so are good for adding an overall scent scheme to a room without overpowering it.
There are a few other materials that are well known for their stress relieving properties. Many of these are usually used in what is called a "blend." Blends are mixes of essential oils that have similar properties. It is thought that these effects are cumulative in nature, therefore you can get all of the benefits of each in a truly potent blend.
These other materials include: geranium, palma rosa, juniper, frankincense, cypress, basil, chamomile, ylang ylang, bergamot, and geranium jasmine. Using lavender or rosemary as a base and then adding a few of these materials can make a quick and easy method of stress relief aromatherapy.
Beware the carrier oil
These mixes should be used in what is known as a "carrier oil." These are base oils such as almond, coconut or olive oil.
These will act to make the scents less intense, while allowing you to stretch the amount of money that is spent on the aromatic materials. Essential oils are so potent that it would be hard to sprinkle a few drops around without overwhelming oneself with the scents.
But First, this safety message...
While essential oils are generally regarded as safe, there are a few things that must be kept in mind when purchasing them. it's important to make sure that only quality aromatherapy grade oils are used. There are also a few safety concerns that must be kept in mind when using these forms of medication.
When shopping for aromatherapy essential oils it's important to keep quality in mind. There are some companies out there that use artificial fragrances in their oils. This is not true aromatherapy. These synthetic oils can cause allergic reactions in certain people, and in general, they just do not work in the same way.
Beware the Fake Stuff....
Synthetic oils are designed simply for their smell. They are not designed to be used as a health aid. These products are mostly designed for perfume, scented candle, and air freshener usage. They are not for use in aromatherapy. True essential oils are made from actual plant based sources. It's important to use the highest quality essential oils possible.
Go Organic...Real Plants that is...
Legitimate essential oils are created from organic materials that has been heavily distilled into their purest form. This form of the oil is a very concentrated version of the essence of the plant that it was derived from. They can range in price from nominal to very expensive. Some come from very rare plants which can drive up cost considerably. Oftentimes lower cost alternatives can be used though.
For inhalation just a few drops of these oils are added to a diffuser. This diffuser will disperse the oils throughout the air so that the microscopic molecules can be breathed into the lungs of those in the room. It only takes a very small amount of essential oil to be effective in this manner. This is why this is the most popular way to use these items.
Make Sure You're Not Allergic to the Carrier Oil!
When essential oils are going to be used on human skin it is important to use a carrier oil. Since these materials are so highly concentrated it can sometimes cause irritation, or even an allergic reaction, in some users.
Grapeseed, sweet almond, olive, or apricot kernel oils are popular carrier oils. A few drops of essential oils are added to these other, more benign, oils so that they may be applied directly to the skin safely. It's important to remember that full strength these oils are a medical grade material, and should be treated as such.
There are well over one hundred different essential oils being used in aromatherapy today. Each one has its own chemical breakdown, and can be used for a variety of ailments. As long as these materials have been purchased from a legitimate supplier, and are used in a proper manner, then safety is only a minimal concern for most users.
So go be good smelling...
Check out our other resources Here are 5 simple things you can do for yourself to de-stress