What is Aromatherapy?

Aromatherapy is the application of using plant-based oils, including essential oils and some other aroma based compounds to improve psychological or physical well-being.  Aromatherapy is generally classified as either a form of alternative medicine, or a complementary therapy, used in conjunction with massage therapy, or other conventional treatments.

Historically, aromatherapy has been used for centuries and was used by many ancient civilizations for healing purposes. Although there is no scientific, or medical evidence to support that it prevents or cures any diseases, it is believed to improve general well-being.

How is Aromatherapy Used?

Steam Inhalation

Adding a few drops of essential oils to boiling water creates an aromatic steam.  Often used to relieve congestion for colds, flu, sinus infections, or to improve respiratory function.

Diffusers

Similar to the steam inhalation method, diffusers use and atomizer with water and heat to create fine, airborne particles of essential oils and blow them into the air. Commonly used to improve and purify the air quality, or distribute a fragrance for ambiance, or to soothe stress, anxiety, mood, insomnia, or to increase alertness.

Topically

Essential oils can be used topically when diluted. Either applying them directly to the skin, or by adding a few drops to lotions, facial creams, etc.  Commonly used in facial or body products to slow the effects of aging, reduce the appearance of scars or wrinkles, increase healing of wounds, and improve circulation and skin tone.

Baths

Adding a few drops of essential oils to bath products or to a carrier agent such as an emulsifier and added to bath water, it can create detoxification benefits, reduce stress/anxiety, help to reduce muscular aches, pain, stiffness, or tension, improve and stimulate circulation, and improves health and tone of skin.

Massage

When diluted in massage oils, not only does the fragrance offer inhalation benefits, but the oils can also be absorbed into the skin and help in reducing stress/anxiety, headaches/migraines, reduce inflammation, relieve muscle stiffness, spasms, aches and pains related to arthritis and rheumatism, or insomnia.

Essential oils offer a variety of health benefits and each oil has its own unique qualities and healing properties. Due to the concentration of the oil, it is important to dilute the oils and to do a patch skin test before using an application, to ensure there will not be any skin irritation, allergies, or reactions to the oil.