It’s time to get in touch with your senses, your sense of smell specifically. Just about everyone knows about the effects of aromatherapy and the relaxation therapy associated with it. Well, this week Bitesize Wellness has decided to run our Pretty & Pamper article on the therapy, in the hopes that we can refresh some of your memories and encourage you to give it a whirl.
Aromatherapy is a practice involving the use of essential oils from plants for healing that dates back nearly 6,000 years. Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, and Native Americans were the most avid users of aromatherapy, but tons of groups used them for different rituals, cleansing, healing processes, and spiritual assemblages. The practice has been carries on through the years, and has proven to be therapeutic and healing on many levels. Essential oils are extracts from leaves, seeds, blossoms, stems, and roots of plants that release ingredients to trigger reactions by the human body. A common misconception is that aromatherapy is all about inhalation of the essential oils, but really, the oils can also be massaged into the body. Researchers are still looking for the exact reasons why essential oils and aromatherapy work on the human body. The most common answer to the question is that pleasant smells trigger pleasant emotions and memories in particular parts of the brain. These parts release hormones similar to that of strong medications used in western medicine. Regardless of the real answer, aromatherapy is easy to practice at home, so treat yourself to a little relaxation.
Here is a list of the most commonly used essential oils and their effects.
Chamomile alleviates insomnia, anxiety, or stress and promotes feelings of comfort. It acts as a sedative.
Sage relieves stress and anxiety and acts as a relaxing agent.
Eucalyptus helps with a variety of problems such as flu symptoms, respiratory infections, and congestion. It acts as an energizing agent.
Frankincense strengthens the immune systems and can sooth skin.
Ginger relieves physical pain and gas, as well as triggers feelings of warmth.
Lavender is used for general skin care (itching, bites, burns, cell regeneration) as well as the promotion of soothing feelings.
Lemon is an uplifting scent that is also great for home sterilization.
Lemongrass has the same effects as lemon, but it can also be used to ward of insects.
Peppermint is great for muscle relief and nausea. It is also considered an energizing scent.
Rose is one of the most important essential oils. It is used to stimulate nourishing emotions as well as reduce stress and anxiety. Rose is also used as an aphrodisiac.
Rosemary is an energizing agent that is also great for the respiratory and circulatory systems.
Tea Tree is used to enhance the immune system and fight off bacteria.
Are you ready for some aromatherapy?