The Application of Essential Oils

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The APPLICATION OF ESSENTIAL OILS

You don’t need to be an expert to enjoy the wide variety of benefits that essential oils hold. Working with essential oil gives you the freedom to become your own healer, all you need is a basic understanding of how to safely and simply use essential oils during your daily routine. From massage blends for pain or inflammation, anti-wrinkle facial creams, to detoxifying salt scrubs and emotional roller blends, working with essential oils will provide a life long journey. Anytime I start working with an essential oil or formulating a new product, I always start with my intention- what is the therapeutic goal and which essential oils, carrier oils, herbs and flowers (if I feel they should be added) will benefit my goal and/or intention best. How do I keep the integrity of the plants used with my therapeutic goals. You will most likely hear me speak of Ayurveda principles when discussing, well, practically everything! I studied Aromatherapy from the lens of Ayurveda so most of my initial work with a client stems around their personal constitution and then choosing which method of application to use based on the client’s dosha (prakriti and vikriti).

The easiest way to aromatically use essential oils is to open a bottle and simply breathe in the aroma through the nose; known as direct inhalation. To enhance the affect, simply place a drop of oil or blend in your hands, rub together and cup around the nose and mouth and breathe. Be careful not to make contact with your face and eyes! 

when to use an aromatherapy inhalation:

  • Respiratory issues

  • Headaches/Migraines

  • Insomnia or other sleep disorders

  • Motion sickness/Nausea

  • Anxiety/stress distress

Aromatic Use

One way to experience the benefits of essential oils is aromatically, or by breathing them in. Using essential oils aromatically can offer many benefits; however, it can be particularly helpful for improving or managing mood. Depending on the chemical structure of an essential oil, it may provide invigorating or uplifting effects, or it might produce calming or soothing feelings. Studies have shown convincing evidence that simply inhaling the aroma of an essential oil is effective for calming nervous or anxious feelings in a variety of settings.

Ideas for aromatic application:

  •  Spritz essential oils on clothing for a long-lasting, pleasant scent

  • Drip two to three drops of oil on the floor during a hot shower (keeping oil away from the water path), and breathe in

  •  Apply oil to a cotton ball and place in the air vents of your vehicle

  •  Place a drop of oil in your hand, rub the palms together, cup the hands over your nose, and inhale

  •  Mix oil with water in a spray bottle and mist over carpet, furniture, or other linens in the home

  •  Add a drop of oil to a dryer sheet to give a batch of laundry a clean, fresh scent

Diffusion

 Diffusion is one of the most effective ways to enjoy essential oils aromatically and is most efficiently accomplished by using an essential oil diffuser. Essential oil diffusers take a whole oil and transform it into a mist, or microscopic droplets, that allow you to experience the aroma of the essential oil for an extended period of time. It is important to remember that essential oils have a delicate chemical structure, so you never want to use a diffuser that could alter the chemical profile of the oil by using heat. It is best to stick with diffusers that use water or cold air to diffuse the oil. While diffusers make it easy to use essential oils aromatically, you can also reap the aromatic benefits of an essential oil without a special diffusing device. Simply inhaling an essential oil straight from the bottle, or placing a drop in your hands, rubbing the palms together, and inhaling the scent will allow you to yield the benefits of essential oils through the air.

when to use an aromatherapy diffuser blend:

  • Environmental ambiance

  • Stress/anxiety reduction

  • Insomnia or sleep disorders

  • Mood or motivation enhancement

  • Purify and improve air quality

  • Reduce airborne pathogens

Topical Use

Applying essential oils topically is a safe, effective way to yield the benefits that essential oils hold for the skin and other aspects of the human body. Due to their chemical makeup, essential oils can easily penetrate the skin and offer a localized benefit to the applied area. Essential oils are easily absorbed into the skin; however, you can prolong the benefits of an essential oil by using a carrier oil to slow down the evaporation of the oil, allowing it to moisturize the skin.

The skin

The skin is highly efficient at transporting small, relatively fat-soluble molecules like Essential Oil’s into the body’s interior, especially when aided by a circulation-stimulating massage. In short, Essential Oil’s circulate in the blood stream. Essential Oils have small molecular structures that allow them to pass through the skin. Sebum present on the surface aids this process.  Essential Oil’s are also absorbed through the tiny hair follicles that are on the skin’s surface.  Essential Oil’s penetrate down in through the fatty layers of the skin and continue down the bloodstream and the lymph system. In order for dermal penetration to take place, the skin should be in a reasonable state of health, if not, one should attend to a toxin detox program before aromatherapy treatments.

MASSAGE BLENDS

Aromatherapy massage blends are designed to enhance the physical and emotional benefits of self-massage or massage sessions. Massage oils are great for muscle pain and soreness, detoxification, circulation, inflammation and arthritis. I unfortunately suffer from both inflammation and arthritis and have made countless blends for after shower or bath massage. These blends have helped me tremendously when my body is tired and achey- essential oils truly can heal our bodies.

when to use an aromatherapy massage blend:

  • Stress/anxiety

  • Headaches/migraines

  • Insomnia

  • Chronic or acute pain relief

  • Arthritis and rheumatism

  • Relieving muscle spasms and cramps

  • Relax and soothe the nervous system

  • Sensual/aphrodisiac

  • And many more….

FACIAL CREAMS AND OILS

A facial cream differs from an oil, as it typically is an oil + water emulsion and is hence capable of delivering moisture to the skin. Creams nourish, soften and moisturize the skin. The choice between a facial oil or a cream would depend on the condition of your skin and the goal of treatment. If you have dry (lacking oil) and dehydrated (lacking water) skin, then a cream would be appropriate. If, on the other hand, you had dry skin but well hydrated, then a facial oil would be appropriate. The facial skin is more sensitive than the rest of the body, so essential oils need more consideration and observation before using.

when to use facial oils and creams:

  • Enhance would healing

  • Influence and slow aging of skin

  • Scar reduction and improve appearance

  • Balance sebum production

  • Improve tone and texture of skin

  • Soften and soothe the skin

  • Increase detoxification and circulation

  • And many more…

AROMATIC BATHS

Baths have been employed for their health benefits since ancient times. The earliest writings regarding the therapeutic benefits of bathing are attributed to the Indian Vedas, which date from approx. 1500 BC. The Romans are perhaps best for utilizing baths extensively for their health benefits and the elaborate bathhouses for people to visit. Hippocrates, the famed Greek physician, employed ‘hydrotherapy’ with aromatic oils and deemed baths as essential to good health. The history of medicinal baths is extensive and it would appear that they are experiencing a renaissance in the modern world due to their benefits in relieving stress and dealing with other health issues. Epsom sea baths are highly effective in aiding and supporting the body in detoxifying, both physically and emotionally.

when to use an aromatherapy bath:

  • Reduce stress and anxiety

  • Alleviate muscular aches, pains, and tension

  • Soothe mental or physical fatigue

  • Stimulate + enhance lymph circulation

  • Aid detoxification

  • Reduce pain and stiffness

  • Improve tone and health of skin

 Don’t have time for a bath? Try a foot bath instead- great for reducing stress/anxiety, heals toe infections, improves circulation and promotes energy.

COMPRESS

One of the simplest and easiest ways to explore aromatherapy is by using a compress. A compress is when a cotton or flannel cloth, soaked in cold/hot water, is applied directly to the skin. Compresses are usually for the treatment of a small-localized area. A cold compress can be used to prevent or relieve congestion, reduce blood flow to an area, and inhibit inflammation. Cold aromatic compresses can be applied with the RICE technique for the relief for such conditions as menstrual cramps. A hot compress can also increase blood flow to a particular part of the body.

when to use an aromatherapy compress:

  • Muscular aches and pains

  • Sprains and strains

  • Menstrual cramps

  • Respiratory decongestant

  • Fevers

If any of these topics spark within you, please get in touch with me to chat or book your free consultation today. I would love to meet you !

 

Susan ZaringComment