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Mon, Jul 30, 2018 8:01am

Aromatherapy

By Megan Roessler M. Ed., @meganroessler

shutterstock_741684532Think back to the last time you experienced a pleasant smell. Remember how it made you feel? For me the smell of fresh-cut grass puts my mind at ease and instantly relaxes me.

I put lavender in my diffuser by my bed every night.  It makes me less anxious and ready to fall asleep. I also love the smell of lemon — I use a lemon scented cleaning spray in my kitchen - it makes me think things are clean.

These are just a few examples of how scents can have a powerful effect on the mind, influence your mood and lower anxiety.

Aromatherapy usually involves the use of essential oils extracted from plants. However, other pleasant smells associated with fond memories can have a positive effect on mood and perspective.

Some studies on aromatherapy have shown these benefits:

  • Lower anxiety and stress levels
  • Improved mood
  • Improved quality of life

You may want to explore using aromatherapy in your daily routine. It may be a helpful form of stress relief that's easy to incorporate.

Essential oils used in aromatherapy may be inhaled directly or indirectly, or applied to the skin through massage, lotions, oils or bath salts.

Aromatherapy works by stimulating smell receptors in the nose, sending messages via the nervous system to the limbic system — a part of the brain that controls emotions.

Some common aromatherapy scents used for relaxation include: lavender, jasmine, chamomile, bergamot, rose, clary sage, neroli, sandalwood, ylang ylang and vanilla.

Explore the scents to discover the ones that work for you. I'd love to hear any of your experiences with aromatherapy.

I love this post it is one of my favorite things in life, Aromatherapy. I am so into different smells. They really do work, at least with me they do. I even travel with them too. I have mini versions of what I use at home.

Lavender I think works the best for me. Every night I spray Lavender Linen spray on my pillow ,and sheets. Then I get in bed and use a lavender hand cream. on my hands each night. The smell seems to automatically trigger my body to relax and fall asleep. I love that smell. It is one of my favorites.

Another smell I like to use in the shower is eucalyptus leaves. I often put Fresh Eucalyptus leaves in the bathroom and the steam from the shower brings out the smell.

Plus, while I am working I burn candles. The smell from the candles adds a bit of freshness to the air, and brings an outdoor scent inside. Right now I been burning a lily scented candle. It helps clear my mind and focus better too.

My daughter is very much into essential oils. Just a couple of days ago, she soothed my two month old granddaughter's colic by holding certain oil little bottle close to her nose. She stopped crying right away.
I will start using the lavender oil at night, when I cannot fall sleep, and will report results in a week.

Thank you! This is great advice, and I find the aromas do work for me. However, I am limited to usage, as my husband has respiratory issues and does not tolerate very well the use of scented candles, room fresheners, etc. I am pretty much limited to using them only when he is not around, or using items that do not travel very far in the house. I will work to see if there are new aromas that may work for him, too!

@loli

My daughter is very much into essential oils. Just a couple of days ago, she soothed my two month old granddaughter's colic by holding certain oil little bottle close to her nose. She stopped crying right away.
I will start using the lavender oil at night, when I cannot fall sleep, and will report results in a week.

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I'll be curious to hear your results after trying lavender at night.

And how interesting that a colicky baby was soothed by scent!!

@lovetoall

Thank you! This is great advice, and I find the aromas do work for me. However, I am limited to usage, as my husband has respiratory issues and does not tolerate very well the use of scented candles, room fresheners, etc. I am pretty much limited to using them only when he is not around, or using items that do not travel very far in the house. I will work to see if there are new aromas that may work for him, too!

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Aromas are very personal. We don't all like the same things and some people seem to have a hyper-sensitivity to scents. Respiratory issues are something to be careful with – good thing you are careful with your husband and what he can or can't tolerate. Some people like to put a drop or two of oil on the palms of their hands, rub them together, then cup their hands near the nose to inhale a few breaths. This may be a way you can gain some aromatherapy without bothering your spouse.

Very good idea! Thank you!

@lovetoall

Thank you! This is great advice, and I find the aromas do work for me. However, I am limited to usage, as my husband has respiratory issues and does not tolerate very well the use of scented candles, room fresheners, etc. I am pretty much limited to using them only when he is not around, or using items that do not travel very far in the house. I will work to see if there are new aromas that may work for him, too!

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Somehow, I have heard that we should stay away from scented candles and room fresheners. You do not know what is in them and what you are breathing. A diffuser and essential oils is what is recommended. Also, you can make your own cleaners to prevent breathing in all the harmful chemicals contained in cleaners. There is this oil named "Thieves" that smells like cinnamon, that I use as a cleaner all around my house. I make my own face "cream", with very good quality coconut oil and essential oils, including Frankincense. Since my cancer, five years ago, I do not use anything on my skin that I cannot take orally. Our skin absorbs what you put on it.
Personally, I would not put the oil in the palm of my hands, because you will absorbe it, and too much could be harmful. It is enough to open your little oil bottle, and smell it all you want. Or put a few drops in a diffuser if the smell is not offensive to others.

I'm interested into getting into aromatherapy but I don't know what kind of oils to get. Can anyone out there lead me in the right direction and suggest what I can start out with.

The oils I use are from Young Living. Go on line and research them. Look for the ones that will suit you. They sell the diffuser, and different oils are for different issues.

@loli Thank you for the information.

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