Aromatherapy means “treatment using scents”. Essential oils are the building blocks of aromatherapy. There are over 300 these very special substances that are extracted from variety of plants, herbs, roots or fruits, flowers, trees, bark, grasses and seeds with distinctive therapeutic, psychological, and physiological properties, which improve and prevent illness.
It is a holistic treatment of caring for the body with pleasant smelling botanical oils such as rose, lemon, lavender and peppermint. The essential oils are added to the bath or massaged into the skin, inhaled directly or diffused to scent an entire room. Aromatherapy is used for the relief of pain, care for the skin, alleviate tension and fatigue and invigorate the entire body. Essential oils can affect the mood, alleviate fatigue, reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. When inhaled, they work on the brain and nervous system through stimulation of the olfactory nerves.
Let’s talk more specific how certain oils can help you.
It is beneficial for relieving headaches, migraines and sinusitis. Basil may also calm feelings of nervousness and upset allowing for relief from mental fatigue and encouraging concentration. Basil essential oil has ability to treat nausea, motion sickness, indigestion, constipation, respiratory problems, diabetes, etc. Basil oil is also a good source of Vitamin A, magnesium, potassium, iron, and calcium.
Health benefits of basil essential oil include the following:
* Cosmetics: Basil essential oil is used topically to massage the skin. It enhances the luster of dull looking skin as well as hair. As a result it is extensively used in many skin care supplements that claim to improve the tone of your skin. It is also used for acne and skin infections.
* Digestion: Basil essential oil is also used as a digestive tonic. Since basil oil has carminative properties, it is used for treating indigestion, constipation, stomach cramps and flatulence. It provides immediate relief from the gas in your stomach and intestines. It is also colic and hence is used for bowel pain.
* Cold: Basil essential oil is effective in providing relief from cold, influenza and associated fever. Due to its antispasmodic nature, it is used in case of whooping cough.
* Respiratory: Apart from its usage in cough, it is used for asthma, bronchitis, and sinus infections.
* Infections: Basil oil is good for treating a variety of infections such as cuts, wounds, skin infections, bladder infections, etc., due to its antibacterial properties. It is also good for viral infections.
* Stress disorder: Basil essential oil has a refreshing effect and hence it is used for treating nervous tension, mental fatigue, melancholy, migraines and depression. Due to this calming nature of basil essential oil, it is widely used in aromatherapy. It regular use gives mental strength and clarity.
* Blood circulation: Basil oil improves blood circulation and thus helps in increasing the metabolism.
* Pain relief: It is analgesic and provides relief from pain. Hence it is used in arthritis, wounds, injuries, burns, bruises, scars, sports injuries, sprains, headaches, etc.
* Eye treatment: It is ophthalmic and hence relieves bloodshot eyes.
* Anti vomiting: Basil essential oil can be used as an anti vomiting agent in motion sickness and many other vomiting cases.
Basil essential oil is also a good treatment for itching from bites and stings from honey bees, insects and even snakes. Other uses include curing motion sickness and vomiting.
It is well-known for its strong soothing effect on mind and body. It is excellent for protecting dry skin and can be used to treat the nervous system, headaches, and menstrual disorders and is good for digestion, sore throat, sunburns and insomnia.
There are two types of Camomile, namely, the Roman Camomile which is scientifically known as Anthemis Nobilis and the German Camomile whose scientific name is Matricaria Chamomilla. Although the essential oils extracted from both the varieties are quite similar in medicinal properties, yet they differ to some extent when it comes to their composition and certain properties.
* Anti Septic, Anti Biotic, Disinfectant, Bactericidal & Vermifuge: They have very good anti septic and anti biotic properties and do not let biotic infections (infections due to biotic factors such as bacteria, fungi etc.) develop. They also wipe off infections already present. These are good vermifuge too and kill all sorts of intestinal worms. If applied on hair, it kills lice and mites, keeping hair and scalp free from infections and damage.
* Stimulant & Anti Depressant: Both the varieties have been seen very effective in fighting depression and for raising spirit. They eliminate feeling of sadness, depression, disappointment, sluggishness etc. and induce a sort of happy or charged feeling. Even smelling these oils can help a lot overcoming depression and bring about good mood.
* Anti Inflammatory & Sedative: While Roman Camomile is found effective in calming down annoyance, anger and irritation, particularly in small children. The German variety, on the other hand, is found more effective on adults for curing inflammations, particularly those in digestive and urinary system. They also reduce blood pressure and check swelling of the blood vessels.
* Analgesic & Anti Neuralgic: They have analgesic properties and efficiently reduce pain in muscles and joints, headache, sinus, toothache, bone injuries etc. They are also very effective in giving relief in the severe pain of Neuralgia by constricting the blood vessels surrounding the Ninth Cranial Nerve and relieving pressure on it.
* Stomach, Digestive and Hepatic & Cholagogue: Being stomachic, they tone up stomach and set it to proper function. They promote secretion of digestive juices into stomach and facilitate digestion. They also promote digestion. Being Hepatic (meaning good for liver), they ensure good health of liver and proper flow of bile from it. They are also Cholagogue, meaning they increase secretion of Hydrochloric Acid, bile and enzymes in stomach, thereby promoting digestion.
* Anti Rheumatic & Anti Phlogistic: They cure dysfunctions of the circulatory system, stimulate circulation and detoxify the blood of toxins like uric acid, thereby helping cure ailments like Rheumatism, Arthritis etc. which are caused due to improper circulation and accumulation of uric. These make them good Anti Phlogistics, the agents which reduce swelling and edema.
* Anti Spasmodic, Relaxant & Nervine: They calm all nervous disturbances or hyper-reactions which result in convulsions, spasms, nervousness, loss of control over limbs etc. They are Nervine, that is, keep the nerves and the nervous system in a state of good health and proper functioning.
* Cicatrisant & Vulnerary: They are very popular in the world of cosmetics, as they diminish the scars, marks and spots on the skin and on the face (being a Cicatrisant) and also protect wounds, cuts and bruises from getting infected, thus serving as a Vulnerary.
* Sudorific & Febrifuge: They induce profuse perspiration (being Sudorific), thus removing toxins and agents causing infections and cooling down the body, effectively giving relief in fever, thus serving as a Febrifuge.
* Carminative: Expel gas from the intestines and stomach and also check gas formation. This also helps relax the body and lower blood pressure. It also ends the chances of other risks from gas, such as trapping of gas in the wind pipe etc.
* Tonic: They are tonic in nature, i.e. they tone up skin, muscles, internal organs etc.
* Other Benefits: They are anti allergenic, help cure acne by removing toxins and cleaning Sebaceous and Eccrine glands through sweating, clean up the urinary system and the kidneys through increased urination (being diuretic), detoxify blood and increase strength as they are also fortifying in nature. They can help cure viral infections like mumps, measles etc. Can be used in mouth wash too, to keep away bad breath and eliminate oral infections. German Camomile oil is a vasoconstrictor.
It activates solar energy which increases ones bioelectrical energy allowing for self-purification and transformation of heavy emotions to renewed optimism.
Health Benefits of Grapefruit Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like diuretic, disinfectant, stimulant, anti depressant, anti septic, aperitif, lymphatic and tonic.
* Anti Oxidant: Like the fruit itself, the essential oil of Grapefruit is rich in anti oxidants. Primarily, in Vitamin-C. This vitamin, in assistance from other anti oxidant components present in Grapefruit Essential Oil, boosts our immune system and fights free radicals. This oil is effective in protecting the body from all harms done by the oxidants, like aging, degeneration of tissues, macular degeneration, loss of vision and hearing, mental and physical sluggishness, nervous disorders and other such problems.
* Diuretic: The diuretic properties of Grapefruit Essential Oil keep your body light and free from toxins by promoting urination. It help in removal of excess water, fats, sodium, uric acid and other toxins from the body and also reduces blood pressure and keeps our heart healthy. Frequent urinations also keep the urinary tract free from infections. It cleans kidneys of calcareous and uric deposits and protects them against renal calculi and infections too.
* Disinfectant: The Anti Viral and Anti Microbial properties of Grapefruit Essential Oil make it a good disinfectant. It does not only protect the body from new infections but also eliminates the infections which are already there. It is particularly effective on infections of colon, stomach, intestines, urinary system, excretory system and kidneys. It is further beneficial for oral and ocular infections as well as infections on skin.
* Stimulant: This oil stimulates and stimulates well. It has stimulating effects on the body and on the mind. It stimulates brain, makes it active and gives new directions to thoughts as well as stimulates endocrinal glands and promotes proper secretion of hormones and enzymes, thereby keeping in shape the whole metabolism. It further stimulates nervous system and makes you more active and alert. The digestive system is also benefited from this as it stimulates secretion of gastric juices and bile in the stomach as well as movement of ingested food through intestines. Further, it stimulates lymphatic system, circulatory system and excretory system.
* Anti Depressant: Like essential oils of the most of the citrus fruits, the Grapefruit Essential Oil too has great uplifting and relaxing effects on mind. It induces a positive feeling and hope, cures depression and relieves of anxiety and stress. This effect is due to two reasons. First, due to its aroma and second, due to its stimulating effects which stimulates certain hormones which have uplifting effects on the brain.
* Anti Septic: The anti septic properties of Grapefruit Essential Oil makes it fit for application on bruises, wounds, cuts, acne and infections, to protect them from microbial infections. Further, being an anti septic, it prevents wound from catching tetanus or from being septic.
* Aperitif: If you think you need to eat more to put on some muscles but lack that appetite, this oil could lend you a helping hand. But that does not mean that you need to take it just before the dinner. A regular dose can increase your appetite methodically.
* Lymphatic: This is the ace property of Grapefruit Essential Oil. It is lymphatic. The lymphatic system plays a vital role in our body. It is involved in the removal of unwanted and toxic substances from the body. Grapefruit Oil ensures a good health of lymphatic system and boosts it up, thereby freeing the body from toxins and fighting problems like cellulite, blood urea, rheumatism, arthritis, gout and renal calculi etc.
* Tonic: You must be familiar with the term ‘Tonic’. It comes in packages like hair tonic, health tonic, liver tonic etc. Now what is tonic? A tonic is a substance that tones up systems. A hair tonic tones hair follicles and keeps your hair healthy and strong. A complete health tonic tones up all the organic systems operating inside, like the digestive system, circulatory system, metabolic system, nervous system and excretory system etc. and boosts up health and strength. Similarly a liver tonic tones up liver, improves its secretions and strengthens it. Do you need one? There is Grapefruit Oil.
* Other Benefits: Keeps the skin clean. Particularly good for treating oily skin and acne. Gives a refreshing feeling. Also beneficial for treating stiffness and cramp in muscles.
With the help of lavender essential oil you can remove nervous tension, relieve pain, disinfect scalp and skin, enhance blood circulation and treat respiratory problems.
* Nervous System: Lavender essential oil has a calming scent which makes it an excellent tonic for the nerves and helps in treating migraines, headaches, anxiety, depression, nervous tension and emotional stress. Its refreshing aroma removes nervous exhaustion and restlessness and increases mental activity.
* Sleep: Lavender essential oil induces sleep and hence it is often recommended for insomnia.
* Pain Relief: Lavender essential oil is also an excellent remedy for various types of pains including those caused by sore muscles, tense muscles, muscular aches, rheumatism, sprains, backache and lumbago. Massage with lavender oil provides relief from pain in the joints.
* Urine Flow: Lavender essential oil is good for urinary disorders as it stimulates urine production. It helps in restoring hormonal balance and reduces cystitis or inflammation of the urinary bladder. It also reduces any associated cramps.
* Respiratory Disorders: Lavender oil is extensively used for various respiratory problems including throat infections, flu, cough, cold, asthma, sinus congestion, bronchitis, whooping cough, laryngitis, and tonsillitis. The oil is either used in the form of vapor or applied on the skin of neck, chest and back. It is also added in many vaporizers and inhalers used for cold and coughs.
* Skin Care: The health benefits of lavender oil for the skin can be attributed to its antiseptic and antifungal properties. It is used to treat various skin disorders such as acne, wrinkles, psoriasis, and other inflammations. It heals wounds, cuts, burns, and sunburns rapidly as it aids in the formation of scar tissues. Lavender oil is added to chamomile to treat eczema.
* Hair Care: Lavender essential oil is useful for the hair as it can be very effective on lice and lice eggs or nits.
* Lavender Flower for Blood Circulation: Lavender essential oil is also good for improving blood circulation. It lowers blood pressure and is used for hypertension.
* Digestion: Lavender oil is useful for digestion as it increases the mobility of the intestine. The oil also stimulates the production of gastric juices and bile and thus aids in treating indigestion, stomach pain, colic, flatulence, vomiting and diarrhea.
* Immunity: Regular use of lavender essential oil provides resistance to diseases.
The health benefits of peppermint oil include its ability to treat indigestion, respiratory problems, headache, nausea, fever, stomach and bowel spasms and pain. Due to the presence of menthol, menthone and menthyl esters, peppermint and peppermint oil find wide applications in manufacture of soap, shampoo, cigarette, toothpaste, chewing gum, tea and ice cream.
* Indigestion: Peppermint oil is very helpful in digestion. Often people put a few drops of peppermint oil in a glass of water and drink it after their meal due to its digestive properties. It is carminative and therefore helps in removing gas. PeppermintPeppermint oil is a good tonic for those who have a low appetite. It also helps during motion sickness and upset stomach. Preliminary research has proved that peppermint oil in the combination of caraway oil can be used for treating heartburns.
* Dental Care: Peppermint oil, due to its antiseptic properties, is useful for dental care. It removes bad breath and helps teeth and gums deal with germs. No wonder, it is added in numerous toothpastes. It is also useful for treating toothaches.
* Respiratory Problems: Menthol, which is present in abundance in peppermint oil, helps in clearing the respiratory tract. It is an effective expectorant and therefore provides instantaneous, though temporary, relief in numerous respiratory problems including nasal congestion, sinusitis, asthma, bronchitis, cold and cough. As a result, it is used in numerous cold rubs. When these cold rubs are rubbed on the chest, they remove nasal and respiratory congestion immediately.
* Nausea and Headache: Peppermint oil is a good home remedy for nausea and headache. Applying peppermint oil in diluted form on the forehead is known to remove headache.
* Stress: Like most other essential oils, peppermint is able to provide relief from stress, depression and mental exhaustion due to its refreshing nature. It is also effective against anxiety and restlessness.
* Irritable Bowel Syndrome: The muscle relaxing property of peppermint oil has been found to ease irritable bowel syndrome. This has been validated through preliminary scientific research though the exact mechanism is still unknown.
* Antispasmodic: Peppermint oil is very effective for gastroscopy, colonoscopy and during double-contrast barium enema. It is applied intraluminally. Further benefits of peppermint oil due to its antispasmodic properties are being studied.
* Urinary Tract Infection: Peppermint oil can be used for treating urinary tract infection (UTI). However, thorough scientific studies are yet to be conducted to confirm this.
* Pain Relief: Peppermint oil can be used externally for providing relief from pain. It is believed that the presence of calcium antagonism in peppermint oil aids in removing pain. It is cooling in nature and therefore helps reduce fever.
* Immune System: Peppermint oil increases your immunity to diseases and therefore helps you in preventing a number of diseases.
* Blood Circulation: It also improves blood circulation.
* Hair Care: Peppermint oil is very useful for hair care as it gives a cooling effect to the head, and removes dandruff and lice.
* Skin Care: Peppermint oil contains Menthol, which is good for skin. It gives a cooling effect. Further it nourishes dull skin and improves oily skin.
The health benefits of Rose Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like anti depressant, anti phlogistic, anti septic, anti spasmodic, anti viral, aphrodisiac, astringent, bactericidal, cholagogue, cicatrisant, depurative, emenagogue, haemostatic, hepatic, laxative, nervine, stomachic and uterine.
* Anti Depressant: Rose Oil boosts self esteem, confidence, hope and mental strength and efficiently fights depression. This can be very helpful to drive away depression from those who are suffering from depression due to any reason. This also relieves anxiety. Being an anti depressant, patients of acute depression or who are undergoing rehabilitation can be given routine and regular doses of this essential oil to bring hope in their lives. This oil is widely used in aromatherapy and invokes positive thoughts, spiritualism and feelings of joy, happiness and hope.
* Anti Phlogistic: It may calm down a patient of high fever by sedating the inflammation caused by fever. It can also be beneficial in other cases of inflammations caused by microbial infection, ingestion of poisonous stuff, indigestion, dehydration etc.
* Anti Septic: This is the most fragrant and perhaps a majestic way (Just imagine treating wounds with Oils of Rose instead of those ordinary anti septic lotions) to treat your wounds and protect them from being septic and catching infections.
* Anti Spasmodic: It efficiently relieves spasm in respiratory system, intestines and muscular spasms in limbs. It also helps cure convulsions, muscle pulls, cramps and spasmodic cholera which are caused due to spasms.
* Anti Viral: Getting a protection from viruses or getting yourself vaccinated against all of them is a tough task, since some of them change their disguise every time they return and make a fool of our immune system, like our old friend who gives you cold and influenza. So what to do? Better use an anti viral which behaves as a shield against any virus that comes. Here is one such shied. The Essential Oil of Rose that protects against viral infections.
* Aphrodisiac: Better I don’t try explaining this property of Rose Oil! Right from Cupid himself to modern day’s high tech lovers, every body knows how roses are indispensable in romance. And so is this Essential Oil of Rose. The very scent of it can arouse you. It boosts up libido and invokes romantic feelings which are essentials for a successful sex.
* Astringent: The astringent property of Rose Oil has many benefits. It strengthens gums, hair roots, tones and lifts skin, contracts muscles, intestines and blood vessels, thereby giving protection from untimely fall of tooth and hair, wrinkles, loss of firmness of intestines and muscles of abdominal area and limbs associated with age, and above all, helps stop flow of blood from wounds and cuts by contracting the blood vessels. This astringent property can also cure certain types of diarrhea.
* Bactericidal: It is a good bactericide. It can be used in treatment of typhoid, diarrhea, cholera, food poisoning and other diseases which are caused by bacteria. Further, it can cure internal bacterial infections like in colon, stomach, intestines and urinary tract as well as external infections on skin, ears, eyes and in wounds.
* Cholagogue: It promotes flow of bile from the gall bladder and helps regulate the acid level in the stomach as well as in the blood, thus keeping you safe from problems like acidity and acidosis. This bile also helps in digestion of food, together with the acids secreted into the stomach.
* Cicatrisant: This property of Rose Essential Oil can be of great interest for those who care a lot about their looks. It makes the scars and after marks of boils, acne and pox etc. on the skin to fade away. This includes fading of stretch marks and surgery marks, fat cracks etc. associated with pregnancy and delivery.
* Depurative: It purifies blood by helping removal and neutralization of toxins from blood. Once your blood is purified and free of toxins, you are protected from nuisances like boils, rashes, ulcers, skin diseases etc.
* Emenagogue: This is yet another beneficial property of Rose Oil. It stimulates the hormone secretions which trigger off menstruations. It is particularly effective on those who are suffering from obstructed and irregular menses. It also eases cramps, treats nausea, fatigue and reduces pains associated with the menstruations and Pose Menopause Syndromes.
* Haemostatic: This property of the Essential Oil of Rose can be very useful for people who are suffering from hemorrhage (bleeding, external or internal) after an injury or surgery. This speeds up clotting or coagulation of blood and stops bleeding and can save life of such patients.
* Hepatic: It simply means it is good for liver’s health. It keeps it strong, functioning properly and protected from infections. It also treats problems like excess flow of bile and acids, ulcers etc.
* Laxative: There cannot be a laxative with a better scent than this and I can bet it, if not for its laxative properties. It can serve as a harmless and effective laxative with a beautiful smell and without any adverse side effect. It actually influences the intestinal and anal muscles to help clear bowels.
* Nervine: It acts as a tonic for the nerves. It gives them strength to bear shocks and protects them from disorders resulting from age, injuries etc. It won’t let your hands tremble or let you go nervous when saying those three magic words to your dream girl for the first time, of course, with a rose in your hand.
* Stomachic: Rose Oil is a stomachic too. It soothes stomach, sedates inflammations in it, helps it function properly and protects it from infections. It also protects it from ulcers which often happen due to over production of acids and their release into the stomach.
* Uterine: This can take care of many feminine problems such as uterine discharges, tumors, bleeding, irregular menses etc. It purifies the uterus too and keeps it functioning properly even in higher ages and can push away the time of menopause.
* Other Benefits: It regulates hormone production and helps balance them. It is one of the best oils which can give you a shining, fresh and youthful skin. Its aroma keeps you charged and feeling happy. It promotes circulation, takes care of heart, reduces blood pressure and helps cure headaches, asthma, dehydration and effect of loo (very hot winds), leucorrhea and certain infections.