The use of aromatic oils has been practiced widely over the years beginning with the Chinese, the Greeks, Romans and Egyptians. They used aromatics for cosmetics, massage, hygiene and many medical treatments. Even the father of modern medicine, Hippocrates, recognized that burning certain aromatic plants offered protection against contagious diseases. He prescribed the extensive use of aromatic oils in the bath houses of his time. Scientists have since verified that the volatile compounds called essential oils, have antibacterial and antiviral properties. Distilled or otherwise extracted from the flowers of some plants and the leaves of others, essential oils stimulate the nerves in the olfactory organs and are then transmitted to the parts of the brain that control emotions. Whether inhaled or absorbed through the skin, some oils are thought to reach the pituitary gland, which controls the adrenals that regulate stress and relaxation responses.
Essential oils for baths and massage
Choose from these oils for an aromatic bath or massage:
- Lemon balm to lift spirits
- Germanium for deep relaxation
- Chamomile to calm the nerves
- Sandalwood to reduce tension or anxiety.
- Bergamot to fight infections
- Ylang-ylang to induce sleep
- Lavender to relax muscles
- Frankincense to produce o meditative state
Extracted by distillation or other methods from flowers, leaves, stems, fruits or roots of plants, essential oils contain many medicinal, health promoting properties of their plant sources. For best results, use only pure essential oils that have been extracted by steam distillation or cold pressing and avoid solvent extracted oils, especially synthetics. The simplest way to apply aromatherapy is to breathe in the aroma. Place a drop of the oil on an unscented tissue and breathe deeply.
According to the latest research findings, any of the anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, sedative, disinfectant and antiviral effects the original plants can produce are concentrated in their essential oils. Thus, these oils can trigger a range of both emotional and physical responses. The oils are volatile, they evaporate when exposed to air. Pay attention to how they make you feel-calm, uplifted, focused and so on. Try to define the aroma; is it light, strong, sweet? Smell some coffee beans to restore your sense after experimenting with a number of essential oils.
Use a clean dark glass bottle to store essential oils or blends. To prevent evaporation, always keep the stored containers tightly closed. Use a separate glass dropper for each essential oil and for each blend. Store oils out of direct sunlight, which breaks down the oils.
Take care! : Its not recommended to use essential oils at the same time you are taking a homeopathic emedy. Essential oils can cancel the effects of these remedies.
The way to health is to have an aromatic bath and scented massage every day
Methods of Administration
Add a few drops of essential oil to a bowl or pan of water. Place it on a hot radiator or the top of a wood stove.
Aromatic massage activates the nerve endings and will stimulate circulation near the skin's surface. Add 8-12 drops of your favorite essential oil to 1 oz. of sweet almond, sesame or olive oil to make invigorating aromatherapy massage oil.
Take an aromatic bath. Simply add 5 drops of essential oil to you bathwater
Purchase a porous, unglazed ceramic ring that you place on the top of a light bulb. Add a few drops of essential oil to the ring; when the light bulb heats up, the oil will evaporate into the air.
These are small containers that are filled with water and heated, usually by a candle or sometimes by a small light bulb. Place 3-6 drops of an essential oil into the water and the essential oil will be dispersed into the air.
Add a few drops of an essential oil to some dried leaves or flowers. Mix and enjoy.
For home and car
Create a natural air freshener by adding 25 drops of essential oil to 2 oz. of distilled water in a spray bottle. Shake well and mist into air.