“Here’s Why I’m Recommending Essential Oils To ALL My Friends”
Okay, I’ll admit it — any time someone mentions essential oils, I can’t help but feel sceptical. I have a hard time believing that some oil in bottles tinner than my pain threshold, could somehow help me with a bunch of ailments. But keen to see what all the fuss was about, I decided that there was no harm in trying this form of alternative healing. The results were totally shocking and will change my daily routine from here on out!
What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are often linked to aromatherapy, the practice of inhaling or application of a mix of highly concentrated liquids extracted from plants, flowers or fruit. Each oil has specific healing properties from soothing pain, aiding digestion, improving concentration, and alleviating things like nausea. If you have an ailment, chances are that there’s an essential oil for you. Upon doing some research, I found oils to help with sleep, acne, hair growth, muscle tension and my fav: anxiety.
A few weeks ago I was diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and Dysthymia. GAD is ongoing anxiety and worries about everyday things without any obvious reason for worry. If that wasn’t enough, it can be very difficult to pinpoint what is causing your anxiety or when it could be triggered. These bouts of anxiety can last for weeks to months at a time or just a few minutes — it’s not easy to deal with. I’m managing anxiety with the help of medication, therapy and exercise — now I can add essential oils to my coping methods.
Get an introduction into aromatherapy with this diffuser and essential oil kit.
So, How Do Essential Oils Work?
While there isn’t loads of research on aromatherapy, the few studies done on it does suggest that when inhaled essential oils activate your brain’s hypothalamus, which controls hormones, energy, and drive. Different oils will trigger different responses in your brain that will tell your nervous system to chill out, wake up and heal up.
When it comes to using, its best to use them for 15 minutes to 60 minutes at a time. Always follow the instructions on the bottle, and if you are taking any medications or suffer from a chronic health condition, chat to your doctor about practising aromatherapy. And never switch out your medication for essential oils- they should rather be an accompaniment to your health routine.
The best way to use essential oils is to add a few drops to a diffuser to release the goodness into the air. If you don’t have a diffuser, you could add a few drops to a bowl of warm water or a cotton ball. You could also apply some to your skin, just be sure to carefully read the instructions of whichever oil you buy.
Get The Real Stuff
Being new to essential oils, I tested out three oils all designed for various things. I tried the Young Living essential oils which are pure and directly extracted from nature, for example, 75 lemons are required to make one 15 ml bottle of Lemon essential oil!
It’s important that you use oils that are pure and not diluted, as you may not know exactly what they are diluted with. Rule of thumb; if it’s considerably cheaper compared to brands that say 100% pure or therapeutic grade, it’s probably not the real thing.
Why I Love Them (And you should too)
It’s a no brainer that essential oils would smell amazing! I’m not usually a fan of lavender scents but I’m absolutely in love with this one. I sprinkled some drops on my pillow and I have never entered dreamland faster. Lavender is known to induce a calm feeling and is considered a nervous system restorative. It can help with inner peace, sleep, restlessness, irritability, panic attacks, nervous stomach and general nervous tension- so, it’s sure to get you feeling all zen.
Lemon is one of my favourites scents and flavours, so this oil was right up my ally. Lemon essential oil is an energising, refreshing and uplifting scent. It’s great for giving you a much-needed wake-up, helping with concentration, makes for a wonderful deodoriser, disinfectant and has anti-fungal properties. It’s also reportedly better at helping with anxiety and depression compared to scents like lavender and rose. If this oil couldn’t better, put a few drops in your toner which can help to clear up your skin as it fights inflammation and bacteria which causes pimples.
Peppermint oil is known to treat a variety of conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, cold and flu, muscle pain and so much more. I used this oil by rubbing a bit on my temples or inhaling it while working. It definitely gave me a jolt of energy during the afternoon slumps and helped with getting things done. And when a mosquito decided to feast on me one night, I used it as a relief for the itchiness.
After a week of trying these babies out, I can say that they will become a norm in my day to day life. The oils have helped to calm me when needed. Whether it’s inhaling it from the bottle, rubbing some under my nose or sprinkling it on my pillow, these oils have definitely encouraged me to practise breathing deeply, which along with the properties of the oil, has made my anxious moments a lot easier to deal with.