Alternative medicine is becoming more popular recently, as people start to look back at what our ancestors used for healing. Modern medicine is fantastic, but it falls short in many ways. A lot of people find more relief when they try the ancient methods than when they take the pills doctors prescribe them.
Aromatherapy is among the ancient healing methods that researchers have studied rather extensively. Unlike some of the other methods of healing, aromatherapy presents some promising results. If you suffer from constant pain, memory loss, or depression, aromatherapy could be the tool you’ve desperately needed in your life. Ahead, we’ll discuss the overview of aromatherapy, as well as some of the places where it can positively affect your life.
What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is an ancient healing method that’s so old it has no known origin. Researchers credit the ancient Egyptians for using aromatherapy and all essential oils for healing, but the practice could have originated even earlier. Wherever and whenever it started, cultures across the globe have adopted the practice to help all kinds of physical, emotional, and spiritual problems.
The practice of aromatherapy involves all-natural oils or essential oils that a patient aromatically inhales to address several different kinds of health concerns. The health benefits of aromatherapy are disputed, but many who regularly attend aromatherapy session claim it can improve their mood, help them focus, and even relieve pain in some cases.
Aromatherapy treatment isn’t just limited to inhaling the perfume of essential oils. Practitioners make a cocktail of essential oils that can harmonize with the body and address specific concerns of the patient. A practitioner might use one combination of oils for someone who is going through a traumatic experience, and another for someone who is looking for pain relief.
Mixing these oils can be extremely potent, and if you don’t do it correctly, you may experience some side effects. It’s essential to consult a professional aromatherapy practitioner with any essential oil mixture, as they’ll be able to give you the best concoction for your needs. If the holistic oils are too potent, you won’t experience any of the benefits.
What Does Aromatherapy Treat?
Unlike some of the other forms of alternative medicine, researchers have done a fair bit of studying when it comes to aromatherapy oils and their use. Although traditional doctors don’t usually recommend aromatherapy as a treatment in many cases, the research supports the idea that aromatherapy can help people with a wide variety of symptoms.
Societies have been using aromatherapy for thousands of years, and there’s a reason it’s still popular today. Patients can expect to see a substantial boost in their quality of life with aromatherapy – sometimes where traditional medicine has failed them.
Sleep is one of the backbones of our lives. If your sleep quality is poor, you can expect to see a long list of negative effects on your daily life. Your focus drops, you become more stressed, and you’ll be more irritable throughout the day. Sleeping pills will help you sleep better, but they come with a variety of adverse effects as well. In fact, you may wake feeling worse than you did without the pills. Even if they work, you may develop a dependency.
Essential oils, on the other hand, are much safer when you use them correctly. Research has shown that people who use aromatherapy have had increased quality of sleep, and an improved waking life because of it. Aromatherapy can help regulate your body, so you feel awake during the day and get tired at the right time.
A lot of people suffer from a minor form of insomnia, where they have trouble falling asleep at night but remain tired throughout the day. This often leads to increased caffeine consumption, which continues the vicious cycle of preventing sleep. Essential oils can reverse much of this problem.
Stress and Anxiety
Stress relief is one of the most common uses for aromatherapy. The essential oils practitioners use will lower the level of stress in the body and can alleviate some of the crippling anxiety some people have.
Common oils like lavender, lemon oil, peppermint, and others improve the user’s mood and put them in a more relaxed state. These oils are easy to find, and the mixtures are simple once you learn them. You can find this information online and make a stress-reducing essential oil package from your home.
Everyone suffers from a bit of memory loss now and then, and aromatherapy is one of the ways you can help boost your short and long-term memory. Practitioners use sage and other essential oils to help increase the memory of their patients, and there has been some substantial success in this area.
Though it’s not a mainstream treatment, doctors will sometimes even suggest that Alzheimer’s and dementia patients try aromatherapy to slow their conditions down. Alzheimer’s is a devastating disease with no known cure, but the families of those who suffer from it will try anything to slow the process. Aromatherapy is one of those tools, and it has some substantial promise going forward.
Antidepressants don’t work for a lot of people. They may experience a slight boost in mood, but the results are extremely variable. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution for depression, as much as the pharmaceutical industry wants us to think that there is. The phrase “chemical imbalance in the brain” sounds right, but it’s a complete myth. There isn’t any research that backs it up, and it’s only a marketing tool for the pharmaceutical companies to sell more depression drugs.
Aromatherapy, on the other hand, does not present the risk of dependence and side effects that depression medication does. It doesn’t seek to correct a made-up chemical imbalance in the brain, it just boosts your energy and improves your mood. If you’re still depressed after taking these medications and therapies, try aromatherapy and see if it helps.
Pain is difficult for doctors since it’s hard to qualify what the patient needs. Who is a doctor to say that a person’s pain isn’t valid? They can’t refuse to give a patient medication because he or she doesn’t think the patient should have any more pain. It’s a sticky situation and often leads to dependence on pain medication for the rest of a person’s life.
While pain medication can lead to side effects and crippling dependency, essential oils don’t have the same risk. They don’t harm the user and can help reduce or manage many different kinds of pain throughout the body. Like depression, if your pain is still persistent after visits to the doctor, try aromatherapy and see if it helps you.
A Lagging Immune System
Whether your immune system is compromised through medical treatment (such as chemotherapy) or you just want to avoid getting sick during a particularly aggressive flu season, aromatherapy can lend you a helping hand. A lot of essential oils have antibacterial and antifungal properties, which can prevent sickness before it begins. This benefit is especially important to people with compromised immune systems.
Aromatherapy can also stimulate healing in many people to help them recover. The essential oils help to circulate blood in the body and promote healing for those with an injury or sickness. Rosehip, calendula, lavender and a few other oils help an illness run its course and aid in your body’s ability to bounce-back. They also provide relief from discomfort if you suffer from skin conditions.
Chronic headaches are relatively common, and they can be debilitating to people who suffer from them. Sometimes, the headaches will get so painful that a person would rather stay locked in their room than go out and face the day. Massages can also help with headaches, but those appointments are expensive and tricky to get on short notice.
Aromatherapy, on the other hand, can achieve much of the same result as a massage and painkiller without the cost or adverse side effect. These oils will treat the problem as well as the cause, reducing stress and making you feel more awake and alert. They’re easy to mix, and you can treat yourself without leaving the house.
Try it for Yourself
Aromatherapy provides relief for a long list of physical and psychological problems. While you should start by seeing a professional and determining how the oils affect you, you can learn to mix them from home to cut down on cost and trips to the practitioner. There is an uncountable amount of combinations of essential oils, and each of them provides a benefit to the user.
While aromatherapy won’t cure everything, it can manage your symptoms and prevent future sickness by boosting your immune system. If you’ve tried traditional medicine and still haven’t found relief, go back to the basics. Our ancestors have been using essential oils for thousands of years, and they still work today. Book an appointment with an aromatherapy practitioner and see if you find the relief you need.