Essential Oils For Stress Relief:
Using essential oils for stress relief is indeed something that’s been done for generations. This type of therapy specifically, is known as aromatherapy. It’s popularity has grown as more people move away from synthetically based products, and more toward “all natural” products.
With that being said, it’s important to understand a little about essential oils and there potential role in aiding with daily stress.
Nowadays, there are what seems to be hundreds of different essential oil blends all ranging in needs.
Let’s Briefly Discuss Essential Oils vs. Fragrance Oils
There are a couple of important notes to be made about fragrance oils vs. essential oils, which we target in this post.
An all-natural oil or essential oil can be unsafe. Just because an oil is all-natural doesn’t mean it can’t have an adverse reaction to say, an individuals skin.
Oftentimes this is why you should be aware of what essential oils may cause these types of reactions before applying them to you skin, generally these oils should be mixed with carrier oils.
Moreover, the same goes for a fragrance oil. A fragrance oil may be more sensitive to individuals skin, then an “all-natural” oil.
When it comes to candle burning specifically, some synthetic fragrances, may even offer a cleaner burn then an all-natural oil.
A Brief Background Of Aromatherapy:
The concept of Aromatherapy mainly deals with the process of inhaling the scents of essential oils. The inhalation process can be completed through the use of several mediums. For instance, an aromatherapy diffuser or candle.
Furthermore, the scents stimulate certain receptors of the olfactory system, in this case located in your nasal passages. The olfactory system affects the part of your brain that regulates emotion, which can in turn, trigger emotions and/or memories.
Often, these emotions are ones filled with positivity. Essential oils or aromatherapy is used in practices such as, yoga and meditation. There are even oils used more heavily in certain parts of the day, sometimes based solely on how a person is feeling at a given moment.
With that said, stress and the effects of stress on many people and there daily lives has become a vital issue. An issues that needs discussion to endure the wellbeing of many.
However, that’s a post for a different day.
A Quick Note About Candles
Even candle enthusiasts are becoming cognizant of potential harmful ingredients used in some of these products. This includes certain waxes (like paraffin wax), which can release toxic volatile organic compounds, known as VOC’s.
Some candle fragrances also include synthetic agents and dyes, some are even known, carcinogens. Oftentimes, these are reasons aromatherapy becomes a promising choice.
Alternatively, you may see people switching to soy based candles blended with essential oils.
It’s important to note, many companies have changed chemical makeup of fragrances to make them “safer” for use. This includes eliminating phthalates, sulfates, and parabens from there fragrance oils.
3 Popular Oil’s:
Let’s briefly discuss, 3 of the most used and popular essential oils for stress relief.
Lavender Essential Oil:
There may not be a more popular scent then lavender, or more well known essential oil for stress relief.
With that being said, having lavender on this list, is a must. According to NIH and an article published by Evidence-Based Complimentary and Alternative Medicine there is evidence that suggests lavender oil may be an effective medicament in the treatment of certain neurological disorders.
Furthermore, a study using lavender aromatherapy was shown effective in relieving workplace stress related symptoms in nurses.
Lavender essential oils can be used in bath salts, tub teas, message blends, bath bombs, and diffusers.
Make sure to research best practices for mixing oils, and follow manufactures directions when using their diffusers.
Lemongrass Essential Oil:
Like lavender, lemongrass essential oils can be used in a multitude of ways. Lemongrass has shown an ability to help relieve stress in individuals.
One study, Physiological and Psychological Effect of Lemongrass and Sweet Almond Oil, concluded participants using the blend, coupled with message, had decreases in diastolic blood pressures, then compared to those in the control group.
According to the study, lemongrass has a “harmonizing effect on the function of the nervous system”.
Ylang Ylang Essential Oil:
Ylang Ylang essential oils are also touted to have calming effects and stress relieving benefits.
For instance, effects on heart rate, blood pressure and improving overall mood. A study published in 2015, also showed a positive effect on anxiety relief in participants using ylang ylang essential oils in aromatherapy.
A study on the effects of ylang ylang oil on physiological parameters and self-evaluation after transdermal absorption was also completed. The study noted “significant reduction in blood pressure, and participants rated themselves as more calm”.
A couple last minute words. The FDA is not involved with the regulation of essential oils. It is vital to have a basic understanding of how to use these products effectively and safely.
Equally as important is understanding that effects of these oils may vary from person to person. Always consult your primary care doctor if you suffer from anxiety or stress, as essential oils alone may not be the method of choice.
Don’t stop current regimens or treatments without discussing with your provider first.
Please be sure to share some of your favorite essential oils for stress relief in the comments section of our blog.
Likewise, if you have any favorite products for use in aromatherapy, please be sure to share with the community. Whether that be a specific diffuser brand, bracelet, aromatherapy necklace, massage blend or candle line.