Aromatherapy & Essential OIls
What is Aromatherapy & What are Essential Oils?
How can they benefit me?
Aromatherapy can be simply defined as: ' the use of plant extracts in Essential Oil format for health & well-being purposes'
I would describe aromatherapy as: ' a therapeutic, holistic & complimentary therapy, to aid health and wellbeing'.
Aromatherapy can work to improve & relieve symptoms of illness and ailments. It can improve mood, health and well-being. The ingredients can be bespoke to the client, therefore more suitable to some off the shelf products. It is one of the few complementary therapies that works on a physical, mental & spiritual level.
Aromatherapy is known to be a long standing historical art, and is both evidence and research based. Often it aids clinical issues alongside traditional pharmaceutical treatments such as coughs. colds, headaches and even midwifery care, with particular benefits during labour & birthing.
What are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are the highly concentrated essences & aromas created from non-greasy plant extracts. They are used in aromatherapy as a complementary therapy but it is not commonly known that they are of often used in everyday fragrances such as many popular perfumes.
They are composed from the aromatic compounds and molecules thought to assist plants survival they can be found forms such as in both dried and fresh seed variety, leaves, rinds and petals.
These oils have been studied & researched throughout history to have not only an inviting scent but therapeutic and natural healing properties within them and can be used in a variety of methods.
They are categorized into notes such as top, middle and base which enable the essential oils to create an optimal therapeutic blend for the clients needs & to aid the complementary therapy. This blend is known as aromatherapy & can be broken down into needs such as antiseptic, analgesic, hormone influencing, cleansing and immune system boosting as well as boosting mental and spiritual well-being as well as physical wellbeing: as well of course as just having an appealing scent for us to enjoy!
These benefits of aromatherapy & essential oils can be used in many ways including inhalation therapy, such as diffusers, candles, soaps and traditional massage therapy.
The main benefit to aromatherapy and essential oils is the fact they are totally natural, there are no synthetic substances used, everything used in aromatherapy is produced by our planet and harvested in a sustainable manner.
What is the point of an aromatherapy blend rather than just using individual oil?
All oils provide a pleasing aroma, however in a blend we can create synergy.
Synergy defined is the description given where several elements; in this case essential oils work together to produce and effect that is greater than using each part individually.
An example of this would be the creation of a bespoke essential oil blend using the top, middle and base notes to create a blend that will aromatherapy be not only be aromatically pleasing but work in synergy to enhance mental and physical wellbeing.
Therefore, a good example of a blend exuberating synergy using aromatherapy essential oil blends to aid sleep would be a blend such as: Frankincense, Lavender, Roman Chamomile and Rose. Each element would influence each other, to produce a more intense beneficial therapeutic effect to aid sleep than that of the one essential oil alone.
How does the aroma of Essential Oils help me? What does my brain do to make them benefit me?
The sense of smell is perceived by the brain in a way known as the olfactory system. This system consists of the brain, nasal cavities where the upper areas support membranes for the perception of the smell and the lower parts as respiratory passages. These olfactory receptions transmit messages in chemical form to the brain in the form of nerve impulses and the brain is able to recognise around 20,000 different scents.
Scents are made of particles but before these particles are able to be perceived as smell they must air volatile, liquid soluble in order to be dissolved in the mucous membranes and lipid soluble to enable them to interact with the olfactory receptors.
Therefore, the mechanism of smell is perceived by the particles being drawn in from the air through inhalation, being dissolved in the upper area of mucous membrane in the nasal cavity, (the olfactory epithelium) before aggravating the nasal cilia and triggering the nerve impulses to travel to the olfactory bulbs located behind each eye socket. The olfactory bulbs then send nerve impulses to the limbic centre of the brain, where it is received as a scent and feeds these impulses through the olfactory centre.
Research has proved that this system is effective with the minutest particles of a substance, thus evidencing the effectiveness of the olfactory system.
That's a quick rundown of how Aromatherapy & Essential Oils can benefit you, feel free to contact me with any queries you may have.