Aromatherapy is the application of essential oils through baths, spa treatments, facials or massage. Essential oils are distilled from plants — such as lavender, eucalyptus and peppermint — which give the oils their fragrances and therapeutic qualities.
Research on the sense of smell has shown that scent is perceived by the part of the brain connected with emotion, and that a scent that pleases you or is associated with a happy event will increase your feeling of well-being. Think of how you react when you smell the fragrance of brownies baking in the oven, or your grandmother’s perfume permeates the air. There is a gutteral response. Before you can even put words to it, your mind responds.
The results of aromatherapy are very individual. While there is general agreement about the actions of certain oils, no two persons are affected by the same essential oil in exactly the same way. Even the same person can be affected differently by the same oil depending on surroundings, time of day or mood. Taking time to experience scents is the best way to learn about and create a personal connection to essential oils. Try evaluating the aromas according to the following guidelines.
As you inhale an essential oil for the first time, describe the aroma: Is it sharp? Is it subtle? Is it balanced? Is it light or heavy? Is it warming or cooling? Is it sweet, spicy, woody, floral, fruity, etc.? Now describe how you perceive the aroma: Do you like or dislike it? Do you associate the aroma with any personal experiences? What emotions do you have that are connected to these experiences? Does the aroma produce those emotions now? Does the aroma affect your awareness: does it rejuvenate, energize or relax?
Here are a few suggestions to get you started in using essential oils in your life:
* Lavender: Balancing, soothing, clarifying, normalizing
* Eucalyptus: Purifying, invigorating, balancing, cooling
* Peppermint: Revitalizing, refreshing, energizing, cooling
* Rosemary: Clarifying, warming, invigorating
* Ylang Ylang: Sensual, euphoric, romantic, alluring, exotic
* Sweet Orange: Cheering, refreshing, uplifting
* Bergamot: Uplifting, normalizing, confidence building
* Lemon: Energizing, uplifting, refreshing, strengthening
* Geranium: Uplifting, balancing, relaxing, normalizing
* Patchouli: Romantic, uplifting, soothing
Essential oils are very concentrated and should be used with care. Please read and follow all instructions carefully.