Aromatherapy harnesses the power of essential oils from plants and other aromatic compounds to promote relaxation and treat certain ailments. You can easily practice aromatherapy at home using essential oils, perfumes, and cosmetics. When integrated into traditional medicine, it becomes clinical aromatherapy.
Aromachology is the study of how different scents affect human behavior. Some aromas are believed to have a calming influence on our minds and bodies. Aromatherapy encompasses not only the use of essential oils but also absolutes, hydrosols, infusions, phytoncides, and carrier oils. Absolutes are oils extracted through superficial fluid extraction, such as rose absolute. Hydrosols, like rose water, are the aqueous by-products of distillation. Infusions are aqueous solutions of plant materials, while phytoncides are natural volatile organic compounds derived from plants. Sweet almond oil is an example of a carrier oil used to dilute essential oils.
Aromatherapy can be administered through inhalation, skin absorption via baths, massages, and compresses, or absorption through mucous membranes via oral rinses and gargles. Ingestion is another method, although it should be approached with caution.
Aromatherapy offers various therapeutic effects, including antiseptic, anesthetic, and psychological benefits. It influences the central nervous system and metabolism. For home aromatherapy, you can blend essential oils like neroli, eucalyptus, lavender, rosemary, nutmeg, and peppermint with base oils, adding a few drops of basil. In your bath, consider adding lavender and rose oils for a relaxing experience. Aromatherapy can effectively address issues like depression, insomnia, acne, joint pain, stress, coughs, and various ailments. It is particularly beneficial for skin problems such as acne and dryness, leaving your skin glowing.
Aromatherapy helps enhance and rejuvenate the skin, preventing wrinkles and providing a manicure and pedicure-like effect. Commonly used essential oils for aromatherapy include sweet almond, avocado, cocoa butter, grape seed, jojoba, olive, peanut, rose hip, sesame, sunflower, and more. However, certain oils like ajowan, almond, arnica, calamus, garlic, melilotus, onion, mustard, wormseed, and wormwood should only be used under the supervision of an experienced aromatherapy practitioner to ensure safety and effectiveness.