Have you ever been curious about essential oils? They are a wonderful tool to use to ignite your health. You can use the healing properties of plants combined with the holistic healing power of your own body. It can be a potent mixture. You do need to be aware of dosage amounts and how you use them.
There are reasons why spas use essential oils in diffusers as well as in their massage oil. They can invigorate as well as relax.
But first, let’s dive into how essential oils are made.
What Are Essential Oils
Essential oils are the distilled essence of aromatic compounds found in seeds, barks, stems, roots, flowers, citrus skins, and more.
Most essential oils are distilled out of the plant by using steam or water. The result is a very concentrated essential oil which has the characteristic fragrance and healing properties. Some essential oils are extracted using solvents like methanol until the essential oils dissolve forming an absolute. Finally, some extract using carbon dioxide.
You can purchase pure essential oils which mean there’s only one element in the essential oil. Or you can purchase blends which have been identified to work together for a common cause. Often, you’ll see blends for focus or for easing congestion.
So what are these essential oils? There are different ones. But the most common are
- Attract pollinators (scent, color, etc.)
- Enable plant-to-plant competition, a plant uses allelopathy (i.e. eucalyptol, camphor)
- Serve as a defense against insects and animals (i.e. peppermint keeps away insects)
- Protect the plant with their antifungal and antibacterial properties (i.e. resins protect evergreens)
How to Use Them
You can use essential oils for aromatherapy. This allows your sense of smell to connect with your body and brain to promote a feeling of wellness. Aromatherapy has been used for many years. How many of us enjoy the smell of fresh flowers in the house?
By using essential oils, you can get that wonderful feeling without having to buy flowers each week. I’m not saying to not buy the flowers because sometimes the sight can provide a nice holistic connection. I am saying essential oils are a wonderful way to ignite your health and well-being.
If you want your whole house to be full of the wonderful scents, you can add essential oils to your cleaning products. Some cleaning products have the essential oils built in.
Some oils can be inhaled directly from the bottle. One fun thing to do is put some drops on your hands before going into the shower. Then rub your hands together briskly and release the scent into the warm spray.
If you’d love the scent in your room, you should look into using a diffuser. There are electric ones and ones that use a direct flame from a candle. There’s a section near the top where you can put your essential oils in some water.
You can also purchase cool mist diffusers. To use these, place the essential oil in with the water. This also allows you to add humidity to your room during a dry month.
If you have a cold, you can use this type of diffuser with oils like eucalyptus and peppermint to help ease your congestion.
You can add essential oils to a bath and enjoy the scent as you relax. The warmth of the water will gently release the oils, and your body will be able to absorb some directly.
Add to Drinking Water
You can blend your own essential oils in water. There are many “recipes” out there that you can try.
Often, people use essential oils in a glass water to improve energy or relax before going to sleep.
Directly on Skin
You can put the essential oil directly on a pulse point if the manufacturer states it’s ok. Often, essential oils are highly concentrated and can irritate your skin. You can test the essential oil directly and see how your skin responds. If you’re finding that your skin is irritated, you may want to look into simple oils like jojoba oil or apricot kernel oil. You could even use olive oil.
Some companies have neutral oils just for mixing with essential oils and then massaged into your skin. This can be a wonderful way to provide moisture and the essential oils. Look for something called “carrier oil.”
Other types of essential oils can be put on the roof of your mouth. You need to be sure of the purity of the oil before trying this. And then you will want to wait a minute before drinking any water to give the oil a chance to be absorbed.
Some companies provide roll-on essential oils for an easier application.
For example, the essential oil tea tree oil is often used for acne. You can apply it directly if it is sold in the correct dilution. You can tell by reading the packaging. If it’s a more pure version, you will want to look into mixing it with another oil before putting it directly on your skin.
You could also use scents like rose petals or orange essence for a fresh perfume.
Quick Word of Caution
I do need to step back and mention that there are some cautions with essential oils.
Not all essential oils are created to be ingested. You will want to do your homework before you start using essential oils internally. Unfortunately, some essential oils can be toxic to the liver or kidneys. And the process of digestion can break down other essential oils and change the effects.
And some others like oregano, clove, and thyme can wipe out the good gut flora. We definitely don’t want that.
Please be certain you’ve purchased quality essential oils with good purity. Remember that if the price seems too good to be true, it probably is. You want to work with reputable companies that provide laboratory test proof.
Finally, know what you’re using and why. That way you can ensure you’re using the appropriate dosage.
How They Can Ignite Your Health
The scent of the essential oil may trigger old memories or emotions when you’re meditating. Often, our bodies hold on to negativity. Use this as an opportunity to release the negativity. You can also use the essential oils to inspire a positive emotional state. Imagine how wonderful you’ll feel when you rediscover balance, joy, and peace?
Essential oils stimulate olfactory receptors which then activates areas of your brain’s limbic system associated with emotion, memory, and state of mind. This connection can be used in neurofeedback brain training. When you want a different habit, you could use scent to make a different decision.
Certain essential oils like eucalyptus can help you breathe when you’re congested. You can either inhale directly or use in a diffuser for relief.
Essential oils can also help with sleep. Lavender is often used for a sense of calm. Lavender was also used for pain relief with children who had their tonsils removed. The kids needed less acetaminophen.
Headaches can also be reduced or controlled through the use of essential oils. It’s similar to the brain training. You can use a scent to stimulate and relax parts of your brain.
Some essential oil blends that contain black pepper or ginger can help reduce arthritis pain and improve flexibility. German chamomile essential oil is used to treat eczema. Bergamot essential oil can give you smoother looking skin and could be added to your nighttime routine.
You can affect your blood pressure, breathing, memory, stress levels and hormone balance once the scent connects to your limbic system. It’s amazing how much our sense of smell can affect our body.
What to Look for When Purchasing
There are a few important things to look for when purchasing essential oils.
If the price is very low, it’s probably not as pure. Or they may have used a less reputable process to extract the essential oils.
Unfortunately, there’s no standardization when it comes to purity for essential oils. You should go with a reputable company that is known for producing excellent quality.
The label could contain:
- botanical name
- country of origin
- distillation date
- expiration date
The better brands have more of these. You should also look for essential oils that are labeled organic, unsprayed or wildcrafted.
When you purchase from InnerOrigin you are guaranteed the best quality and Truth on Label
Where to Learn More
And ask me! InnerOrigin has a wonderful line of essential oils and I love helping others learn more.