Monday, March 14, 2011

Essential Oils in Aromatherapy

*Still in revise mode: Stay Tuned

Aromatherapy in holistic health is the use of essential oils for the healing of the mind, body and spirit. I use the word healing loosely because technically, in the USA, only products approved by the FDA can heal. But 3000 years ago civilizations used essential oils medicinally to heal wounds, prevent diseases, and cure ailments.  Even Biblical texts account for the use of herbal remedies and essential oils to keep diseases, parasites, and [paranormal phenomenon] at bay.  Forms of Aromatherapy are accounted for around the world in different time periods and civilization eras. Some of the most documented cases were in the Middle Ages in Europe, however there are many other historical documented medicinal uses around the world all the way up to World War II.   Aromatherapy became popular in the USA in the late 90's when science could decipher the compounds in the essential oils responsible for the mechanisms of healing.  Today in the US., an Aromatherapist License is required in order to recommend and prescribe essential oils in order to help with ailments, even though many companies have emerged over the last two decades selling essential oils.  Those companies offer their essential oils as a supplement or scent enhancer rather than a complimentary therapy, which I frown upon since this really does a disservice to Aromatherapy and those who have gone through the schools to obtain their Aromatherapy License.
I thought about obtaining my license while I was in my undergrad.  I had taken an Aromatherapy class and fell in love with it.  From then on, I was hooked and have used essential oils as complementary and alternative medicine.  But that is what my degree is so I can do that for myself, I just can't recommend any essential oils or herbal therapy for anyone else.  The loophole is I can educate others and that is what I will do here.  Although there are thousands of oils to choose from, below are some of the most popular essential oils and what they are used for in Aromatherapy.:

Basil (Ocimum basilicum) Diffuse in air for bacterial and viral infections. Use with carrier for aches, pains and cramps.  Not recommended for use internally because of its toxicity at large concentrations. Never use in large doses.  Do not use when pregnant or lactating.

Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) Use six drops per eight ounces of non-scented lotion for skin ailments such as acne, psoriasis, abscesses, and other dermatological disorders. Diffuse in air for anxiety, stress, and depression.  Use on toothbrush for cold sores, halitosis, and dry mouth.  It causes photo-toxicity so it is not recommended for use if sunlight exposure is a probability.  

Cedarwood Atlas (Cedrus Atlantica) Diffuse in air for studying, stress, bronchial infections, and asthma induced wheezing.  Use eight to ten drops per eight ounces of non-scented lotion for skin ailments such as acne, cystitis, and chronic dry skin.  

Cinamon
Clove
Eucalyptus
Frankincense
Geranium
Grapefruit
Jasmine Absolute
Lavender
Lemon
Lemongrass
Marjoram
Myrrh
Orange
Oregano
Patchouli
Peppermint
Rose Absolute
Rosemary
Sandalwood
Spearmint
Tea Tree    
Wintergreen
Ylang-Ylang

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