It has been estimated that over 40% of people suffering with stress and anxiety use some form of alternative treatment to help, and essential oils can work as a complementary therapy to alleviate these conditions. Peppermint and Lavender oils can be very effective against headaches and migraines and Lavender oil can also aid sleep quality and habits, being both relaxing and balancing. Essential oils, not only used to create ambience in your home or freshen up your laundry, are often used in aromatherapy either by being diluted and rubbed onto the skin, or inhaled. But what are essential oils.
Essential oils are highly concentrated, volatile plant extracts and this oil captures the plant’s scent and flavour – capturing the essence of the plant. The unique aromatic compounds give each essential oil its characteristic essence obtained through either cold pressing the plant to extract the oil or via steam and or water distillation. Once the ‘chemicals’ have been extracted, they are combined with a carrier neutral oil such as sweet almond, jojoba, olive, sunflower and grape seed, and avocado to create a ready for use product. The more natural the process, the more natural and pure the essence. A few drops of these oils can go a long way!
Here at The Vital Touch we use essential oils not only in our massaging to soothe muscle inflammation and tension because the chemicals in the essential oil can interact with your body in a number of ways, (and when applied to the skin some of the plant’s chemicals are absorbed), but also by inhaling the aromas from the oil, which can also stimulate areas of your limbic system (the part of your brain that plays a role in motivation and behaviour, emotion, learning and memory). The limbic system also plays a role in controlling some unconscious physiological functions, such as breathing, heart-rate and blood pressure – so essential oils could exert a physical effect on your body, too. Essential oils can help with reducing inflammation, depression, insomnia and in some case such as peppermint and tea tree oil, be used for their antimicrobial effects. In ‘essence’, essential oils have some very interesting applications for promoting and helping overall good health.
There are many types of essential oils, each with its own unique smell and potential health benefits. Popular oils include:
Lavender – the fragrance is calming, relaxing and balancing, both physically and emotionally.
Rosemary – known to reduce pain, soothe inflammation, eliminate headaches and strengthen the immune system.
Lemon – typically used to ease stress, fight fatigue and insomnia and ease digestion.
Peppermint – has been associated with memory recall as well as sustained focus. If you are interested in finding out more about our wellness programmes and our massages, contact us