Is our nose a pathway to our brain? Is aromatherapy an important approach to healing? Essential oils are rising in popularity, and experts are looking into these questions.
What are essential oils?
Studies suggest that aromatherapy can be beneficial. What exactly are essential oils, and can we smell our way to feeling better? According to a popular essential oil website, they are naturally occurring compounds found in seeds, bark, stems, roots, flowers, and other parts of plants. The idea is the botanical scents will pass through the nervous system to the brain. When absorbed by our skin, the oils may have antibacterial and antifungal effects.
What are some of the benefits?
Various benefits have been researched. Women in labor report positive results using the essential oils of rose, lavender, and frankincense. Chamomile tea and lavender lotion at bedtime may help encourage relaxation and improve sleep. Some studies also show ginger or spearmint essential oil to help with nausea.
Whatever health benefits of aromatherapy we are seeking, it’s simply important to use scents we enjoy, make us feel good, help us relax, and feel more positive. When used the right way, oils are safe. Some may need to be diluted, and they cannot all be used in the same way. If we follow instructions and possibly consult with our physician, we just may be able to smell our way to feeling better. At least we will smell good!