In the world of aromatherapy, essential oils are a staple. These aromatic compounds have been used for centuries in perfumes, soaps, and candles, but they are also starting to see more widespread use in natural home remedies and personal care products. In fact, there is an increasing number of people turning to essential oils for their therapeutic properties. Let’s explore the many ways you can incorporate essential oils into your daily life.
Essential oils are the concentrated aromatic liquid extracted from various plants. The oil is collected from the flower, bark, or leaf of the plant. Because it isn’t the whole plant, the essential oil is not the same for each variety. For example, one oil may have antiviral properties, while another oil may have anti-inflammatory properties. Because the oil is not from the same plant, it has different properties than the plant it comes from. Depending on the condition you are looking to treat, you’ll likely choose a different oil.
Here are some of the oils you may see used in aromatherapy:
Whole plant: These oils are extracted from the whole plant, so they contain all of the compounds the plant has to offer. This can be beneficial if you want to benefit from the properties found in the whole plant. But, this type of oil is not as easy to extract or store as synthetic or compound oils.
Distillate: This is the highest concentration of the oil found in the plant. A distillate is typically 80% + concentration of the oil, which means the oil has a very strong aroma.
CO2: This is similar to steam-distilled essential oils. The CO2 extraction uses carbon dioxide to extract the oil from the plant material. This is a very safe extraction method because the carbon dioxide is odorless.
Different essential oils can be used in many ways, depending on the oil you choose and your situation. Here are some of the most common ways essential oils are used:
Aromatherapy: Aromatherapy is the practice of using essential oils in order to improve your mental, emotional, and physical wellbeing. It can be used to treat a range of health conditions, including stress and anxiety, migraines, skin ailments, and more.
Perfumes: Perfumes are made from essential oils in concentrations ranging from 5% to 95%.
Oils for dietary supplements: These oils are extracted for their therapeutic properties, but they are not labeled as drugs, so they can be used for dietary supplements.
Aromatherapy is a popular holistic therapy because it combines essential oils with positive energy from the sun. It is said to boost your immune system and improve your mental health. Most importantly, it is said to be very relaxing and stress-reducing. If you are looking for a simple DIY aromatherapy regimen, diffusers are the most popular way to use essential oils. You can fill a small basin with water and add drops of essential oils for a concentrated aroma. These diffusers can be plugged-in in the bathroom or bedroom where you spend most of your day. If you don’t have room for a diffuser or you travel frequently, essential oils can also be placed in a decorative bottle and placed on your desk or nightstand. You can also dab a few drops into a handkerchief or pea pod and carry the scent with you.
Aromatherapy is a very safe practice, but there are some safety concerns to keep in mind when using essential oils. These include dietary supplements, dosing, and essential oil types. When it comes to dietary supplements, the US Food and Drug Administration does not regulate the ingredients or quality of products. This means there is no guarantee that what you are consuming has been tested or that the ingredients are safe. Dosing is another key aspect to keep in mind when using essential oils. The recommended dose is typically on a drop-by-drop basis. It’s important to note that most essential oils should not be taken orally.
Essential oils are an exciting addition to the world of natural remedies, and they can be used in a variety of ways. Whether you are interested in aromatherapy with diffusers or adding a few drops to your favorite foods, essential oils can add a powerful boost of aromas to your life.