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Essential oils have been used for centuries to enhance physical, emotional, spiritual and mental wellness. In fact, during the plagues of the Middle Ages, perfumers and tanners were noted to be less susceptible to the disease. This was due to their use of essential oils in their work.
As more microorganisms become antibiotic resistant, it is important to learn as much as possible about essential oils. Essential oils are complex compounds to which germs are unable to become resistant. In fact, some drug manufacturers are adding essential oils to pharmaceuticals to prevent the development of drug resistant organisms. In addition, researchers are finding that many medications are more effective when combined with plant oils.
What do essential oils do?
Essential oils offer a broad array of health-enhancing benefits. Unlike pharmaceuticals, essential oils may be used to promote calmness and energy at the same time. They help protect our bodies from the harmful effects of pollution. Essential oils can even promote healthy regeneration of cells. Essential oils are very effective treatments for mood and stress-related disorders. They can be used to aid concentration and relieve pain. Insomnia may be relieved with the use of essential oils.
Essential oils may be used to promote the health of the entire body. They benefit every organ and the body as a whole. Essential oils are used to prevent and eliminate many kinds of infections. They are used to treat serious infections, such as MRSA, and VRE, which do not respond to antibiotics.
Specific essential oils and their benefits
Here are seven of the most valuable essential oils to keep in your home. Purchase organic, high quality oils from reputable dealers as quality varies greatly. Store your oils in a dark place out of reach of children.
- Lavender: Lavender oil is sometimes considered to be a medicine cabinet in a bottle. Lavender is relaxing. It soothes colicky babies and enhances sleep in adults. I have used it on burns. It relieves pain and fights infections.
- Tea Tree: Tea Tree oil is popular for wound care and oral health. It can relieve yeast infections. Tea tree oil is an excellent multi-purpose essential oil.
- Peppermint: Peppermint relieves headaches and soothes digestive ills. It improves the circulation of the body. Peppermint is an excellent oil to employ if you are suffering from mental fatigue.
- Rosemary: Rosemary aids concentration. It enhances the health of the liver. Rosemary helps to open up clogged breathing passages.
- Clary sage: Clary sage is an excellent hormone balancer for women.
- Myrrh: An excellent oil for serious infections, myrrh is a terrific oil to use for skin care. It possesses potent anti-aging qualities.
- Geranium: Geranium is a great all-purpose oil. Use it for skin care. It has astringent qualities which improve the appearance of the skin. Geranium rids oily skin of excess oil without being too drying.
Using essential oils safely
Essential oils are potent substances. Consult with a knowledgeable practitioner or educate yourself prior to using essential oils. Essential oils should not be taken internally except under the supervision of a qualified aromatherapy expert. Oils may be administered via diffusers, inhalation and topically.
Here are some general guidelines for blending oils. Grape seed, olive, sesame and avocado oils are all excellent base oils.
- Everyday use: Combine 10 drops of an essential oil with one half ounce of a base oil. This is a good concentration to use for hair care and massage.
- Specific use: Blend 20 drops of an essential oil with one half ounce of a base oil. Use this for backaches or to treat skin irritation.
- Acute use: Blend 40 drops of an essential oil with one-half ounce of a base oil. Only use this strength locally to treat a specific body part, such as a strained ankle, for a short period of time.
- Neat use: While most essential oils must be diluted prior to using, a few may be applied directly to the skin for short term use. Lavender essential oil may be used undiluted for burns. Tea tree oil may be applied to the toes, undiluted, for the treatment of athlete’s foot.
The above guidelines are for general use. Some oils are very strong and must be used at much lower concentrations. Learn about each oil prior to using.
In addition to learning about the essential oils, take the time to learn about different base oils. All offer healing benefits, as well. Essential oils may be added to baths. They may be combined with healing clay, honey, aloe juice and a variety of other bases. Tailor your selections to the need at hand.
Consult with a qualified expert if you have questions.