Conventional medication undoubtedly holds the number one spot for healing in today's society, but as we progress, we may find taking an ibuprofen every other day to combat a headache or taking Xanax for prolonged periods can be detrimental to our health in the long run. Though they are just now getting their proper praise, essential oils are one of the big dogs in holistic healing. For thousands of years, they have been used to provide cures for anything from nursing a seasonal head cold to relieving the body of cancer cells. Here is how you too can use these majestic oils to improve your overall quality of life.
Natural Stress Relief
Most of us have such busy, ruling schedules that lead to a rise in our stress levels. Whether you just need a quick 'pick me up' or have contracted a serious case of the blues, essential oils can provide you with natural stress relief and work towards a healthier state of mind. The olfactory nerve, which gives us our sense of smell, is connected directly to the parts of the brain that affects our moods, emotions, and overall mental state. So in essence, if you are inhaling a putrid smell, it can put you in a funk. A few great options to choose from are lavender, lemon, bergamot, ylang-ylang, clary sage, and jasmine. All of these scents are calming and therapeutic, yet they work in different ways to ease stress. Commonly, you notice the scent of lavender in many doctor offices and clinics to invoke feelings of serenity. In fact, a Korean study conducted in 2013 even revealed the use of aromatherapy lowered the stress of patients in the intensive care unit.
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Instant Energy Booster
Sleep deprivation seems to be the norm in a world where it seems there are never enough hours in the day! Instead of walking around all day in zombie-mode, try using essential oils for an instant energy booster. Both peppermint and lemon oil are probably the best options to put an extra pep in your step. Because peppermint has high levels of menthol, it can combat chronic fatigue and improve concentration while lemon is super energizing by nature. In fact, all citrus oils tend to put the body in overdrive. If you can't get your hands on lemon oil, try lime, orange, or even eucalyptus instead. Eucalyptus isn't a citrus fruit, but it has been known to help with neurological conditions related to energy levels. If you are out on the go, just take a whiff of one of these oils directly from the bottle, or put a couple of drops on your palm and sniff it throughout the day.
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Get A Restful Sleep
Insomnia and restless sleep syndrome plague many households. If counting sheep and drinking bedtime tea isn't enough to get the job, it may be time to try something stronger and more potent get a restful sleep at night. Lavender, vetiver, roman chamomile, ylang-ylang, and cedarwood are all great choices for sleep aids.
Many of us relate chamomile tea as a means for a good night's rest, but the essential oil version is more effective as it is still soothing to the mind, but much more potent. Vetiver and cedarwood are grounding oils with sedative properties making it easier to drift off. Make it a nightly practice to load your oil diffuser with one or a few of these oils to fall asleep faster and stay asleep until your alarm sounds.
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Improves Cognitive Function
Whether you always forget the time of your weekly meeting or are suffering from Alzheimer's, essential oils can be of service. Aroma passes through the nose and on to the limbic system of the brain, which houses your memory. The number one oil that improves cognitive function is rosemary oil. Rosemary oil contains properties that stimulate brain activity and strengthens its functionality, and in turn, memory is improved. A study conducted by the University of Northumbria’s psychology department analyzed the memory of a group of senior citizens and concluded rosemary aromatherapy had a positive impact. Basil, cypress, peppermint, and sage oils will also help restore both your long and short-term memory.
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Individuals prone to headaches should always have a bottle of essential oil at their disposal. Peppermint, rosemary, lavender, eucalyptus, and chamomile serve as great pain relievers. The menthol content within peppermint will relax your muscles and ease the pain, and the other oils mentioned all naturally have analgesic or pain-killing properties. If your headaches are due to sinus issues, eucalyptus will definitely do the trick, as it will open up your nasal passages and release any sinus tension. For headache relief, apply these oils directly to your skin and sniff them throughout the day, add it to your bath water, put them into an oil diffuser or vaporer, or even rub them directly onto your temples.
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Everyone has had their fair share of depressive moments and can all agree they are no joke. While your prescription antidepressant medication and psychiatric visits may be sustaining you for now, there is a way to beat depression naturally, and you will save a lot of money in the process. A study including fifty-eight hospice patients revealed that after receiving a massage with essential oils once a day for a week straight, there were lower levels of anxiety and stress. Several other studies brought about similar results. Bergamot, frankincense, ylang-ylang, lavender, and Roman chamomile are all practical antidepressants.
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Enhances The Immune System
Flu season can be a stressful period for those with weak immune systems. However, you are in luck this year as the regular use of essential oils naturally enhances the immune system. The immune system is the body's natural defense system against foreign invaders like viruses and harmful bacteria that can cause the body to fall ill. Stack up on essential oils like lemon, oregano, clove, grapefruit, and eucalyptus to keep your body healthy, as these essential oils contain antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, and antioxidant properties. They can be mixed with water in a spray bottle to disinfect your home or work area or applied topically.