Essential oils are an easy and pleasant way to help you cope with the symptoms of stress.
What Is Stress?
Stress is a state of mind, usually accompanied by physical and emotional symptoms. We all experience stress at some time in our lives. As we are all unique, what acts as a stressor to one person, may not cause any reaction in another.
Stress can be caused by work pressures, boredom, family issues, finances, school or university exams, the death of a loved one or something as simple as being caught in a traffic jam. Stress can lower your resistance and increase your susceptibility to illness, especially if it is allowed to continue for long periods of time. Stress can cause muscular pain, especially in the neck, back and shoulders, high blood pressure, chronic headaches, weight loss, anxiety, insomnia, lethargy, shallow breathing, loss of appetite, difficulty concentrating, loss of your sense of humour and mood swings.
To avoid the many health issues associated with stress, it’s important to take appropriate action on a regular basis, to release stress physically and emotionally.
Using Essential Oils To Treat Stress
Essential oils are a safe and effective treatment to help you cope with stress. They help boost your mood, energise you and can help ease muscle tension and pain.
Massaging with essential oils is one of the best ways to calm the mind and release muscular aches and pains. A monthly aromatherapy massage works wonders in keeping your stress under control.
If you suffer from headaches and don’t have time for a professional massage, self-massaging with essential oils, especially to the neck, shoulders and the scalp can be very helpful . Add 1 drop of essential oil to 2 mls of vegetable oil or 5 drops of essential oil to 10mls of vegetable oil.
6-8 drops of essential oil can be used in a warm bath to help ease tired muscles and calm the mind. Run the bath, add the oils and swish the oils in the water. The oils will sit on top of the water. If you want to disperse the oils through the water, place the drops of essential oils in a cup of full cream milk and add to your bathwater.
Alternatively, after showering place 4-6 drops of essential oil on a face cloth or sponge and rub the cloth briskly over your body.
Allow your feet to soak in a foot spa to which 4-5 drops of essential oil have been added. Following up with a foot massage will help relieve your aching feet, as well as your stress.
Placing 4-6 drops of essential oil into a diffuser can help calm or liven up your mood. Using essential oils such as lemon and orange can also help increase your appetite if stress has caused a loss of appetite.
You can place your favourite essential oil on a tissue to smell when needed or place 4 drops of your favourite essential oil on a cotton ball, insert in a small bottle with a tight fitting lid and open the bottle and inhale the fragrance, as and when you need. another option is to use a personal inhaler
Finally, you can wear your essential oil blend as a perfume. To create this blend, just follow the same steps as described above for massage.
Essential Oils to Relieve Stress
Although there are many oils that can be used to help with stress, the following oils are readily available and relatively inexpensive.
Chamomile Roman (Anthemis nobilis)
Chronic tension, insomnia, muscular aches and pains, headaches and nervous indigestion. She is also useful for calming irritable children and colicky infants. (Can be bought in a 3-5% blend in jojoba.)
Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus)
To ease muscular aches and pains, helps to calm the mind and restore a positive outlook and vitality.
Frankincense (Boswellia carteri)
To help with anxiety, slows down breathing, calming and centring the mind.
Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens)
For lethargy, chronic anxiety, eases frustration and irritability, nervous exhaustion due overwork and stress.
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia or Lavandula officinalis)
Lavender is one of the most useful oils for stress. She calms and soothes the nerves, relieves tension both muscular and emotional. She helps with stress headaches and insomnia. Lavender is considered an aromatic rescue remedy helping to relax the body and mind and is useful for panic and anxiety attacks.
Orange Sweet (Citrus sinensis)
Poor appetite, nauseous headaches, tension, insomnia, eases frustration, moodiness and irritability.
Palmarosa (Cymbopogon martinii)
Insomnia, anxiety, nervous exhaustion, calming and uplifting, poor appetite.
Peppermint (Mentha piperita)
Enhances concentration and study, apathy, mental and physical fatigue, uplifts the spirit.
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
Poor concentration, anxiety, muscular stiffness and pain, can help bolster self-confidence and calm an overactive nervous system
Some Blends To Get You Started
Here are some blends to get you started. Enjoy making your own combinations using your favourite essential oils.
Lavender 2 drops, palmarosa 2 drops, geranium 1 drop in 10mls vegetable oil for massage or in a diffuser to vaporise.
Sore, stiff or tight muscles
Eucalyptus 3 drops, lavender 2 drops, rosemary 1 drop in 10mls vegetable oil for massage.
Lavender 2 drops, geranium 2 drops, sweet orange 1 drop in 10mls vegetable oil for massage. Massage neck, shoulders and temples with the blend. You can then massage the scalp without the blend if you wish.
Peppermint 2 drops, sweet orange 2 drops in 10mls vegetable oil massaged into the stomach area.
Peppermint 2 drops, eucalyptus 2 drops, rosemary 2 drops in a diffuser.
I am available to do aromatherapy massages on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays in Padstow. Phone or email for an appointment.