What is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is the use of essential oils from plants for their therapeutic properties. The oils are used to improve physical and emotional well being and to promote positive health.
Each oil will have a number of medicinal qualities and some oils, like lavender for example, are extraordinarily versatile; healing burns, reducing insomnia and stress, deterring moths, acting as an antiseptic, reducing inflammation,lowering blood pressure,acting as an insecticide, even flavouring biscuits! As a complementary therapy, aromatherapy looks at the whole person to ascertain the cause of an illness; it offers a holistic response that aims to strengthen the body's natural defences, and recognises the emotional and environmental influences on the body as well as the physical. Essential oils rarely have side effects, unlike orthodox drugs, and will not cause a negative reaction if used with orthodox drugs.
(c. 460BC-c. 370BC)
How does it work?
Essential oils enter the body in two ways;through the nose (inhalation) and through the skin (topical application, massage, baths).
Smelling essential oils allows the molecules to penetrate the body the fastest, sending messages to the brain and nerves and entering the blood stream through the respiratory system. This is the best way to use oils to influence emotions and state of mind, for example, inhaling even small quantities of Basil will help to improve focus and clarity of thought.
The other way that oils penetrate the body is through the skin. The tiny molecules of oil are easily absorbed by the skin, the body’s largest organ, and quickly transported by the blood to the whole body where their small molecules enable them to bind to receptors in the body's cells and work as a tonic on the whole body or on specific organs.
At the same time, as the oils travel around the blood stream, they will de-toxify and revitalise the organs concerned with drainage and the metabolism (lymphatic system, kidneys and liver). When their work is done the oils are excreted naturally leaving no harmful residues behind.
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