Aromatherapy - just the name is enough to induce a sense of calm and relaxation around you. 

Aromatherapy, also called essential oil therapy, is a healing method that uses aromatic essential oils to improve your physical, mental, and emotional health.

You may have heard of essential oils, increasingly so in the last few years. But what are they? Essential oils are concentrated oils extracted from various plant parts that retain the smell and flavour (hence essence) of their source. They can be inhaled or diluted and applied to your skin. 

The chemicals in essential oils have various health benefits, including stress relief. When you inhale or apply essential oils to your body, they affect your olfactory (smell) system and limbic (emotional brain) system. 

The oils cause your brain to secrete neurotransmitters such as dopamine and serotonin, which can improve your mood.

Aromatherapy may be especially helpful in these uncertain times when the stress level in everyone’s life is shooting through the charts. Let’s find out ways in which essential oils can be used to relieve stress. 

But before that, remember that essential oils are highly concentrated and hence potent. They may also react with your skin. So, they must be diluted with a carrier oil before being applied to the skin. 

How To Use Essential Oils For Stress Relief

1. Use a Diffuser in Your Living Area or Workspace. An aromatic atmosphere infused with essential oils can relax you during or after a long, stressful day at work. 

Put a few drops of essential oil of your choice in an oil diffuser and warm it up so that it can reach the remote corners of your work or home space. 

You can use lavender, sandalwood, or lemon essential oil,  as each of these is known for stress and anxiety-reducing properties.

2. Bathe in Water With a Few Drops of Essential Oils Added. You can start or end your day with a warm bath infused with refreshing essential oils with therapeutic effects. 

Add a few drops of diluted essential oils with soothing characteristics such as bergamot, patchouli, or rose essential oil and stir the water before you take a bath. 

This bath will calm your senses and help release the stress accumulated throughout the day.

3. Take the essential oil along to bed for a good sleep. Lack of sleep adds to the stress in everyday life. 

Essential oils may help relieve stress by promoting a good night’s sleep so you can rest and recover. Oils such as lavender, lemon, chamomile, and frankincense promote feelings of relaxation and drowsiness, helping you sleep better. 

Add a couple of drops of the essential oil to the edge of your pillow. You can also add a few drops on a cotton ball or tissue paper and place them in your pillowcase before you sleep. The smell of the essential oil will last for a few hours and inhaling it will help you sleep peacefully. 

Do not ingest essential oils. When you use an essential oil on your skin for the first time, do a patch test on a small area for skin irritation and sensitivity. 

If you suffer from any health issue, consult your doctor before using essential oil for any condition.

Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.