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Boosting your health and wellbeing with aromatherapy
Aromatherapy isn’t just about pleasant smells of essential oils, that’s only part of it. Aromatherapy is a type of therapy used to help us heal, rest and recover from stress or illness. In this guide, we will walk you through the many health and wellbeing benefits of aromatherapy.
You’ve probably seen the word ‘self-care’ floating around the internet in recent years, but it’s not just a buzzword. Aromatherapy has been around since 1937 when a French scientist started experimenting with essential oils to heal a burn. Self-care today is recognised as a holistic way of looking after ourselves.
Aromatherapy is used to support our overall health and wellbeing using essential oils from plants, berries, roots, leaves and flowers through our sense of smell or skin absorption to help us relax, relieve pain and boost our mood.
Essential oils used for aromatherapy are extracted from natural sources like plants and flowers. There are over 90 different essential oils out there, each with its own scent and healing properties.
Lavender: Lavender is best known for its relaxing and healing properties that can help heal minor burns and bug bites. Lavender has a subtle floral scent which is said to help relieve headaches and promote a sense of calm.
Peppermint: Peppermint has a cool and refreshing scent which is said to help treat symptoms of colds and coughs when inhaled as a vapour. Peppermint oil can be used topically to the skin for an instant cooling effect, great for relieving stomach cramps or sore muscles after a workout.
Ylang Ylang: Ylang Ylang has been used for centuries in perfumes, religious ceremonies and of course, aromatherapy. It has a soothing, floral aroma which is said to help reduce feelings of anxiety, restore confidence and boost mood. Ylang Ylang oil is suitable for all skin types and is also thought to help control the skin’s oil control and improve elasticity.
Chamomile: Known for its comforting and calming properties, chamomile oil is used to ease low moods and create a sense of inner peace. Chamomile oil is suitable for all skin types and can be used to ease mild irritations.
Tea Tree: Tea Tree is known for its anti-inflammatory properties and used for soothing and refreshing the body and mind. It is also a popular natural remedy for treating bacterial and fungal skin conditions, promoting healing and relieving discomfort.
What are the benefits of aromatherapy?
1. Improves quality of sleep
Essential oils have relaxing properties which can help us get a more restful night’s sleep. If you’re already relaxed before going to bed then it’ll be easier for you to fall asleep. Try adding a few drops of your favourite essential oil to a warm bath or dilute with water and spritz around your pillow. Stress, anxiety and depression do not contribute to a quality night’s sleep, but incorporating aromatherapy into your evening routine might help improve your sleep and overall quality of life.
2. Helps relieve stress and anxiety
Dedicating a few hours of our day to incorporate a sense of calm into our lives helps us to feel grounded and enables us to cope with negative thoughts and feelings. Mindfulness and Meditation is becoming a way of life and there are many benefits to this practice. Aromatherapy gives you the opportunity to sit peacefully, breathe deeply and rest.
3. Improves your mood
Scents have the power to trigger memories, evoke different emotions and even reduce stress, leaving us feeling recharged and happy. Essential oils like jasmine, tea tree and cinnamon make us feel energised, while orange and lemon oil is great for enhancing our mood.
4. Relieves pain
Essential oils don’t offer a cure for illness and pain but aromatherapy is becoming a popular way to help manage and relieve mild to moderate pain including headaches, stomach cramps, neck, back and knee pain. Incorporating massage and aromatherapy can help ease muscular aches and pains, for example, adding a few drops of eucalyptus, sandalwood and lavender.
Try it for yourself at home
There are a variety of ways you can use essential oils and incorporate aromatherapy in your home and self-care routine. From diluting oils in water and spraying around the room to adding a few drops into your bath, you can easily reap the rewards of aromatherapy without seeing an aromatherapist or visiting a fancy spa.
Aromatherapy essential oil diffusers are the best way to go if you want to fill your home with soothing scents and feeling the benefits as you breathe. Alternatively, you can buy an essential oil burner or simply dab a drop or two directly to pressure points on your forehead, wrists or behind your ears.
Whether you enjoy relaxing by reading a book, listening to music, meditating or doing yoga, incorporating aromatherapy with these activities will enhance your experience and may improve your overall wellbeing and quality of life.
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Our health insurance ultimately provides you with peace of mind. We include exclusive health benefits as standard in all our healthcare policies. Access free Health and Wellbeing Support, Lifestyle Rewards and 24-Hour GP Advice Line. Get a no-obligation quote today to see how little private health insurance costs!
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