Essential oils are nature’s gift to help us be our best selves, heal faster and connect with the earth. The use of essential oils for therapeutic purposes and to enhance well-being is what aromatherapy is about.
Mainly, plants and flowers have an essence that gives them their distinctive aroma but also protects them from storms and other harmful plants and diseases.
We extract essential oils from different parts of the plant: root, stalk, and flower, and then, they become essential oils.
Each essential oil has its own unique properties and uses. Some oils have anti-inflammatory effects, and others are sedative.
Diffusing or using essential oils topically has a positive emotional and physical effect on the body. And the way this works is when you smell the aroma of oils, they travel to reach your part of the brain called the amygdala, which is responsible for emotions and other functions. They can also be absorbed through the skin.
Safety precautions and some guidelines
Before starting to use essential oils, you must have a basic knowledge of their safety. Yes, essential oils are natural compounds, but they are intense.
That’s to say, for example, a few drops of peppermint essential oil equal about 28 cups of peppermint tea!
This is why the most important note to consider if you want to stay on the safe side is dilute essential oils when used topically on the skin. Another takeaway is to keep them away from your eyes and nose because it can be problematic if they enter your eyes or nose.
You want to know that each oil has its own unique nature. For example, some citrus oils could be photosensitive. Hot oils, on the other hand, like cinnamon, clove, oregano, and lemongrass need to be diluted even more than other oils.
It is recommended to dilute essential oils by 3 to 5 percent for adults, but it differs depending on the oil and purpose you are using it for.
To make things a bit easy for you when trying to dilute essential oils, you can check the Now foods essential oils dilution guide and calculator.
If you’re going to diffuse essential oils, then there is no need to mix them with a carrier oil. Just add a few drops into the diffuser and enjoy the aroma of the oils while gaining their many benefits.
Just be careful with whoever else is in the room. Pregnant and nursing women should avoid exposure. Pets also might feel uncomfortable.
A person with an allergic profile might develop an allergic reaction. Essential oils to be careful with if you are allergic are Oregano oil, Cinnamon bark oil, Jasmine oil, Lemongrass oil, Ylang-ylang oil, Chamomile oil, Bergamot oil.
Related post: 5 benefits of adding spirulina to your daily diet
Some common essential oils and their benefits and uses:
Basically, there are more than 90 types of essential oils. Some oils are popular than others. Each oil has its own characteristics and benefits.
Let’s have a look at some common essential oils and how to use them to achieve optimal health and well-being.
Frankincense essential oil
Botanical name ”Boswellia carterii’‘
Frankincense is a good choice to diffuse while meditating or practicing yoga because of its calming effects. Also, it helps to calm overthinking and mind noise.
It is amazing for anxiety, has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties which make it healing for sore muscles, back pain, or any other body discomfort.
Ferthermore, it is a very safe oil and has no dermal maximum application. Just be careful if the oil has oxidized. If so, get rid of it as it may harm the skin.
Cypress essential oil
Botanical name ”Cupressus sempervirens”
It helps boost creativity and self-acceptance. It’s good for cold and flu season. It is diuretic and antiseptic and helps soothe restless legs when messaged towards the heart.
Cypress essential oil has no maximum dermal application, which makes it another safe oil to use.
Virginia Seder wood
Botanical name ”Juniperus virginiana”
Actually, Virginia Seder wood essential oil is one of many other Seder wood oils.
Seder wood essential oil can calm any overactive thoughts that could be preventing you from going to sleep. It is used as an insecticide.
It can ease any congestion and helps support bronchitis. Also, works as anti-inflammatory and antifungal.
Sweet orange essential oil
Botanical name ”citrus aurantium dulcis”
Diffusing sweet orange improves mood, helps with sleep and calms the blues that may be associated with depression. It is also antimicrobial and helps to relieve stomach upset.
Sweet orange essential oil helps soothe dry skin and is good for circulation.
Lemon essential oil
Botanical name ”Citrus Limon”
This is a strong oil and needs to be diluted with caution. Inhaling lemon essential oil helps with concentration, detoxification, and digestion. It is also uplifting and increases energy.
It has antimicrobial and antivirus properties and can help treat different types of skin acne. Lemon essential oil is also a part of many cleaning products because of its ability to remove stains.
Lavender essential oil
Botanical name ”Lavandula”
This oil is refreshing but also calming. It is very popularly used to control insomnia.
Lavender essential oil has no dermal maximum application and helps soothe, hydrate, and fight skin infections. It is also amazing for wound healing, insect bites, and minor skin burns.
Carrier oils have their own health and beauty benefits, but they are also used to dilute essential oils as they are potent and may cause skin irritation on their own.
Usually, any vegetable or nut-based carrier oil would be a good fit. However, you need to pay attention to little details about which carrier oil to choose.
Things like the odor of the oil and its suitability to your skin type. Another important factor is to choose a quality, pure, and free of preservatives oil to gain optimal benefits.
The best carrier oils for your skin type:
Oily skin: jojoba oil, grape seed oil, and sweet almond oil
Normal skin: coconut oil, sweet almond oil, and grape seed oil.
Dry skin: avocado oil, olive oil, coconut oil, and sweet almond oil
Sensitive skin: jojoba oil, sweet almond oil, and sesame oil.
Beware: if you have a nut allergy, you should avoid nut-based carrier oils.
How to pick the best quality essential oil
An original essential oil can help boost your health and wellness, but fake oils could do the opposite. To not waste your money on fake oils, look for the following features whenever you choose essential oils.
Quality of the product: a pure essential oil bottle should contain the Latin name of the oil. Also, make sure that the product contains no fragrances or other added chemicals.
Essential oil bottle: Quality oil should be in a glass brown or blue bottle and not a plastic bottle.
Well-known company: always choose to purchase your oils from a reputable brand. These are always more trusted. You can also check customer reviews of people who already tried a certain brand in mind.
Price of the oil: not all oils are equal. They vary in price. Some oils are expensive than others. If you know a certain oil to be expensive and you find it at a very low price elsewhere. Then probably this is a non-pure essential oil.
To end with, essential oils are safe to use when used properly. However, if you have a certain health condition or are taking medication, get the help of your health practitioner or a certified aromatherapist.
So, essential oils are therapeutic and powerful gifts from nature. Do you agree? Have you used essential oils before? What was your experience?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments section down below. Someone needs to listen to your personal experience.
Happy thriving 🙂
4 thoughts on “How to use essential oils to optimize your health and well-being”
Wow, I learned so much about essential oils. Especially that I needed to consider safety. thanks so much
Thanks, Lani. Essential oils are great, but however, stay on the safe side, especially if you are still new to them.
My favorite is Peppermint & Cabernet!
Thanks, Sylvette! Good to have you here 🙂