Aromatherapy it is a holistic treatment approach with essential oils formulated from medicinal plants, herbs, roots, and trees. This treatment approaches balances and harmonizes body, mind, and spirit. It doesn’t also provide symptomatic relief but it enhances the natural ability of the body to balance, heal, regulate and maintain. It is an advantageous therapeutic method which is natural and non-invasive.
The essential oils have been in use since 69-30 BC in Egypt. There is famous beauty expert Cleopatra, and the secret behind her beauty regimes was the use of essential oils like jasmine, myrrh and rose.
Then further contribution was made by Marguerite Maury who was biochemist from Austria, she developed a unique way for the application of essential oils onto the skin involving techniques of massage which are still being followed. Her research includes the effect of essential oils on nervous system. Maury opened clinics of aromatherapy in France, Switzerland and England. In India also essential oils have been traditionally in use as Ayurvedic literature since 2000 B.C enlist various essentials oils like cinnamon, ginger, myrrh, coriander, spikenard and sandalwood being administered for various ailments.
Essential oils are concentrated hydrophobic liquid which have a tendency to vaporize or are volatile in nature. They are also named as volatile oils or ethereal oils. They are obtained by extraction process by distillation and other methods are like expression, absolute oil extraction, solvent extraction, tapping, and cold pressing.
Essential oils show their effects by absorbing into the system like through nose and then evoke thoughts, feelings, emotions, and memories by stimulating the emotional center of the brain. It further harmonizes and balances body and healing process is stimulated.
They are either used by direct inhalation, aerial diffusion, topical application and through diffusers, etc.
Some points have to be kept in mind before using essential oils like they should not be used undiluted on the skin, and some individuals get allergic reactions to some oils, care has to be taken while exposing yourself to sun rays as some essential oils are phototoxic causes redness, burning, blistering when gets exposed to UVA rays. Some of the essential oils are contradicted in pregnancy, asthma, epilepsy and other health conditions. They should be taken under the guidance of physician especially if they are to be taken internally.
Essential oils have several applications like they help to relieve from stress e.g.- peppermint oil, they also improve memory e.g.- sage oil. There are some essential oils which increase the rate of healing in the body like lavender and calendula. There are oils which help in sleep regulation like benzoin, rose, etc. In the strengthening of the immune system to get protection against a number of illness and infections e.g.- lemon, cinnamon oil. Other applications include relieving pain e.g.- eucalyptus oil helps to improve digestion like citrus essential oils.