Over the years, stress has become synonymous with modern hurried lifestyles. Though required in small doses to help us push our bodies to their full potential and accomplish tasks more efficiently, when experienced on a daily basis it can become a problem. As it turns chronic, it starts affecting general health, sleep, skin, as well as relationships.
As of last year, marked by the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s been another pandemic because of the constant coping with fear and uncertainty – that of stress and anxiety. Considering the pandemic doesn’t seem to be going anywhere for the time being, nor the measures in the likes of social distancing, lockdowns and quarantines, besides seeking professional help, establishing the right coping strategies in daily life proves to be important. Aromatherapy is one of them.
Aromatherapy as Your Pick-Me-Up
Known for its psychological and physical benefits, alternative medicine enthusiasts are slowly but surely turning aromatherapy mainstream because it’s a drug-free solution that’s been used by many civilisations for centuries. You too can easily incorporate it, given that it’s not difficult nowadays to come across certified 100% pure organic essential oils for stress and anxiety that can truly make a difference in your life.
The reason aromatherapy is so effective with changing one’s mood, promoting balance, relieving tension, and reducing stress in a short matter of time has to do with the fact the incredible aromas of the oils trigger an emotional response by stimulating the central nervous system. Moreover, when inhaled the aromas reach the lungs, and their beneficial natural occurring substances further offer therapeutic effects for one’s health and well-being.
Oils Known to Tame Stress
The minute you decide to get on board with the aromatherapy trend, and start searching for oils, you’d come to realise just how extensive the range can be. While there are various options you can give a try, the following are some of the best-known choices for relaxation and stress relief:
- Lavender is famous for its anxiolytic properties and the calming effect on the spirits;
- Chamomile helps reduce the production of stress hormones;
- Clary Sage promotes relaxation with its woody aroma, relieving stress and mild depression;
- Geranium has muscle relaxing properties and assists with reducing fatigue;
- Jasmine uplifts moods and brings comfort;
- Bergamot invigorates your spirits, and improves negative emotions;
- Marjoram soothes and eases the muscle tension;
- Patchouli offers calming effects and increases energy;
- Neroli helps put a halt to excessive worrying.
Ways to Use These Oils to Tame Stress
Great news is not only do you have a wide range of essential oils for stress and anxiety to choose from, depending on the aroma and the side benefits you’re after (e.g. antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties), but you’ve also got the flexibility with how you want to adopt aromatherapy.
In the Bathroom
For instance, if you enjoy soaking in a nice warm bath relaxing your body and mind with great ingredients such as manuka honey, you could try another recipe consisting of your favourite essential oil. To make your skin absorbent, as well as reap utmost relaxing benefits, it’s recommended to add Epsom salts with three to five drops of your favourite essential oil.
Baking soda is another ingredient that comes in handy with this, so it’s not only useful for cleaning appliances at home. Speaking of which, it’s just as great for creating your own shower melts – simply mix one cup with 1/3 cup of water, add 20 drops of your chosen oils, and leave to set overnight in silicone moulds.
Now, if you’re more of a shower fan, along with investing in a better experience with the right shower head, you can enhance your shampoo or body wash with a few drops of organic certified essential oils for anxiety and stress. In case you’d like to get your DIY mode on, you can create your own DIY body wash
Same as when applying them topically with relaxing massages on different parts of your body, your main ingredient should be a carrier oil to prevent allergic skin reactions. Another way is to “carry” the oils to the shower, adding a few drops on cotton pads and placing them on the shower floor nearby, away from the direct flow, so you smell the aromas as they evaporate.
In the Bedroom
When there’s stress, sleep is among the first aspects of your life to be impacted. As anxiety keeps your mind busy with problems, pumping cortisol in your body, it’s difficult to catch the z’s. Not being able to get shut-eye then leads to a vicious cycle of being worried of not being able to fall asleep, consequently resulting in insomnia.
You’d be able to tackle this issue effectively and get the quality sleep you crave using the help of aromatherapy. Besides applying some of the aforementioned techniques, you can bring the lovely relaxing scent of stress essential oil into your bedroom by creating your own mist.
The simple mixture of distilled water with drops of your favourite oils would prove to be perfect for refreshing the room as you prepare it for slumber, as well as for adding the soothing aromas to your bedding. Once you start applying this, your brain would create an association between a specific scent and sleep, so breathing in from the mist would immediately put you in a sleepy mode.
In the Home in General
When using them as air fresheners, vaporisers and diffusers would assist you with dispersing the particles of the essential oils for stress and anxiety in the room. Don’t be surprised if all of a sudden you find yourself feeling like your home became your personal spa as the aromas create a calming and healing environment!
Inhalation isn’t only perfect for when you’re congested or fighting colds and the flu – it can work wonders on a day-to-day basis if you use it as a two-minute method to unwind. All you’d have to do is pick a heatproof bowl, fill it up with boiling water, add up to seven drops of your chosen oil, cover your head with a soft towel, and breathe through the nose. Lastly, the simple old-fashioned way to reap the incredible aromatherapy benefits is to just take a few deep breaths smelling directly from the bottles.