Aromatherapy: the use of essential oils in treatment

The concept of Aromatherapy is ancient. Scents, or aromas, have been used since the beginning of time to excite hunger, and to stimulate the nerve cells that lead to the brain to produce sexual desire, calm, even sleep.

History of aromatherapy

Aromatherapy has its roots in the most ancient healing practices of humankind, for the plants from which we now derive essential oils had been used for thousands of years before the technique of distilling oils was discovered.

The earliest people probably discovered by chance that some of the leaves, berries and roots they gathered for food made sick people feel better.The Egyptians were using aromatics 3000 years BC for medicinal and cosmetic purposes.

In India the use of plants reflects the religious and philosophical view of man as part of nature. The medicinal plants of India became famous throughout Asia and eventually found their way into Western medicine.The medicinal plants of India became famous throughout Asia and eventually found their way into Western medicine.



However, the word aromatherapy was only used in the 1920s by French chemist René Maurice Gattefossé, who devoted his life to researching the healing properties of essential oils after an accident in his perfume laboratory.In the accident, he lit his arm on fire and thrust it into the nearest cold liquid, which happened to be a vat of lavender oil. Much to his amazement, the burn quickly healed without a scar. Hence the word aromatherapy came to being used to describe the use of oils from plants as a form of treatment: aroma = scent; therapy = to cure or to treat.

How aromatherapy works

Different oils elicit different physical and emotional responses. Some calm us, some excite us. Some make us happy; some make us reflective. Some enhance our spiritual side, some increase our desire for carnal pleasure.

For example, Eucalyptus is used to fight infection, particularly bronchial or lung infections; Jasmine, Rose and

Sandalwood stimulate feelings of affection, sex and sleep; Rose is used to alter mood by inducing feelings of affection and lifting the gloom of depression. Lemon grass purifies the body and simulates the senses; and Tea tree is universally known to fight infection and enhance the immune system that protects our vulnerability to illnesses.

The oils above, and many others, are bottled either individually or in combination, and are also offered in the form of soaps, candles, powders and many other scented products.One such oil, bottled under the name of “Sensual Aromatic Oil” from the Harnn Natural Products collection, is a combination of several oils that promote sexual arousal, with the addition of progesterone, a powerful hormone extracted from the sex glands of the female. Progesterone is as old as the mating of the first man and woman and the reproductive process which continues to sustain human life on the planet.

How does essential oil work? Once you inhale a scented oil through the nose, the scent stimulates the olfactory organs, which are linked to the brain that controls emotions. When the essential oils are rubbed on the skin, they stimulate a reaction on the nerve endings of the skin’s surface. This reaction passes through the nerves until it reaches the pituitary or master gland in the brain. In turn, through a series of chemical reactions, the pituitary controls whether we feel stressed or relaxed, joyful or depressed, in the mood for love, or for sleep.


How to apply aromatherapy in everyday life

There are many ways in which essential oils can be used. One of the most popular is inhalations by using burners. Massage with essential oils is also a common method of treatment. Another use is in aromatic baths. Water itself has many therapeutic properties and when these are combined with essential oils it enhances the effect.

Aromatherapy can help you deal with the stress of modern living. Our mind, body and emotions strive to be in a state of health and balance but many factors throw us off-balance, creating stress and illness. Today’s fast-paced living often allows little time for more than a quick shower, while soaking in a scented bathtub would give us time to recoup our needed resources to meet each day or to sleep restfully at night.

However, you can enjoy even a quick aromatherapy shower by using essential natural soap to clean the body, but not dry out the skin, while letting the warm shower droplets caress your body until you feel thoroughly relaxed.

Quality of essential oils:

In aromatherapy it is most important that natural essential oil are used as synthetic based oils which may smell similar to natural oils but they do not have any of the therapeutic effects of natural oils at all. The best instrument for determining whether an essential oil is adulterated is an educated nose. Many people can distinguish between natural and synthetic scents, but it takes experience.

Good quality pure essential oil does not come cheap. For example, pure jasmine oil costs over US$2000 per kilo, it takes 8 million hand picked blossoms to produce 1 kilogram of Jasmine absolute.

Where to buy high quality essential oils in Vietnam

- Thann has 4 blends of essential oils.
- L’occitane has 10 blends of essential oils.
- L’Apothiquaire has 18 blends of essential oil
- Harnn natural products has 9 different unique blends of essential oils.

Popular essential oils and applications
. Chamomile
. Promotes sleep and tranquility
. Cinnamon
. Increases energy and awareness
. Clove
. Promotes healing
. Eucalyptus
. Fight infection, particularly bronchial or lung infections
. Jasmine
. Stimulates feelings of affection, sex and sleep
. Lavender
. Promotes sleep
. Lavender
. Purifies the body and simulate the senses
. Lemon Grass
. Purifies the body and simulate the senses
. Nutmeg
. Increases energy
. Orange
. Increases joy and energy


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