Aromatherapy and stress: Four essential oils that promise relief

There is a close association between aromatherapy and stress relief. Around the world, stress has become a comprehensive issue, affecting people’s mental and physical health.

Sumi Thadani, the co-founder of Secret Alchemist and a certified aromatherapist says while long-term stress can manifest itself as anxiety, irritability, anger, headaches, sleep issues, digestive issues, hormonal imbalances, and more, aromatherapy can help with these symptoms.

Essential oils can help in relaxation, alleviating pain, regulating blood pressure, aiding in better functioning of organs and the entire body. Clinical aromatherapy can be a comprehensive alternative treatment to sync the mind, body and soul connection,” she says.

But, what is aromatherapy?

Thadani explains it as a “therapy that uses the sense of smell, one of the strongest and most effective of all human senses”. “The science of aromatherapy emerges from the roots of Ayurveda, and each aroma has a strong and impactful effect on all types of Dosh, balancing for a more holistic wellbeing of the inner you.”

She adds that clinical aromatherapy can be practised primarily in two ways: inhalation or topical application. “A lot of this can be incorporated in our daily lives, whether as a diffuser, or a roll-on, or just massaging on the body,” she says.

The expert recommends the following four essential oils to alleviate symptoms of stress:

1. Lavender: It is the gateway to essential oils. Lavender Officinalis (botanical name) is one of the most-studied essential oils for its relaxing effects. It helps calm the nervous system, lowering blood pressure and heart rate. It counter-reacts to stress, relieves fatigue and symptoms of depression.

2. Ylang Ylang: Cananga Odorata (botanical name), native to tropical Asia, relieves depression and improves mood. It aids in increasing blood circulation and has an invigorating effect. It not only controls anxiety and tension, but also helps in lowering the blood pressure.

essential oil, aromatherapy for stress relief, how can aromatherapy help will stress, essential oils and stress relief, indian express news Aromatherapy diffusers take essential oils and evaporate them, spreading the aroma effectively through air. (Photo: Getty/Thinkstock)

3. Clary sage: It is an essential oil that has shown antidepressant-like effect on the body. Salvia Sclarea (botanical name), is a plant native to the northern Mediterranean. It can help alleviate stress by inducing a sense of well-being. It is a member of the sage family.

4. Patchouli: A well-known essential oil, it is used to treat chronic stress. This scent’s potent aroma increases the secretion of happy hormones serotonin and dopamine. Pogostemon Patchouli (botanical name) improves mood and stimulates blood circulation treating the symptoms of stress.

Thadani also lists effective ways in which these oils can be integrated in our lives.

* Diffusers: Aromatherapy diffusers take essential oils and evaporate them, spreading the aroma effectively through air. Once inhaled, it can have a positive and holistic effect on the body.

* Body products: Use body products that use essential oils and not the synthetic scent. They can be used in topical application for alleviating pain from joints or through champi-massage. You can also use them as a body lotion or oil or dab a few drops on your pulse points.

* Candles: It is a simple and the least time-consuming way to relieve stress. Lighting a candle could be a part of your meditative routine of 5 minutes or a way to enhance your ambience. In any case, it is a great addition to aromatherapy.

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