Aromatherapy . It is an ancient art that provides a therapeutic use of pure aromas for a natural treatment and an important complement to help restore our balance and harmony. Essential oils have many properties that stimulate the human being and become an invaluable element of well-being. The vegetable medicinal produce aromatic essences, they are removed by distillation and pressure, there are also other methods for some individual species.
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- 1 History
- 2 Essential oils
- 1 Action of essential oils
- 2 Main essential oils
- 3 Uses
- 1 Meditation
- 2 Natural therapy
- 3 Therapeutic uses
- 4 Forms of Application
- 5 General
- 6 See also
- 7 Sources
The term Aromatherapy was used for the first time by the French chemist René-Maurice Gattefosé in 1935 ,  it is an alternative medicine therapy and from a scientific point of view it is not considered part of conventional medicine. In ancient times, the Egyptians 40 centuries BC made preparations with essential oils that were used in medicine, cosmetics, baths, and to harmonize temples.
The use of essences is from ancient times and has references in all cultures and religions. Hippocrates used fragrant incense to rid Athens of the plague, and Roman soldiers bathed in aromatic oil and massaged themselves regularly in the belief that it kept them strong. The Egyptians began the art of extracting the essences of plants by heating them in clay containers, it was the Greek alchemists who, preserving the fragrance and healing properties, invented distillation to obtain essential oils.
The use of essential oils was done for millennia in China India and Persia. The Vedas also used oils in their medicine. Aromatherapy is believed to have passed to the West at the time of the Crusades. Historical records show that essential oils were used during the plague of the 14th century . In the 16th and 17th centuries aromatherapy was popular among the great European herbalists, but until the 18th and 19th centuriesscientists were unable to identify many of the specific compounds in plant chemistry. The research enabled scientists to extract active compounds from medicinal plants, which led to the development of pharmaceutical drugs and the rejection of plant medicine.
By 1920 the dedication of Rene-Maurice Gattefossé , a French chemist who discovered the medicinal properties of lavender essential oil when he applied it to a burn on his hand after suffering an accident in his laboratory, and began a modest revitalization of vegetable oils. In 1928 this researcher coined the term aromatherapy to summarize the healing effect of essential oils. Later, Dr. Jean Valnet , a surgeon in the French Army , used essential oils successfully to treat soldiers wounded in combat and patients in a psychiatric hospital. In 1964 Valnet published Aromathérapie, which is still considered by many to be the aromatherapy bible.
In the 1950s Margarita Maury , an Austrian beauty therapist and biochemist, introduced the idea of using essential oils in massage and established the first aromatherapy clinics in Great Britain (France) and Switzerland . Later some physical therapists, nurses, cosmetologists, massage therapists, doctors and other health professionals began to use essential oils as an alternative to antibiotics.
Only about 5 percent of essential oilsproduced today are used in aromatherapy, but there is plenty to choose from. In fact, if you become familiar with just 10-15 essential oils, you will be able to treat many common problems. (It is better to know few essences, so to know a little about many oils.) Essential oils are muscle relaxants (oregano and black pepper), digestive tonics (cardamom and peppermint), circulatory stimulants (rosemary and basil) and precursors of hormones (sage and fennel). Many cells repair wounds (lavender and Helichrysum); help to eliminate metabolic waste (grapefruit and juniper). Additionally, a number of essential oils enhance immunity, working with the body to heal itself. They are able to stimulate the production of phagocytes (white blood cells that attack invaders),
Action of essential oils
One way of acting essential oils is through smell, harmonizing psychic emotional and spiritual states, the sense of smell is related to our emotions because it is directly connected to the brain where the center of emotions is located, also the space of many activities vital of our organism, sleep , sensuality, thirst , memory, etc. When you smell something emotional memory is evoked , you can relational emotions. The limbic systemwhere the center of emotions is located is related to the hypothalamus, the part of the brain that is communicated with the sex glands. The associative memory of aromas and situations generate the use of oils for therapeutic use, since consciousness registers the aroma with the setting. Aromatherapy acts on the subtle planes, therefore it can be used as vibrational therapy, it also helps meditation, visualizations, concentration, affirmations and all those techniques aimed at seeking inner balance and harmony.
Main essential oils
- Basil : used for headaches and migraines, also for mental fatigue.
- Angelica : helps to contact the Divine.
- Bergamot : antidepressants, anti-inflammatory antiparasitics lifts the spirit, refreshes and relaxes. It is very useful for cases of depression, anxiety and tension.
- Cinnamon : it is an aphrodisiac and mental stimulant.
- Cedar : sedative effect indicated for stress. Kidron: sedative is combined with lavender.
- Cypress : astringent, stimulant of circulation, antiseptic, it is used in duels as in other stages of change.
- Clove of Scent : mental exhaustion and to quit smoking.
- Juniper : acts on the mental, emotional and physical planes, relieves situations of confusion and fatigue.
- Eucalyptus : decongestant, antiviral, antibacterial stimulant. It acts on the respiratory system and is decongestant.
- Geraniums : balance the mind and body, anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory, antidepressant, relaxing and to restore and stabilize emotions.
- Ginger : rheumatic and muscular pain, sexual and physical exhaustion.
- Lavender : first aid global oil, antiviral, antibacterial, increases immunity, antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic. It is a very effective sedative, it is used in insomnia problems. Helps to balance emotional states such as hysteria, depression, calm, relax.
- Lemongrass : used in mental fatigue is a mental stimulant
- Lemon : mental stimulant, antiseptic, astringent, healing.
- Tangerine : calming and sedative, brings joy.
- Marjoram : antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic. It works by improving states of loneliness, anxiety.
- Peppermint : digestive, cleans the paranasal sinuses, decongestant, antiseptic, stimulates the brain and helps clear thoughts.
- Orange : it is antidepressant and restores elevating the spirit.
- Pine : stimulating the nervous system, provides energy and well-being.
- Rosemary : stimulate circulation, relieves pain, decongestants, improves circulation, memory, mental clarity, creative processes, is a psychic protector and a physical stimulant.
- Salvia : relaxing, harmonizes sexuality by relaxing and relaxes sexual energy.
- Sandalwood : sensual properties, meditation, calms thoughts, is anxiolytic and antidepressant.
- Thyme : antiseptic for the respiratory tract and cough suppressant. It is tonic and energizing on the physical, mental and emotional level, improves memory.
- Vetiver : is a deep relaxant, balances group energy and can be an aphrodisiac.
- Ylang-Ylang : antidepressant and sedative, acts on sexual difficulties, stress and anxiety, is used in states of nervous tension, insomnia and hyperactivity.
- Chamomile : anti-inflammatory, antiallergic, digestive, relaxing antidepressant
- Tea tree : antifungal, antiyeast, antibacterial
In Ancient Egypt different combinations of fragrances were burned at different times of the day – morning, noon and night as offerings to the sun god Ra. The sunset formula was known as “Kyphi” and it was a blend of 16 oils. Plutarch says that it is induced by sleep, enlightenment dreams, calmed worries and was full of these things that evoke joy at night. The blue lotus was especially appreciated for its ability to uplift spirits and promote health. Through the centuries in India, Mystics have used aromatic oils and Frankincense to enhance creativity. Certain scents have been associated with being linked to increased sexual pleasure, sage, jasmine, and patchouli to name a few. Others are anti-depressants among the “feeling good oils” are jasmine, rose and lemon balm. Undiluted essential oils are very powerful and have been used for medical purposes for thousands of years by the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, Chinese, Indians and the entire Arab civilization.
The oils were used since ancient times for meditation and religious rituals, also for many cultures the aromas were used as offerings to the gods. To meditate with oils we can achieve:
- Purify and prepare the place for meditation
- Help quiet the mind of everyday thoughts.
- Deepen and calm the breath.
- Get mental clarity
- Balance the chakras
- Bring the power to the ground
- Harmonize the energy of a group
Aromatherapy has been used as a natural therapy on many occasions for centuries, today its use has been increased by the ease with which people who wish to do so can buy it in many specialized stores. With aromatherapy they can be used from candles or essential oils, although their application in the body is so wide that many different forms of use can be chosen.
The use of essential oils can stimulate the immune system and improve health, physical and mental, contributing to a feeling of well-being. The oils have antiseptic and restorative properties and are known to stimulate slow circulation and to induce relaxation. Some have euphoric qualities. Aromatherapy is considered most effective when used in massage, but when inhaled in the form of steam it affects the nerves related to the limbic area of the brain that governs our feeling of happiness, satisfaction and well-being. Essential oils can be used for a wide range of conditions: from acne and arthritis to veruccas and varicose veins. The use of natural essences of aromatic plants, for physical healing and psychological well-being.
Forms of Application
- Internal route: The internal route has to do with its use through the oral route. In any case, it should be known that oral ingestion is totally inadvisable without adequate medical supervision.
- External route: It is more recommended than the internal route, mainly for its safety and ease of application. This is so, since thanks to the external local application, the different essences tend to penetrate immediately through the skin, acting directly on the organs that are under it.
- Bath or shower: It is useful to enjoy the virtues of an aromatic bath, in which the temperature of the water must be raised to a certain extent, and adding four or five drops of the essence that we have chosen. In the shower, the ideal is to pour four or five drops of essence into the wet foam glove, rubbing the body.
- Massages : In this technique the essences are usually added to a basic oil that acts as a vehicle, diluting the essences to avoid various skin reactions or irritate the skin.
- Poultices and compresses: It can be useful for muscle aches (with hot water), or for fever or headaches, sprains and strains (with cold water).
- Inhalations: Useful to treat respiratory tract conditions, in this technique five to ten drops of essence are added to a container of boiling water and then breathe in the vapors with a cloth on the head.
- Candles: Scented candles are useful which, when burning, spread their fragrance quickly in the environment, thus filling the entire place where they are with their aroma.
The oils used correctly for aromatherapy do not produce any unpleasant effects or contraindications, however we must take into account:
- Do not ingest them
- Do not exceed the number of drops or the time of use.
- Do not use in pregnancy: basil, camphor, marjoram, myrrh, cloves, hyssop, juniper, cedar, sage, rosemary.
- Do not put in direct contact with the skin: cinnamon, cloves, bergamot, cinnamon, juniper, ginger, lemon, mint, pine, thyme.
- Do not use in case of epilepsy: rosemary sage.
- Do not leave any essence within the reach of children.
- Do not sunbathe after using on the skin: bergamot, grapefruit, orange, lemon, lemon verbena, angelica.