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Aromatherapy: Clearing the Mind and the AirSeptember 9, 2015
In many cases, there’s a lot more to aromatherapy than personal preference. In other words, just because you like an essential oil’s fragrance doesn’t necessarily mean the substance will benefit your specific needs. But with home aromatherapy, preference can take a front seat if your priority is making the house smell great.
What if you don’t know where to start? You can’t go wrong with clearing the air, especially if you’ve got cats, strong cooking smells or poor ventilation in your home. Commercial air fresheners with synthetic fragrances often clear odors by emitting toxic chemicals to mask them. Clearly, there are healthier ways to refresh your environment.
Citrus oils are excellent choices to cleanse the air while also providing antiviral and antibacterial benefits. Choose from bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, lemongrass and tangerine. Sage and rosemary are great air purifiers as well. An appealing blend could consist of simply lemon with sage essential oil. Try mixing about 10 drops of essential oils with 1 cup water into a spray bottle to freshen the air. Water diffusers are an ideal way to send a fine mist of fragrant oil into a room. With water diffusers, 3-4 drops of essential oil should provide around 3 hours of aromatherapy.
Another popular use of aromatherapy is boosting the immune system – especially during cold and flu season. An excellent way to do this is with antiviral essential oils, many of which also fight bacteria as well. Aromatic antiviral oils include clove, eucalyptus, juniper, lavender, lemon and rosemary. Eucalyptus also works to clear phlegm from the lungs and sinuses. You can’t go wrong combining eucalyptus and lemon for a fresh immune-boosting blend.
Essential oils even have the ability to positively affect your mood. Frankincense, for example, is said to promote contemplation. The citruses – especially bergamot and tangerine – are uplifting to the mind. Other oils help promote relaxation and sound sleep, including ylang ylang, geranium, clary sage, marjoram, rosewood, Roman chamomile and lemon balm. Some stress-busting blends include lavender with clary sage, patchouli with tangerine and a combination of Roman chamomile, lavender and marjoram.
Keep in mind you can purchase ready-made blends from many essential oil companies. In some cases – especially if the blend includes several individual oils or expensive oils – it’s more economical to buy a blend than to purchase separate oils. It all depends how deep you want to wade into the essential oil ocean. With essential oils, you’ll benefit whether you make a modest or major investment.