Some people believe you can!
Aromatherapy is more than just lighting some incense or burning an oil candle and enjoying the beautiful smells that fill the room. It’s a therapy, which means it has a higher purpose (other than smelling great) – and it can potentially aid healing strategies.
Aromatherapy can be used to enhance physiological and physical wellbeing through the use of natural oils extracted from plants including flowers, bark, stems, leaves, roots and other parts of a plant, according to aromatherapy.com. As well as being used as an alternative medicine, it can also be used as a complimentary therapy to assist cognitive wellbeing. People tend to have aromatherpy massages to alleviate headaches, backpain, digestive disorders, insomnia and premenstrual syndrome (PMS).
Aromatherapy massages use essential oils (which are highly concentrated plant oils) that have been added to a massage oil or lotion and are meant to enhance your experience. After the massage, the massage therapist may suggest a blend that you can use at home in between massage treatments.
A licensed massage therapist will take your health history before the massage to help assess if it is right for you and your condition.
Here’s how it works – the different aromas from the oils stimulate smell receptors in the nose which creates different emotional and physiological reactions by sending messages through the nervous system and to the Limbic System (the part of the part of the brain that controls emotions). It then triggers positive emotions and eases pain. Essential oils are also believed to be absorbed through the skin.
You do need to be cautious if you have sensitive skin or are prone to epilepsy or high blood pressure. A good massage therapist will often discuss your history prior to treatment, however, it’s always best to do your own research first. It can cause allergic skin reactions, may not be recommended for pregnant women (please consult your doctor prior to treatment) and should not be done over bruises, skin rashes, inflamed or weak skin, unhealed wounds, tumors, abdominal hernias or fractures.
Research into whether aromatherapy is effective and can be used for medicinal purposes is inconclusive and ongoing. However, one thing is for certain, aromatherapy can be very enjoyable.
If you are looking for an aromatherapist or to try aromatherapy, search the CanadianBeautyHub directory.