Essential oils are natural volatile aromatic compounds found in plants. They give plants their scent while protecting it from predators and disease. Essential oils have been used for centuries for fragrances, food preparation, beauty treatments and health-care practices.
When I first heard the phrase “volatile aromatic compound,” I was a little put off – to me that phrase sounds like something negative. When in reality, the term “volatile” actually refers to the way oils change states quickly from liquid to gas.
how to use oils
Essential oils can be used for a very wide range of concerns – emotional, physical and mental – and can be used as single essential oils or in complex essential oil blends, depending on user experience and desired benefit. Generally, the oil is placed on the area of the concern: topically for skin and muscle concerns, internally for system concerns and aromatically for emotional and overall health concerns. I’ve found that it is often beneficial to use more than one method at a time.
- Essential oils are easily absorbed by the skin and can be safely applied topically. Always use a carrier oil with young or sensitive skin.
- They can be absorbed into the bloodstream via the skin – my favorite way is through the feet, especially with children or those sensitive to scents.
- They can benefit localized areas when applied at the site (shoulder, knee, throat, etc.).
- They have restorative and calming properties, and can be used with massage.
Your feet have the biggest pores and the most resilient skin – use topical oils on the bottom for quick absorption and great results – dilute with a carrier oil for babies or those with sensitive skin.
- My favorite oils can be taken internally. Do not use a product internally that does not have the appropriate dietary facts on the label.
- Essential oils can be cleansing, relaxing and supportive when taken correctly.
- A few drops in a glass of water or in an empty pill capsule can begin the journey of health and wellness.
- Smelling essential oils can stimulate the brain, calm the body and work with internal systems.
- Smell is one of our strongest senses and is closely in tune with emotional responses.
- Diffusing with a low or no-heat water diffuser is my personal favorite – I literally have them all over the house!
- Simply placing a few drops of oil into your hands, cupping your hands over your nose/mouth and taking a deep breath can have amazing results (be careful not to touch your eyes).
Always check with your physician before embarking on a new health regimen.