Essential Oils 101: Uses and Applications

Essential Oil Therapy is defined as the use of aromatic substances for therapeutic applications and holistic healing. An essential oil is one that has been isolated from a natural material through stream or water distillation or cold pressing. In the practice of essential oil therapy, an essential oil can be applied in three different ways, depending on the desired outcome.

Topical

Oils applied topically may be used for a variety of purposes, such as relaxation or joint stiffness, among many others. Generally, an essential oil intended for topical use should be diluted by a carrier oil. The percent dilution depends on the essential oil itself. There are many ways to apply an essential oil topically, including massage, compresses, sprays and baths.

Inhalation

Essential oil inhalation is used for many purposes, including mood enhancement and stress reduction. Methods of inhalation include direct inhalation, smelling salts, through a handkerchief or cotton ball, or with an inhaler tube. An inhaler tube is a tube filled with an essential oil-saturated cotton pad. Essential oil diffusers also work well for spreading relaxing or invigorating fragrances throughout indoor spaces!

Ingestion

Though there are several methods available, ingesting an essential oil should be done only under the supervision of a licensed healthcare provider.

Keep in mind that there are many different essential oils and that use and application methods vary.

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