People often find essential oils appealing based on their scent. This can be anything from using Lavender to help calm the nerves, or citrus for a fresh scent. This also makes many people wonder if they have actual medicinal properties. Others believe they only have psychological benefits derived from their comforting scents. Their medicinal properties have been demonstrated by the fact that they have chemical components known to produce specific results. For instance, nearly all essential oils contain monoterpenes, which are best known to be antiseptic, bactericidal, antiviral, and a decongestant among many other properties.
Do Essential Oils Work?
Practice utmost caution when using essential oils because they have components unique to each one of them. The most popular groups of chemical components include terpenes, esters, alcohols, ketones, phenols, and aldehydes. Understanding each of these can help you know which ones are safer to use without having to consult a professional. Terpenes consist of carbon and hydrogen atoms in a chain, and high concentrations of terpenes in essentials oils cause weaker effects. However, oils are judged by the oil itself because those with low terpenes could have intense effects.
Alcohols, ketones, esters, phenols, and aldehydes are all oxygenated components, but they differ significantly in their properties. Ester and alcohol containing oils are safer to use on both elderly and young people, as they are gentle and rarely cause irritation. Ketones, phenols, and aldehydes containing oils, on the other hand, should be handled with great caution. Depending on the %concentration of these three chemicals in an essential oil, the dilution needs to be 1%, as they can be extremely powerful and often accumulate in the body. Therefore, they should be used for a relatively short time. New research has demonstrated that essential oils are absorbed more rapidly than earlier thought, so be cautious when using them.
Essential oils are inhaled or enter the body through the skin and into the bloodstream. This is why Rain Drop therapy massages and other related treatments actually do work. While some oils are easily absorbed (in 20 minutes), others can take up to 36 hours to enter the bloodstream. It can be uncomfortable on the skin for that period of time, especially if they have strong scents. Inhaling is another option that can be very beneficial, and only a little oil is dropped in steam. The scents are generally calming and can put you at ease, making aromatherapy massage enjoyable. In addition, your muscles also benefit from the effect, leaving you feeling relaxed.