The essential oil of plants can be applied directly or by a diffuser (vaporizer).
Essential oils are used for their multiple benefits for the treatment of physical conditions (respiratory, infectious, chronic pain …) and for their properties to improve mood, promote relaxation and reduce stress. Its newest and simplest application methods include the use of vaporizers and diffusers that can be found in a variety of stores.
Also, these essential oils are within our economic and physical reach, since we can buy them in supermarkets like Mercadona at reduced prices. In this article, we will explain what essential oils are and their oil, what they are used for and how their most common preparations are made.
ESSENTIAL OILS: WHAT ARE THEY?
Essential oils are oils with a fragrance that are present in many types of plants. These essential oils are often used as perfumes, food flavorings, medications, antiseptics and additives in many products. They are also the working material for some healing techniques such as aromatherapy, relaxing massage and Ayurvedic medicine.
The essential oils are obtained by distillation and are extremely concentrated. Some essential oils made of pink require more than 1,800 kg of rose petals to make half a kilo of essential oil and that’s why its price is so high.
Scientific research has isolated hundreds of chemicals in essential oils and has shown that many essential oils have antibacterial, antifungal and antiparasitic properties.
Although there are hundreds of essential oils that are regularly used in healing treatments and perfumes, some of the most commonly used essential oils are lavender, chamomile, peppermint, tea tree oil, eucalyptus, geranium, jasmine, rose, lemon, orange, rosemary, incense, and sandalwood. Some essential oils contain more than 200 identified chemicals
WHAT ARE THE USES OF ESSENTIAL OIL? MAIN PROPERTIES
Essential oils are normally used for skin conditions such as acne, athlete’s foot, burns, cuts, dandruff, eczema, insect bites, warts, parasites, sunburn, and wrinkles.
They are also recommended to treat muscle, joint, circulation problems (arthritis, hypertension, cellulitis, pain and varicose veins) and respiratory and infectious conditions (allergies, asthma, otitis, sinusitis, congestion, colds, and flu).
Its properties include its ability to improve digestion, promote hormonal balance and treat (in a complementary way) depression, anxiety, sexual dysfunction, and fatigue.
In relation to this, they can be used as mood enhancers, to increase energy or to reduce stress and seek relaxation. Essential oils can be purchased as perfumes, lotions or incense to improve the environment of homes and offices.
ESSENTIAL OIL SIDE EFFECTS AND CONTRAINDICATIONS
Most of the essential oils available are safe if used in small doses, and side effects are usually rare. These include rashes, itching, and irritation on the skin, as well as allergic reactions (watery eyes, sneezing and swelling of the area).
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Some essential oils can cause nausea, dizziness or gastrointestinal discomfort when used in excess or when they cause allergic reactions.
ESSENTIAL OIL PREPARATIONS AND METHOD OF APPLICATION
Due to its high concentrations, essential oils must be diluted with base oils (such as almond, grape, sunflower and sesame seeds) before being applied directly to the body. Only the oils of lavender, tea tree, eucalyptus, and geranium can be applied directly on the skin without dilution.
When diluted, it is recommended to apply 1 to 3 drops of essential oil for each tablespoon of base oil. For larger quantities, 20 to 60 drops per 100 ml of base oil can be added.