Categories
Natural Health News and Articles

How Essential Oils Heal

As essential oils grow in popularity, many people want to know more about their benefits and healing properties. We spoke with Scott Johnson at Young Living Essential Oils last week and asked him a few questions about how these fragrant and powerful oils work.

According to Johnson, PhD and director of Global Education and U.S. Sales at Young Living, “one of the things that makes essential oils so special is their ability to rapidly absorb into the human body.” The reason for this is that essential oils are fat-soluble nutrients, so they are attracted to the lipid (fat) membranes that surround our cells. “They penetrate our cell membranes, delivering nutrients to various cells and tissues to support health,” explains Johnson. Compounds of essential oils can be detected in the blood within minutes if applied topically on the skin.

Furthermore, essential oils can be used in a variety of ways, both internally and externally, and they have unique healing properties. If you’re using an essential oil to treat sore muscles, for example, it might be best to apply the oil topically. If you want to cleanse your body, however, you might take the essential oil internally. “It all depends on what you’re trying to accomplish,” affirms Johnson.

Natural essential oils are made through a unique distillation process that involves extracting oil from plant material or resin. There are several methods—essential oil can be steam-distilled, hydro-distilled with the use of water, or cold-pressed with the aid of citrus oil that comes from the rind of the fruit.

Because essential oils are potent, rapid, and very volatile, people with certain conditions—like pregnancy, epilepsy or fever—must be especially cautious while using them. If you’re pregnant, stay away from oils that have phytoestrogens (like anise, clary sage, fennel, and mugwort), as these may stimulate uterine contractions. Also keep in mind that some oils (bergamot and citrus oils, for example) are photosynthesizing, so if you go into the sun with them they may discolor skin or create depigmentation.

That being said, essential oils are generally very safe to use. Indeed, the safety and natural benefits of essential oils were qualities that led visionary founder Dr. Gary Young to the creation of Young Living in 1993. A pioneer in essential oil study and production, Dr. Young made essential oils more readily available to people through a wholesale business model. He also helped spread awareness about the health benefits of each essential oil, and established Young Living’s five-step Seed to Seal process—“seed,” “cultivate,” “distill,” “test,” and “seal.” This process ensures the purity of each essential oil and serves as the foundation for Young Living’s distribution of essential oil around the world today.

Written by Nicole Kagan

[themedy_toggle icon=”plus” heading=”Reference” onload=”closed”]

  • How do I choose and use essential oils?(2013, July 16).
    takingcharge.csh.umn.edu/explore-healing-practices/aromatherapy/how-do-i-choose-and-use-essential-oils

More on Aromatherapy & Essential Oils

Categories
Natural Health News and Articles

Toxin-Free Lice Remedies are Safer and More Effective

Louse In The House!

When my kindergartener was sent home from school with lice, I did what most Moms do – freaked out. I went into the drug store, purchased the medicated lice shampoo and the furniture sprays filled with neurotoxins, followed the directions on the boxes, and felt completely confident that these tiny parasites would be annihilated. Unfortunately, despite my best efforts, the treatment did not work. Soon, all three of my girls had heads full of lice and I did too!

Freak out number two: This time, I called the pediatrician and received a prescription for an even stronger lice shampoo. We all treated our hair with something that smelled like gasoline and burned like acid. I did the treatments out on our deck because the fumes were choking us. My young children, ages 6, 5, and 3 at the time, were crying, eyes bloodshot, coughing and spitting from the toxic fumes.

Lessons From The Trenches Of Chemical Warfare

Lice were dropping out of their hair, but I worried that whatever was in that stuff was being absorbed into their bloodstream through their scalp and breathed into their tiny lungs. Furthermore, this was the third chemical treatment I had used on my young children in a short period of time and despite my doctor’s advice, I was feeling increasingly uncomfortable with these methods. Furthermore, it wasn’t even working! I was so emotionally and physically exhausted from months and months of ineffective treatments and almost $500 in the hole from all of the expensive products.

I began researching non-toxic, natural remedies to treat lice and was appalled to discover that mainstream products contained ingredients categorized as pesticides, nerve poisons, and carcinogens. Furthermore, studies have shown that the over-use of these toxins create a breed of “super lice,” which I believed our family had. No amount of poison can destroy them!

Non-Toxic Lice Solutions

It’s 99% about the combing. No matter what lice treatment option you use, the most important tool in eradicating lice is the COMB. Invest in a good lice comb from the drug store. I love the Rid RIDvantage, red handled comb with metal teeth which cost about $10.00.

It’s 100% about the tenacity and patience. It seems easier to douse a head with chemicals, do one comb through then repeat the treatment as instructed 10-14 days later. Truthfully, a bit of elbow grease, a ton of patience, and good follow-through is all it takes to rid your household of lice without exposure to overly expensive pesticides, toxins, and nerve agents.

Basic Steps To Non-Chemical Lice Treatment

  • Step 1: Wash hair. There are many suggestions for what to wash the hair with but the idea is to get the lice sedate enough so you can comb them out. When they are submerged in water they go into a dormant state which allows you to better “catch” them when you comb.
  • Step 2: Condition with a heavy conditioner. I use Suave coconut scented. This allows the teeth of your fine tooth lice comb to glide through the hair. Conditioning also helps loosen up the “glue” of the lice egg on the hair shaft allowing easier removal.
  • Step 3: Combing. With hair only slightly towel dried, prepare your “combing station” with a small container of hot water, a washcloth or napkin, lots of hair clips and your good lice comb. Divide hair into small sections. Comb through each section of hair multiple times at multiple angles with the fine side of the comb. Be very methodical and deliberate. Gently scrape the comb along the scalp (where the new eggs are laid) and follow through down to the ends of the hair shaft. Dip the comb frequently into a container filled with water and/or wipe comb on a napkin. Even if you don’t think the comb is working, you will be amazed to see little tiny black things floating in the water or on the napkin. These little black dots will be either eggs or tiny bodies of the newly hatched nymphs. The grown lice are about the size of a sesame seed and light brown in color while nymphs (babies) are half the size of a poppy seed and appear black. You will likely have to pick many eggs out by hand, but the comb is best for the nymphs which are the new generation of egg-layers, the ones that bite and make your head itch, and can never seen in the actual hair with the naked eye.
  • Step 4: Blow dry hair on the highest heat setting when finished combing. If you own a flat iron, section hair and flat iron. Any eggs you miss with the comb and/or with hand picking will hopefully be burned with the high heat.
  • Step 5: Rub a lice-deterring oil into the hair, such as tea tree oil or coconut oil. Longer hair should be kept up in a tight braid. Read labels carefully as many lice sprays contain toxins.

Repeat this entire process every day for 10 days. After the tenth day, it is advisable to go through the five steps about a week later and once a month preventatively afterwards, especially following a sleep-over or other activity where chance of exposure might be high.

During the 10-day treatment, launder all clothing, bedsheets and towels in hot water and dry on high heat. Vacuum all couches, mattresses and car seats, bag up those plush items that cannot be washed and store them for two weeks. Boil or freeze hairbrushes after each use. Change sheets and pillowcases each night during the 10-day treatment.

It certainly is easier to use mainstream lice products, but not necessarily safer for our kids, less expensive, or (sometimes) even as effective.

With some tenacity and lots of commitment I promise you can rid your family of lice safely and naturally.

Written by Alicia DiFabio, Psy.D.

Alicia DiFabio, Psy.D. is a freelance writer with a doctorate in psychology. Her personal essays and parenting articles have appeared in various newspapers and magazines. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and four girls, one of whom has extensive special needs. She can be found writing about her adventures in parenting at her blog, Lost In Holland

Categories
Treatment

Peppermint Essential Oil

Peppermint essential oil is a powerful antiseptic oil and is used to destroy bacteria, viruses, and parasites found in the digestive tract.

It also helps to alleviate sinus and lung congestion, irritable-bowel syndrome and the itching associated with ringworm, herpes, scabies, and poison ivy.

[themedy_button url=”/product-category/botanicals-and-herbs/essential-oils/peppermint-essential-oils” icon=”tint” font_awesome_att=”” label=”Shop Peppermint Essential Oils” colour=”#759904″ colour_custom=”#759904″ size=”large” edge=”rounded” target=”_self”]

Categories
Treatment

Respiratory Essential Oil

Respiratory essential oils are commonly a blend of myrtle, spruce, peppermint, pine, lavender, marjoram oils and varieties of eucalyptus oil.

The intent is to relieve congestion, coughing, and difficult breathing.

[themedy_button url=”/product-category/botanicals-and-herbs/essential-oils/respiratory-blend” icon=”tint” font_awesome_att=”” label=”Shop Respiratory Essential Oils” colour=”#759904″ colour_custom=”#759904″ size=”large” edge=”rounded” target=”_self”]

Categories
Treatment

Lemon Essential Oil

Lemon essential oil is derived from a lemon peel, is antiseptic and antioxidant.

Use it to treat viral and bacterial infections, aid with digestion issues, and boost immunity.

[themedy_button url=”/product-category/botanicals-and-herbs/essential-oils/lemon-essential-oils” icon=”tint” font_awesome_att=”” label=”Shop Lemon Essential Oils” colour=”#759904″ colour_custom=”#759904″ size=”large” edge=”rounded” target=”_self”]

Categories
Treatment

Thieves Essential Oil

Thieves essential oil is a blend of Clove, Cinnamon Leaf, Rosemary, Lemon and Eucalyptus.

Mix thieves and purified water into spray bottle to kill bacteria and harmful germs.

By spraying in front of the A/C unit, the mixture travels through the filter onto bed covers, sheets, pillowcases and bathroom counters.

[themedy_button url=”/product-category/botanicals-and-herbs/essential-oils/thieves-essential-oils” icon=”tint” font_awesome_att=”” label=”Shop Thieves Essential Oils” colour=”#759904″ colour_custom=”#759904″ size=”large” edge=”rounded” target=”_self”]

Categories
Image

Essential Oils for Managing Emotions

This guide offers ideas for how to use aromatherapy and essential oil treatment for addressing different emotional states. It was originally produced and found on the Holland & Barrett website.

Essential Oils for Managing Emotions


Categories
Video

Remove Makeup with The Oil Cleansing Method

Rachael Pontillo speaks often about her battle with acne when she was younger. Clearly (no pun), she’d won the battle and by using natural products.

In this video posted on her website, HolisticallyHaute.com, she details two common myths when it comes to facial oil cleansing. She also walks through the process of removing her own makeup using jojoba oil.

[themedy_media type=”youtube” url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hz4LwDFWzCI”]

More info on Aromatherapy & Essential Oils


Categories
Treatment

Simple Lavender Oil Treatments for Eczema

If you suffer from eczema and are sick of taking medication that only provides short-lived relief, lavender oil may be a new option for you. As an alternative to conventional treatments that merely suppress symptoms, lavender oil can be used as an all-around restorative agent.

The oil’s antiseptic, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties benefit mild cases of eczema (atopic dermatitis), as well as create a sense of stability for balanced skin. Lavender oil has been valued for hundreds of years as a natural remedy for skin conditions, as it brings circulation to skin cells that suffer from irritants and stress. It is especially rich in aromatic molecules called esters, which are antispasmodic, tonic, and pacifying. Its cicatrizant properties, which assist restoration through formation of scar tissue, help heal all kinds of wounds and burns. It is a powerful anti-inflammatory for the skin and was even used as an antibacterial in hospitals during World War I.

Lavender oil is effective at soothing eczema and the variety of symptoms that accompany it. While the most common sign of eczema is an itchy rash, eczema sufferers also exhibit bumps, blisters, redness, scaling, and abnormal pigmentation. Doctors usually treat these symptoms with prescription creams that contain steroids and antibiotics. They also recommend antihistamines, immunosuppressants, hydrocortisone, immunomodulators, prescription-strength moisturizers, corticocosteroids, and ultraviolet light therapy to patients who need more support.

While pharmaceutical treatments are helpful, they only suppress symptoms and do not heal the root of the problem. As a result, patients tend to rely on medication for symptom alleviation.

Lavender oil can provide a broader spectrum of relief to eczema sufferers. Unlike the common antibiotic and steroid creams that can be addictive for people with eczema, lavender oil addresses the skin from the inside out. Lavender oil gently eases irritation, works to promote a healthy balance of nutrients on the skin, and acts as an effective stress-reducer. This powerful healing property of lavender oil is due to the aromatic compounds that enter into the bloodstream and travel to the limbic system, the part of the brain that is often called “the emotional brain.” Lavender oil’s treatment of stress is especially vital as stress is one of the primary causes of eczema skin flare-ups.

For a simple eczema treatment, make a homemade spray following three simple steps.

  1. Add 10 drops of essential oil to one cup of water (distilled or tap water work fine).
  2. Pour the mixture into a spray bottle and close tightly.
  3. Shake well and spray on affected areas.

Or make lotion supplemented with lavender oil.

  1. Buy a fragrance free lotion containing Shea butter or vitamin E (Burt’s Bees Fragrance Free Shea Butter & Vitamin E Body Lotion works well).
  2. Add 10-15 drops of lavender oil to the container.
  3. Mix well with a spoon.
  4. Rub lotion into the skin gently.

In addition, you can also make a vegetable oil-based treatment.

  1. Purchase a nut or vegetable oil (coconut or sesame oil, for example) to use as a base.
  2. Add 15-20 drops of lavender oil to the container.
  3. Shake well and use the mixture topically on eczema when needed.

While you could also apply pure essential oil in ‘neat form’ directly to small affected areas without dilution, this may be too harsh for skin due to the oil’s strength and purity. Start with one of the techniques that combines lavender oil with a water or oil-based substance, and see how skin reacts from there.

Keep in mind, too, that lavender oil should be avoided for people who are pregnant, have epilepsy, or a fever. Some essential oils contain miniscule amounts of neurotoxins, which may have a convulsant effect. Because essential oils are potent and highly concentrated, they can have a significant impact on a system prone to sensitivity. As always, be sure to consult your physician before use.

Lavender oil’s multifaceted healing properties—whether antispasmodic, antibacterial, or anti-fungal—can be used to supplement existing eczema treatments. Lavender oil allows skin to restore, renew, and heal in a natural and gradual way.

[themedy_toggle icon=”” heading=”References” onload=”closed”]

Written by Nicole Kagan

  • Lavender uses. (n.d.). Retrieved from www.netherfield.co.nz/lavender-uses.php
  • The Franklin Institute Resources for Science Learning (2004). The Human Brain-Stress. www.fi.edu/learn/brain/stress.html

Related Products

[products ids=”14348, 14345, 14337″ columns=”3″]


Categories
Image

Uses for the Essential Oil Lavender

Lavender oil can be used for acne, migraines, insomnia, wounds, dandruff, hay fever, bug bites, sunburn, and nausea.

The infographic from LeonsBeautyTipsandSecrets offers a summary of the different applications of lavender oil.

Uses for the Essential Oil Lavender


Related Products

[products ids=”14348, 14345, 14337″ columns=”3″]


Categories
Image

History and Use of Essential Oils

Essential oils are liquids that are generally distilled by steam or water from the leaves, stems, flowers, barks, or roots of a plant. Once extracted, the oils can be used for skin treatment, mood enhancement and other health benefits.

The infographic found at BulkApothecary.com displays a history, the different types and various uses.

History and Use of Essential Oils



Categories
Treatment

Aromatherapy

Whether you choose to breathe them in, rub them on, or gargle with them, essential oils have been used to treat a host of physical and emotional ailments for at least 6,000 years. From Egyptian to Roman to Native American societies, there is a host of recorded data that documents how ancient societies utilized the powerful healing processes found naturally in essential oils. This practice is known today as aromatherapy.

The method of extracting essential oils from various plants, flowers, and seeds comprises a unique sect of herbal medicine that is recognized for its incredible healing properties. From skin diseases to respiratory infections to gastrointestinal health, aromatherapy is a versatile form of treatment since it can be used for a variety of conditions. The secret to its effectiveness lies in the powerful antiseptic, antibacterial, and antifungal properties found naturally in almost all essential oils.

Most essential oils contain the germ-fighting agents necessary to knock out bacteria, fungi, yeast, parasites, and viruses. And unlike pharmaceutical drugs, essential oils interact with multiple body systems at once, making aromatherapy a broad-spectrum form of treatment. The reason behind this rapid absorption of essential oils in our bodies is due to the fact that our bodies and essential oils contain many of the same naturally occurring chemicals. Because of this similar composition, our systems very easily absorb and employ the complex chemical treatments found in essential oils.

How To Use

The best way to determine how to use aromatherapy is to consider the ailment you are treating. Almost every essential oil can be inhaled, making inhalation through various methods a popular form of treatment. This method is best used when treating respiratory conditions, colds, flu, and addressing emotional and mental disturbances. For a skin condition, wound, or burn, a topical application would be the most effective. Ingestion is a popular method throughout the world, but few essential oils can be consumed. Before taking any essential oils by mouth, it is imperative to consult with your physician as certain essential oils pose a toxic threat when ingested. There are several different ways to unlock the antiseptic properties present in essential oils.

Inhalation

The first and fastest form of treatment is inhalation. Inhalation is an ideal aromatherapy technique as it safe on the system and employs our sense of smell, the most powerful of senses. Through sense of smell, the healing properties of essential oil rapidly interact with body systems connected to emotion, nervous system, body temperature, and appetite.

Steam Tent

Creating a steam tent is most beneficial when treating cold and flu symptoms. To do so, simply boil a pot of water, remove from heat, and add in about three drops of your essential oil of choice. Create a tent around your face by standing a few inches over the pot, covering your head with a towel, and trapping the steam around you. You will want to inhale the steam deeply for a few minutes, or until your nasal passages clear and your cough subsides. Be sure to stay far enough from the pot to avoid burning your face.

Diffusion

Another inhalation method is with the use of an essential oil diffuser. As with a steam tent, you will want to add three drops of essential oil to the water-filled diffuser. Diffusers come in different forms; some are candle-lit and others are electric. As the diffuser is activated and heats up, the water will steam and release the essential oil into the air. You will want to breath deeply and slowly to take in the essential oil molecules that are released through the diffuser.

External Application

Another common method is through external application.  Utilizing essential oils in a bath is the preferred method of treatment as the warm water assists in the absorption of essential oils into the skin. As Hippocrates taught, “a perfumed bath and a scented massage everyday is the way to good health.” A recommended dosage for a full bath is 3-15 drops per tub. This form of application is effective as it is one of the few therapies that can rapidly penetrate body tissues.

Massage

An essential oil massage is an excellent form of therapy that will also alleviate the pain and itching associated with viral and fungal skin infections. To create aromatherapy massage oil, combine 10 drops essential oil for every ounce of vegetable oil or lotion. To treat physical injuries using aromatherapy, a compress soaked in essential oils will provide a soothing effect and reduce swelling of the injured area. To create the compress, utilize 5 drops of your chosen essential oil in 1 cup of water and soak the compress in the solution.

Spray

In some cases of illness, a throat spray or gargle made of essential oils may be the most effective form of treatment. This can be easily created by combining two drops of essential oil into a teaspoon of honey and taking by mouth, or by adding 1-2 drops of essential oil to 1/4 cup of water and using as a gargle to treat throat infections. It is common practice in European countries such as France to ingest essential oils to treat certain forms of organ dysfunction. However, it is vital to consult a physician before taking any oils internally, especially if you are pregnant as a few varieties of essential oils can cause a toxic reaction when ingested.

Types of Essential Oils and Their Uses

There are over fifty kinds of essential oil that are used therapeutically. Here is a complete list of those most commonly used. As always, be sure to consult your physician before use.

  • Angelica: The seed and root oils from this plant contain properties that effectively manage menstruation, digestion, and coughing. However, this essential oil can over-stimulate the central nervous system, making it important to use sparingly and with caution.
  • Anise: This delicious tasting (and smelling!) essential oil is useful as a lactation stimulant while breastfeeding, and can soothe muscle spasms, indigestion, and insomnia. It is vital to control the amount of anise essential oil used due to the fact that large doses can cause skin rashes and retard proper circulation.
  • Basil: Basil is used to treat the herpes and shingles viruses, headaches, and indigestion issues. It also acts as a lactation stimulant and aids in the treatment of mental and emotional disorders.
  • Bay: The essential oil derived from the leaf of the bay tree relieves sinus and chest congestion and is used to improve memory and lymphatic circulation throughout the body.
  • Benzoin: This antiseptic and antifungal essential oil also alleviates dry skin and provides emotional support.
  • Bergamot: This refreshing essential oil can be used to battle the viruses responsible for flu, herpes, shingles, and chickenpox, ease digestion, and act as an anti-inflammatory for the urinary tract system, mouth, throat, and skin.
  • Birch: Often made available for purchase under the moniker “wintergreen” essential oil, birch is useful in treating psoriasis and relieving arthritis and muscle pain. However, large amounts of birch are toxic to the system, so use with caution.
  • Carrot Seed: No, this essential oil is not distilled from the carrots in your refrigerator. Carrot seed actually comes from the seeds of the plant Queen Anne’s lace, a distant ancestor of today’s carrot. This oil can be used to treat skin disorders such as eczema, rashes and certain precancerous skin conditions.
  • Cedarwood: Cedarwood is most useful in treating respiratory and urinary infections, and can also be used to fight off acne, dandruff, and chronic itching. Avoid all cedar oils while pregnant.
  • Chamomile: This versatile essential oil is used to treat a host of conditions. Chamomile acts as an anti-inflammatory agent, pain reducer, and addresses indigestion, ulcers, and liver damage. This essential oil is also commonly used to treat insomnia and acts as a powerful antidepressant.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon can be used to treat urinary tract infections, diarrhea, and is helpful to relieve tension. However, you will want to dilute cinnamon essential oil with a less potent essential oil, as cinnamon is a potential skin irritant.
  • Citronella: While this essential oil is more commonly known as an insect repellant, citronella is also useful in treating colds and infections. Be cautious with topical applications as it can cause skin irritation.
  • Clary sage: Clary sage is used throughout Europe as a sore throat remedy and also can be used to alleviate pain and menopause symptoms. Clary sage should not be combined with alcohol.
  • Clove bud: This essential oil is used to fight infections such as colds, flu, and chest congestion. It can also act as a stress reliever and memory stimulant.
  • Coriander: Coriander is an antiseptic essential oil that eases pain and inflammation associated with arthritis and acts as an antiseptic in treating flu, cystitis, and diarrhea.
  • Cypress: Use this essential oil to treat sinus and lung congestion or to ease symptoms associated with low blood pressure, hemorrhoids, and varicose veins.
  • Dill: Dill is useful in treating indigestion and can also be helpful as an appetite suppressant.
  • Eucalyptus: The essential oil derived from the eucalyptus tree is a powerful antiviral agent. It is useful in treating throat infections, fever, flu, chest congestion, and herpes.
  • Fennel: Fennel is commonly used as a lactation stimulant, but can also be helpful in treating indigestion, urinary tract disorders, and to quickly heal bruises. Do not use if you have epilepsy as fennel can over-stimulate the central nervous system.
  • Fir: Use this essential oil to treat asthma, chronic cough, and to soothe muscle pain.
  • Frankincense: This valuable essential oil treats fungal infections, ulcers, lung sensitivity, and chronic diarrhea. Additionally, frankincense has been used throughout the ancient world to increase consciousness and relaxation.
  • Geranium: Geranium possesses both antiviral and antifungal properties, making it an important treatment for shingles, herpes, and ringworm. This essential oil can also be used to treat menopausal symptoms and regulate blood pressure.
  • Ginger: Ginger can be used internally to alleviate digestion issues such as nausea, diarrhea, gas, and loss of appetite. It can also address infections of the lungs and urinary system.
  • Helichrysum: Use Helichrysum to treat bronchitis, asthma, and pain and inflammation associated with arthritis.
  • Inula: Inula is mostly used to treat skin infections and herpes, but can also relieve sinus, chest congestion, muscle pain, and inflammation.
  • Jasmine: This essential oil is sometimes used to treat complications with the prostate. It also acts to soothe headaches.
  • Juniper: Bronchial infections, eczema, and hemorrhoids are all treated with this essential oil. Use with caution as overuse can over stimulate the kidneys.
  • Labdanum: This antiseptic essential oil is used to treat colds, coughs, wounds, and hemorrhoids.
  • Lavender: This quintessential aromatherapy oil contains the broadest reaching of benefits. From treating burns and eczema to lung and sinus infections, indigestion, and skin infections, lavender is a go-to ingredient in aromatherapy treatment.
  • Lemon: The essential oil derived from the lemon peel is antiseptic and antioxidant. Use it to treat viral and bacterial infections, aid with digestion issues, and boost immunity.
  • Lemongrass: This antiseptic essential oil can be used to ward off scabies and ringworm and to treat headache and indigestion pain.
  • Marjoram: Use Marjoram in treating colds, flu, migraines, and high blood pressure. It is also useful as a topical skin application in treating bruises, burns, bacterial and fungal infections.
  • Melissa: This essential oil contains both antiseptic and antiviral properties and is an appropriate treatment for strep, herpes, chickenpox, chest congestion, and high blood pressure.
  • Myrrh: Use myrrh as an external application on yeast infections, eczema, skin infections, ringworm, and wounds. It can also be used to boost immunity and aid with digestion, coughs, and diarrhea.
  • Myrtle: Used throughout the ages to treat the complexion, myrtle is also helpful in treating respiratory infections, muscle spasms, and varicose veins.
  • Neroli: Neroli is particularly useful in treating symptoms of menopause. It also addresses circulation problems like high blood pressure and hemorrhoids.
  • Niaouli: Use this essential oil on bacterial and fungal infections as well as in treating respiratory allergies.
  • Palmarosa: Palmarosa contains wonderful antiseptic and antiviral properties that are useful in treating acne, skin infections, and herpes.
  • Patchouli: Patchouli holds antiseptic abilities and is used to treat eczema, athlete’s foot, and skin inflammation.
  • Pepper, black: Pepper can be helpful in caring for colds, flu, urinary tract infections, and food poisoning. It is important to be cautious when using topically as pepper can be a skin irritant.
  • Peppermint: Peppermint is a powerful antiseptic essential oil and is used to destroy bacteria, viruses, and parasites found in the digestive tract. It also helps to alleviate sinus and lung congestion, irritable-bowel syndrome and the itching associated with ringworm, herpes, scabies, and poison ivy.
  • Ravensare: This essential oil is an important antiseptic treatment against flu, bronchitis, viral infections, and sinus congestion.
  • Rose: Rose oil is a strong antiseptic that fights infection and can also treat asthma, liver dysfunction, and depression.
  • Rosemary: This essential oil stimulates the nervous system, lowers cholesterol and alleviates chest congestion, sore throat and sore muscles.
  • Rosewood: Rosewood is a sweet-smelling essential oil that treats infections, colds, headaches, and nausea.
  • Sage: This antiseptic essential oil is used to fight throat and mouth infections. It should be used with caution as it contains a potential neurotoxin that is especially harmful to individuals prone to seizures.
  • Sandalwood: Sandalwood is primarily used to treat genital and urinary tract infections and can also be helpful with nerve pain, inflammation, and persistent coughs.
  • Tangerine: This gentle essential oil taken from the peel of a tangerine combats sleep and digestive disorders. It is a wonderful essential oil to use on children and pregnant women due to its extremely safe and mild composition.
  • Tea Tree: Similar to eucalyptus essential oil, tea tree oil contains strong antiseptic properties. It is useful in fighting vaginal, sinus, fungal, and viral infections. Like lavender, this is a popular essential oil for use in aromatherapy due to its extremely powerful and versatile nature in treating a host of conditions.
  • Thyme: This antibacterial essential oil eliminates intestinal worms, chest congestion, and indigestion. In the past, Thyme was actually used to treat whooping cough. Due to its powerful antibiotic nature, it is not recommended for daily use.
  • Vetiver: Use vetiver to increase circulation, treat muscle pain and sprains, and improve liver function.
  • Ylang-ylang: This sweet-smelling essential oil lowers blood pressure, relaxes muscle spasms, and acts as a strong sedative. Be wary to limit dosage, as high concentrations have been known to cause headaches.

Precautions

It is vital to be aware of the potentially toxic effect of some essential oils, especially for children and pregnant women. A few essential oils that are potentially toxic when ingested include bitter almond, hyssop, mugwart, oregano, pennyroyal, sassafras, savory, and thuja. Additionally, essential oils in their natural state are extremely concentrated and have the potential to burn or irritate skin and other sensitive tissues. It is important to dilute essential oils that pose a potential irritation to the skin with less irritating oils before topical application. The following essential oils should be diluted before use:

  • Bay rum
  • Birch
  • Black pepper
  • Cinnamon
  • Citronella
  • Clove
  • Cumin
  • Thyme

For elderly, allergenic individuals, or someone who has a serious health condition such as asthma, epilepsy, or heart disease, consult with your physician before the use of any essential oils. For continual use, be sure to vary the essential oils that you employ in your treatment, as overexposure of one kind of essential oil may be harmful to your liver and kidney functions over time.

Summary

From anise to cypress to lavender, there is a bounty of useful and medicinal essential oils that will banish viral, fungal, and bacterial infections all the while improving sleep, mood, and emotional health. From Egyptian civilization through today, aromatherapy has played a major role in addressing common illnesses and ailments.

By following sage medical advice and adherence to the recommendations provided here, you can employ and benefit from the antiviral and antibiotic properties drawn from the beautiful flowers, trees, and plants that surround us everyday.

As Kurt Schnaubelt, Ph.D and Director of the Pacific Institute of Aromatherapy in San Rafael, California, puts it, “for many common infectious diseases, aromatherapy offers more effective and more wholesome solutions than conventional medicine.”

  • Alternative Medicine: The Definitive Guide. New York: Celestial Arts.
  • Natural Healing Wisdom & Know-How. New York: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, Inc.
  • Essential Oils for Beginners. California: Althea Press