One’s sense of smell is intensely linked to both memory and emotion, perhaps more than any other sense. The perfume industry has long been aware of this fact, but lately, people have opted to take matters into their own hands by using essential oils. When used appropriately, these intense aromatic compounds are derived from plants and have the power to change and influence mood, memory, and emotion and are quite effective in reducing stress.

How do Essential Oils Reduce Stress?

Stress is one of the hazards of modern life. Unfortunately, stress has been linked to many health problems, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. An easy solution for easing chronic stress is aromatherapy via essential oils. Aside from stress reduction, they also promote sleep or relaxation – all through the sense of smell.

5 Essential Oils for Stress Relief

There are many ways to use essential oils responsibly. Some like to use a diffuser that disperses the scent while also purifying the air. Others may benefit from rubbing it directly onto their skin, especially at acupressure points, or wearing a necklace diffuser. Practicing mindfulness and focusing on the scent and your other senses while using essential oils can help you reap the most benefits. With that said, here are some of the best oils for stress relief.

  1. Lavender: This scent is the most widely researched and commonly used for relaxation, promoting sleep, and reducing stress. It has also been used to treat depression and anxiety. Some medical professionals even use lavender to reduce stress in doctors’ offices and before surgery.
  2. Rose: A sweet, floral, emotional scent of rose has been popular throughout history. Recent studies have found that rose essential oil can serve as a relaxation and anti-anxiety aid.
  3. Ylang-ylang: This unique plant has a delicate scent and is found in tropical Asia, where it is used medicinally. Ylang-ylang has been found to reduce stress, heart rate, and blood pressure and promote relaxation.
  4. Bergamot: Perhaps best known for its contribution to Earl Grey tea, bergamot is a citrus fruit hybrid used in Italian folk medicine. Its unique scent has been shown to reduce anxiety, promote sleep, and relieve symptoms of chronic stress.
  5. Peppermint: Stress can leave you feeling tired both mentally and physically. Peppermint oil can serve as a perfect pick-me-up and energy boost. The scent promotes alertness and improved cognitive function. Additionally, it has been found to relieve IBS symptoms and may be used in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s.

Whether you opt to use essential oils in the air or on your skin, they can be the perfect relief after a long, stressful day. These volatile aromatic compounds have been scientifically shown to be calming– plus, they’ll make your house smell great!

Essential Oil Warning/Alerts: When applying to the skin, it’s best to combine it with a skin-based carrier oil since essential oils are undiluted and easily reach the bloodstream by skin absorption resulting in an essential-oil-related injury or worse, death. The same goes for breathing in essential oils among those with lung conditions, such as asthma, bronchitis, and the like.

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