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How to use Essential Oils

HOW DO I USE ESSENTIAL OILS?

There are lots of ways to use essential oils, depending on your needs and desired effect! We encourage you to read and learn about the many ways essential oils can be of benefit to you.

Below are some basic guidelines, but in no way is this list complete. Explore, discover, learn, and enjoy! 

 

INHALATION

Has mainly a psychological effect through the limbic system and neuroendocrine functions. This helps balance moods, feelings and mental functions, as well as energy levels in general. Inhalation can contribute to hormonal balance, especially in women, by modulating the functions of the many brain centers. Once the action of an oil has cleared the limbic system, it tends to selectively modulate other areas, such as the temporal lobes (which tend to dysregulation), the basal ganglia (which tend to either hyper- or hypo-functioning), the cingulate system and the prefrontal cortex. Different oils will affect different brain centers and tend to balance different peptides (i.e. neurotransmitters and hormones) such as serotonin, dopamine, GABA, and so on, which ultimately affects core metabolic glands such as the adrenals, gonads, thyroid and their hormones. 

 

INHALATION METHODS: 

Dry Inhalation:

  • Put a few drops of the oil or blend on a tissue and inhale deeply.
  • Drop 1-3 drops onto a cotton ball, put it in a ziplock bag and inhale the scent whenever needed; e.g. when driving, traveling, and so on.

 

Steam Inhalation:

  • Drop 1-2 drops onto a wet washcloth in the shower or bath, cup over your nose and inhale.
  • Drop 2-3 drops into a basin or bowl of hot water, place a thick towel over your head to form a tent and inhale — for sinus, ear and chest conditions.

 

Diffuser:

  • Drop 3-8 drops into the water for any diffuser with a heat source or with the ultrasonic diffuser.

 

 

TOPICAL APPLICATIONS

Have a physiological effect on the skin and muscles, and a psychological effect as the evaporating oils are inhaled. The skin and lymph selectively absorb essential oil components, which primarily exert a beneficial influence on those local functions and tissues. In addition, certain oil constituents are also absorbed into the bloodstream, but the amount and actual content seems to vary greatly. This would depend on the absorbability of the oil and carrier medium used, as well as the type, thickness and condition of the skin and muscle tissue it is applied to.

 

Topical spot application of an oil in addition can exert an energetic effect if applied over an active acupoint, reflex zone or other particular body zone. This energetic action varies on the point and the oil selected and forms the basis for the use of essential oils on an acupuncture-based model, for instance. The mechanism of action again involves the body's basic communication system, peptide activity, which is also greatly (although not exclusively) involved in acupuncture stimulation with needles. 

  

TOPICAL METHODS:

Perfume:

  • Put 1 drop of the essential oil or essential oil blend in a dab of lotion and apply to skin. 

 

Bath:

  • First dilute 4-8 drops in some milk or a vegetable oil and then swish into a warm bath. This is especially important to avoid skin irritation or sensitization.

 

Foot bath:

  • Put 4-8 drops directly into the hot water and soak the feet for 10 minutes.

 

Massage:

  • Blend a total of 5-10 drops per 10 ml of carrier oil (this is a 2.5-5% dilution). A lotion can also be used as a base.

 

Facial towel:

  • Put 2-4 drops in a bowl of hot water and stir; soak a washcloth in the water briefly, wring out to remove excess water and apply to the face for a minute or two. This will relax the facial muscles and open the pores. Facial towels are very useful before cleansing or at the beginning of facial work in general.

 

Therapeutic Liniment:

  • Use 10-20 drops per 10 ml of vegetable carrier oil (a 5-10% dilution) and massage into the problem area (e.g. the feet, shoulders, nape, forehead, abdomen, low-back, an so on). Coconut, apricot kernel and sweet almond oil are the best carrier oils for liniments and massage as the skin readily absorbs them.

 

Precautions: To prevent skin irritation or sensitization, never use essential oils or blends undiluted on the skin, and always avoid contact with the eyes and mucous membranes. Discontinue use immediately if any irritation occurs. 

Never take single or blended essential oils internally. Always keep the bottles out of reach of infants and children. Check with your health-care practitioner about using single or blended essential oils during pregnancy, postpartum, and when medical conditions (e.g., epilepsy, hypertension, etc.) are present.