Before I share with you my favorite essential oils for dealing with stress, and a few way’s you can use them, let’s first analyze that big, bad, but ever so commonly known word — “Stress”. Can we avoid it or at least minimize its existence? And just how bad does it affect us, hindering our attempts at a healthy mind and body.
Symptoms of Stress on the Mind & Body:
Times sure have changed as far as the cause of stress. Long long ago, the causes of stress were probably due to survival — protecting ones self from harsh elements (hoping that mud hut holds up!), hunting for dinner, or hoping there was a good harvest else starvation. Sure, times have changed to an extent, or maybe “survival” just comes in a different form. Job insecurity, a horrible boss, worries of paying the bills, making the right decisions for our children, divorce, etc…are more twenty-first century style of stress.
The Short Term effects of stress include: insomnia, headaches, sweating, weight-gain, constipation, diarrhea, heart palpitations, stomach disorders, tired skin, recurrent infections.
The Long Term effects of stress include: depression, migraines, chest pains, high blood pressure, continuous insomnia, chronic stomach disorders, heart disease, stokes, cancer…the list is endless!
Nature’s Stress Busters:
Before reaching for medicine or other “liquid cure’s” (not that a glass of vino from time-to-time is out of the question:-) to deal with stress, there are a few things that mother nature has given us to help keep away or even cure stress and it’s devastating effects.
- Exercise – as we all know is hugely beneficial in this department. A quick jog, a walk in nature, dancing, and laughing (yes, laughing can be great abdominal exercise!). It helps improve self-image stimulating the production of feel-good brain chemicals.
- Massage – reduces the level of cortisol (stress hormone), and increases serotonin and dopamine (feed-good brain chemicals) in the body.
- Volunteering – giving of our time to someone else = self-satisfaction! Need I say more!
- Essential oils – smelling an essential oil or applying it into the skin relieves tension, anxiety, and muscular tension.
3 Essential Oils for Stress:
There are so many essential oils that work wonders with stress, finding which one smells good to you and gives you the sought after soothing effect, is essential. I love my Natural Skincare hobby, the aroma of essential oils permeating my surroundings, puts be in a very chilled out mood and gives me that feel-good brain chemical. It’s a great way to be productive in the work area. I would highly recommend dipping into the world of these magical oils. Of course Caution is advised as they are pretty potent potions! My favorites are:
- Roman Chamomile
I like these 3 as they’re pretty easy to find and are gentle on the skin. You can either put a few drops into a warm bath, in a burner/vaporizer/diffuser, or a carrier oil for a massage. I even drop a few oils throughout my house as a natural house freshener, or in my car.
For a Massage:
Choose a carrier oil (grape seed, sweet almond, sunflower are all easily absorbed, and affordable), and your chosen essential. Mix 1-2 drops of essential oil per teaspoon/5 mls of carrier oil.