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The power of aromatherapy and pain management

What is Aromatherapy ?

It is the art of using aromas (smells) of flowers, herbs and plants to elicit a response in the body. This can be be using candles, diffusers, bath oils and massage oils.

Aromatherapy can be helpful with the symptoms of Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis and other inflammatory illness. It can also assist to balance the body’s systems and create overall relaxation. The pressure in Aromatherapy is light and relaxing as the massage is to relax the muscles ad calm the nervous system while allowing the essential oils to penetrate the skin.

One of my favourite stories in history which shows the power of Aromatherapy is a story about robbers during the Great Plague of 1722. This quartet used to plunder the bodies of plague victims, as the plague was highly contagious they used to cover themselves in a concoction of herbs and flowers and vinegar which kept them safe from contracting the plague. This concoction was called Four Thieves Vinegar. Although most likely it was the aroma of the Apple Cider Vinegar and Garlic acting as an insect repellent, today we learn that the ingredients they used have bactericidal and antiviral properties and that these ingredients have a powerful effect on the body.

Aromatherapy is the art of using the essential oils obtained from the flowers, herbs and plants , mixing them specific for an ailment for each individual and applying it through massage to be absorbed to the body. Absorption can also be through inhalation and sprays.

When oils are inhaled the sensory information travels from the nose to the limbic system of the brain . The limbic system is responsible for emotional and psychological responses. The limbic system is triggered by nerve impulses and connected to other areas of the brain responsible for secreting hormones and regulating bodily functions. This is why scents trigger memories and can influence your bodily systems and stimulate or relax the different systems. The response of the body to the inhalation of the scent takes place in a matter of seconds.

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