Australian households spend hundreds of dollars on remedies and medicines to treat minor ailments like headaches, colds, flu and muscular aches. Essential oils can help provide relief to many common complaints in a natural and holistic way. By using the oils instead of or in conjunction with western remedies, you can save money and stop the bathroom cabinet from getting cluttered with items you rarely use.
The basic aromatherapy first aid kit should contain the following oils:
Primarily it is an oil to relax, calm and soothe, lavender oil has a multitude of healing properties. A drop of diluted lavender oil on the temples can help a headache. Used neat on small burns and cuts can aid healing. Lavender in a vaporiser in the bedroom can promote deep sleep.
Another soothing oil, chamomile mixed in with some jojoba oil can comfort stressed skin. Used in a vaporiser it, like lavender, it can promote sound sleep and calm anxiety. Chamomile is one of the few oils that can be used around children safely.
Yet, although these oils are natural products they need to be treated with respect. Care needs to be taken as their misuse can cause irritation or worse. Oils should not be used neat on the skin (unless it’s Tea Tree or lavender oil in minute portions on pimples or very small wounds). For massage blends, mix no more than six drops of essential oil to 20 millilitres of carrier oil. For bathing, four to six drops is all you need to use.
Eucalyptus is one of the strongest decongestants known. For chest colds, place a few drops in boiling water and use as a steam inhalation. Mixing some Rosemary oil in with the Eucalyptus can help clear the head further.
Nature’s antibiotic Tea Tree oil can be used to ease sore throats by gargling one drop of oil in a glass of warm water (be careful not to swallow).
For cleaning wounds, bathe them in a drop of tea tree oil mixed with a cup of hot water. A drop of tea tree oil neat on pimples can help clear them quickly.
Rosemary is known for its warming properties and is a great help to ease sore muscles and aching joints. Soaking in a warm bath with four to six drops of rosemary can relieve muscular and arthritic pain.
Peppermint is good for stomach problems. For stomach aches, massage the stomach in a clockwise direction with one or two drops of peppermint oil mixed with carrier oil. Peppermint oil is also good for the relief of stress headaches and tiredness. These oils can provide relief for many other minor complaints. Aromatherapy’s major attraction is that is provides natural relief to complaints rather than using man-made chemicals.
As with any medication, oils should be used with care. Oils must be kept away from children and kept in a cool, dark place. Their use should be avoided during pregnancy or if you are on medication, especially for epilepsy. If you have any concerns, please speak to your doctor or a qualified aromatherapist.”
- Panda Pearson, Aromatherapist and Holistic Healer