If you have been struggling to sleep, but don’t want to turn to sleeping pills, then this article is just for you. We explain how you can use the art of aromatherapy as a natural way to help lull you to sleep.
Aromatherapy is a term that was first used in the 1920s, although fragrant essential oils extracted from plants have were used for much longer. In fact, records from as long as 6,000 years ago show the use of these oils in cosmetics, perfumes and medicines. The power of these plant oils to relax and heal us is even recognised by health specialists, with Apollo Hospitals, for example, offering aromatherapy and other alternative therapies at their Chennai facility.
You can quickly benefit from the power of essential oils at home, as long as you bear a few simple rules in mind. First, only buy good quality essential oils – avoid those that you see on market stalls, for example, while travelling for medical tourism in India.
When you have your oils, you can decide how you want to use them. You can mix a few drops with water in a spray bottle to spritz around the bedroom or onto your pillow, or warm a little in an oil diffuser to perfume the air. If you would prefer to apply the oil directly to your skin with a massage, you must always to mix your essential oils with a base oil, such as sweet almond, coconut or grapeseed oil. One drop of essential oil per teaspoon of carrier oil is the perfect quantity, and you can mix different essential oils to create a blend that appeals to you.
Now you know how to use the oils, we’ll take a lot at the top five scents which will help you to nod off at night. These essential oils can be used individually, or you could combine two or three of them to make a special bedtime mix.
Perhaps the best known essential oil used to aid sleep is lavender. Extracted from the lavender plant, a purple-flowered herb which grows wild and in gardens around the world, the oil has a clean, fresh and floral fragrance. Choose lavender oil to create a relaxed ambience in your bedroom which will help to soothe you into a deep, restorative sleep.
With a soft, flowery perfume which many people compare to roses, geranium essential oil is considered by aromatherapists to be a good choice for anyone with insomnia relating to stress. It has a remedial action, meaning that it will help you fall asleep without the nasty side effects of sleeping pills. It is also said to create a feeling of comfort, which particularly helpful if you have depression or anxiety.
Often used in its dried form in herbal sleep aids and infusions, chamomile is a top treatment for insomnia. Chamomile essential oil has a sweet, herbal scent and works gently to calm troubled thoughts and feelings of nervousness. Chamomile essential oil is also very helpful if you suffer from nightmares.
Neroli essential oil extracted from the blossoms of bitter orange trees, which are native to the Mediterranean region. The oil is known for its mild tranquilising effects and pleasant orange fragrance and works particularly well for a warm bedtime bath or massage.
Essential oil from the sweet marjoram plant is a healthy addition to any natural sleep aid kit. The aromatic herbal scent has a quietening effect on strong emotions, so it is useful if you can’t sleep after being upset during the day.