Aromatherapy involves the use of extracts from flowers and plants to improve or cure various physical and psychological ailments.
The History of Aromatherapy:
Aromatherapy began over 6,000 years ago when the Egyptians began using certain oils for medicinal and burial purposes. Throughout the years, aromatherapy has been used by many major civilizations, including the Greeks, Romans, Chinese, and Native Americans. Aromatherapy was also used during numerous world events, such as The Black Plague, World War I, and World War II.
The term was first created in 1930 by French chemist, Rene Maurice Gattefosse. After burning his arm during an explosion in a perfume factory, Gattefosse recognized the healing powers of lavender oil. As a result, lavender oil was used to treat injured soldiers during the Second World War.
Types of Aromatherapy:
Aromatherapy can be experienced in different ways. The three types of aromatherapy are Massage, Olfactory, and Cosmetic.
- Massage – One way that aromatherapy can be experienced is by having essential oils applied directly to the skin through massage. The direct external application of oil helps to kill germs and bacteria, and also increases resistance to illness by improving the immune system. The massage itself is beneficial in helping the patient to relax and to create a feeling of rejuvenation. Massage therapy also helps to reduce depression and to calm nerves and tension.
- Olfactory – The inhalation of oils causes a chemical reaction in the body, which releases certain chemicals, such as Enkephalin, Endorphins, and Serotonin. The release of such chemicals causes a feeling of relaxation. The scent of the oil can aid in relieving stress and experiencing complete rejuvenation.