One of the best things about essential oils is the variety of ways in which they can be utilized. The three main ways to use essential oils are aromatically, topically and internally. There are certain times and situations that make each one most appropriate. Here’s a little summary of each:
Aromatic use of oils basically means inhaling the aromas from them. Did you know that the nose can distinguish over 5000 smells? Did you also know that we have olfactory receptors throughout the entire body? This helps us to understand how using oils aromatically can have such profound effects on our wellbeing.
Aromatic use can be as simple as taking the lid of an oil bottle and breathing in the aroma. It can also mean putting the oils in a diffuser. The volatile nature of essential oils allows them to be easily evaporated and diffused throughout a large space. Diffusing oils in a room can promote a sense of peace and calm, or can be uplifting, depending on the oil chosen. I also love aromatic use to support clear breathing and healthy respiration, and there are specific oils that I select for that.
Essential oils are safely and easily absorbed by the skin, and can be used on various parts of the body. If I want an oil to work systemically, I’ll apply it to the soles of my feet. The soles of the feet (in the arches) have thin skin, but large pores – two things that help maximize absorption. Essential oils can also be used topically on specific locations for specific areas of need, such as to help soothe muscles, or to help promote healthy skin.
I love topical application for kids and babies too, and this is the primary way I use oils with Valentina. Some oils, such as lavender, I’ll apply neat to the soles of her feet, while others I will put in a roller bottle with some fractionated coconut oil to dilute them. I have a great sleepy time blend with lavender, vetiver, marjoram and cedarwood that is in a roller bottle by the bed. I’ll apply it to the soles of Valentina’s feet before nighty-night time and she sleeps soundly until morning.
It is important to note that not all essential oils are created equal, and therefore not all brands of essential oils are of pure enough quality to be safely used internally. I know that brand I use has strict standards of purity, potency and quality, and therefore I feel very comfortable taking them internally. Having said that, even within that brand, some oils are not appropriate for internal use based on the nature and chemical constituents of the oils.
For the oils that can be used internally, they can either be put in water and drank, or put in an empty capsule and swallowed. I like to take cinnamon to help keep my blood sugar balanced, but it is a very hot, pungent oil. So I prefer to put that one in a capsule. Others, such as fennel or peppermint, I’ll put in some water and drink, and they are great for keeping my digestive system happy.
It is fun getting to know the different oils and how to use them most safely and effectively. Many oils can be used any of the above ways, so then it’s a question of deciding what the goal is of using that oil and the setting. I have a peaceful blend that I’ll diffuse in my office to help keep everyone feeling calm, but if I’m out presenting at a conference, I’ll have a roller bottle of it and will use that on my neck or inner wrists to help me relax a few minutes prior.
If you’d like to learn more about how to use essential oils for your family’s health, drop me a line and I can give you some information to help get you started!