Posted by: sakalaradiance | October 8, 2008

The Seven Best Ways of Using Essential Oils for Health and Healing

From David Crow, founder of Floracopeia and member of the DoshaCare Advisory Board.

1) Inhalations
This is the use of essential oils on hot compress, using diffusers, or onto hot water for inhalation. Standard dose is 10 drops. Best for respiratory and sinus, headaches. Caution: prolonged inhalation of concentrated essential oils can cause headaches, vertigo, dizziness, nausea, and lethargy.

2) Baths
A generally safe does is 5 – 10 drops of milder oils. Put oil on water immediately before entering bath, disperse. Can be mixed with 1/2 to 1 cup sesame oil or milk then poured into bath. A 1/2 ounce bottle is a perfect size for a bath blend. Add 2 or more essential oils using up to 7 or 8 drops to total to carrier oil. Pour this into tub.

Aromatic baths are excellent for skin problems, circulatory problems, respiratory symptoms, stress and nervous tension, insomnia, muscular and menstrual pains.

Caution: overuse of essential oils in the bath can cause irritation. Use only mild, non-irritating oils for bath, such as lavender and clary sage.

3) Compresses
10 drops oil in 4 oz hot water, soak cloth, wrap. Good for bruises, wounds, muscular aches and pains, dysmenorrhea, skin problems.

4) Facial steam

1 – 5 drops on hot water in a pot, cover head with a towel, steam face. Excellent for opening sinuses, headaches, skin treatment.

5) Massage
Pure essential oils are about 70 times more concentrated than the whole plant.
Dilutions are typically 2% – 10%. For adults, a 2.5% dilution is recommended for most purposes. For children under 12, 1% is generally safe.

A 2.5% blend for a 1 ounce bottle of carrier oil is 15 drops of essential oil.
1% = 6 drops per oz
2% = 12
3% = 18
5% = 30
10% = 60

6) Direct Palm Inhalation
Caution: This method of use should only be done with oils that can be safely applied to the skin (see the toxicology and safety section below). Apply 1-2 drops of oil to the palms, rub together gently and inhale deeply. This is an excellent method of use for a quick and easy exposure to the anti-microbial and other therapeutic uses of essential oils.

7) Diffusers
There are various types of diffusers on the market, with different advantages and disadvantages.

Candle diffusers
Usually a heat resistant vessel for water and essential oils, and a heat resistant platform that holds the vessel over a small candle.
Advantages: very simple to use; provides light background fragrancing
Disadvantages: does not produce strong concentration for therapeutic benefits.
Electric heat diffusers
Small absorbent pads are placed inside of a heating chamber with ventilation that allows the aromatic compounds to evaporate into the surrounding air.
Advantages: easy to use; minimal maintenance; can diffuse thicker oils.
Disadvantages: heat damages some aromatic compounds.

Cool air nebulizing diffusers
A system that uses air pressure generated by a compressing unit to vaporize the essential oils. A glass nebulizing bulb serves as a condenser, allowing only the finest particles of the essential oil to escape into the air.
Advantages: strong diffusion maximizes therapeutic benefits in respiratory conditions.
Disadvantages: diffusers need to be cleaned regularly, and tend to clog. More viscous oils cannot be diffused (such as sandalwood or ylang ylang).

Electric heat and cool air nebulizers can be purchased with timers, to produce intermittent diffusion. This reduces the amount of oil consumed, and prevents over-saturation in a room.

Other methods
Adding essential oils to room humidifiers
Essential oil rings places on light bulbs

Interview with David Crow on Open Mind Radio


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