At Aromatic Apothecary we only ever look to nature for the ingredients of our products, yet many people wonder how essential oils help with pain relief and if it is not better to rather take synthetic medication to manage pain.
Essential oils have an effect on emotions when inhaled and physically when absorbed through the skin. Many essential oils have various pain relief properties, whilst some essential oils have an actual physical effect – some are anti-inflammatory and some stimulate detoxification, while others work by improving circulation.
ANTI INFLAMMATORY AND IMPROVED CIRCULATION
Essential oils such as peppermint with its high menthol content have been shown to alleviate rheumatic pain, headaches and other inflammatory conditions in the body. Peppermint oil has a cooling effect on the applied area – similar to an ice pack. Likewise oils with warming properties such as ginger are an irritant to an area and therefore warm up the area, bringing fresh blood supply and improved waste removal.
Therefore one of the best ways to treat muscle or joint pain is to alternate cooling and warming applications. If the cooling and warming oils are combined in one preparation the antagonistic effects give very effective pain relief. Our recommendation is applying peppermint oil to the problem area as a cooling function as well as Ginger oil as a warming function.
Circulatory stimulation gives rise to an automatic improvement of fresh blood supply to an area and removal of toxins or excretory substances. An example that best shows the benefit of improved circulation is the removal of lactic acid in muscles post exercise after application of certain essential oils. The lactic acid build up after exercise and can cause cramping so it is best to massage the combination of oils, to remove the acid buildup.
Aside from quick pain relief for sports injuries or joint pain, today more and more nurses and doctors are incorporating soothing and comfort care into their standard clinical care regime within hospital environments for patients with longterm illnesses. Because essential oils can be used for the relief of pain and suffering, aromatherapy is a perfect and healthy option for pain management.
Other more general pain relieving oils shown to have an effect are camomile and lavender. Many experiments have been done to show how these oils soothe painful areas after application. Their actions are also anti- inflammatory and alleviate surface or skin pain from burns, for example.
YOUR PAIN RELIEF ESSENTIAL OIL GUIDE
If you’re looking for the best essential oils for pain relief, here is a quick guide:
Ginger – warms the muscles
Rosemary – stimulates circulation and therefore oxygen
Peppermint – cools
Lavender – anti-spasmodic, relaxes muscles and contains pain relief properties
Arnica – helps with bruising and inflammation, improves circulation and prevents build up of lactic acid after sport
Menthol – for deep penetration. Also adds to the cooling effect contrasting the warming of Ginger and Rosemary.
Take a look at our Pain relief products that contain combinations of the above for maximum pain relief. Without resorting to a pill…