Hey there, sweet friends and welcome back! Today I have a special guest for you all and I am so excited! You likely know, or should know, that I am obsessed with my essential oils and believe everyone should have them in their home. When Carrie told me how she felt about using essential oils with her family, and offered to write about it, I was thrilled. I love seeing how other moms use essential oils. There is always so much to learn! So, please help me welcome Carrie Willard to Just A Simple Home!
How I use Essential Oils for emotional well-being
Aromatherapy has become more popular lately among mothers, and for good reason – it works! Aromatherapy dates back to ancient times. Essential oils are even mentioned in the Bible, where oils were highly prized for perfume and therapeutic value.
Essential oils can alter mood because of their action on the brain, (source) and they are used to support a variety of ailments common to children (and moms!). One of the more common uses of aromatherapy is to support our emotional well being, especially in the fight against stress, depression and anxiety.
Aromatherapy for Mood Control
Aromatherapy is ideal for anxiety or depression sufferers who don’t want to use prescription drugs. While aromatherapy alone won’t fix what’s wrong with your life, it can provide some relief so you can better deal with whatever’s stressing you. Then you can take appropriate action.
It also works well for those who are dealing with a lot of stress or emotionally challenging situations. When I was hospitalized with a high-risk pregnancy two years ago, I brought oils with me. I used them to spray around the room to clean, as EOs have antibacterial and antiviral properties. I also needed the mood lift they provided, as bedrest has a depressive effect.
There are several essential oils that have helped me get through my anxiety, stress and depression. I keep blends on my nightstand so that I can use them before bed. Here are some of the most popular choices for mood control.
* Lavender – This is one of the most popular oils. Its scent is very pleasant to most people, and it works as a sedative and analgesic (meaning pain reliever – one reason why it shows up in the birthing room so often!). I’ve used it while in labor, for teething babies and on myself for earache. I also use lavender in a diffuser when my kids are hyper, when I’m stressed or I feel it’s going to be a challenging day.
* Sandalwood – This oil is well known for its effectiveness against stress.
* Patchouli – Patchouli oil is a mood enhancer, and it is also used as an aphrodisiac.
* Vanilla – This is another scent that many people love, and it also has a calming effect. Vanilla also has the reputation of making your man feel very happy. Use at your own risk (Or perhaps combine the last two if you’re trying to have another baby!).
* Clary sage or rosemary can be used for studying when you need to focus – great for those with attention challenges.
*Lemon and peppermint are great if you need an energy boost. (If you’re nursing, be careful with smelling or eating mint as it may lower supply.)
How to Use Aromatherapy for Mood Control
For quick results, you can just take a whiff of any of the above essential oils. This can help you calm down when you’re facing an intensely stressful situation. Some other ways to use aromatherapy include:
* Diffusers and aroma lamps
If you want your entire family to take advantage of the effects of aromatherapy, a diffuser or aroma lamp will scent your home with your favorite essential oil. These are great to use around bedtime to help everyone unwind.
They’re also wonderful if you have a sick person in the house – since essential oils are antibacterial and antifungal, they’re ideal for use in a sick room. Also great if you have a teething baby fighting sleep.
* Baths – Who doesn’t love a nice warm bath at the end of the day to reduce tension? Aromatherapy makes it even better. Add five or six drops of your favorite essential oil to the water.
* Massages – A massage can help loosen tense muscles and improve brain chemistry to ward off anxiety. Aromatherapy oils can be used to make massage oils to maximize the benefit. Just add ten drops of the essential oil to an ounce of a carrier oil appropriate for your skin type.
As long as they are properly diluted before using on the skin, essential oils are very safe. Along with strategies like keeping gratitude journals, exercise, diet and deep breathing techniques, aromatherapy is another excellent strategy for controlling your mood.
Carrie Willard is a homeschooling mom of 7 who writes at CarrieWillard.com about managing the large family on her blog. She is passionate about moms taking time for what feeds their soul. Her free ecourse will help you find time for your goals and dreams during the busy child-rearing years.
*Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.