|This month I’m going to talk about some of the most important oils that appear in a typical aromatherapist’s toolkit. Around one hundred different oils are commonly available and these range from the exotic, such as frankincense and myrrh, through to the more commonplace aromas, like lemon and cinnamon.|
Despite this vast choice, you’re only likely to experience a small number of oils during a typical aromatherapy session, unless of course you’re suffering from a particular complaint that can only be satisfactorily dealt with by something special.
One oil that you’re almost certain to encounter during a massage is lavender, which can be used to tackle a large number of ailments. Its fresh, sweet, floral aroma with a slight underlying fruitiness is a welcome fragrance whether you suffer from acne or allergies, asthma or athlete’s foot. It’s also effective against depression, headaches and stretch marks.
The fresh, herbaceous, sweet and slightly medicinal aroma of rosemary is another olfactory delight that is commonly used by aromatherapists. This is a popular option for sports massages as it’s excellent for soothing aching muscles. But that’s not all. Neuralgia, poor circulation and rheumatism are just some of the common problems for which we use rosemary.
The aroma of chamomile, familiar to herbal tea drinkers everywhere, is the third of our most common oils.
Its fruity, crisp sweetness is especially effective against skin complaints, such as inflamed skin, insect bites, abscesses and dermatitis. In addition, it’s often used to tackle a number of allergies, PMS, nausea and arthritis.
Finally, eucalyptus, with its fresh, woody and earthy scent, is popular for use against a number of everyday complaints, such as colds, coughs, fever and flu. Maybe that’s why koala bears always look so healthy!
Although these are possibly the four most common oils that are used during massage, an aromatherapist should always ask about your general medical condition before your session so that she can prescribe the most effective oil for you. And don’t forget, you can always ask your aromatherapist if you have any more questions about the oils she has selected.
Nina Downes LLSA