You may have experienced mood-altering essential oils before, but you may not be aware of the science behind it.
What is the reason why inhalation lavender helps so many people relax? This question has been confusing to many, so our Resilient experts decided to describe how essential oils work in the brain.
An understanding of how aromatherapy works can not only allow you to better use essential oils, but also better appreciate the therapeutic benefits of aromatherapy.
What happens when you inhale essential oils?
When essential oils are inhaled, their aromas are first processed by the olfactory bulb located inside the nose. The olfactory bulb is connected to the limbic system, which affects emotions and memory. Aromas stimulate the amygdala, which affects mood and emotions, whether positive or negative.
How can we determine that essential oils can affect mood and the brain?
Many studies have shown that essential oils can affect our mood. According to the National Cancer Institute, "studies have repeatedly shown that odors have specific effects on our autonomic and neuropsychological function, and can affect mood, health perception and level of 'awakening. This research suggests that odors may be therapeutic in the context of stress and other psychological disorders. »
- A recent study conducted by the University of Lorraine showed promising evidence that orange oil reduced symptoms of PTSD in mice.
- Lavender essential oil has been shown to decrease pre-surgery anxiety in patients undergoing outpatient surgery in a study conducted by the Department of Health Care, Paris III in 2019.
- A 2017 study conducted by The Republic Korea found that aromatherapy was able to reduce stress and tension experienced by intensive care patients.
- Ylang Ylang helped improve the self-esteem of 34 nurses from the Brazilian nursing team. It also showed promise as an aid in relieving chest palpitations in a 2015 study.
What are some examples of essential oils that can alter mood?
Much of what we have learned about essential oils comes from a variety of studies and research and Olfactotherapy trainer.
For example, essential oils from the Cupressaceae plant family have been shown to decrease stress and anxiety (i.e. cypress, blue cypress).
Essential oils in the chemical family of monoterpenols (eg, clary sage, geranium, lavender, neroli) and sesquiterpenols (eg, cedarwood, sandalwood, patchouli) are generally emotionally balanced and grounding.
As researchers continue to study the effects of essential oils on our brains, we as consumers are becoming more confident in the benefits essential oils provide us in our daily lives.