Aromatherapy for Migraines
A popular holistic healing treatment around for centuries, aromatherapy uses plant extracts to encourage well-being and treat a wide range of conditions, including migraines. Also referred to as essential oil therapy, aromatherapy uses highly-concentrated liquids (essential oils) extracted from various parts of the plant. These powerful oils are made from the leaves, stems, flowers, bark, and other aspects of plants, creating a potent oil most effective when applied topically.
Essential Oils for Relief
There are many wonderful benefits of essential oils, from reducing stress to promoting sleep and calming the brain. Essential oils were first introduced by the Chinese more than 6,000 years ago, but only recently has aromatherapy become very popular across western cultures – and for good reason.
There are many ways to use these mighty oils for migraine relief, from applying them directly to the temples, forehead, back of neck, or bottom of feet to inhaling the fragrance through a diffuser. As with everything, it’s important to do your research and understand how to properly use them before diving in.
How to Use Essential Oils
Essential oils should always be diluted in a carrier oil before applying topically. Some of the best carrier oils include coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil, and jojoba oil. As a rule of thumb, five drops of concentrated essential oils should be added to one ounce of carrier oil before applying. Never ingest essential oils or apply them directly to skin without diluting them first.
Which Essential Oils Work Best?
If you’ve ever looked at your local natural health store, you’ve probably seen just how many choices you have. Remember, different oils have different benefits – so don’t just pick a random oil and hope for the best! We know stress is one of the main migraine triggers, which is why many of the oils on our list have stress-relieving properties.
Peppermint – Peppermint oil is a popular go-to for migraine sufferers, as it works wonders to relieve pain, reduce nausea, and relax the body. Menthol – the primary ingredient in peppermint oil – works to increase blood and oxygen flow, which is important for reducing migraine symptoms.
Lavender – If your migraines are triggered by stress, lavender oil may be a good option. Not only does it act as a natural stress-reliever, it can also help with migraine pain.
Eucalyptus – People who have migraines because of sinus issues should consider using eucalyptus essential oil, as it helps clear the nasal passages and relieve sinus tension.
Rosemary – Rosemary is a favorite amongst herbalists because of its anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. When used, you may notice an immediate calming effect, and it also acts as a stress-reducer.
Chamomile – Another essential oil with anti-inflammatory properties, chamomile essential oil relaxes the body and can help treat tension headaches, as well as other types of migraines.
Sandalwood – Sandalwood is celebrated for its ability to improve mental clarity while promoting relaxation at the same time. When used for migraines, sandalwood can relieve pain help the body and mind unwind.
There are many wonderful benefits of essential oils, if they are used responsibly. If you suffer from migraines and are curious about aromatherapy, please call 203-840-0000 for a phone consultation or schedule an appointment with me to talk through your questions and concerns.