The Whole You
by Wendy Humphris, ROHP
Stress impacts your life in a wide range of ways, and can either be episodic stress, acute stress, or chronic stress.
The most common type of stress is acute stress, which is temporary and usually short-term. Chronic stress is what people experience more over a long-term basis, where it keeps returning whether from the same situation or just because you don’t have a good handle on your stress. Chronic stress is often related to a past trauma that keeps coming back into your life. Then there is episodic stress specifically related to the demands you place on yourself, where it comes back in cycles.
Regardless of the type of stress you have, you might be looking for a way to relieve it, but in a more natural way. Essential oils can provide that for you, by using oils extracted from herbs to help with your stress and find relief.
What Essential Oils Can Do
As you know, essential oils are oils that are extracted from different parts of plants, herbs, and flowers. They can come from the leaves, flower petals, herbs, stems, and so much more. There are different processed used for different types of oils, such as lavender oil being extracted in a different process than say lemon essential oil.
What You Should Know About Essential Oils
If you are new to using essential oils, here are a few tips, tricks, and facts you need to become familiar with before you start using them for stress relief:
There are different ways to use essential oils. There is no single best use for any essential oil. The way you use them come down to preference, and what you are trying to benefit from. For example, using lavender oil is great for sunburns and skin irritations, so naturally you would use it directly on the skin. However, other uses for oils include in a diffuser, in the bath, and even by using them in body and skincare products. The options really are endless.
Skin contact requires diluting the essential oil first. It is really important that you dilute an essential oil before putting it on your skin. Pure essential oils are extremely strong, and much too strong for your skin. It should diluted with a carrier oil, such as grapeseed oil, olive oil, or jojoba oil.
Every oil has multiple health benefits. You will find that many of the oils listed below are not just good for stress relief, but each have their own selection of benefits. Oils might be good for stress relief, along with chronic pain, anxiety and depression, soothing itchy skin, and so much more.
You need to be careful when purchasing essential oils. What you are looking for is “pure” essential oil, not fragrance oil. Make sure you pay close attention to the label and description of the oil, whether purchasing online or in person. If it says fragrance anywhere, put it back and find something that mentions it is 100% pure essential oil.
The Best Essential Oils for Stress Relief
If you are interested in using essential oils to help relieve your stress, here are some of the best ones:
Lavender – Lavender is definitely one of the most popular essential oils in general, but can also be amazing for stress, improving your sleep, and reducing anxiety. Lavender is very calming and soothing, helping to relax you, whether you are dealing with a lot of stress in your life, or just want to wind down after a long day.
Frankincense – Frankincense, like all essential oils, has many health benefits. It can be good for reducing inflammation in the body, relieving chronic pain, and yes, helping with stress. It has been used in many essential oil blends aiming at helping with stress and anxiety.
Ylang Ylang – When you look at different essential oils and blends that are recommended for stress and anxiety, you will probably see ylang ylang each and every time. This essential oil really helps to calm and relax your nervous system, which can help with the heightened levels of stress you are experiencing.
Lemon – Lemon is great because it not only helps with stress and anxiety thanks to the light sedative qualities it has, but it can be great for waking you up and helping with fatigue. For this reason, it is a great essential oil to use in the morning if you wake up with anxiety, but you also want to be more alert to take on the day.
Chamomile – This one is likely not surprising, since chamomile tea is often recommended for relaxation and to promote better sleep. Try a little chamomile essential oil or go the traditional route and have the tea to reduce your stress levels.
Wendy Humphris, ROHP
I’m a holistic nutritionist and I transform health for a living.