Hi Mystic Moments, it seems life has piled on a lot of stress in a short space of time, leaving me feeling somewhat depressed. It certainly doesn’t feel like there is light at the end of the tunnel. Do you know of any aromatherapy methods I could try, to help get myself back on track?
James, 24 from Birmingham
Hi James, so glad you felt comfortable enough to discuss such a taboo subject. Your mental health should be of utmost importance, so please do use the advice I’m about to give you. If there are no apparent signs of improvement, please don’t be afraid to go and see a Doctor. Regardless of stigmas attached, mental health is just as important as physical health.
Depression is one of the most common mental disorders around the world, and together we can fight it. There are numerous causes as well. Chronic stress, emotional problems from the past, hormonal imbalances, alcohol, poor diet causing nutritional deficiencies, lack of sun exposure, toxins in the body and food allergies are all contributing causes.
Luckily, there are natural remedies for depression out there, which include the use of certain essential oils.
How they work
The chemicals in essential oils can interact with the body through being absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream or stimulating areas of the brain through inhalation.
When specialised nerve cells in the upper part of the nose detect smells, they send an impulse to the brain along the olfactory nerve to an area called the olfactory bulb.
The olfactory bulb processes the impulse and delivers the information about the smell to other neighbouring areas of the brain. These other areas are known as the limbic system.
The limbic system is a set of brain structures that are thought to play an essential role in controlling behaviour, emotions, memory, and mood.
The Top Essential Oils to Combat Depression.
The most well-known oil on the list and for a good reason too. There are plenty of different variants to choose from, ranging from Lavender French to English. Research has proven that lavender can help combat depression and alleviate insomnia and anxiety. Lavender essential oil is notoriously known for its calming scent which makes it an excellent tonic for anxiety issues. It can also help in treating migraines, headaches, depression, emotional stress and nervous tension.
This incredibly sweet and floral aroma has incredible benefits and is known to help promote hormonal balance. Hormonal unbalances are known to cause mood swings, irritability and depression so keeping them balanced is very important. Ylang Ylang oil can help curb the negative thoughts associated with depression. To top it off the oil is also a mild sedative which can help to lower overall stress levels and promote calmness.
Grapefruit oil is proven to normalise neuroendocrine hormone levels as well as improve immune function. When used in aromatherapy grapefruit essential oil can stimulate the senses and is a fantastic oil for alleviating mental exhaustion and fatigue. Its overpowering citrusy scent helps to elevate low moods and energise both mind and body.
Cedarwood essential oil has a calming and soothing effect on the mind and body making it an excellent mood stabiliser. This wonderful woody aroma is also a useful natural sedative. The scent of the oil triggers the release of serotonin in the brain, which is then converted to melatonin which encourages a better night’s rest. Cedarwood is also excellent for attaining higher levels of concentration, so you’ll be able to focus on what is essential in your day to day life.
Roman chamomile essential oil has been used as a mild sedative to calm nerves and reduce anxiety by inducing a mode of relaxation. That’s the reason why chamomile is so widely used in teas, candles and aromatherapy products. Like German Chamomile, Roman Chamomile oil has a floral, herbaceous scent and is well known for the calming effects it has on the mind and body.
Turmeric essential oil is considered to be a potent relaxant and balancer, and studies have shown that it can help fight against two common mood disorders, depression and anxiety. Turmeric is a deep, yellowy orange root and hails from the same family as ginger. Curcumin, the main constituent of turmeric, helps to boost levels of brain-derived neurotrophic factor or BNDF in the brain that can cause depression. Curcumin has been found to stop and even possibly reverse the effects that low levels of BNDF can cause. Overall it is excellent at improving general mood and evoking positive feelings.
The great aroma of sandalwood oil is a definite mood lifter! The essential oil has a warm, woody, calming fragrance. The scent of the oil has a powerful therapeutic effect on the brain's limbic system, and the oil is an excellent emotional balancer. You'll often find it in incense, and it is great to diffuse when meditating as it helps increase mental clarity and focus. The oil also has sedative properties which allow it to enhance sleep quality and alleviate depression.
Basil oil is known to be uplifting, which makes it useful for lowering symptoms of anxiety or fear. Fatigue is a major stumbling block for many depression sufferers so since basil oil helps to minimise sluggishness it can directly contribute to reducing these adverse symptoms of depression. The scent of the oil has a powerful therapeutic effect on the brain's limbic system, and the oil is an excellent emotional balancer. Basil has been used for centuries to help people deal with racing thoughts and overwhelming feelings; you can diffuse basil oil at home to relax and unwind.
Orange essential oil is a potent anti-depressant and fantastic at energising and lifting the mood. Research shows that orange oil is both “uplifting” and “calming,” making it an excellent scent for brightening your day. Orange oil is extracted from the orange peel and contains geraniol, alpha-pinene, and limonene, which are all known to have antidepressant effects. With its energising scent, orange oil creates feelings of happiness, increases energy levels and helps elevate the mood.
Patchouli is a fantastic mood-lifting oil, and its delightful earthy aroma can help to decrease feelings of sadness and hopelessness and replace them with feelings of positivity and hope. Patchouli oil is commonly used in aromatherapy because of its antidepressant properties. Inhaling Patchouli encourages the release of serotonin and dopamine; the pleasure hormones in the brain, which can directly alleviate feelings of depression, anxiety and stress.
You have plenty of oils to choose from James with all being equally as great. Here at Mystic Moments, we take mental health very seriously, so much so we have also formulated a pack of five essential oil blends which definitely contain some of the oils mentioned above.
This pack includes the following blends:
If you’re struggling to cope with day to day tasks or just finding it difficult to tackle each day as it comes along, this is the blend for you. The combination of oils in the Anxiety Blend are reputed to assist in reducing issues caused by anxiety. It’s time to stop dreading life and embrace it.
Contains: Bergamot (Citrus Bergamia Melarosa), Lavender (Lavandula Officinalis), Rosewood (Aniba Rosaeodora) and Ylang Ylang (Cananga Odorata).
The Confidence Blend contains oils to help fill you with confidence. Whether you have a big presentation coming up or have some last-minute nerves before a date with the person of your dreams, let this combination of quality oils make your dreams become a reality.
Contains: Ginger (Zingiber Officinalis), Lemon (Citrus Limonum), Lime (Citrus Aurantifolia), Peppermint (Mentha Arvensis) and Ylang Ylang (Cananga Odorata).
The Happiness Blend contains oils that can help bring you back to your old self, the happy-go-lucky, care-free you. With rich and scintillating tones this blend can get your million-dollar smile back in no time.
Contains: Chamomile (Anthemis Nobilis), Clary Sage (Salvia Sclarea), Grapefruit (Citrus Paradisi), Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia) and Orange (Citrus Sinensis).
The Peace Blend contains oils to help you rekindle your tranquil side. It’s time to sit back and relax with this exceptional blend and let your peaceful nature surface.
Contains: Cedarwood (Juniperus Virginiana), Lavender (Lavandula Angustifolia), Marjoram (Origanum Marjorana), Spearmint (Mentha Spicata) and Ylang Ylang (Cananga Odorata).
The Revitalise Blend contains oils to help get you back on track and in gear. Containing specially tailored essential oils with one focus – to leave you bursting with energy. So if you’re feeling lethargic and tired let Revitalise work it’s magic!
Contains: Clove (Syzygium Aromaticum), Grapefruit (Citrus Paradisi), Orange (Citrus Sinensis), Palmarosa (Cymbopogon Martinii) and Ylang Ylang (Cananga Odorata).
Here are the best methods for scent inhalation:
• Inhale the scent directly from the oil’s bottle.
• Dab a few drops of the essential oil onto a cotton ball and inhale directly.
• Add several drops of the oil to a diffuser and inhale indirectly.
• Create an aromatherapy bath by adding several drops of essential oil to a carrier oil and then adding this to the bathtub.
• Enjoy an aromatherapy massage by adding a few drops of the essential oil to either Almond Sweet or Apricot Kernel carrier oil.
• You can even add a few drops to your shower, which is especially useful if using the citrus oils.
When we are free of depression, anxiety, excessive stress and worry, addictions, and other psychological problems, we are more able to live our lives to the fullest. Peace of mind is a natural condition, and is available to everyone. I hope this helps James, and you feel a lot better soon.
Peace Out x
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