Aromatherapy is the therapeutic use of essential oils. An essential oil is an aromatic essence distilled from a single botanical source. Essential oils have many different effects on the body, mind, and soul. Some have an analgesic and antispasmodic effect, while most are antibacterial. Essential oils can be sedative or stimulating and can aid in skin care and wound healing. There are many different ways of using essential oils therapeutically – baths and saunas, foot baths, inhalations, compresses, creams or lotions, and perhaps the most common and relaxing way through aromatherapy massage.
How does it help?
Some of the popular massage techniques that can be used in conjunction with aromatherapy are:
This method of massaging was developed by the Swede Professor Ling. It is beneficial to promote the feeling of well-being and also helps to reduce emotional and physical stress.
Neuromuscular massage forms the basis of aromatherapy massage and evolved from the work of Stanley Leif. The overall effect of this massage is to restore the balance of the autonomic nervous system.
This massage helps to improve the flow of lymph and can also be incorporated into aromatherapy massage. Lymph drainage massage is particularly useful in detoxifying the body and boosting the immune system.
Acupressure massage and Shiatsu.
This method of massage focuses on the meridians of the body and aims to relieve blockages of these meridians by massaging vital pressure points. It can be performed while the person is fully clothed and requires no needles such as in acupuncture.
In reflexology, the focus is placed on manipulating and massaging certain points on the feet and other parts of the body, that are said to directly affect internal organs. Massaging of these points is said to improve the functions of the corresponding organs in the body.
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