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Make your own relaxing steam inhalation blend for insomnia
Combat insomnia with this DIY essential oil blend
The art of aromatherapy (also known as essential oil therapy) has been practiced for about 5000 years by people using extracts from plants and trees in herbal medicine. Essential oils can be used for a wide range of purposes, from clearing up a tight chest and healing wounds, to uplifting the mood and relaxing the body and mind.
In a nutshell, aromatherapy is an art form that involves the inhalation or topical application of aromatic oils extracted from a variety of plants. 'Aroma' refers to the characteristic fragrance of the essential oils, while 'therapy' refers to healing. Whether the essential oils are applied directly to the skin or inhaled, one may either way reap the therapeutic effects!
Focusing specifically on the method of steam inhalation, herbal steams deliver the therapeutic qualities of the essential oils directly to the respiratory tract. The essential oils are detected by the olfactory organ in the nose, which then sends messages through the nervous system to the limbic system - the part of the brain that controls emotions. This stimulation then triggers psychological and emotional effects, resulting in different outcomes depending on which oils were used! Pretty cool, right?
If you suffer from insomnia, steam inhalation is a natural way to help you fall asleep and have a good night's rest. The best part is that it's affordable and comes without the nasty side effects of prescription sleeping pills. Below, you'll find that we have selected the best essential oils to use for insomnia, and have given you a simple step-by-step guide to creating your own steam inhalation blend to help you sleep.
What you'll need
- 4 drops of Lavender Essential Oil: The most popular essential oil for sleep and relaxation. Used as a natural remedy for anxiety, too.
- 3 drops of Roman Chamomile Essential Oil: Commonly regarded as a mild natural tranquilizer. Reduces tension, anxiety, depression and headaches.
- 2 drops of Clary Sage Essential Oil: A natural sedative that provides a calming effect. Reduces stress hormones.
- Medium-sized container
- Boil 2-3 cups of water and remove from heat.
- Add boiled water into a medium-sized container (or into a hand basin).
- Add essential oils into the container or hand basin.
- Position your face above the container of hot water, about 20 cm above.
- Drape a towel over your head and the container/basin, forming a tent.
- Inhale the vapour with slow deep breaths for 5-10 minutes.
The quality of essential oils can vary widely. As a responsible consumer and inhabitant of Earth, it's always recommended to choose essential oils that are organic, eco-friendly and sustainably-sourced! No fragrances, additives or synthetic ingredients should be added to essential oils, and you should always make sure that the product you're buying is 100% natural and pure.
While aromatherapy is a wonderful and powerful healing tool, it is important to use essential oils properly for best therapeutic effect and for your safety! Before using aromatherapy, it's best to educate yourself on the various essential oils, their uses and their contraindications.
- Never ingest essential oils, unless under supervision of a qualified aromatherapist! Essential oils are highly concentrated and can be toxic if used incorrectly.
- You should always dilute essential oils in a carrier or base, such as water or oil.
- Do not attempt to cure or treat any serious disease with aromatherapy.
- Avoid using on pregnant women unless you're fully trained in aromatherapy.
- If you suffer from any medical condition, first research which essential oils are safe and which are contraindicated to your condition.
Caution: Essential oils should not be taken internally. Add to a carrier oil, as a massage oil, rub onto temples, use as a burner oil, in the bath or as a steam inhalation. Essential oils are not recommended during pregnancy, breastfeeding or on small babies.
If you have any health-related questions, please contact us or leave a comment below for FREE advice. We always love hearing from you!