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by C.B Love

aroma1.gifAromatherapy originated in France and is based on the pharmacological properties of essential oils.

Aromatherapy is an increasingly popular form of holistic therapy and is the systematic use of essential oils to improve physical and emotional well-being.

There are some 400 essential oils extracted from plants all over the world. Some of the popular oils used in aromatherapy today include chamomile, lavender, rosemary and tea tree.

These oils are used to treat a number of ailments and are particularly useful for stress-related problems and a variety of chronic conditions.

These natural plant oils are applied in a variety of ways:

· Massage (most used method)
· Baths (add a few drops to warm water)
· Inhalations (not for asthmatics)
I have to say that, as an asthmatic, I would not rule inhalations out. Just make sure you use the correct oils with the correct dosage (remember: LESS IS MORE).

aroma2.gifMy favourite oils are lavender, chamomile, peppermint, neroli, rose (I find it is best to use absolute. Although very pricey it is worth the expense), rosemary (great for muscular pain!), frankincense (wonderful for respiratory problems such as asthma), bergamot, sweet orange and petitgrain. Lavender is so versatile as it can be mixed with virtually any other essential oil. I prefer Roman chamomile to the German one, only because it has a wider range of properties. I use Sweet Almond, Jojoba or Coconut Carrier Oil for massage blends, but these carrier oils are by no means the only ones I would use. Take consideration into the oils you are blending, their purpose and the type of skin you might use the blend on.

I could wax lyrical about aromatherapy since I have found great release in its application but instead I prefer you find out for yourself. I can only recommend you acquire books such as the Complete Illustrated Guide To Aromatherapy by Julia Lawless (an authority, if not THE authority in aromatherapy) from Element Books or Essential Aromatherapy by Carole McGilvery and Jimi Reed (the both of them have written a plethora of guides on holistic therapies and techniques) from Acropolis Books.


aroma3.gifComplete Illustrated Guide To Aromatherapy by Julia Lawless, Element Books
A comprehensive guide which includes a directory of essential oils with properties and use, a detailed index of ailments and treatment, a massage section complete with pictures and directions. Julia Lawless is also the author of The Fragrant Garden.

Essential Aromatherapy by Carole McGilvery and Jimi Reed, Acropolis Books
A very similarly put together book as the one mentioned above. The plus is the excellent section on massages with plentiful of pictures regarding their administration.

Also the The Aromatherapy Bible by Gill Farrer-Halls  from the "Bible" collection from Godsfield Press, I have a few myself, namely the "Crystal Bible", the "Wicca Bible" and my friend Jo's "Meditation Bible". They are a fountain of knowledge for curious minds!

Aqua Oleum – Alec and Julia Lawless
You can find a huge range of high quality essential and carrier oils for a very fair price.

Aromatherapy Council
if you’re looking to get aromatherapy treatment, then the Aromatherapy Council is your first port of call. Whilst an aromatherapist can practice and without having to be AC Registered, I would strongly recommend you seek treatment through a registered practitioner. That way you have someone to turn to should things go wrong. The Aromatherapy Council can help you find registered practitioners.

Mother Nature’s Goodies eBay Shop
I love eBay and I am a regular customer at Mother Nature’s Goodies. Liz runs her shop from home and I highly recommend her products and excellent service.

Home Aroma
I get all my blending bottles from this eBay shop. My favourite ones are the 30ml with droppers. I only go for brown or blue as they’re the best to keep light away from the contents.

I also use a wooden box (or several) to store my oils. They’re a great way to keep them from light and keep organised. I am also currently looking to make my own aromatherapy perfumes and cosmetics, which is yet another aspect of aromatherapy!

I hope you will find as much pleasure in using aromatherapy as I have!