Can Essential Oils Help Ease Your Anxiety?
Did you know that the most common mental health issues are anxiety disorders? Approximately 40 million adults in the U.S. suffer from anxiety, and women are twice as likely to be affected. When I heard this, I wanted to research if essential oils for anxiety are effective.
Many with anxiety seek treatment through their doctors, which often results in a prescription for medication. This is why anxiety in the U.S. costs about $42 million/year. As with any medication, side effects, drug interactions and withdrawal symptoms are always a concern. This can be especially problematic for mental health medication.
Essential oils have been used safely for years to support health, including mental health and treatment for anxiety.
Essential Oils for Anxiety
Another study found that by diffusing lavender in homes, postpartum women had a significant reduction of postnatal depression and reduced anxiety disorder (source).
Extracted from the peel of the bergamot orange, bergamot oil has a light citrus scent with floral notes. Its scent makes it great to diffuse in your home or office. Not to mention the effects it can have on your mood.
According to this 2015 study, both animal and human trials have found that bergamot helps relieve anxiety, reduce stress, and improve mood.
Vetiver oil is known to promote feelings of calm because it’s rich in sesquiterpenes. This is especially important because sesquiterpenes contain grounding properties. When used on the skin or inhaled, vetiver can help provide a calming and grounding effect on emotions.
After a difficult day, I recommend you apply vetiver to your neck and feet to relax.
4. Ylang Ylang
Many people who suffer from anxiety also have high blood pressure (source). Ylang ylang oil is the go-to essential oil to decrease blood pressure, as well as stress-hormone levels.
Ylang ylang also has uplifting effects, which can help with mood and soothe fears.
I know it seems like I recommend frankincense for everything, but it is known as the “king of essential oils”. Frankincense provides a calm and tranquil energy, as well as spiritual grounding. Because of it’s calming aroma, it’s perfect to help quiet the mind.
Frankincense is also known to relax the nervous system, as well as support healthy nervous system function.
6. Clary Sage
According to research, clary sage can ease tension and help control cortisol levels in women. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone. And, most noteworthy, high cortisol levels may increase your risk of anxiety and depression.
Another study found that clary sage lead to a significant reduction in anxious behavior in animals (source).
Copaiba essential oil has a calming effect when diffused because of its combination of a sweet and woody smell. Many people use it to lighten the mood in the room. Hence, it’s perfect for the office or classroom.
I love to diffuse in my favorite diffuser or add 2-3 drops to my bath.
8. Balance Blend
A proprietary blend by dōTERRA, balance blend is formulated with emotionally beneficial essential oils. As a result, these oils work together to create a sense of calmness and well-being. Balance essential oil blend contains the following oils:
- Spruce Needle – soothes away stress and helps lighten emotions
- Ho Wood – has powerful calming and grounding properties
- Frankincense – promotes relaxation and a positive environment
- Blue Tansy – its fruity aroma helps uplift your mood
- Blue Chamomile – is known for being calm and comforting
The wood-like aroma of Balance will help quiet things down, clear your mind, and help you find tranquility.
In conclusion, these essential oils can be used in three different ways to help ease your anxiety: aromatherapy, ingestion or topically.
Still not convinced? In a recent study by the American College of Healthcare Sciences, 58 hospice patients were given hand massages with an essential oil blend. The essential oil blend consisted of bergamot, frankincense and lavender. All patients who received the aromatherapy hand massage reported less pain and depression (source).
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