Aromatherapy with essential oils

Whether fragrance lamp, bathtub or body care: Essential oils are not just something for the nose. They should also act on the respiratory tract in general or the skin, fight stress and brighten the mood

How it smells: Essential oils, for example, can be vaporized using such fragrance lamps. Experts recommend "all-natural oils"

© Shutterstock_ValentinaZavrazhina / istock_bgblue

There is a reason why the term aromatherapy is reminiscent of medical treatment. The use of essential oils not only influences our well-being, but is part of herbal medicine. "The principle of action has not yet been fully researched," says pharmacist Sylvia Trautmann from Dresden. "We know from empirical medicine that essential oils work."

Experts recommend natural oils from certified organic cultivation

These are most popular in fragrance lamps, but they can also be dripped into bath water or massaged into the skin. Caution: do not use undiluted.During vaporization, for example, they travel via the nose into the limbic system, the part of the brain in which emotions are processed and reactions of the pituitary gland are triggered. That affects our mood.

Essential oils mostly contain monoterpenes. The chemical compounds can even be detected in the bloodstream, explains the expert. That is why it is important to pay attention to good quality. We recommend oils that are "100 percent natural" and come from certified organic cultivation.

Store essential oils protected from light and not above 25 degrees. Many pharmacies offer special advice on aromatherapy

Sylvia Trautmann, pharmacist from Dresden

© W & B / Sven Döring

Make body oils yourself

If you want to use cosmetics with essential oils, you should check whether you can tolerate them. To do this, apply a drop of it in a little fatty oil on the inside of the elbow. If there is no irritation after 24 hours, the substance can be used in any application, for example in fragrant body oils.

These are easy to make yourself: add 15 to 20 drops of essential oil to 100 milliliters of high-quality vegetable oil such as almond, jojoba or apricot kernel oil. It is best to massage into damp skin immediately after showering.

Aromatic shower creams can also refresh or soothe. It is best to use natural cosmetics. Avoid artificial fragrances - often in cheap, perfumed cosmetic products or candles - they can lead to allergic reactions or headaches.

This is how the flavors work

lavender

sends calming messages to the brain in the event of stress and difficulty falling asleep. Whether in fragrance lamps, baths or in the form of capsules for ingestion.

orange

brightens - like other citrus oils (lemon, tangerine, grapefruit) - the mood. In addition, the fragrance is said to increase the ability to concentrate and memory.

fir

has a balancing effect on restlessness and stress, but also on the airways.

rose

should have an anxiety-relieving and harmonizing effect on the psyche. In cosmetics, the oil stimulates the cells to renew.

peppermint

refreshes and clears the skin in cosmetics. The oil should also - used in medicines - strengthen the immune system and relieve cramps.

Rockrose

was already used in ancient times as an incense for disease prevention. The oil from Cistus creticus clears the air and is said to have an antiviral effect.

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Tip for a full bath: add essential oil to a cup of sea salt or dissolve it in milk or cream. Or use a few drops with fragrance-neutral base oil baths. Do not put in the tub until it is filled with water.

Do not underestimate the effect of the oils. If they are too concentrated, they have a toxic effect on the respiratory tract and nervous system. Better to keep babies and toddlers away. Beware of pregnancy: some oils, such as verbena, can trigger labor.