This page contains questions that I get asked often.
However, if you have any remaining questions after reading through this page, please do not hesitate to contact me!
Why do I need an Aromatherapist?
Regardless of what your current symptoms are; it is vital that you always do research on any medications, supplements, vitamins, essential oils or any other natural remedies – prior to using them. Whichever method you decide to use to help you achieve your health and wellness goals, it is important to have a thorough understanding (or be under the guidance of someone who does), of how the product will affect your body, any risks or contraindications to be aware of, how long you should take it & how long it should be used for.
An aromatherapist has studied & understands the basic therapeutic properties of essential oils, their individual chemistry & how the various constituents found in each oil affect its safety and efficacy, any cautions or contraindications to medications you are on or medical conditions you may have; in order to help you get to the root of your health & wellness issues – not just mask the symptoms. Even though essential oils are all-natural, they are extremely concentrated substances and can cause harm if used incorrectly. Some people incorrectly believe if they are using a “high quality” “pure” or “therapeutic” brand of essential oils, the safety guidelines do not apply. This is false. Every essential oil that is pure (unadulterated) has therapeutic properties. The term “therapeutic essential oils” is used by companies for marketing. There is no governing body that deems an essential oil as therapeutic quality or not.
As an Aromatherapist, I ask you to fill out several intake forms prior to our consultation. This allows me to review your entire health history, and helps me to see your needs as a whole person (mind, body & spirit), instead of simply masking the symptoms you are experiencing. I will then formulate an effective blend which is tailored to you and your needs, which addresses the root cause that is exacerbating your symptoms. I also provide you with a treatment plan that outlines the ingredients in your blend, the dilution (if applicable), how often you should use it & any lifestyle change recommendations to further help you achieve your health and wellness goals.
If you would like to schedule a consultation with me, click here to see the various aromatic consultations I offer.
What benefits can aromatherapy offer me?
Aromatherapy can be used for many different things, depending on each person’s needs. For example: essential oils can be used to reduce anxiety or agitation, increase quality of life in hospice settings, promote restful sleep, stress reduction, minimize the appearance of scars, smoking cessation, and ease pain (this list is not all-inclusive).
Each essential oil contains many individual constituents; which give each of the different essential oils their various therapeutic properties. Many essential oils offer us multiple therapeutic properties; this is due to the wide variety of constituents contained in each essential oil.
What is aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy is defined as: the holistic therapeutic application of genuine, authentic, plant-derived essential oils for enhancing the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual health of the individual.
Aromatherapy is gaining popularity as more individuals integrate essential oils into their daily lives for self-care and healthcare professionals are beginning to recognize that it is a great holistic complementary therapy for many conditions/ailments.
What are essential oils?
Essential oils are highly concentrated aromatic extracts that are distilled or expressed from a variety of aromatic plant material, including flowers, flowering tops, fruits/zests, grasses, leaves, needles and twigs, resins, roots, seeds, and woods. They are stored inside of plants. Essential oils can be found in either external secretory structures (glandular trichomes – found on the surface of the plant), or internal secretory structures (found inside the plant).
Essential oils are used by plants for various reasons. For plants, essential oils serve to attract insects, repel competing vegetation from growing within its area/zone, protect themselves from various predators, and provide immunity.
How are essential oils produced?
Essential oils are extracted from plants via the processes of distillation or expression (cold pressing).
Distillation is the most common process for extracting essential oils from plants. During this process, the plant material is placed inside the still. Once the still is sealed, steam or water/steam slowly breaks down the plant material to remove the volatile constituents. The constituents then rise upward through a pipe that leads them into the condenser. The condenser cools the rising vapor back into liquid form, the liquid is then collected below the condenser. Water and essential oils do not mix, so the essential oils will be found on the surface of the water where it is siphoned off. On occasion an essential oil is heavier than water; in this case the essential oil would be found on the bottom, rather than the top of the water. The water that is remaining is known as a Hydrosol or Hydrolat. Hydrosols contain water-soluble constituents of the aromatic plant and retain a small amount of essential oil.
Every liter of hydrosol contains between 0.05 and 0.2 milliliter of dissolved essential oil, depending on the water solubility of the plant’s components and the distillation parameters. -Suzanne Catty (2001)
Expression (also known as cold pressing) is an extraction method that is specific to citrus essential oils such as: Sweet Orange, Lemon, Bergamot, Lime and Tangerine. This process involves a pricking/sticking action to release the essential oil. The rind of the citrus fruit is placed in a spiked container that punctures the peel, while the device is rotated. The puncturing of the rind releases the essential oil, that is then collected in an area below the container. The spinning motion separates the majority of the essential oil from the fruit juice, the end process is the same as above.
Is it safe to ingest (eat/drink) essential oils?
Short answer = No! One should never ingest essential oils, unless you are under the supervision of a properly trained/certified aromatherapy professional. Only practitioners that are qualified to diagnose, trained in essential oil pharmacology, and trained to weigh the risks against the benefits should be recommending essential oils for internal ingestion.
I have a medical condition(s) that require prescription medication, is it safe for me to use essential oils?
Yes, it just requires a knowledge of the constituents in each essential oil and any contraindications the oils may have, to create a blend that is safe for you to use. Essential oils are wonderful for many ailments. However, some essential oils do have contraindications with certain medications and/or medical conditions.
To ensure your safety; I have each client fill out intake forms prior to our consultation. I review your forms for any medical conditions, allergies or medications you may be on prior to formulating your blend. I will only use essential oils in your blend that are compatible and safe to use for your unique situation.