Essential oils for Sleep and Anxiety
If you are one of the many who suffer to fall asleep and then stay asleep, essential oils may be your answer. You can diffuse essential oils in aromatherapy as a safe and natural alternative to the pharmaceutical interventions promising to improve your sleep patterns. Our brains are conditioned to associate certain smells with sleep. And so, using essential oils and aromatherapy, you can begin to improve your sleep patterns. Essential oils are affordable, natural and easy-to-use. They have incredible benefits when used regularly, for example, they act as an organic stress and anxiety reliever and help you get a deeper night’s sleep.
What Are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are made from plant extracts and can be drawn from a plants leaves, flowers, roots, seeds or stems. The act of extraction that makes essential oils, is a process of condensing a plants active botanical constituents. In other words, it means creating a liquified version of the plant and then extracting all the good oils from this liquid. Using essential oils allows you to gain the maximum benefits from the plants extracts as the plants minerals, phenols and flavonoids are all still active. This is what makes essential oils so strong, and why you should never use them without a carrier oil.
Why are they good for sleep?
Certain fragrances created when using essential oils have an incredible calming effect. Our olfactory nerve receptors are located in the mucosa of our nasal cavity. These olfactory nerves are responsible for relaying sensory data to our brains. So, when we smell certain fragrances, like camomile or lavender, our olfactory receptors send calming signals to our brains. This helps prepare our mind and body for sleep.
Ways to use for sleep
You can mix a few drops of essential oils with a carrier oil of your choice, and then rub this mixture on your chest, wrist, neck, forehead, hands or feet. Or you can invest in an aromatherapy candle, which are infused with essential oils. Another effective and easy way to use essential oils to help you sleep, is to pour a few drops of your essential oil of choice into a diffuser, which will gently disperse the fragrance around your room as you sleep. Two final methods of using essential oils to help you sleep, are to add a few drops of oil to your water and spray this mixture on your pillow before you sleep and to pour 3-4 drops of essential oil into your bath with Epsom salt, as you bathe before you are ready for bed.
3 Best Oils for Sleep
Lavender is well known for its calming and relaxing properties. This plant increases slow-wave sleep. Which is instrumental for calming your heart rate, relaxing your muscles and encouraging a rest filled sleep.
Chamomile helps reduce insomnia by lowering your anxiety levels. Camomile has been used in ancient herbal medicines to reduce levels of stress and anxiety for over hundreds of years.
Peppermint oil has amazing anti-inflammatory properties, which help clear your airways and thereby reduce snoring and sleep apnoea.