Essential oils are natural extracts from flowers, leaves, bark or roots of plants and they can provide much needed relief and healing for a variety of ailments, including as a natural remedy for anxiety. Given that one of our most primordial senses is our sense of smell, it makes sense that these molecules would have an impact on our brain and body. Essential oils contain a massive amount of terpenes and research shows that specific terpenes also protect DNA, slow tumour growth, lower LDL cholesterol, reduce blood pressure, and kill germs.
Here are our favourite essential oils for anxiety and stress.
Vetiver oil has a tranquil, grounding and reassuring energy, often used in trauma helping with self-awareness, calmness and stabilisation. A nervous system tonic, it decreases jitteriness and hypersensitivity and is also useful in panic attacks and shock. A few drops on your pillow is also said to be effecting for snoring.
A common effect of stress is a busy mind and with that comes a mind that won’t relax when it comes time to sleep. Lavender oil when applied to the wrists has been used for thousands of years as a treatment for insomnia. Rubbing 1-2 drops of lavender oil onto your temples is also suggested to help release the tension of a headache. Massaging lavender into your palms for relaxation is also simple and effective.
The oil version of this spice (derived from the plant’s leaves) is anti-inflammatory, helping to de-stress the muscles and loosen up the joints after being hunched over a computer all day or a tough session in the gym.
The best way to introduce this oil into your everyday routine, like lavender, is to rub a couple of drops onto your wrists or inhale directly from your palm. Mixing cinnamon oil with coconut oil gives wonderful healing properties when massaged into the body.
The beautiful aroma that jasmine flowers produce has not yet graced our gardens, however the flower’s essential oil has been known to create a calming effect, especially when diffused. Jasmine is a popular natural remedy for improving mood, overcoming stress and balancing hormones. Jasmine oil has been used for hundreds of years in parts of Asia as a natural remedy for depression, anxiety, emotional stress, low libido and insomnia.
Like Cinnamon oil, Rosemary oil is perfect for relieving tension found in tight neck and shoulders that stress can cause to build up. Try this massage oil blend:
Ten drops of Rosemary
Seven drops of Peppermint
Seven drops Lavender
Apply a generous amount to stressed muscles and massage for deep relaxation.
A wondrous “adaptogen” that provides calm to anger-induced stress, offering an immediate feeling of peace and stillness when applied topically to the wrists, neck, feet and back. Ylang ylang is considered an effective antidepressant, antiseptic, antispasmodic and sedative. It has a positive effect on immune health, blood flow and emotions, making it a natural remedy for the endocrine, cardiovascular, reproductive and digestive systems. Ylang Ylang with lavender in a hot bath is also the perfect de-stress remedy.
If you are pregnant or breastfeeding please check before using essential oils.