Aromatherapy is the science that uses the healing powers of essential oils. Aromatic essential oils are distilled from organic plant sources. These plants produce many natural phyto chemicals. Thus, essential oils have diverse therapeutic effects on the mind, body and spirit.
Massage and Aromatherapy go hand in hand. In ancient Egypt, aromatic baths were a daily ritual. This was followed by a massage using aromatic oils made from cinnamon, rose, cedar wood, lilies, myrrh and so on. The last Egyptian queen Cleopatra was famous for exotic massages, aromatic baths and perfumes. She lavishly used perfumes to seduce both Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony. In those days, aromatherapy massage was meant for relaxation, pleasant bodily scents, skin conditioning and overall healing. They did not have a clear distinction between perfumery and healing. We now know that an aromatic essential oil massage heals through the sense of touch and smell.
Importance of Aromatherapy Massage
The true significance of an aromatherapy massage is to completely harmonize the mind and the body. Pure and natural essential oils both heal and beautify the body, emotions, and the psyche for a truly powerful and unique sensory experience. An aromatherapy massage is effective due to the ability of the essential oil to penetrate the skin layers and tissues. This permits the oil to enter into the blood quickly and spread the therapeutic benefit throughout the body. The quality of the essential oil will directly affect the extent to which the positive health effects the oil can be derived.
Aromatherapy massage has been accepted today to play a role in relaxation, rehabilitation, and preventive health care in western medicine as well. These massages are offered as part of the health package in spas, beauty clinics resorts and wellness centers.
Essential oils need to be selected and used with care and caution before delivering an aromatherapy massage. Essential oils can either sedate or stimulate the recipient. Most oils are antibacterial and many anti-spasmodic. There are many aromatherapy products available in the market today which contain synthetic substances. These do not give any therapeutic health benefits and can in fact cause adverse reactions.
Health Benefits for Specific Ailments with Aromatherapy Massage
- PMS (premenstrual syndrome)
- Menopausal symptoms
- Digestive problems,
- Muscle and joint stiffness
- Lethargy and low energy levels