There have been many recent studies around the use of essential oils and people with Autism, Anxiety and ADHD as well as many other disorders. Essential oils should only be used to compliment existing therapies or physicians orders, they are not meant to replace current treatments.
- A systematic review of 16 randomized controlled trials examining the anxiolytic (anxiety-inhibiting) effects of aromatherapy among people with anxiety symptoms showed that most of the studies indicated positive effects to quell anxiety (and no adverse events were reported).
- People exposed to bergamot essential oil prior to surgery had a greater reduction in pre-operative anxiety than those in control groups.
- Sweet orange oil has been found to have anxiety-inhibiting effects in humans, supporting its common use as a tranquilizer by aromatherapists.
- Ambient odors of orange and lavender reduced anxiety and improved mood in people waiting for treatment.
There are a number of ways to use aromatherapy although, if you have a serious condition, you may want to contact an experienced aromatherapist who can help guide you. Certain essential oils can cause photosensitization (making your skin more sensitive to the sun) or allergic reaction and others should not be used on pregnant women, so it’s important to be familiar with an essential oil before using it. That said, you can try to use essential oils at home via the following methods:
- Indirect inhalation of essential oils using a room diffuser or placing drops nearby
- Direct inhalation of essential oils using an individual inhaler with drops floated on top of hot water (this is popular for treating sinus headaches)
- Aromatherapy massage, in which essential oils are diluted in a carrier oil and massaged into your skin
- Applying essential oils to your skin by combining them with lotion, bath salts, or dressings
Some of the specific essential oils for concentration and relaxation that are believed to help people:
- Roman chamomile: soothes and comforts
- Lavender: calms and reduces anxiety
- Orange: calming, sedative, reduces anxiety and depression
- Mandarin: quiets, especially when combined with lavender
- Ylang ylang: sedates and calms the emotions
- Vetiver: calms, focuses the mind
- Frankincense: supports the immune system
- Patchouli: soothes the nervous system