I’m pleased to say that in 2018 I qualified as an Aromatherapist having taken my level 3 diploma with ITEC. This means that I now use essential oils freely with my massage treatments as well as on a prescriptive level.

I am now able to make up products for clients to help them with a range of conditions just for some much needed pampering! This includes anything from facial products to skin creams and bath oils.

With all prescriptive products, each essential oil is carefully selected and combined with a suitable carrier to ultimately suit the needs of each individual client taking into account all medical history, lifestyle, oil safety and intended outcome.

Aromatherapy should never be used in replace of modern medicine, however it can work effectively alongside it and works well as with any other holistic therapy, and is considered as more of a preventative than cure approach.

What is Aromatherapy and how does it work?

Aromatherapy is the use of Essential oils derived from plants for their therapeutic properties. The use of essential oils is said to have a positive effect on physical and emotional wellbeing. Each essential oil has unique properties and a qualified aromatherapist is able to utilize these properties to safely help the client with any given issue. For example, you have all heard of lavender?! Well lavender is a powerful hypotensive and relaxant meaning it can help to reduce blood pressure as well as calm the mind and body and aid sleep. It is also analgesic and anti inflammatory so can help to ease symptoms of pain when used correctly. Lemon is also antibacterial and antiviral which is why it is seen in so many modern day cleaning products!

Plant therapy has been used for centuries. The Egyptians were known to use plant resin for preserving their dead. They used cedar and myrrh for their embalming!

Hippocrates wrote much on the use of plants in medicine and the Romans would scent their baths frequently making oils and essences an important part of their culture!

Aromatherapy works through contact with the skin (massaging an oil into an area of the body) or through inhalation.

Essential oils are absorbed through the skin, where tiny molecules enter the skin's surface layer, follicles and sweat glands where they enter the blood capillaries of the dermis. (Deep skin layer). They then reach the blood circulation where they are transported around the body having an effect on all the body systems.

Smelling an essential oil is the fastest way for it to penetrate the body. The molecules travel up the nose and pass quickly into the bloodstream via the lungs and respiratory system.

At the top of the nose is the olfactory system which contains the smell sensing cells. They send messages to the brain, often triggering emotional and psychological responses in the person whether the smell is a pleasant or unpleasant one (hopefully pleasant!). The brain can then respond by telling the body to relax for example.

Essential oils can affect a person in 3 ways:

Firstly, they can interact with your body chemistry. I.e. our hormones, enzymes and neurotransmitters are all chemicals and the presence of another chemical in the body can affect the way they work.

Secondly, they can change the chemical messages and impulses sent around the body changing the way various body systems function. For example, an oil with de stressing properties may relieve the symptoms of stress shown by our bodies..i.e. Slowing our heart rate and breathing.

Thirdly, our sense of smell is so closely linked to our mind and also memory that particular cells can cause particular responses. If a smell is appreciated it is likely to invoke a positive response and make someone feel good!