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Herb Affair Blog - general health

Aromatherapy For Sleep

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Sleep is something that many desire to have control over, but often fall short on. The countless restless nights, the lying awake with the endless “to-dos” of tomorrow running through our thoughts, and the tossing and turning under the sheets; they all contribute in our ability to function the next day. They determine our productivity. If we are consistently experiencing these sleep-troubled scenarios, we are often not meeting all of the potential we are capable of in our day-to-day routines.

Perhaps you have tried various sleeping pills out there on the market. Perhaps you have tried to shut the power off on the electronics an hour earlier before bedtime. Maybe you have even gone as far as to meditate, read, or perform some kind of bedtime routine in hopes of getting a better night’s sleep with no success.

Don’t worry; there is hope!

Although bedtime routines can significantly improve your ability to get a good night’s sleep, people often forget to incorporate one key element into the equation- your sense of smell. The aromas you smell on a daily basis impact your mental and emotional variables much more than most individuals realize.

Scents for Sleep

Lavender (Lavandula)

Lavender is the most well-known essential oil to help individuals who are struggling to get a good night’s sleep. This oil is not only responsible for creating a more relaxed state of mind, but it also has been shown to lower skin temperature, and heart specific regulations like blood pressure and heart rate. Also, Lavender is often used to reduce anxiety and promote a sense of calm quietness in the body.

Chamomile (Chamaemelum nobile)

Another popular herb used in aromatherapy is Chamomile. Chamomile is great for individuals who suffer from an over excitable brain, anxiety, or possibly even depression. For those who have hectic schedules, a lot of responsibility resting on them at work, or perhaps just a full social calendar; Chamomile may be the way to go. The scent of Chamomile calms both the mental and physical body which ultimately prepares you for a restful night’s sleep.

Marjoram (Origanum marjorana)

Marjoram can be a great addition to Lavender for aromatherapy purposes. Like Lavender, Marjoram calms the nervous system allowing the rest of your body and mind to settle into a restful state. Those who suffer from hyperactivity, or an overactive mind and body, may find the combination of the Marjoram and Lavender to be useful in promoting a state of peace and calm. It is also a warming herb that dilates arteries lowering blood pleasure and possibly even PMS symptoms, as well as working to expand your ability to breathe if you are suffering from a cold or other respiratory illness.

Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica)

A favorite among men, Cedarwood is the perfect essential oil to help fight insomnia as it relieves mental strain and helps prepare the mind for rest. Although the impact this oil has on sleep has not been studied as much as the previous oils, some are suggesting that it may be due to Cedarwood’s ability to promote a grounding and greater sense of well-being that ultimately aids itself to a good night’s rest. Further research will need to be done to say with finality how Cedarwood actually induces the state of sleep.

How to Reap the Benefits

There are endless ways to incorporate aromatherapy into your space and into your body. However, the most basic technique is to use a diffuser. A diffuser is a simple electronic device. You simply fill it up with purified water, add a few drops of essential oil, and hit the “on” button. Your space will be filled with the scents of slumber and you will be drifting off to sleep in no time!

*If you are allergic to particular herbs or essential oils, you should not use them for aromatherapy purposes. You should also consult a medical professional if your inability to sleep continues or worsens.

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