Aromatherapy and Sleep
Aromatherapy is a holistic treatment that uses natural plant extracts to promote health and well-being. Sometimes referred to as essential oil therapy, aromatherapy has been around for thousands of years and has been used by the ancient cultures of India, China and Egypt for medical and even religious purposes. Even today, aromatherapy oils can be a benefit for a variety of different reasons that improve both mind and body, including calming you into a good night’s sleep.
Thanks to an increased interest in natural therapies, aromatherapy has become a popular solution for many sleep-related issues. This has also seen the treatment gain recognition in the fields of science and medicine, with many studies discovering a positive effect on insomnia and overall sleep quality.
In 2015, a study by the National Library of Medicine in the U.S used aromatherapy oils on cancer patients undergoing treatment. They discovered that oils such as lavender, frankincense and bergamot among many others, were effective in improving the patients sleep quality by 95%. They reported alleviations in nausea and a more relaxed mind and body of the patients, even during such a stressful time in their lives.
While aromatherapy has been recorded to have positive effects on improving sleep, mental health and emotional issues, there remains no peer-reviewed evidence supported research of aromatherapy oils actually curing any illnesses. There’s no need to worry however, as something as simple as getting a good night’s sleep, on a consistent basis, will improve your overall health – and using aromatherapy can help you do that!
The Best Oils for Sleep & How They Work
There are many different kinds of oils available that offer different benefits for different reasons. The primary oils that aid in sleep aromatherapy include lavender, chamomile and peppermint.
Lavender contains chemical compounds that calm the nervous system and is the most studied of all the essential oils. All of this research has uncovered an oil that is capable of having a positive effect on sleep for different walks of life. After breathing in steam filled with lavender, women with mild insomnia reported improved sleep and students exposed to lavender aroma at night have reported less sleepiness the following day.
Chamomile is considered to be the best oil for soothing anxious feelings, making it an essential to use as part of your sleep schedule. A mind engaged in excessive worry due to anxiety can cause sleep deprivation, and sleep deprivation can cause even more anxiety. To help break the cycle, inhaling chamomile can have a sedative effect which can help to induce sleep in a natural way.
Peppermint is known to aid in deep, clear breathing, increase clarity of mind and is even an antimicrobial, fighting back against germs and bacteria. By improving breathing and increasing the oxygenation of the lungs and the brain, peppermint can help promote your body’s natural mechanisms for relaxation and sleep.
Using Aromatherapy for Sleep
The most common and most modern form that people use for sleep aromatherapy is through inhalation. An aromatherapy spray uses a diffuser to evaporate the oil which allows the benefits to be breathed in and is less cumbersome compared to other methods such as applying the oil over your skin. Our Lavender and Rosemary sprays can be used to lightly mist your pillows and sheets before bed to bring about the calming benefits, but also leave them smelling good with their distinctly harmonious scents.
Aromatherapy pillows are another way you can enhance your relaxation by creating a cosy and calming sleep environment. We offer a range of aromatherapy pillows that come with a mini spritzer bottle that allows you to refresh the pillows with lavender, chamomile and peppermint scents. The Zoned Technology design creates large holes in the centre and smaller ones around the edges for head and neck support. While soft Tencel® mesh cover adds the temperature-and moisture-regulating comfort for breathability and scent release.
To find a scent that suits you, take a look at our catalogue of aromatherapy pillows and sprays or visit us in-store.