What Are The Benefits Of Aromatherapy Massage?
Massage therapy for many is a fundamental necessity of their lives. It offers a holistic approach to physical and mental wellness which can relieve issues from aches and pains to calming anxiety, stress and tension, relieving headaches and aiding sleep issues.[1,2]
If you have never had a massage before, you may want to do a little research to find a trained and licensed Massage Therapist in your area. Note, some states only require certification. To further enhance the effects of a massage, you may want to consider booking yourself an aromatherapy massage.
What Is An Aromatherapy Massage And What Is A Full-Body Aromatherapy Massage?
Aromatherapy massage incorporates specific essential oils as an extension of a massage therapy session to enhance one's massage experience and further reduce tension, offer muscle pain relief and reduce overall achiness.
Essential oils are natural plant oils that are extracted from aromatic plants. In the case of their use in massage therapy, essential oils are blended with a carrier oil or cream to enhance the massage. Numerous essential oil research studies looked at the chemical structures and properties of the oils and found that they can have a positive effect on the body and mind - or in other words on our well-being.[1,2,3]
Massage therapists offer their own style of work and this can range from a lighter touch to a deep tissue massage - we all have our preferences about whether we want a deep tissue massage to get out the kinks or a gentler touch that can calm the senses.
So a full-body aromatherapy massage treatment is the same as a regular full-body massage session but just adds essential oils to the cream or oil the therapist uses. A massage session will focus on areas of the body prone to aches and pains such as the upper and lower back, as well as shoulders and neck tension. The extremities of the body are also approached to reduce tension in the arms, legs, feet, hands, head and scalp. Massage sessions generally run 60, 75 or 90 minutes (which we highly recommend) but can also be found in 30-minute increments from some therapists.
These are some of the many benefits of aromatherapy massage:
- Relieves pain and tension
- Reduces stress and anxiety
- Promotes relaxation
- Improves sleep
- Boosts immune system function
How Do You Do Aromatherapy Massage?
Aromatherapy massage is given by a trained, licensed or certified Massage Therapist using techniques of Swedish massage to spread the carrier and essential oil blend directly onto the skin where it is absorbed and travels throughout the body via the bloodstream. The massage pressure can be deeper, lighter or a combination of both. Most massage therapists will employ the use of their hands, forearms and elbows to give an effective massage to reduce tension.
Depending on the essential oil used, such as with aches and pain, the massage may focus on certain areas the client wishes to focus on to relieve those aches and pains or will be approached as a full body massage for relaxation and stress relief.
If you would like to learn more about giving a relaxation massage to a loved one, you can watch this video for basic techniques. Don't forget to make yourself an aromatherapy massage oil with the below information on Edens Garden pain relief blends and carrier oils.
Essential Oils Blends For Aromatherapy Massage
While we all know that certain essential oils offer relaxation, reduce stress, help with sleep issues, and boost immune function, for the purposes of this blog post, we are going to focus on a few of Edens Garden's pain blends which include Sore Muscles & Pain Ease, Inflammation Aid and Massage Therapy.
Whether active, on your feet often or sitting in front of a computer for work, pain is a universal sensation. A massage session promotes circulation to loosen tight muscles. When a massage is enhanced by essential oils, the analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties of the essential oils become an added benefit to the client. So let's look at a few Edens Garden essential oil blends to see which might be best to incorporate into a massage session for your particular needs.
Sore Muscles & Pain Ease
The magnetic aromatics in Sore Muscles & Pain Ease essential oil blend are minty, herbal and uplifting and offer clarity of mind. This compelling blend was formulated with Cypress- Italian, Peppermint, Sweet Marjoram, Basil, Grapefruit- Pink and Lavender- Bulgarian as an unrivaled analgesic blend that helps to cool hot, irritated and inflamed muscles as well as mitigate and subdue muscle spasms.[5,6]
The added benefit of this blend is the combination of Cypress and Grapefruit which can help stimulate the immune system, tone and support circulation which assists with the relief of tired achy legs, especially in the case of poor circulation such as with varicose veins. For those that run hot or to take advantage of its cooling ability, try this dynamic essential oil blend during summer.
Try diluting this blend to 3% by adding 18 drops to 1 oz of carrier oil.
Encouraging optimal blood flow and augmenting circulation, Inflammation Aid essential oil blend has the capacity to restore your strength and stamina. Strengthening Turmeric and energizing Ginger are both exceptional when it comes to restoring and sustaining joint health due to their added warmth and invigorating qualities.[7,8,9]
Frankincense- Carterii, Copaiba, Spruce- Black, Lavender, Chamomile- German and Cistus are noted for their ability to reduce pain, ease inflammation, relieve stress and stimulate the immune system. This blend would be exceptional for those who experience pain, especially in the joints, feel cold often or for those who need a little motivation and energy to get moving.
Try diluting this blend to a 3-5% dilution, or 18 - 30 drops in 1 oz of carrier oil.
The essential oils Wintergreen, Peppermint and Camphor in Massage Therapy naturally contain components of methyl salicylate, menthol and camphor. Like Sore Muscles & Pain Ease, it has a cooling nature with the added benefit of exceedingly effective analgesic properties.
- In one study, the use of Peppermint and Wintergreen together showed better performance at pain relief than NSAIDs.[10,11]
What’s more, Ylang Ylang, Helichrysum- Italicum, Blue Tansy, Chamomile- German and Osmanthus Absolute help to improve mood while relieving pain and stimulating circulation.
If you’re on your feet for hours on end or are sore from an exercise regimen, this blend should be your go-to for an aromatherapy massage session.
For relief between massage sessions, try this pain relief blend in a foot soak with Epsom Salts–
- 6 drops of Massage Therapy essential oil blend with ¼ cup of Castile soap and one cup of Epsom salts
Try diluting this blend to a 3% dilution, or 18 drops in 1 oz of carrier oil.
*NOTE: Please be aware that the use of Wintergreen essential oil is contraindicated in certain situations. Due to its methyl salicylate property, which is closely related to aspirin. Please avoid using this oil before surgery, on those who have bleeding disorders such as hemophilia or with those who take blood thinners.
How To Make Aromatherapy Massage Oil?
Using a carrier oil and a 1 oz amber glass bottle with a cap, fill the bottle with a base oil such as Jojoba or Grapeseed oil, leaving a little room at the top to fill it with your choice of pain relief essential oil blend.
Here are a few carrier oils to consider when you make your aromatherapy oil blend:
- Unscented cream: Great for those who need extra moisture and don't want the greasiness of an oil. Just be sure to use an unscented cream when you blend in your essential oils.
- Jojoba Oil: No aroma, matches the skin's natural sebum & absorbs easily, washes out easily from fabrics and does not stain, does not go rancid, great for all skin types.
- Grapeseed Oil: Gentle on the skin, toning, regenerative, shelf life of 1 year.
- Apricot Kernel Seed Oil: Light, nutty aromatic, pampering, great for sensitive skin, shelf life of 1 year.
- Sweet Almond Oil: Faintly sweet & nutty aroma, improves skin tone, used often in massage therapy, shelf life of 1 year.
In conclusion, aromatherapy massage is a wonderful way to promote relaxation, reduce stress and anxiety, and improve overall well-being. With its many benefits, it's no wonder why this type of massage is becoming increasingly popular. So if you're looking for a way to unwind and improve your health, why not try aromatherapy massage?
- Massage Therapy for Health: What the Science Says https://www.nccih.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/massage-therapy-for-health-science
- A Randomised Study of the Effects of Massage Therapy Compared to Guided Relaxation on Well-Being and Stress Perception Among Older Adults https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17709060/
- Essential oils used in aromatherapy: A systemic review https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2221169115001033
- Effect of aromatherapy on sleep quality of adults and elderly people: A systematic literature review and meta-analysis https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0965229921000807
- Sweet Marjoram https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5871212/
- Analgesic-Like Activity of Essential Oil Constituents: An Update https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5751100/
- Anti-Inflammatory Effects of the Essential Oils of Ginger (Zingiber officinale Roscoe) in Experimental Rheumatoid Arthritis https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5115784/
- An Experimental Study on the Effectiveness of Massage with Aromatic Ginger and Orange Essential Oil for Moderate-To-Severe Knee Pain Among the Elderly in Hong Kong https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0965229908000034
- Anti-Arthritic Effects and Toxicity of the Essential Oils of Turmeric (Curcuma longa L.)
- Treatment of Low Back Pain: The Potential Clinical and Public Health Benefits of Topical Herbal Remedies https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3995208/
- Camphor ( Cinnamomum camphora ), a traditional remedy with the history of treating several diseases https://www.researchgate.net/publication/277662697_Camphor_Cinnamomum_camphora_a_traditional_remedy_with_the_history_of_treating_several_diseases