Emotional aromatherapy.

"When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." – dr. Wayne Dyer.


Life in a hurry, characteristic of our times, and the intensification of stress factors from the environment strengthens anxiety and neurosis. Both current negative feelings and past experiences may cause stress and anxiety reactions in the body, and its accumulation over a longer period of time is able to trigger the deterioration of health. This in turn leads to permanent fatigue both on the physical and mental level. Fatigue and chronic stress expose us to civilizational threats such as lack of immunity and chronic diseases. “Stress makes everything worse from the gums to the heart and may make you more susceptible to diseases ranging from a common cold to cancer.” [1].

Stress may:

1/ Cause sleep disorders, causing fatigue and greater susceptibility to diseases.

2/ Cause anxiety, neurosis, irritability, making relationships with people difficult.

3/ Affect concentration problems, making it difficult to work or study.

4/ Cause a weight disorder: a sudden increase or decrease in weight.

5/ Weaken your immunological system, making you vulnerable to infections, chronic diseases and even cancer.

6/ Push to abandon healthy habits (regular, healthy meals and physical activity), indirectly contributing to health issues.

7/ Contribute to problems in the digestive system, circulatory system, headaches, arthritis, blood pressure.


Therapy with essential oils may help relieve stress and reduce anxiety when stressful triggers appear (i.e. limit the impact of certain situations on our emotions). [2].

Essential oils do not heal but they are able to support the body's natural self-healing function [2]. Essential oil molecules penetrate the bloodstream and circulate throughout the body. This process begins a few minutes after applying the oil and may continue up to 24 hours. Some of the natural plant oils are powerful antioxidants. They can support immunity and reduce inflammation. They may also positively affect emotions.

Oils have different properties, some relax us and give a sense of harmony, others stimulate and regenerate the body. Mint contains alcohols and ketones with energizing properties; citrus oils include monoterpenes that affect the mood and have an invigorating effect. Essential oils distilled from herbs and grasses contain phenolics that have nerve-soothing and uplifting features. Tree bark oils include alcohols with balancing and grounding properties, while those derived from flowers - esters, are uplifting and calming. [3]

How it works.

The part of the brain responsible for emotions and the nervous system is the limbic system and it is there, through the sense of smell, that the oils do their useful work. Through the olfactory system, information travels to five areas of the brain, including the amygdala. This brain center is responsible for memory, decision making, emotions and emotional responses. This means that an emotional experience is stored in our memory and can be retrieved from this “stock” at any time when circumstances arise that trigger this memory. Thus, it affects our behavior as well as the storage and release of emotional traumas. The amygdala is a small, paired structure that is located in both the right and left hemispheres of the brain. Research conducted in 2007 showed that the structure on the left is able to evoke both positive and negative emotions, while the structure on the right - only negative. Simply put, our brain has twice as much capacity to create negative emotions as compared to positive ones.

The limbic system is directly related to the parts of the brain that control heart rate, blood pressure, breathing, memory, stress levels, and hormonal balance. Therefore, the positive effects of essential oils on the emotional sphere will also bring benefits on the physical level.

Research by Japanese scientists confirmed that the inhalation of essential oils can regulate the sympathetic nervous system ("one of the two main parts of the autonomic nervous system, responsible primarily for the mobilization of the body. It maintains constant activity, enabling the maintenance of homeostasis" [5]). Some of the scents have a stimulating effect, and some have a calming result [3]. They can also be a stimulus to release from emotional traumas and blockages. They strongly oxygenate the brain. They may even affect emotions trapped in particular organs and tissues. They might also balance energy and raise the energy vibration of the body. "Essential oils have been found to have the highest frequency of any natural substance used by man" [2]. Used externally or internally (in their purest form), essential oils will help to increase the vibration of the human body. The subject of vibrations was devoted to the article: "VIBRATIONS AND HEALTH".

“Specially prepared aromatherapy can significantly reduce anxiety and nervous tension, especially in people with autism and Down syndrome. Natural essential oils introduced through the respiratory tract and skin are highly effective in treatment and health prevention.” [5].

Emotional aromatherapy techniques.

Inhalation is the most effective method of aromatherapy as far as working with emotions is concerned. Combining aromatherapy with massage or relaxation techniques may support the processes of cleansing the mind of negative emotions, blockages, memories and help eliminate them or transform them into positive equivalents. The use of the oil when experiencing strong, negative emotions gives the opportunity to obtain a quick response of the body and observe its reactions to a given oil and thus the selection of the best aromas that will most effectively support our well-being.

The methods used in aromatherapy according to J. Miosga [3] are:

- aromatherapy massage,

- aromatherapy inhalation,

- aromatherapy baths,

- aromatherapy compresses.


A gentle back massage combines the calming properties of essential oils with a soothing touch. It has a relaxing effect on the muscles and senses. When performing a massage on a larger area of the body, it is worth diluting essential oils in a base oil (e.g. hemp oil) in the following proportion: 3-5 drops of essential oil per tablespoon of base oil.

Foot massage is also an effective method of aromatherapy. We have many receptors on the soles of our feet, thanks to which the oils are quickly absorbed into the bloodstream and distributed throughout the body. The oil application on feet is safe. This technique can be used in children and people with hypersensitive skin, and by using certified natural oils, they do not need to be diluted in a base oil. We may also apply several oils, combining them in a mixture or applying one after another. Each subsequent oil should be applied to the skin after the previous oil has been absorbed (about 2 minutes).


This is the most effective method of influencing the emotions. Inhalations can be used:

1/ Directly, e.g. by breathing deeply several times the oil applied to the hands (1-2 drops of oil), on a cotton pad, a handkerchief or an aromatherapy pendant.

2/ By rubbing into the skin of the neck, temples or under the nose (a roll-on bottle is perfect in this case, in which we can dilute the oil/essential oils in the base oil).

3/ Using a diffuser spraying oils in the room (3-5 drops of oil).


"They may help stress, fatigue, insomnia, respiratory infections and muscle pain. Also here, depending on the oil used, the bath can be refreshing, relaxing or cleansing. The effect of the oil is also influenced by the temperature of the water, warm water opens the pores and relaxes the muscles, thanks to which the oils are more easily absorbed by the skin and enter the circulatory system. The vapors from the bath allow the aroma to be inhaled through the respiratory system. Do not use detergents or bath liquids during the aromatherapy bath. For the bath to have a stimulating effect, the water should be lukewarm, and at the end of the bath, slowly add cold water. Stimulating and refreshing oils include, among others: citrus, eucalyptus, lavender, pine.” [5]. In the case of the last of the oils, check beforehand whether it is irritating to the skin. For the bath, we can also use essential oils diluted in base oil, placing the mixture in gel capsules dissolving in warm water.


Add a few drops of oil (about 3 drops) to a bowl of water. Deep a cotton cloth in it, and then apply it to the place where the ailment occurs. In the case of tension, stretch in the body, a cold compress will work best, while for neuralgia - a warm one.

Examples of the influence of some oils on our emotions:

Lavender – is commonly used to provide relaxation. The essential oil distillated from that plant has strong sedative properties and helps you fall asleep. In combination with basil oil, it helps to reduce the level of cortisol in the blood [3]. I use lavender oil in moments of increased stress, rubbing it into the skin of the neck and face (I use a fully natural oil, a trusted company, so I don't dilute it), then I put the hand on which the oil was applied to my nose and inhale several times. The oil can also be rubbed into the feet. I also use lavender oil for back massage: in addition to a strongly calming effect, it also eliminates tension in the body and relieves pain.

Oil distilled fromthe bark of the frankincense (Boswellia) calms and relaxes, gives a sense of contentment and helps to achieve emotional balance. This oil also has the ability to cross the blood-brain barrier and can act directly on brain cells to help regenerate them. This oil is perfect for use in meditation practices.

Orange, grapefruit, lemon.

These fresh and invigorating aromas have mood-enhancing properties. They add energy and will be great in antidepressant therapies. Individually or together, applied to a diffuser, they will fill the room in which we are staying with a beautiful and refreshing aroma.

Bergamot- this fantastic fragrance associated with Earl Gray tea has the ability to relieve stress and lift the mood. This is my favorite oil, which I reach for immediately when I’m very nervous, inhaling it directly from the bottle or rubbing one drop of it on my hands, which I covered my nose and inhale deeply several times.

Geranium- this intense, floral aroma has properties that soothe the senses. The oil of this plant is ideal for massage that provides emotional balance and calmness.

Cedar bark oil has calming and emotional balancing properties for both for mind and body.

Distilled from needles and twigs, spruce essential oil is rich in bornyl acetate, a chemical compound that promotes relaxation and tranquility. It helps to reduce and fight with stress. The oil is perfect for inhalation, bathing or massage. Before falling asleep, I also apply it on the pillow, inhaling it in my sleep until it evaporates.


"Among the many interesting stories, an example of aromatherapy is a.o. that Cleopatra, suffering from insomnia, filled pillows with rose petals, which gave her a peaceful sleep and beautiful dreams. Modern research has shown that rose oil contains ingredients with relaxing and sleep-inducing effects.” [5] Rose oil can reduce adrenaline levels by 30%. [4]. It has the highest vibration on our planet (refer to the article: "VIBRATIONS AND HEALTH"). It allows you to experience unconditional love and offers a sense of calmness, understanding and gentleness. The oil is perfect in meditation practices.

Recommendations for ailments related to emotions.

When I have trouble falling asleep, I recommend using the diffuser with application 3 oils from: lavender, bergamot and cedar wood or lavender, bergamot and frankincense 2 drops each. The diffuser should be in our bedroom, switch on half an hour before going to bed.

In states of anxiety, I may recommend direct inhalation (from the palm of your hand or a bottle) of lavender, orange or bergamot oils.


Based on:

[1] Association for Psychical Science's magazine Observer, December 2007.

[2] Christi Turley, Karisa Tomkinson "AromaHeal part 1. Simple Techniques to Support Emotional Healing with Essential Oils", 2020-12-22.

[3] Christi Turley, Karisa Tomkinson "AromaHeal Part 2. Powerful Techniques to Accelerate Inner Healing with Essential Oils."

[4] Wikipedia.

[5] Agnieszka Hłobil, Izabela Piecuch, "Aromatherapy as support in psychopedagogy" (original title: „Aromaterapia jako wspomaganie w psychopedagogice”), Koszalin University of Technology, 2010.


Related articles:

"Aromatherapy - introduction".

"Aromatherapy a gift of nature that cares of harmony of your soul and body".

"Properties of essential oils at glance".

"Vibrations and health".