Saturday, April 25, 2009

What is Aromatherapy

Simply put, Aromatherapy means, "Fragrant Remedy". Aromatherapy is the art and science of using essential oils to encourage good emotional and physical health. It is the result of observations and studies of aromatherapists, massage therapists, perfumers, chemists, biologist, doctors and nurses from all over the world.

Aromatherapy uses essential oils that are derived from the petals of flowers, the leaves, bark, resin and roots of trees and herbs, the blades from grasses, and the rinds of citruses. The essential oils from these plants are stored in tiny glands in different parts of the plants. If you rub a peppermint leaf between your fingers, the essential oils are released onto your skin and you can experience the wonderful essences of the oil. It is the chemical constituents of these essences that determine the therapeutic effects of a particular essential oil.

The essential oils used for therapeutic aromatherapy are usually extracted by steam distillation from plants, flowers, trees and grasses. In a simple steam distillation process, the plant releases its essential oil in the form of vapor after it is boiled. The vapor passes through a condenser where cooling takes place and the vapor turns back into a highly concentrated liquid, known as an essential oil.

The by-product derived from the essential oil distillation process is called a hydrosol. Water soluble compounds stay in the water producing a fragrant and therapeutic water solution, which is also often used in aromatherapy.

Expression is a method used for citrus fruits. The outer colored citrus rinds are pressed to release the essential oil held within.

An aromatherapy grade essential oil must meet the range of chemical constituents that has been determined for that prticular oil to be of maximum quality.

Purity is essential for therapeutic aromatherapy. A pure essential oil means that it has not been extended with a vegetable oil or a chemical and that its' original chemical composition has not been altered.

Synthetic fragrances can be purchased very inexpensively but will not have the perfect synergy of chemical components as Mother Nature produces.

Earthly Sensations uses only 100% pure, unadulterated, aromatherapy grade essential oils!

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