Complete Guide To Aromatherapy Massage
Aromatherapy massages have a transformative power that promotes overall well-being and relaxation. Aromatherapy massages are undertaken for many different reasons like improving mood, for relaxation, etc.
Aromatherapy massages offer many benefits. Essential oils are used in aromatherapy massages. Essential oils are natural plant extracts that are derived using different parts of plants. Thus, they are natural oils that can be used in aromatherapy.
This article aims to offer a complete guide on aromatherapy, its different benefits, oils, risks, etc. Read below to learn more about aromatherapy massages.
What Is Aromatherapy Massage?
An aromatherapy massage is a special form of massage therapy that uses essential oils to increase the effectiveness of massages. Essential oils have a great aroma and properties that promote relaxation.
While performing aromatherapy massage, the massage therapist uses gentle pressure on the body and uses different types of massage techniques like Swedish massage techniques or deep tissue massage techniques. Tell your massage therapist your requirements, and based on your goals, the massage therapist will use appropriate essential oils and techniques.
The essential oils used in aromatherapy are diluted with any carrier oil, such as coconut oil, sweet almond oil, jojoba oil, etc., and then it is applied to the skin. Diluting the essential oils before applying them on the skin is necessary because essential oils are highly concentrated and it can make your skin red or irritated.
So, it is advised to always dilute the essential oils before using them on the skin. When the massage therapist works on your body, the aromatic molecules of the essential oils are absorbed through the skin, and it provides a multi-sensory experience.
Top 11 Essential Oils For Aromatherapy Massage
Each essential oil has some unique properties and benefits that add a personal touch to aromatherapy massages. Following are some of the commonly used essential oils in aromatherapy massages:
1. Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender oil is one of the most commonly used essential oils for many different purposes, like skincare, health care, and massages. It has calming and soothing properties that help promote relaxation, especially after a tiring day.
2. Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint oil is rich in menthol, which gives a refreshing touch to this oil. It has a minty scent, and massaging using this oil has the ability to offer total body comfort. It also helps calm your headspace. Peppermint contains menthol that is rich in cooling property, and this help in reducing pain and tension in the muscles.
3. Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus oil is another commonly used oil for relaxation, calmness, and refreshment. It has properties that support easy breathing. This is a great oil that promotes pain relief mainly because of its cooling and soothing properties.
4. Chamomile Essential Oil
Chamomile oil has calming effects and thus is considered to be a great oil for rest and relaxation. It is a popular choice in aromatherapy massages when it comes to restful sleep.
5. Rosemary Essential Oil
Rosemary oil has an energizing and uplifting scent. It has the ability to improve focus and concentration and also offers clarity of thought.
6. Ylang Ylang Essential Oil
Ylang Ylang oil has an exotic floral scent that promotes relaxation and also enhances mood. It is a great oil that can be used to help balance emotions and improve overall well-being.
7. Bergamot Essential Oil
Bergamot oil has an uplifting aroma. It has a citrusy scent that energizes your mind and body. It is great for people going through emotional imbalances. Also, it helps in releasing aches and pain in the muscle and offers relief from muscle strain or tension.
8. Geranium Essential Oil
Geranium oil is a great oil that is known for its balancing properties as well as its ability to promote emotional wellness and stability It is a great oil to use after a hectic day for aromatherapy massages. It helps ward off negative emotions and energies.
9. Sandalwood Essential Oil
Sandalwood oil has a warm and woodsy scent that is loved by many people. It has relaxing and calming properties and also helps clear thoughts. It is a commonly used oil in spirituality. It supports emotional, mental, and overall health well-being. Sandalwood essential oil and massage therapy can help reduce the levels of the stress hormone and can also stimulate the limbic system in your brain.
10. Frankincense Essential Oil
Frankincense oil is also associated with spirituality and tranquility. It promotes relaxation and also influences rest and calmness. Thus, this makes it a great oil to be used in aromatherapy massages. Frankincense oil is rich in anti-inflammatory properties that help in reducing inflammation and pain in muscles.
11. Patchouli Essential Oil
Patchouli oil has a unique scent. It has grounding properties that offer balance. It has natural calming properties that promote inner peace, and due to this reason, this oil has made it to this list. Using aromatherapy massage oil is best option to relax your mind, body, and soul.
What Are The Benefits Of Aromatherapy Massage?
There are several benefits of an aromatherapy massage that has been discussed in detail below:
1. Deep Relaxation And Rest
Massages are known for offering relaxation and rest. And massage using essential oils add additional benefits to it. Essential oils have properties that create a relaxing ambiance, and thus, aromatherapy massages are considered to promote deeper relaxation and rest.
Using essential oils like chamomile, lavender, ylang-ylang, etc., have natural calming and relaxing properties that promote relaxation. Using these oils in aromatherapy massage along with perfect techniques can help relax both mind and body. Aromatherapy massages can help unwind and recharge from within.
2. Promotes Emotional Well-being
Essential oils used in aromatherapy massage have the remarkable ability to influence our emotions. Citrus scents, such as bergamot and sweet orange, are known for their uplifting properties, promoting a positive mood and combating feelings of sadness.
On the other hand, grounding oils like sandalwood and patchouli can instill a sense of tranquility and stability, helping to balance emotions and improve overall well-being.
3. Improves Sleep Quality
If you struggle with sleep-related issues, an aromatherapy massage may offer some relief. Essential oils such as lavender and chamomile have been traditionally used to promote better sleep. The calming effects of these oils, combined with the relaxing nature of the massage, can help you achieve more restful sleep and also improves the quality of your sleep and rest.
4. Improves & Uplifts Mood
Aromatherapy massage helps boost your mood and enhance emotional well-being. Certain essential oils, such as citrus oils like sweet orange or bergamot, are known for their mood-boosting properties. The pleasant scents can help promote a more positive outlook. Essential oils have energizing properties that help in uplifting your spirits. There are many fragrant essential oils, like lavender oil, rose oil, etc., that can help improve your mood.
5. Relaxes Muscles
The skills of a massage therapist, along with the relaxing properties of essential oils, do wonders for your muscles. It helps relax your muscles and offers your muscle the calmness and relaxation desired with the help of massaging techniques like kneading, friction, and effleurage, which helps release the tightness in the muscles.
6. Nourishes Skin
In addition to the therapeutic benefits, aromatherapy massage can also provide nourishment to the skin. The carrier oils used in combination with the essential oils help moisturize and hydrate the skin, leaving it feeling soft, smooth and rejuvenated. You can enjoy radiant, glowing skin after your aromatherapy massage.
What Are The Risks Related To Aromatherapy Massage?
While aromatherapy massage is generally safe for most people, there are a few risks and precautions to consider:
- Allergies: One consideration is possible sensitivity to the essential oils. Some individuals may have allergies or sensitivities to certain essential oils. Let your massage therapist know about any allergies or sensitivities you have to ensure the oils used are safe for you.
- Skin Sensitivity: Essential oils are highly concentrated oils and can cause skin irritation in some individuals. It's recommended to do a patch test on a small area of skin before the massage to check for any adverse reactions.
- Pregnancy: Pregnant women should exercise caution when it comes to aromatherapy massage. Certain essential oils, such as basil, and clary sage oil for pregnancy are not recommended. It's best to consult with your healthcare provider before receiving an aromatherapy massage during pregnancy.
- Medical Conditions: If you have any underlying medical conditions or are taking medications, it's important to consult with your healthcare provider before trying an aromatherapy massage. They can provide guidance on whether it's safe for you and any precautions you should take.
Is It Safe To Practice Aromatherapy Massage During Pregnancy?
Perhaps the answer is not definitive.
The safety of receiving a prenatal massage itself is generally acknowledged. However, if one experiences discomfort in the calf region or has a history of blood clots, it is advised to refrain from undergoing a massage. In the event that an expectant mother desires an aromatherapy massage, it is recommended to consult a medical professional beforehand to ascertain the safety of specific oils. There exists apprehension that essential oils might traverse the placenta and potentially cause harm to the developing fetus.
As outlined by the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy, certain essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy. These include aniseed, basil, birch, parsley, pennyroyal, sage, tarragon, and wintergreen.
Some Key Tips To Follow Before Aromatherapy Massage?
Following are some of the tips that you should consider before going for aromatherapy massages or any sort of massage to make the most of it.
1. Selecting The Essential Oils According To Your Needs:
If you wish to boost your mood, then you should go for citrusy scents. On the other hand, if your aim is relaxation and rest, you should include lavender or chamomile oil in your choices to consider. If you are seeking a refreshed feeling, you should go for oils like peppermint, eucalyptus, grapefruit oil, etc.
You can ask your massage therapist to recommend you certain essential oils and then choose an essential oil based on your needs.
2. Select The Way You Want The Essential Oil To Be Used:
There are two options for aromatherapy massages, you can decide whether you want to diffuse the oil while practicing massage, or you can choose to apply the oil directly on your skin during the massage. The massage therapist should always dilute the oil with massage lotion if you are applying it to the skin.
3. Avoid Going For Massage On A Full Stomach:
Going for massages with a full stomach might upset your stomach, and you might also not enjoy the massage to its fullest. Instead, you can go for a light snack.
4. Drink Water:
It is advised to have water before as well as immediately after your massage session.
5. Warm Shower:
It is advised to take a warm shower after your massage session. This will help your body relax further, and it will also help in removing excess oil remaining on your skin. The required amount of oil is absorbed through your skin by that time.
Aromatherapy massages are one of the best ways to improve and enhance your overall massaging experience as compared to traditional massages. It is a great self-care routine that one can inculcate. It has the ability to promote overall wellness and promotes relaxation, and rest.
Aromatherapy massage nurtures both your mind and body. It helps balance your emotions and promotes emotional well-being. It also helps relax tight muscles.
And creates a tranquil environment for deeper relaxation. If you're looking for a therapeutic massage experience, then it is recommended to go for aromatherapy massages, as aromatherapy massage combines essential oil massage, which offers further relaxation. Massages done by professional massage therapist combining aromatherapy increases the effectiveness and advantages of massage.
Let the therapist know your needs based on which they can suggest you the right essential oils, as every oil has its own unique features that cater to your different needs and requirements.
Always remember applying essential oils directly on the skin might cause skin irritation. While practicing full body massage and enjoying the benefits of massage therapy, it is necessary adding essential oils to some other solution like massage lotion or massage oils.
Essential oils can be used with carrier oils as well for massage therapy and aromatherapy. If your skin is sensitive to essential oils, then you can use a diffuser to diffuse the oils and enjoy its calming benefits. Inhaling essential oils help calm your mind and also supports emotional balance.
What is an aromatherapy massage?
An aromatherapy massage is a special form of massage therapy that uses essential oils to increase the effectiveness of massages.
Is aromatherapy massage a full body massage?
Yes, aromatherapy massage aims to treat all the areas of your body, especially the ones that are prone to stress, like shoulders, neck, back, legs, etc.
What are the benefits of aromatherapy massage?
Deep relaxation and rest, improved emotional wellbeing, improved sleep quality, enhanced mood, relaxed muscles, and nourished skin, are some of the benefits of aromatherapy massage.
What's the difference between massage and aromatherapy?
The main difference between massage and aromatherapy is that aromatherapy uses essential oils for creating a relaxing ambiance, and calm and soothe your muscles, mind, and body.
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