As a trained nurse and aromatic medicine practitioner, I would like to share with you what a difference aromatherapy and massage can make to the quality of life for people with chronic illness, the elderly, the palliative, their families and carers.
Incorporating the benefits of aromatherapy with touch is powerfully incredible (or incredibly powerful). As we journey through life, our needs change. Aromatherapy and the essential oils work with you through all stages of that journey.
The power of smell
Our sense of smell is powerful and immediate – your body chemistry reacts with the chemical constituents in the plants – essential oils being the life blood of the plants. This assists you in selecting the essential oils you require. If you like the aroma, then this indicates that it is the best oil or blend of oils for you. Smell association is also a factor in selecting the oil. Aroma often conjures up feelings, events etc from the past that you are comfortable with.
The role of aromatherapy in palliative care
Palliative care aromatherapy and massage work together to bring comfort and quality of life to our palliative client, family and friends alike. It is often difficult for people to say those three words – ‘I Love You’. A gentle hand massage combined with a delightful, beautiful aromatic smelling essential oil or blend does just that! This is proactive in bringing family and friends together while encompassing and sharing the end of life journey of your ‘loved one’. An example of an essential oil blend that I often use in these instances is a combination of:
Mandarin (Citrus reticulata) – for letting go of any anger, frustration or grief
Frankincense (Boswellia carterii) – calming, slows and deepens the breath
Petitgrain (Citrus aurantium/amara) – soothes and relieves anxiety
Be aware, however, that in choosing essential oils, that the medication/s that your client is being administered, do not contain the same chemical constituents – the elimination pathways being the same! Avoid essential oils that are contraindicated and also be aware that oil and water do not mix and that the ingestion of essential oils is not advised unless under the supervision of a qualified aromatic medicine practitioner.
Discover the difference these actions described above can make. Enjoy the art of blending. There are so many wonderful combinations with multifunctional chemical properties for many different ailments and uses. It is lovely to receive and equally as good to apply.
Working holistically on the physical, emotional and the spirit – a wonderful adjunct to conventional treatments.
Aromatherapy for Health Workers and Carers will be held on the Sunshine Coast Campus on July 18 and 19.
Christmas can be a time of joy but to many it becomes a time of stress. The following are a choice of Essential Oils that I use to help me get through the festive season.
I use it as a vaporiser blend and have it vaporising in my diffuser 24 hours a day.
It conjures up feelings of past family Christmases, Mum’s home cooked pies and Christmas pudding. The Christmas tree which was chosen from the choice of real trees from the grower up the road and midnight mass at the local church, lovely childhood memories.
Cedarwood (Cedrus atlantica)
- Sedative to the nervous system
- Stimulates circulatory system
- Helps with nervous tension
- Stress related conditions
Cinnamon (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
- Useful for nervous exhaustion and stress related conditions
Scotch Pine ((Pinus sylvestris)
- Stimulates and aids the adrenals and nervous system
Lemon (Citrus limon)
- Lifts the spirit a great tonic and quencher
Frankincense (Boswellia carterii)
- Sedative / tonic
- Good for letting go of anxiety and fear
- Modifies the sweetness of a blend in an intriguing way
About the Author: Denise Lynds has been managing director of Aminya Natural Therapies since 2004, and is based at Head Office on the Sunshine Coast. She has had 26 years of nursing experience in Australia and overseas, and along with her team, has successfully incorporated aromatherapy, reflexology and massage programs in over 150 health facilities, helping to bridge the gap between allopathic medicine and natural therapies. Denise was part of the team to develop the Advanced Diploma of Aromatic Medicine now being delivered at Aminya.