Essential oils are highly concentrated compound extracts of plants. They have multiple uses, but in all, help boost physical and mental health. This inexpensive form of alternative medicine comes with multiple healing properties. One such is its effective qualities to induce sleep or help remain asleep.
Essential Oils: Usage and Risks
Essential oils are easily available in stores or online and are widely gaining recognition for its successful sleep-inducing properties. Most essential oils are adaptogens, meaning they adapt to the person using it and could have different results in different people. So, it is best to sample tests before picking up an entire bottle. For instance, sandalwood essential oil is considered as a stimulant for its smell but in many instances, it has also helped people sleep better.
The common ways to use essential oils are:
- Diluting with an air diffuser;
- Applying a few drops on certain pressure points on the body;
- Mixing with salts in hot water while bathing;
- Steam Inhalation;
- Spraying on the pillow and sheets.
- Essential oils may cause allergies in some people. We always recommend sample testing the products beforehand.
- Remember to never consume essential oils. As it contains concentrated bioactive extracts, they can cause a host of problems when consumed without professional administration.
- Pregnant women and women who are breastfeeding are recommended to avoid using essential oils altogether.
Our Top Four Picks for Essential Oils
You might know this from its extracts in tea but chamomile essential oils are one of the most effective sedatives for inducing deep slumber. While there are several types of chamomile, Roman Chamomile oil is ideal to address sleep problems. The properties in chamomile help relax the mood and reduce stress, putting you in the perfect zone for falling asleep.
Lavender oil is one of the most popular and preferred essential oil for its calming properties. Even doctors prescribe the use of lavender oil to relax the mind and calm the nerves. The soothing smell of lavender is considered to induce relaxation and drowsiness. Hence, it is also commonly prescribed for anxiety and stress-induced insomnia. Lavender is also perfect for children with sleep disorders. Studies have shown that lavender also acts as a pain reliever in children and the sedative properties induce quality sleep.
Extracted from a citrus plant, bergamot is famous for its calming properties. Originated from Italian folk medicine, this essential oil has made its name globally for reducing heart rate, blood pressure, and anxiety. It is important to note that all other citrus oils are known for their fresh scent and hence acts as stimulants, bergamot stands apart from its citrus family. Studies have shown that the calming effect of bergamot has resultantly increased sleep quality amongst people suffering from various sleep disorders.
If you are troubled with breathing problems while sleeping like snoring or sleep apnea, peppermint essential oils may help ease your pain. The anti-inflammatory properties in peppermint can help relieve the blockage in the nasal airway that induces snoring or reduces oxygen to the brain, thereby ensuring you do not wake up from your sleep multiple times. In addition to using peppermint oil as aromatherapy, you can also add a few drops for steam inhalation.