What is Aromatherapy?
May 2, 2020
Aromatherapy uses “aromas,” essential oils from plants, as a “therapy,” a way of improving a person’s health and well-being. Applying essential oils with massage, or in baths, inhalations, and vaporizers can have signiticantly positive effects on a person’s mood, as well as easing physical aches and pains. Working with aromatherapy requires a careful choice and application of essential oils in the appropriate carrier product. Therefore you need to know the oils well, and have a good understanding of when and how to apply them to achieve maximum benefits to your health. Aromatherapy is a beautiful art. pleasing to the senses and a joy to receive. It is also a natural way of enhancing and maintaining good health and a positive mental attitude
Origins of Aromatheraphy
Today, Aromatherapy has its roots in antiquity, when aromatic herbs and essences were used as cosmetics, medicines, perfumes, and incense.
Herbs were steeped in fat and left in the sun in Ancciant Egypt. The heat drew out the aroma, which merged into the oily base to create ointments and solid perfumes. The practice of embalming the bodies of dead Pharaohs involved packing aromatic gums, spices, and woods into body cavities. In the tomb of Tutankhamen, alabaster jars were ound containing ointments that could still be analyzed thousands of years later. And were found to contain gums such as frankincense and myrrh. Which, along with cedarwood and other spices, were used in embalming.
The Ancient Greek physician Hippocrates, born about 460 BCE, advised that scented herbs should be burned over his patients. Other physicians created herbal remedies such as “megaleion,” which contained . myrrh and cinnamon and could be used as a wound-healing treatment as well a
The great Arab scholar Avicenna (980-1037 CE} is credited with rediscovering techniques of distillation. He applied to the rose, obtaining aromatic waters and essential oil. Artifacts found in Iraq and Pakistan suggest that distillation may have been in use several thousand years ago. Distillation is still being used during the Middle Ages and into the 16th and 17th centuries. At this time, herbals, small books describing the process of extraction and descriptions of the properties of herbs were printed.
Herbal treatments and essential oils were the medicine of the people, as
described by Nicholas Culpeper in his famous herbal of 1653. Later in that
century when bubonic plague raged through Europe, physicians wore masks stuffed with herbs and spices fo protect them from infection. In the 18th century, in apothecary shops in London, it was possible to buy herbal remedies containing essential oils. However, with the growth of interest in synthetic, so called “pure,” drugs during the 19th century, essential oils and herbs fell largely into disuse in the West, but the 20th century saw a revival of interest in herbs and essential oils.