Aromatherapy and Arthritis

Arthritis is a painful and debilitating disease. It affects the large joints of the body and sufferers describe the pain as often unbearable. Arthritis pain is so devastating, that it can limit body function, movement, and cause deformity of the joints. There is no known cause or cure for Arthritis, and treatment consists of pain management. Many people believe that it is important to keep the body supple and flexible before Arthritis can set in. Yoga is a very effective method of keeping joints supple and flexible. By beginning a routine of Yoga exercises now, you may be warding off many serious and pain filled days in the future.

Yoga is not only an effective tool that may help prevent Arthritis, it is also very therapeutic to those who are suffering with it. The important rule is not to push yourself beyond what you can easily hold and maintain. Remember to move slowly, and that Yoga is not a competitive sport and the only person that you are working with is yourself. You do not need to compare your progress or performance with anyone’s but your own. And don’t limit yourself to thinking that you must see great strides of flexibility from day to day. If your pain is greater on one day, then don’t push yourself to do as much, and don’t feel bad about it. Just remember to work in the zone that is comfortable for you, and if Arthritis pain changes the boundary of that zone daily, that is ok, just continue to work smoothly and comfortably.

Heat therapy is also very effective in treating the pain and swelling of Arthritis. This is where aromatherapy can be highly beneficial. Aromatic heat baths and herbal massage oils are an awesome way to promote healing to the painful area while reducing pain and swelling. There are many wonderful herbs that have analgesic and pain reducing qualities that may be massaged directly on the affected areas. These are great remedies for dealing with pain as there is no limit to their application and no side effects. You should of course test the herbs first to make sure that you have no sensitivities or allergic reactions. You can check for allergic reactions by adding a drop of the essential oil to the nape of the neck, by the hairline, and checking for any irritation. Fourteen hours is sufficient time to see if any irritations have developed. If the area is clear of redness or signs of a reaction, it is safe to assume that the oil will not cause an allergic reaction.

It is also important to note that when using essential oils they are in concentrated form and can be very irritating to the skin if used directly. You should always add essential oils to carrier oil when making massage oil. This means that you should add 10-20 drops of essential oil to 1 ounce of carrier oil. A great carrier oil for an Arthritis massage oil would be Sweet Almond or Olive. You can make your own Arthritis massage oil with 1 ounce of carrier oil, 3 drops of Vetiver oil, 4 drops of Cedarwood oil, and 4 drops of Lemon oil. Blend together in your carrier oil and store in an amber colored bottle. You can also add the blend to a bath of hot water for immediate and penetrating relief in the bathtub. Soak in the hot bath for at least 20 minutes to obtain the most relief.