essential oils and pain reliefConcerned about the side effects of pain-killing drugs?  Want to know more about essential oils and pain relief?  This short article introduces you to this natural treatment

We all suffer pain from time to time. It can be an acute pain such as headache or sinusitis or chronic pain caused by a condition such as arthritis.

Nowadays, many people are conscious of the side effects of pain-killing drugs and are seeking alternative ways of managing their pain.  One natural way is to use essential oils.

Some have analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties which means that they relieve or reduce pain. Essential oils are made up of minute molecules that are very easily absorbed into the blood stream. They quickly penetrate cells, providing oxygen and improving circulation to inflamed areas.

Note: Essential oils are potent and highly concentrated. Never apply directly to the skin undiluted as they can cause burns. Dilute them with a carrier oil such as olive oil, jojoba oil, sweet almond oil.

Read the instructions. Pregnant women or people with certain medical conditions should check with their doctor before using them.


Essential Oils and Pain Relief

Below are 8 of the most commonly used essential oils used for pain relief

1. Lavender

Uses – Muscle tension and spasms, joint pain, sciatica, neuralgia, rheumatism, tension headache, migraine, menstrual cramps, stomach cramps, and colitis. It also relieves stress and helps reduce muscle tension, both of which increase pain levels.

How to use:

  • Inhale the lavender vapors diffused into the air using a diffuser.
  • In the bath. Used at bedtime it can help you to fall asleep, and gives you a better quality sleep. Studies have shown that poor sleep increases pain levels so improving the quality and amount of sleep you get will help reduce the pain.

2. Chamomile

Uses – Headache, earache, PMS, muscular pain and spasms, low-back pain, neuralgia, and TMJ

How to use:

  • In the bath. Add a few drops to your bath water.
  • Massage a few drops of diluted chamomile directly onto the affected area.
  • A few drops in a hot or cold compress (whichever works best for you).


3. Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus works by initially cooling then heating the area where you applied.

Uses – Arthritis, foot pain, knee pain, back pain, joint pain and stiffness, sciatica, rheumatism, arthritis and restricted joint mobility.

How to Use:

  • As a cream or lotion massaged into painful areas.
  • In the bath.
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4. Peppermint

Uses – Muscle and joint pain, headache, migraine, nerve pain, neuralgia, muscle aches.

How to Use:

  • As a cold compress to relieve swelling and inflammation of an injury.
  • Add a few drops to your bath water.
  • Apply diluted to the temples for headaches and migraine relief. Keep it well away from your eyes.


5. Rosemary

Uses  – Back pain, muscle and joint pain, headache, gout, arthritis, rheumatism, sprains, fatigue after strenuous exercise, menstrual cramps, pains in the intestines caused by constipation.

How to Use:

  • Apply diluted directly to the skin.
  • Add to your bath.


6. Wintergreen

The wintergreen plant contains natural methyl salicylate – the principal component of aspirin. Wintergreen cools down irritation and promotes blood circulation and also acts as a natural numbing agent. It also stimulates urination which speeds up the removal of uric acid and other toxins from the body which alleviates the effects of rheumatism.

Uses – Headache, muscle pain, stiff joints, nerve pain, arthritis, rheumatism, bone pain, menstrual cramps, neck pain,            herniated disk, tendonitis and carpal tunnel pain. Wintergreen oil also helps relieve stress and tension which is important in pain relief.

How to use:

  • Massage diluted wintergreen oil into the affected area.
  • Use in a compress – warm or cold.


7. Tea Tree

Tea Tree oil is a potent analgesic, anti-inflammatory, disinfectant, and anesthetic. Can be used without a carrier oil.

Uses – Earache, toothache and after tooth extraction, gingivitis and periodontitis, arthritis, gout, muscle aches and pains, rheumatism, sciatica, shingles and back pain.

How to use:

  • As a hot compress
  • In the bath
  • Massage into the affected area


8. Ginger

Uses – back pain, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, muscle pain, joint pain, and sprains.

How to use:

  • As a massage oil, blended with a carrier oil.
  • Add it to your hot bath
  • a warm compress
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If you’re bothered about taking too many tablets for your pain, there are other things you can do. Studies into essential oils and pain relief have shown that many are highly effective as a natural alternative to pain-killers.