Lately I have been reading a great book titled Aromatherapy.  It is by Kathi Keville, who has been researching herbs and aromatherapy since 1968, and Mindy Green, who has worked in the natural products and complimentary health care industry for about 40 years. 

This book not only covers therapeutic uses of essential oils, but also has chapters covering massage, facial care, body and hair care, and cooking with essential oils.  I am currently reading the chapter on cooking with essential oils.  I especially enjoyed the chapters on massage and facial care.  The chapter on facial care gives instructions on how to give a facial, which is something I want to do in the near future (my mom is looking forward to that:)).  Giving Mom a massage with oils will be very fun.  The recipes for lotions and creams look great, also.

Since reading this book and receiving encouragement from friends, I have been using essential oils more often.  Some of my favorite things as of yet have been using lavender oil for headaches, peppermint oil for stomach aches and nausea, and lavender and marjoram oils for sleeping.

For a headache, take lavender oil and rub it across your forehead and temples, and at the base of your neck.  This doesn’t work for all headaches, but it usually helps me.  My headache is usually gone within ten minutes!

When my stomach is feeling yucky, I rub peppermint oil diluted in almond oil over my stomach.  If I start feeling really sick, I will also smell some peppermint oil, either right from the bottle or I’ll put a few drops on a tissue and use that.  You can also put the tissue with the peppermint oil on it in your pillow while you are sleeping, and then you can have a peppermint pillow!  To dilute peppermint oil, use a 2% dilution, which is 10-12 drops for every ounce of carrier oil (I usually use either almond or olive oil).

The other night I was having a hard time sleeping.  I had gone to bed around 9:15, and it was 11:20, and I still wasn’t asleep!  I took some marjoram and lavender oil (since my aromatherapy book suggested them), put a few drops on a tissue, then tucked the tissue in my pillow case.  I also used an essential oil blend called “Anxiety Release,” which I put on a tissue and tucked into the slats of my sister’s bed above me.  I started feeling sleepy almost instantly, and was asleep in 40 minutes.

Note:  Although the Aromatherapy book has some really good information, it also discusses some mature subjects.  Please use discretion.