Aromatherapy: The Health Benefits of Essential Oils

Scents can evoke feelings, emotions and memories, but did you know they can enhance your health? For thousands of years, people have used aromatherapy to help improve their body, mind and spirit, says Healthline.1 Known as a holistic treatment, aromatherapy uses plant extracts to promote health and wellness, according to Healthline.2

How does aromatherapy work?

Aromatherapy works through the sense of smell and skin absorption, notes Healthline3, and can be used with some of these products:

  • Diffusers
  • Aromatic spritzers
  • Inhalers
  • Bathing salts
  • Body oils, creams or lotions for massage or use on skin
  • Facial steamers
  • Hot and cold compresses
  • Clay masks

7 essential oils to try and their health benefits

Essential oils can be found online, in some supermarkets or health food stores. Keep in mind that it’s important to buy from a reputable producer because oils aren’t regulated by the Food and Drug Administration, according to Healthline.4 And, when you’re applying essential oils, don’t put them directly on your skin. To avoid an allergic reaction, do a skin patch before putting it on your skin.

Interested in trying? Depending on your condition, here’s a list of what could help, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine5 and Healthline6:

  • Heal headaches and IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) symptoms: Peppermint oil
  • Boost your mood: Lemon oil
  • Relax and sleep better: Lavender oil
  • Get rid of athlete’s foot and heal insect bites: Tea tree oil
  • Reduce stress: Bergamot oil
  • Relieve nasal congestion and coughs: Eucalyptus oil
  • Heal dry skin: Geranium oil

Get connected to an aromatherapist

Since there are hundreds of essential oils to use, you can do some research online, or you might like to get guidance from a certified aromatherapist. These professionals can help you address specific health problems and help find a scent that best suits you. You can find an aromatherapist by using an online directory, asking for a recommendation at a spa or yoga studio or contacting the National Association of Holistic Aromatherapy.

According to Healthline7, it’s a good idea to talk to your doctor before seeing an aromatherapist. That way, you can make sure the aromatherapy sessions are tailored to work together with any medical treatment you’ve been getting. Although most essential oils are safe to use, your doctor can tell you about what side effects to be aware of.


  1. “Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits,” Healthline, last accessed May 3, 2022,
  2. “Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits.”
  3. “Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits.”
  4. “Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits.”
  5. “Aromatherapy: Do Essential Oils Work?” Johns Hopkins Medicine, last accessed May 3, 2022,
  6. “The 10 Best Essential Oils to Try,” Healthline, last accessed May 3, 2022, .
  7. “Aromatherapy Uses and Benefits.”