One of the reasons many women, and an increasing number of men love a day at the spa is because of the much needed feeling of relaxation it provides. This relaxing atmosphere can be achieved in many ways, through soft music, dimmed lighting, aromatherapy, and hydrotherapy.
What are aromatherapy and hydrotherapy?
Aromatherapy is a form of alternative medicine that utilizes the natural essential oils extracted from flowers, bark, stems, leaves, roots, and other parts of certain plants to enhance psychological and physical well-being. Each essential oil has specific purposes and is used to treat various conditions. These oils can be used in many ways:
• They can be mixed with a carrier, base, or existing product to for therapeutic purposes depending on the properties of the essential oil
• They can be inhaled on their own for temporary relief of symptoms, stress, or bad moods
• They can enhance hydrotherapy treatments by adding aromatic as well as topical therapeutic benefits
Hydrotherapy uses water in its various states (ice, steam, liquid) at different temperatures to treat various physiological as well as mental conditions. Some examples are:
• Soaking in a hot bath infused with essential oils, muds, or salts to relieve sore muscles
• Using a humidifier in dry rooms or taking a steam shower to relieve respiratory symptoms
• Using hot or cold compresses to relieve pain and inflammation
Combining aromatherapy and hydrotherapy
It is very common in alternative medicine, as well as in spa treatments to combine aromatherapy and hydrotherapy. Often, essential oils are added to therapeutic soaks, mineral body wraps, and steam treatments during facials. Each therapy enhances the effects of the other.
Two of the most commonly used essential oils are lavender and eucalyptus.
Lavender has positive effects on the mind as well as the physical body. Its scent is relaxing, soothing, mildly sedative, and considered to be pleasant to most people. For these reasons, it has been used to treat conditions such as depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Lavender also has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and anti-fungal properties. It is generally well tolerated and non-allergenic, with no side effects. For this reason, it can be used (when mixed with a carrier oil or base) to soothe minor wounds, rashes, and other and skin irritations. In the spa or holistic wellness center, it is not only used aromatherapeutically to promote relaxation, but can also be misted or applied onto the skin to treat skin conditions such as acne, rosacea, eczema/dermatitis, and psoriasis.
Eucalyptus, on the other hand, is antispasmodic, stimulating, and is an effective antiseptic and expectorant. It has many medical and therapeutic uses, and is often used in aromatherapy and hydrotherapy (steam) spa and wellness treatments to energize and stimulate the mood, as well as to treat respiratory conditions.
Bringing the spa home
I received a gift of an EssenceAire Diffuser from TEI Spa Essentials.
This unique and elegant electrical diffuser offers a misting technology through the vibration of the water and ultrasonic waves that oxygenate and purify the air in whatever room you use it. You can use it for that reason alone, but you also have the option to add a few drops of your favorite essential oil for a customized aromatherapy/hydrotherapy treatment.
I was sitting at my computer feeling stressed about an upcoming deadline. It got to the point that my mind began to wander and I could not focus on the task at hand. Instead, I began to think about what to cook for dinner, what to write for my next blog post, getting the car inspected, etc. just to avoid the stress of completing my deadline. I decided to try some lavender essential oil in my diffuser. I added just a few drops, and set the timer to 30 minutes, and it immediately started working. And I have to admit…I began to relax and feel better and was able to concentrate on my deadline.
What makes the EssenceAire Diffuser different from others?
My favorite feature, and what is most unique about the EssenceAire Diffuser is that I was able to control the strength of the fragrance. There is nothing more annoying than turning on a typical diffuser or lighting a heavily-scented candle or traditional oil burner and being overcome with the fragrance to the point that you have to leave the room. Plus, I was able to control the length of time the fragrance stayed in the air. You can set the diffuser to run straight for 30 minutes, then shut off automatically; or you can set it to come on for 15 seconds, then go off for 30 seconds. Once it stops running, the fragrance quickly dissipates, unlike those stinky candles and artificial air fresheners.
I have to admit, I have tried a “poor man’s” version of this…adding drops of essential oil to a regular humidifier. And of course, I ended up clogging and breaking the humidifier. Well this particular diffuser uses disposable cups to hold and separate the oils from the interior of the diffuser to avoid clogging the machine. You choose how much or how little aroma you want by adding more or fewer drops of the essential oil. Plus, unlike typical humidifiers, it has the ultrasonic action which provides cleaner, more oxygenated air.
Bringing the spa anywhere…
I am lucky enough to work from home, but I think the EssenceAire Diffuser is something people should use in their offices as well. Many office buildings have high levels of indoor air pollution which can lead to health problems. The air purifying feature of the EssenceAire could help improve the quality air you breathe at work. Adding certain essential oils to the cup could also help you stay focused, reduce stress, and keep your mood positive.
The EssenceAire Diffuser comes in two sizes, large and small. The small one is small enough to fit onto any crowded desk or bookshelf, and is powerful enough to get the job done. The fact that the fragrance fades quickly once you shut it off is great for the office as well, in case someone drops in who doesn’t like the scent.
Whether you need to de-stress after a meeting at the office, or just want help getting to sleep at home, the EssenceAire Diffuser allows you to experience the many positive health benefits of aromatherapy and hydrotherapy on your terms.Powered by Sidelines