When you’re in pain of any kind, it’s hard to feel like yourself. Whether its muscle and joint pain or a lingering headache, pain can affect your daily life. Essential oils have long been used to soothe many kinds of pain, from tension headaches to stomach cramps. We’ll take a look at some of the most effective pain-relieving oils and how to use them.
Many modern pain relievers are associated with various negative side effects. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Ibuprofen and Naproxen are known for stomach and kidney problems. They’re also linked to high blood pressure.
Essential oils can be used to treat various forms of pain, from joint and muscle pain to headaches and stomachaches. Many oils have anti-inflammatory properties that mimic the effects of NSAIDs without the nasty side effects.
When anti-inflammatory essential oils penetrate the skin, they have been shown to reduce the pain and swelling associated with arthritis. Diluted essential oils can be applied topically to the affected areas, including ankles, knees, and wrists.
Headaches and even migraines can be soothed with the right oils. Some can be inhaled to relieve stress-related headaches, or they can be applied directly to the neck or forehead to ease the ache. Lavender is especially useful for headache relief.
Sinus headaches can be eased with oils like eucalyptus or peppermint, which ease congestion.
Many essential oils are effective at relieving sore muscles. Their anti-spasmodic properties can ease muscle spasms and pain from overwork.
Stomach cramps and even stomach ulcers can be relieved with several essential oils, including chamomile. Some are effective at relieving gas buildup associated with stomach cramps. Others, like peppermint oil, are known for their ability to soothe the stomach’s lining to reduce discomfort.
A warm bath has long been a remedy for sore muscles. Adding in anti-inflammatory essential oils can increase a bath’s effectiveness as the oil is absorbed through the skin. Simply fill up a warm bath and drop in a few drops of your chosen essential oil, then soak for up to 30 minutes. The soothing scent will also help reduce the stress that may lead to tight muscles.
For swollen or painful joints, a topical application of essential oil in a carrier oil (such as jojoba or olive oil) can relieve pain quickly. Dilute the essential oil and apply directly to the affected area, massaging for a few minutes.
Certain essential oils can be ingested in diluted forms. Peppermint oil is known for its ability to soothe upset stomachs. As always, check with your doctor if you’re unsure which essential oils are safe to ingest, especially if you are pregnant or nursing.
Touted by many as the most versatile essential oil, lavender works to fight pain in several ways. First, its soothing properties reduce the tension that may cause tension headaches or sore muscles. It is also a powerful anti-inflammatory, serving to reduce swelling that can cause joint pain.
To relieve tension, drop a few drops of lavender essential oil into a diffuser and inhale the scent. Alternatively, you can take a warm bath with the oil, which will also soothe muscles. It’s mild enough that a few drops can be applied directly to the neck or forehead to ease a headache.
If you suffer from gas pains due to bloating, chamomile oil can reduce your discomfort. It is known for its use as a carminative, meaning it relieves gas.
Chamomile tea is often recommended for stomach discomfort.
There are two common forms of chamomile. Roman chamomile is best suited for stomachaches, while the stronger German chamomile has strong anti-inflammatory properties that can ease joint and muscle pain.
You probably already know that ginger is a common remedy for stomach discomfort and nausea. However, it’s equally effective at treating a range of other painful conditions including arthritis. In fact, ginger is listed by Dr. Joshua Axe as the #1 essential oil for treating the pain associated with arthritis.
Besides relieving aching joints, ginger can reduce stomach ulcers. In a 2015 experiment, ginger essential oil reduced stomach ulcers by an incredible 85%. As always, exercise caution when ingesting any essential oil and be sure to dilute it properly.
It is also effective against tension headaches when diluted and massaged into the temples.
Its antispasmodic properties help soothe stomach cramps when ingested. It also works to soothe the lining of the stomach.
No matter what kind of pain is ailing you, essential oils can be used to bring quick relief without the harmful side effects of pain-relieving drugs. Applying the right essential oil will help you get back on track so you can live a pain-free, healthy life.