Aromatherapy is a natural healing method which uses essential oils to achieve a therapeutic affect. It is not known whether it is the chemical action of the essential oil itself or the scent that provides relief. Because of this uncertainty, some doctors worry about potential essential oil interactions with standard medications used for treating migraines.
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Some of the essential oils commonly used for migraine aromatherapy are basil, chamomile, clary sage, eucalyptus, ginger, lavender, marjoram, peppermint, rosemary, sandalwood, and ylang-ylang .
When using aromatherapy to relieve migraines, keep these safety precautions in mind.
- Be sure to talk to your doctor before trying anything new.
- If possible, speak with an experienced aromatherapist.
- When combining aromatherapy with other medications, watch for any adverse reactions and report them to your physician immediately.
- Buy therapeutic grade essential oils designed for aromatherapy. They will be sold in dark containers and stored away from direct sunlight.
- Use either a carrier oil or an aromatherapy diffuser. Essential oils can be powerful irritants and should never be applied directly to the skin.
Essential oils can be used in an aromatherapy diffuser and inhaled two or three times daily. They can also be added to a large bowl of hot water and the aroma inhaled with eyes closed. Although essential oils can be added to carrier bath, face, or massage oils and applied to the body or bath, this should only be done after consulting with a experienced aromatherapist to make sure the oils used are safe for this purpose.