The Nose Knows - Aroma Therapy Defined
Monday, March 29, 2021
While fragrance has been used for healing purposes for centuries, it was dubbed aromatherapy in the late 30s, thanks to a French chemist. Aromatherapy uses a plant’s aroma-producing oils (essential oils) to treat disease. Oil taken from a plant’s flowers, leaves, stalks, bark, rind or roots is mixed with another substance, like alcohol, oil or lotion, then sprayed in the air, inhaled or applied to skin. Depending on the type of oil, the result on the body may be calming or stimulating. Specialists of aromatherapy use it to help treat a wide range of physical and mental conditions including burns, infections, depression, sleeplessness and high blood pressure.
Sensory Cells Connect to Brain
The ability to smell comes from sensory cells in a small patch of tissue high inside the nose. These cells connect directly to the part of the brain that plays a major role in controlling our memories, behaviors and emotions therefore, how we interpret and respond to smells.
Our nose helps us enjoy the aromas of favorite foods or flowers. Aroma, as defined by Merriam-Webster, is a distinctive and usually pleasant or mouthwatering smell. Therapeutic is relating to the treatment of disease or disorders by methods to provide or assist in a cure. If it passes your sniff test and you’re considering using aromatherapy, tell your doctor.
Source: HealthWise and NIH