Aromatherapy to Cope with Growing Age

Submitted by chris parker on August 17, 2012

Aromatherapy is an ancient alternative healing practice, in which essential oils are used, for improving overall health. These essential oils have been extracted from various parts of plants, which could include flowers, leaves, barks, roots, fruits or berries. These oils are made to enter the body through absorption (massaging), or inhalation. Millions of Americans try aromatherapy every year, for better psychological and physical well-being.


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In the last few years, there have been several clinical studies conducted, to observe the effects of aromatherapy on elderly people. Some of these studies reported that elderly patients suffering from dementia and depression could benefit immensely from aromatherapy massages. Given below are some of the benefits of aromatherapy on elderly people –

  • Alleviating aches and pains across the body
  • Controlling blood pressure and soothing the nervous system
  • Healing dry skin and bed sores (through certain blends)
  • Helping patients feel good about themselves
  • Improving sleeping patterns
  • Increasing alertness and cheerfulness
  • Providing higher motivation to perform various daily activities
  • Reducing the levels of agitation, withdrawal and wandering
  • Relieving stress, anxiety and the accumulated tension

Certain essential oils are highly recommended for elderly people, as they have antidepressant, antibacterial, analgesic, diuretic, astringent, antispasmodic and deodorant properties.

Lavender essential oil happens to be very good for most elderly people. Some of the other essential oils that can also be used in aromatherapy for elderly people include –

Elderly people who are bedridden, wheelchair-bound or incapacitated in other ways could benefit from gentle aromatherapy massages too. A combination of essential oils can be blended with a mild carrier oil to alleviate discomfort and improve circulation for handicapped elders.

While many health experts agree that the use of aromatherapy is great in assisting the overall care of elderly people, it cannot be used in place of medical treatment for most conditions. Moreover, there are several factors to be kept in mind while preparing essential oil blends for the elderly. Older people have more delicate and sensitive skin and therefore the essential oil should be diluted in a higher amount of carrier oil before it is used for a massage. Adding too many drops of essential oil in their bath water could also cause them to slip and fall. Moreover, some of the aromatherapy essential oils could have an adverse effect on older people, especially those who are already suffering from certain preexisting medical conditions.

Therefore, it is imperative to consult a doctor before using aromatherapy for elderly care.

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