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Essential oil benefits can range from the relief of physical ailments to the treatment of psychological and emotional problems. The benefits of essential oils are often expounded by practitioners of aromatherapy, who largely believe that the scents of essential oils have a profound effect on the mind and body. Essential oils are used topically or orally. Different essential oils typically have different properties.
Topically applied, essential oils usually absorb easily into the body. That's because most essential oils dissolve in fats and alcohol, allowing them to penetrate the skin by dissolving in the body's own fatty tissues. Inhaling the oils may also allow them to penetrate the skin, as droplets of evaporation from the oil can come into contact with the lining of the nasal passages. Some essential oils are commonly taken by mouth.
Many who seek essential oil benefits do so for the sake of physical health. Essential oils are said to have a number of health benefits, including boosting immunity. The essential oil of the tea tree plant, for instance, is said to prevent colds and fungal infections of the skin when applied topically. The essential oil of eucalyptus is said to be effective in treating a number of viruses, including genital and oral herpes, chickenpox, and shingles. The essential oil of cinnamon is considered by many to be a powerful anti-viral agent.
Many types of essential oils offer multiple benefits. Eucalyptus oil, for instance, is also considered an effective treatment for respiratory congestion when inhaled. Peppermint essential oil benefits may include supporting digestion, reducing appetite, and invigorating the body. Rosemary essential oil benefits may include supporting hair and skin health, nervous system wellbeing, circulatory system support, and muscle support. The essential oil of myrrh is said to have anti-viral, anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, and anti-inflammatory effects.
In addition to the physical benefits of essential oils, there are also believed to be a number of emotional and psychological benefits. Aromatherapists in particular generally believe that the aromas of many essential oils can bring about profound changes in mental and emotional states. The essential oil of lavender has long been prized for its alleged calming properties. Rose essential oil benefits are believed to include mental stimulation and enhanced mood. Valerian essential oil benefits are said to help calm the body and balance the emotions.