Tip: If you’re looking for a quick-fix stress remedy, aromatherapy massage uses two most powerful senses – scent and touch to instil a fast, deep sense of wellbeing, calm and relaxation.
How: During a session you will usually be asked to choose a scent that appeals to you from a selection chosen by the aromatherapist. Trust this instinctive process. Aromatherapists believe that when smelling essential oils there is a chemical reaction in the brain that draws you toward one essential oil blend, depending on what you need at that time. The body will be drawn to the oil that will do it the most good at any given time, is their mantra. Aromatherapy massage focuses more on the gentle stimulation of pressure points that govern lymph drainage and help balance the nervous system instead of deep manipulation of muscles.
Why: The calming effect is profound. There are two parts to the autonomic nervous system – the sympathetic and parasympathetic. The sympathetic is stimulated when you are in flight or fight response – which most people tend to be these days – and the body works off adrenaline and the energy is used in the muscles, lungs and heart. All the things needed to take flight. The parasympathetic is stimulated when the body is at rest or sleeping to repair, aid digestion, skin cell renewal and equips the body with the tools to last longer, which sympathetic does not. In a healthy body there’s a healthy balance between the two and a real aromatherapy treatment is one of the best ways of helping to balance this system. See The De-Stress Diet page 7 for many more goodies to stimulate this system.
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