Aromatherapy For Allergies: Can Essential Oils Help?

April showers bring May flowers. And May flowers bring… allergies.

In the USA over 50 million people suffer from allergies, making it one of the leading causes of chronic illness in the country. Many people suffer from allergies in the spring, early fall and even year round. For me, when there’s an open window in the spring and I get a whiff of certain kinds of pollen I sneeze three or four times, my nose starts to run, and my sinuses get more clogged than the Chick-Fil-A drive through at lunch time. 

Everyone’s experience with allergies is different, though. Common allergies symptoms include: 

  • Itchy, inflamed eyes
  • Coughing
  • Sneezing
  • Nasal congestion
  • Runny nose

Can Aromatherapy Help Reduce Allergy Symptoms?

Although scientific studies in this area remain a little slim still, many people’s testimonies around aromatherapy and essential oils make a strong case for its health and allergy benefits. A well-designed regimen of essential oils treatments may provide some much needed relief and even erase reliance on over the counter anti-allergy drugs. 

Essential oils activate the olfactory nerve in your brain and cause other parts of the brain to respond accordingly, triggering various physiological changes in the body. 

Some of the most popular and practical ways of drawing on the power of aromatherapy include:

  • Directly smelling essential oils for at least five minutes
  • Using an aromatherapy facial steamer, like the one we sell here at Maivara
  • Taking a shower or bath with oils 
  • Breathing in small amounts of oils in with a diffuser
  • Applying oils to the skin once they’re diluted 

Here are some of the most potent essential oils that will help you beat out seasonal allergies: 

Peppermint Essential Oil For Allergies

In its most basic sense, coughing is caused by minute muscle contractions. A study by the National Library of Medicine concluded that peppermint oil applied to rats had the effect of relaxing and soothing muscles in their throats and tracheas. Humans very likely enjoy the same benefit. If you’ve ever breathed in the sharp minty scent of peppermint when your sinuses were plugged you’ve probably experienced first hand its healing, anti-inflammatory, decongestant abilities. Peppermint essential oil is great for opening up airways. 

Lemon Essential Oil For Allergies

Because of mucus’s heavy role in making allergy symptoms worse, a natural antihistamine like lemon can be a lifesaver. Like peppermint, it also relaxes the body’s inflammatory reaction. Additionally, lemon oil has the special property of controlling and inhibiting bacteria. Use Lemon with lavender essential oil for a soothing, energy-enhancing effect

Eucalyptus Essential Oil For Allergies

Steam rooms frequently fuse steam with a sprig of eucalyptus leaves in order to open up your airways and soothe your nerves, and you can enjoy these same benefits with eucalyptus oil. Replicate this same experience in your own home with the help of an aromatherapy steamer - a portable facial steamer that emits 20 minutes of warm steam and provides many health and sinus benefits.

Apply a couple drops of eucalyptus to the rock that sits in the steamer and heats up, and voila, your face is bathing in a healing cloud of eucalyptus steam. In a study of various aromatic herbs including eucalyptus, researchers discovered that eucalyptus reduces hoarseness in the throat, sore throat symptoms, coughing and wheezing. 

Lavender Essential Oil For Allergies

There’s a reason lavender essential oil is one of the most in-demand essential oils. It boasts an unparalleled ability to relax and calm the body and reduce anxiety. Lavender essential oil can make quick work of the stress and discomfort that frequently comes with dealing with allergies. Especially if you’re trying to sleep or rest and allergies have you irritated, try using lavender to calm your nerves and help your body rejuvenate. 

Tea Tree Essential Oil For Allergies

Tea Tree oil’s proven anti-fungal, antibacterial and antiviral properties make it a no brainer for combating allergies and other illnesses. It also boasts great anti-inflammatory abilities. Because of its potency, however, more people have allergies to this essential oil than others. If you’re new to using it you should first conduct a test on a small patch of your skin with it to prevent an unwanted reaction. This oil should only be used topically. 

Aromatherapy Can Help With Allergies - But Use Oils Safely

Remember to never directly apply essential oils to the skin. If you wish to apply them to the skin, first dilute them with another carrier oil such as almond oil in order to reduce their direct impact. For the same reasons, don’t ever drink or ingest essential oils. Always remember to test very small doses of oil in order to ascertain possible allergies you might have to them.

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