Aromatherapy is exactly what the name implies: “Aroma used as a therapy.” It can relieve stress, aid in digestion, and even help memory. The best part is it is easily affordable and readily available.
Aging brings with it many challenges that can be difficult to face. For example, grandma may not have the best memory anymore and grandpa is easily annoyed and doesn’t sleep very well. Perhaps they don’t even eat as much as they should due to side effects from their medications or other problems.
Before adding more pills to the daily regimen of our senior population, perhaps we should consider aromatherapy first.
Contrary to how it sounds you do not need to be able to smell scents for Aromatherapy to work. The aromatic molecules still have the same effect on the limbic system. This releases endorphins which then trigger various emotions and physical reactions that can relieve anxiety, invigorate, or aid digestion.
Studies are ongoing, but there is evidence that seniors who are affected by Alzheimer’s can experience some relief with scents that trigger memories. Other scents that aid sleep, anxiety, and depression are also beneficial.
Certain essential oils can also help with pain. Sufferers of arthritis can certainly utilize aromatherapy via essential oils to minimize discomfort.
Candles are an easy way to jump into aromatherapy. They are available everywhere and can be inexpensive. This makes them easy to find. There is also a wide range of scents available. You can find lavender, lemon, chamomile, or combinations of scents.
Available at most stores you can pick them up at grocery stores, big box retailers, and the internet. There are also specific stores and websites that specialize in aromatherapy and sell candles. White Fox Candle Company is a good example, carrying a wide range of candles (and other products) for your aromatherapy needs. They are also available should you have any questions or need assistance picking out the right item.
When thinking about the environment a senior citizen is living in, it is easy to assume the space is a bit dark, dusty, and cluttered. But it doesn’t have to be that way. While grandma and grandpa may not be able to get around as easily to tidy up, they can receive some motivation to brighten the place up.
Let’s start with sleep. A linen spray of lavender spritzed on the pillows and sheets at night might help get an extra hour or two of rest. Perhaps include a diffuser with a chamomile essential oil to aid in relaxation and pain relief.
Morning comes and as they prepare for their day, they can slip on a clay necklace that has a drop of orange and bergamot added to it. Or perhaps Grandpa prefers a felt patch pinned to his shirt instead. Energizing and uplifting, these two scents not only aid in digestion but will ease anxiety. The perfect start to the day.
As the day progresses, a candle with some peppermint could help with mental clarity and energize the space. Open the curtains, prop open a window, and enjoy the afternoon.
Many floral scents could help stimulate memories. For example, a rose garden in summer or lilacs in the spring.
Aromatherapy is an excellent and non-invasive way to help seniors. There are many methods of integrating it into their home ranging from candles to diffusers to clay necklaces. Easy to find and use, essential oils can be an important way to help improve the living conditions of our senior citizens.