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Essential Oils & The Elderly


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Health & Wellness

Essential oils from plants have been coming to the forefront of American culture for the past few years.  They have been proven effective for many things through widespread use.  While the FDA may not have run tests on these oils & brands of oils, most of them have been used for ailments over a course of centuries, & we can be reasonably certain of the safety of the oils for intended use.  Use caution if you plan to ingest anything that you're unsure of or if you have not researched it thoroughly.  The suggestions given below are for supportive uses  that can help improve the quality of life of senior citizens through topical use & through diffusing into the air.  Always remember to ask for advice from your physician before trying new therapies that need to be in alignment with your doctor's care.

Lavender  This easy to find essential oil can be used in a diffuser to help promote sleep.  It can also be used mixed with water and a small bit of salt in a spray bottle, sprayed on bed linens & pillowcases to promote relaxation & sleep.  It is also helpful on small cuts or skin tears (aging skin gets thinner over time) & bug bites to ease itching & help the tissues heal.

Eucalyptus. Respiratory ailments can be alleviated by using this oil.  Put it into the diffuser or even into a steaming pan of water in order to allow the aroma open the airways.  You can also mix it with a bit of coconut oil & place it on the chest or under the nose in order to have the benefit of it being closer.

Antivirals.  Oregano oil is touted as being antiviral.  Different oil companies have other blends of oils that are said to be anti-viral, as well.  Diffusing these in the homes of the elderly is a wonderful idea, especially during influenza outbreaks, especially because influenza molecules that are airborne can be contagious for a long period of time. If you diffuse oregano oil, be prepared to become hungry for Italian food!

Peppermint & Lemon.  These two oils have a number of excellent qualities all their own, but when you mix them & diffuse them, they can be incredibly motivating.  If you know of a senior citizen that is struggling with lack of motivation, depression or sluggishness, this can be a very gently, subtle way to help.  You'll obviously need to do more than this, but this can be a small boost to start the day on the right track.  Peppermint can also be diluted with coconut oil & applied topically over the stomach if there are complaints of indigestion or intestinal difficulties.

These are just a few of the many helpful oils that are out there for us to use.  The list is far longer than the little introduction that we've written above.  Tread carefully & know that some of the oils may not be as helpful as others.  Much depends upon whether the company you are buying from is reputable, and whether there is genuine science to back up their claims.  If, however, you're looking for little boosts in the right direction, oils can be incredibly helpful.  As you learn more, you'll find that some of them can be used in far greater ways with far greater success than just altering moods & fighting viruses.  You certainly owe it to yourself & your loved ones to check into this amazing resource!


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