Does Diffusing Essential Oil Help You Sleep Better?
A good sleep can help you in many ways. It not only keeps you feeling energetic throughout the day but also rejuvenates and repairs your body for better health. Many people around the world suffer from insomnia, sleep disorders or have difficulty falling asleep. Well, if you are one of them, you can improve your sleep using essential oils.
Essential oils have been used for aromatherapy for many years to help with relaxation. It helps naturally eliminating stress and relieving anxiety. As a result, you feel more relaxed and sleep better.
But do all essential oil have a calming effect? Probably not, and therefore, it is important to know which of them are best suitable for treating insomnia.
Is it a good idea to diffuse essential oils while you sleep?
Each essential oil has a distinct characteristic. Some of them have a calming action while some have an activating effect. Also different essential oil diffuse in the air at a different rate. Therefore, the time for which you will leave your diffuser on can have a great impact on your body. Moreover, the different diffusing techniques may also affect the spread of the scent for treating your sleep problem.
Using a particular scent before bedtime can help the body to relate with your time for sleep, thereby naturally promoting a better sleep. Most scents have a sedative effect which helps in calming the nervous system. Moreover, some essential oils may aid breathing, especially when you have a cold.
Diffusing an oil that helps in relaxing the airways reduces the obstruction and aids sleep. However, highly energizing essential oils such as lemongrass or tangerine should be avoided, as it may activate your body and interfere with your sleep. Essential oils may have a different effect on every individual and hence finding out the right oil or the right blend may seem to prove beneficial. All the essential oils act as adaptogens and may adapt to the individual who uses it.
Ways of diffusing essential oil for sleep
There are several ways to diffuse essential oils in your environment. You may either use an ultrasonic diffuser, easily available in the market. Just adding a few drops of a calming essential oil to it will start diffusing the aroma in minutes. The device creates a mist that is released in the air. However, these diffusers come with a disadvantage of filling water over and over again to work efficiently and create the mist.
Nebulizers also work as an effective diffuser and are hassle-free. The device is equipped with an electric pump that sprays the atomized scent molecules in the air evenly, resulting in a calming aura in your room. However, nebulizers may use up a little more oil as compared to ultrasonic diffusers and hence you run out of your oils faster. Other ways to diffuse essential oils are candle lamp diffusion and terracotta diffusers.
Which essential oils promote a better sleep?
Well, not all the essential oils have a calming action, some may have a refreshing and activating action which may interrupt with your sleep if you use it during bedtime. Therefore, it is imperative to choose your essential oil very carefully when trying to help with sleep. Here is a list of calming essential oils that can be good for sleep.
1. Lavender Oil
This is an extensively used oil in aromatherapy to promote relaxation and induce a better sleep. The soothing scent is considered a better option for falling asleep as compared to other sleeping aids. It has a calming effect on the nervous system, which aids in combatting anxiety and stress.
2. Chamomile Oil
Just as chamomile tea has a relaxing effect on the body, diffusing its oil may have a similar effect. It acts as a mild sedative and helps in falling asleep fast.
3. Ylang Ylang Oil
This is another great essential oil that may help you to have a better sleep through the night. The aroma reduces blood pressure while slowing down the heart rate, thereby relaxing the body. It also helps in fighting depression and reduces anxiety.
4. Frankincense Oil
This oil has been used for thousands of years for treating a variety of physical conditions. It is also a great relaxant and thus can be a great choice to use at bedtime. A few drops of this oil when rubbed under the feet has a calming effect which helps in falling asleep fast.
5. Cedarwood Oil
If you like the woody smell, this oil is just for you. It not only diffuses a great aroma in the air but also combats stress and anxiety. It also induces the production of serotonin which boosts your mood and makes you feel happy. Moreover, its sedative action is great for a deep sleep.
Besides using these oils individually, you may also experiment with blending one or more oils. This will help you to know what works best for you. As said earlier, each oil has a different effect on different people. Therefore, find the right one can or combinations can be highly rewarding.
Can essential oils be harmful?
With so many benefits, it seems that essential oils are great natural products that can be used to treat a variety of problems including sleep disorders. But too much of anything can be harmful. It may also affect your health if used in the wrong way. Leaving your diffuser on for the entire night may sometimes lead to overexposure. There is a misconception that since the essential oils are natural, they can be used as much as you want. But these aromatic oils have a great impact on your body. They may affect your blood pressure levels too.
Therefore, proper use of these essential oils is highly recommended. Experts suggest using your diffuser just a few times in a day and night. You may use it for 15-20 minutes at a time for saturating a room of standard size. In this way, the aromatic particles spread in the air in the right amount and your olfactory system does not get irritated. In some individuals, overexposure to aromatic scents may trigger a headache.
That being said, you may definitely use aromatic essential oils for promoting sleep but make sure you diffuse it for only a short period at a time. Some diffusers come with a timer setting so that you can get the right amount of aroma throughout the night. However, you must follow the device instructions and experiment with the amount of oils used for the perfect effect.