Improve Sleep with Aromatherapy
One of the simplest things we can do to improve our sleep is to enlist a little aromatherapy to aid us each night. This can be done with plant or flower cuttings, essential oils, herbal tea or incense. Aromatherapy has been proven to help sleep, and reduce stress and nausea. But don't take my word for it. In a 2014 Study Lavender was found to improve sleep quality in hospital patients. Another study in 2009 showed that Korean students stress levels were reduced when they were exposed to essential oils compared to other students. And a study in 2014 found that peppermint aromatherapy helped reduce nausea post operatively.
Herbs That Improve Sleep
Herbs than can induce or improve sleep include Lavender, German Chamomile, Magnolia Bark, and Valerian Root.
How to Use Them
Cuttings: Set a pot on the stove with water in it and a steamer basket. Once the steam begins coming out place the cuttings in the basket, turn the heat down and allow the steam of the plant to permeate the room for 10 to 15 minutes. Or tie the herbs together crush them a bit and place them in your bath water.
Essential Oils: Essential oils are extremely versatile. They can be diffused, placed in bath water, place on the body topically and if they are therapeutic grade they can be ingested in water (only use a glass container if you choose to do this and make sure that the oil you are using is OK to ingest). A popular place to use essential oils is on the bottom of the feet. Here are a couple reasons why: The bottoms of the feet and the palms do not have sebaceous glands. Sebum is an oily substance covering most of your body. It's there to help lubricate the skin and make it a bit more waterproof. Another reason is that the pores on the soles of the feet are larger than all other pores on the body. This allows the essential oils to be absorbed more quickly and reach the bloodstream faster when they are applied to the soles. So place some lavender oil on the bottoms of your feet and rest easy.
Herbal Tea: You can purchase herbal tea at any grocery store these days and find even more options for wellness teas even ones designed specifically for sleep. Additionally you can make your own herbal teas using fresh or dried herbs.
Incense: Incense is a great choice when you have access to matches or another fire source. There are many types of incense from ones that balance your chakras to the Nag Champa that is made by Tibetan refugees to many different scented ones. Find ones you like that help you relax. But make sure you don't fall asleep while incense is burning. It's best to do a meditation while the incense burns and then do your normal sleep routine.