Do you enjoy walks amidst nature and then suddenly you get that fragrance which just elevates your mood, rejuvenates your senses? Aroma plays a crucial role in shaping our mood. That's precisely where the concept of aromatherapy stems from. For thousands of years, aromatherapy massage has been embraced all over the world for its benefits.
The concept of Aromatherapy is based on the use of essential oils, lotions, aroma compounds which are believed to improve mental and physical well-being. Aromatherapists have mastered the art of blending essential oils and compounds that are used either for applying on the skin or inhaling.
Although modern-day aromatherapy has evolved, with a lot of changes from what it used to be in the 1900s, traditional aromatherapy massage dates back to the time of Chinese, Roman, Greek, Egyptian civilization. Although there is no exact date of its origin, the mention of aromatherapy can be found in scriptures, art, sermons. The civilizations used the essential oils as cosmetics, perfume or drugs, to fulfill a sense of aesthetic pleasure and beauty.
The oldest mention of essential oils can be found in a book named De Materia Medica by Dioscorides, who believed in the medicinal values and healing properties in them.
A French book named "Aromathérapie: Les Huiles Essentielles, Hormones Végétales" by René-Maurice Gattefossé mentioned the treatment of modern-day aromatherapy in 1937. Gattefossé claims that he had burnt his hand and then he applied lavender oil, which effectively helped in his treatment.
Since its inception, a French surgeon named Jean Valnet was the first to popularize the use of aromatherapy to treat soldiers during the Second World War.
What to wear during the massage:
Generally, before the massage begins, the therapist approaches the client to invite them for a smelling session. There are different blends of essential oils and each is described by the therapists. They also mention the benefits and effects of every blend. Most of the time, it depends on the discretion of the client as to which oil blend to go for.
The client is also asked if they have any medical conditions or allergies and the therapist also takes note of any tightness or pain in some specific area.
After this process ends, the therapist normally leaves the room to allow the client to undress and wrap themselves in towels and lay down on the massage table. The tables are often cushioned for extra comfort. The degree of exposure during the massage depends on the comfort of the client.
What to expect:
Generally, a professional Aromatherapy Massage lasts for 90-120 minutes. Compared to other forms of massage which focus more on the expertise of the therapist and the strokes, aromatherapy focuses more on the healing benefits of the oils. The massage normally starts from the head so that the client inhales the aroma from the oil blends. Aromatherapy massages are gentle on the body with sustained, gentle strokes that reach the muscle tissue layers. Different techniques like kneading, gentle pinching, stretching the skin, gliding, friction, acupressure may be used during the session. The combination of technique depend on the expertise of the therapist and the body condition of the client.
At times, soothing background music is played at the background to enhance the experience and provide spiritual benefits. It, however, depends on the discretion of the client.
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Aromatherapy has been widely accepted around the world for the range of benefits it offers, both physically and mentally.
Aromatherapy is proven to alleviate muscle pain. The massage strokes reach the deep tissues, providing blow flow to the specific areas of pain and stiffness. Black pepper oil is a common oil used for muscular aches.
People with disturbed sleep, improper sleep cycle often rely on aromatherapy for improving the quality of sleep. Essential oils like clary sage, patchouli are used for people looking to fight insomnia and disturbed sleep patterns.
Aromatherapy also helps in soothing sore joints. Elderly people go for this massage therapy to get rid of the joint pain they experience due to age or lifestyle. The essential oils help in providing lymphatic fluids to the joints and provide mobility.
The oil blends used in aromatherapy is known to improve digestion and boost immunity too.
Aromatherapy has been known to improve mental well-being by alleviating stress, depression, anxiety and agitation. People who have a busy schedule, often rely on a regular massage session to get rid of their daily stress.
Many conditions have been believed to be treated using aromatherapy. Research has shown that it is useful for chemotherapy patients, women facing menstrual and menopausal problems, alopecia or hair loss issues. It is also known to tackle digestive problems and psoriasis.
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Common oils used:
Aromatherapy involves a range of oils with each offering a different benefit. Some of the common oils used are black pepper for stimulating blood circulation, muscular aches. Ginger oil helps in tackling arthritis pain and improving mobility. Basil oil can be used for enhancing focus and is reported to alleviate depression. Bergamot oil is effective for people with urinary or digestive problems. Eucalyptus oil is known to help tackle skin problems. Clove oil is famous for being a painkiller. Lavender oil works wonders on cuts and burns. It is even reported to enhance sleep quality and relaxation. Rosemary is known to promote hair growth, prevent muscle spasm and boost memory. Tea tree oil is often used for its antimicrobial, disinfectant qualities. Thyme oil is used for fatigue, stress.
Different oils are also used for different moods. For example- chamomile, geranium and lavender oils are used for calming. Ylang-ylang, clary sage, rose oils are used for uplifting. Eucalyptus, pine and tea tree oils are used for decongesting while rosemary oil is often used for energizing.
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Types of Products used:
In aromatherapy, many props can be used to complete the massage. It depends on the expertise of the therapist to choose the perfect combination and tailor it to the needs of the client. Generally, inhalers, diffusers, aromatic spritzers, bathing salts, body oils, creams or lotions, facial steamers, hot and cold compresses or clay masks may be used for a massage session. They may be used alone or in combinations.
A professional quality Aromatherapy massage costs around 3000-5000 INR in Tamil Nadu. We, at Le Bliss Spa, offer a 60-minute Aromatherapy Massage for 2800, a 90-minute massage for 3900 and a 120-minute massage for 4500 INR.