Birch Hill Happenings Aromatherapy

Your One Stop Aromatherapy Shop since 1997

Birch Hill Happenings Aromatherapy, LLC Newsletter Vol 121

January 17, 2009

In this issue:

Physical Ailment

Your Mid-Back - at the Middle Curve – Sore and Painful

by Penny Keay

Oh boy – you know where I’m talking about. This is not your lower back, this is not your upper back or shoulders.

This is the area right in the middle of your back where the curve begins to your lower back. The kidney area, right about where the rib cage ends.

It is the area where the lower thoracic vertebrae and the upper lumbar meet, where the upper back begins to curve towards the front of your body before re-curving to your lower back.

This transition area in the back can become very sore and painful from just sitting. If you have short legs and a long back, like I do, you have a hard time finding a chair that fits you properly.

Usually I end up sitting on the front edge of the chair or if I sit back where my hips and back are supported I have my feet dangling over the edge like a 2 year old! Not very comfortable either – in fact, worse, so I’d much rather sit on the edge of my seat! (Of course a foot stool works too!)

Spending lots of hours at my computer I have a tendency to sit on the front edge of my chair with no back support.

For me this causes the mid-back area to get very sore. My chiropractor and massage therapist say this is often times a weak spot in many folks. There are very few exercises you can do to strengthen this area. Unless you can fly like Superman!

I’m not kidding! One great exercise to help this area is to lie on the floor on your stomach.

With your hands and arms outstretched in front of you, lift your feet a little pointing the toes backwards and pretend you are flying left and right through the air – like Superman.

Just do it for a little while each day and it will strengthen those muscles and you will have less pain! And I mean just a little each day (less than a minute) until you get it strengthened – you will be surprised at how well it works!

Now back to our message, I mean massage oil . . .

So a good massage with heating and pain relieving essential oils give the best relief after a long day sitting on the ‘edge of my seat’.

Using a blend made up using a few to several of the following essential oils will help relax the tight muscles and the pain or soreness the tight muscles may have caused. Use no more than a total of 36 drops to a 2 ounce bottle of your favorite carrier oil.

Eucalyptus globulus
Sweet Marjoram
Black Pepper
Juniper berry
Bay laurel
Cinnamon leaf

One of my favorite blends is made with Peppermint, Ginger, Black Pepper, Juniper berry and Eucalyptus globulus essential oils.

I put 15-20 drops of each oil in a 2 ounce PET plastic bottle then add . This is blended well.

Next I have Al rub this into those tight muscles. It warms them, relaxes and takes the pain away!

This is a blend for specific areas of sore muscles as this is a very high concentrated blend at near 8-10% essential oils.

This blend is not meant for a whole body or whole back massage.

This blend works very well on any back, neck, shoulder and etc areas that are tight and sore. But you only need a small amount to massage into those areas.

Another Ache and Pain Massage Blend

Sweet Marjoram – 20 drops
Cinnamon leaf – 15 drops
Lavender – 15 drops
Peppermint – 10 drops
Fractionated coconut oil – 2 ounces

Blend all together in a PET plastic bottle . Use on any sore or painful muscle. Although this blend can be used on large areas, it is better used on a specific sore muscle group.

If you want to use it on larger areas, you may need to dilute it further.

If you do not feel like blending your own massage blends, then you could try any of our preblended massage oils these all work great on muscles too. Back Rub, Joint Rub, Muscle Rub, Muscle Relaxing, Dar’s Massage Blend, or Theratone Massage Blend are our suggestions.

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Emotional Concern

Depression – Essential oils can help

by Penny Keay

Depression is an emotional state where you can feel hopelessness, extreme sadness and have no interest in anything in life and may have both emotional and physical symptoms.

It can be a very serious medical condition and should not be taken lightly.

First before I go any further, if you are currently under the care of a medical professional for clinical depression please let them know that you would like to use essential oils along with you present regimen.

As your feelings of depression lesson the medications you are on may need to be decreased slowly but should never be stopped ‘cold turkey’.

Many prescription drugs used to treat depression need to be slowly reduced in strength before totally being eliminated otherwise unwanted withdrawal problems can occur.

Follow your doctor’s advice on the weaning process to get off of any prescription medication used for depression.

Also if you or someone close to you has had thoughts of death or suicide seek immediate medical attention. Do not try to self treat.

Remember Aromatherapy and the use of essential oils are Complimentary for your health care, but should never be used as the only course of action, especially with clinical and serious depression.

What are the causes of depression?

There can be many but not any one reason. There can be a family history which could indicate genetic implications, or maybe just stress from life – losing a job, losing a spouse, child or other loved one.

Having other types of major life changing events – even though you should be happy about your new home, a new baby, a new job, these too can cause you to have a lot of uncertainty in your life.

Then there is the financial obligations that can cause a lot of undue stress especially with these strained economic times.

Also underlying diseases and health problems can cause depression.

Hormonal imbalances or other chemical imbalances can also be a cause. This is especially noted in women after they have a baby – Post-partum depression is all too often a common occurrence in today’s society.

What kind of symptoms can you experience?

One of the most common symptoms is you have overwhelming sadness.

This type of sadness doesn’t last for a few hours or just a day here and there. This type of sadness seems to be going on for weeks at a time. You may or may not cry a lot.

You have no interest in the things you used to enjoy whether it is a hobby or your work. You may feel guilty about something you didn’t even have any part of but can’t explain why this is so.

You can’t even make a simple decision without it causing you to become upset.

Physically you may not have any energy or feel overly fatigued. You may sleep too much or maybe not enough.

You may not want to eat and will start to lose weight. Or the opposite can occur and you can over indulge in foods that may give you a short burst of anti-depressing help and then gain excessive weight.

You may develop unexplained pains and aches – almost like flu symptoms. You can experience headaches.

You may be very restless and have problems concentrating. You may have no desire for sexual activity.

Clinical Depression is not just having a sad or blue day. It is not having S.A.D (Seasonal Affective disorder – although there can be a type of depression caused by S.A.D. this can often be remedied with light therapy.)

When using essential oils to help with depression you can try several different approaches. You can use essential oils that are known to help you feel good, happy and euphoric.

There are several essential oils that have shown in the past to be helpful for depression. Or you can use essential oils for specific ailments.

Always when choosing essential oils find ones you like and that remind you of happier times, avoiding the ones that can cause you to remember bad or sad times.

Often times if you find an oil that you really enjoy and seem to crave, there is a good chance it is because it has some of the chemical constituents your body is needing to balance you chemically.

Here are a few oils that can brighten and lighten your mood, they are considered uplifting.

Bergamot, Geranium, Grapefruit, Jasmine, Lemon, Melissa, Neroli, Petitgrain, Rose, Tangerine, Orange, Peppermint and Spearmint.

Ylang-Ylang can make you feel euphoric and is very uplifting. We have seen folks get quite giddy with its use. Likewise it is also calming and will help you feel more at ease inside.

If help with restlessness is needed try:

Bergamot, Lavender, Roman Chamomile, German Chamomile, Clary Sage, Cedarwood, Frankincense, Melissa, Patchouli, Cypress or Sandalwood.

Mental concentration and memory can be enhanced with Rosemary. Add a little Lemon and Basil to this blend to help even more.

Over all fatigue try:

Basil, Coriander, Geranium, Lemon, Peppermint, Grapefruit, Orange, Pine needle or Spruce needle.

For Aches and Pains use:

Peppermint, Rosemary, Helichrysum, Eucalyptus globulus Juniper berry, Ginger, Black Pepper, Sweet Marjoram or Spearmint – mix these with a carrier oil and massage on affected area. (See the previous article for massage blends)

To help boost the immune system:

Frankincense, Niaouli, Oregano, Sweet Marjoram, Thyme

How to use these oils to help you or your loved ones?

Several can be made into massage oils. If the person with depression will allow you to touch them and give them a massage, realize some people don’t want to be touched when they are not feeling well, others welcome it.

The combination of the human touch and the use of pleasant and enjoyable essential oils can often time work miracles.

Whenever more than one of our five senses can be stimulated in a pleasant and affirming way, the body will usually respond more positively.

If they don’t want a massage, then simply using any diffuser will help to get the essential oils into the air.

You can use aromatherapy jewelry as a way to keep it at a more personalized area, especially if others around you may not enjoy your favorite scents.

It is a lovely gift that will show you care.

You can use essential oils in the bath, in lotions and in your hair care. However you want to use them will help!

Mild Depression Inhalation and Diffuser Blend

Clary Sage – 20 drops
Ylang-Ylang – 20 drops
Basil – 10 drops
Sandalwood – 10 drops
Geranium – 5 drops
Lavender – 5 drops

Blend all in a glass bottle. Then apply a few drops to any type of personal diffuser such as an inhaler or jewelry.

This blend can also be used in any diffuser as often as you desired. Preferably use on a daily basis until your depression is gone.

Above were just a few suggestions to help get you started. You may find more oils that will work better for you depending on your symptoms. Please check out the following articles previously written that may address your needs in more detail.

Articles that may help are found in our past newsletters visit

This list is a starting point. There may be other articles that may fit your given situation better so please read through the entire list of articles on the Past News Letter Index. Also Visit our Health and Beauty Index and Recipes Index for more helpful information and blends to use.

Just type visit our Newletter archives Page and scroll to find these Newsletter articles on:

S.A.D Vol. 120 and Vol 85;

Relaxing Bath Vol 118;

Consoling the loss of a Pet Vol 117;

Stiff Necks Vol 115;

Sexual Performance Vol 113;

Analgesia Pin Relief Vol 112;

Peacefulness Vol 106; Falling Asleep Vol 102;

Tiredness Vol 101;

Mental Fatigue Vol 99 and Vol 72;

Cabin Fever Vol 98 and Vol 6.2;

Balancing emotion Vol 93;

Comforting blends Vol 91;

Staying Alert Vol 89;

Sadness Vol 87;

Relaxation Vol 84;

Headaches Vol 82;

Irritability Vol 81;

Forgetfulness Vol 80;

Calming Blends Vol 77;

Happiness Vol 76;

Stress Vol 73, 74 & 75 (3 parts;

Anxiety Vol 6.9;

Memory Loss Vol 6.6;

Insomnia Vol 6.6;

Grief Vol 6.4

Please note the information on symptoms or causes depression was sourced from AltMd and WebMd websites.

Essential oils and aromatherapy information was sourced from many of the aromatherapy books and publications from our reference library.

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Health and Beauty

Body Splashes – How Refreshing!

by Penny Keay

After your shower or bath, it’s always nice to splash on a little fun scent. You can make a personalized body splash very simply.

You don’t want your splash to over power your senses so you will need to use just a drop or two in 2-4 ounces of distilled or filtered water.

Shake well and put some one your hand, rub it all over your body.

Of course you will want to avoid any mucous membranes (eyes, mouth nose, vaginal) as even a small amount of essential oils on those delicate tissues may cause a discomfort.

It is best to only mix 2 ounces at time and mix it fresh each time.

Try a few different blends. Vanilla and Jasmine, Ylang-Ylang and Neroli, Peppermint and Lavender.

Let your mind go wild. Create new and different blends each time.

If you find a blend you really like and would like to make it last longer than just after your shower, mix your newly created essential oil blend with some emulsifier and then add it to our Body spray.

You can mix it a lot stronger and wear as a perfume, sprayed into your hair or on you clothing. Just spritz some on your body after your bath and shower and smooth over the whole body.

Neroli Body Spritzer

Neroli – 10 drops
Ylang-Ylang – 8 drops
V’nillas Blend - 6 drops
Emuslifier ( Polysorbate 20 or Coconut Emulsifier ) - 1/4 teaspoon
Body spray base – 8 ounces

Blend the essential oils together with the emulsifier. Then mix into your Body spray base. Shake well and use to spray your hair and body.

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Around the House and Garden

Sweetest Holiday – Valentine’s Day – It’s almost here! Are you Ready?

by Penny Keay

Here it is just a few weeks before Valentines’ day. Now is the time you will want to get prepared for a wonderful romantic evening with your Sweetie.

This year with Valentine’s Day being on a Saturday you will have plenty of time to plan that perfect evening together.

You can make special blends to diffuse during dinner or if you are going out for the evening you can make a body or hair spritzer to use that is made with known aphrodisiac essential oils.

Or you can make a special massage blend or hot tub blend just for the two of you.

But what essential oils are considered the most likely to be an aphrodisiac? Usually scents that are spicy with a hint of citrus, woodsy like Sandalwood or sweet like Vanilla.

Here is a list of essential oils that you and your lover may enjoy.

Try blending two or three together in small amounts and experiment.

There are no rules to blending these – just try different combinations: Anise, Cardamom, Cinnamon leaf, Clove bud, Coriander, Ginger, Nutmeg, Jasmine, Neroli, Myrrh, Myrtle, Patchouli, Rose, Peppermint, Sandalwood, Vanilla and Ylang-Ylang. Some folks also like the following Basil, Black Pepper, Clary Sage and Vetiver.

Try this blend to Excite the Sensual Senses

Ginger – 6 drops
Myrrh – 4 drops
Cinnamon leaf – 2 drops
Jasmine – 2 drops
Cardamom – 1 drop
Jojoba – 1 oz
Sweet almond 1 oz

Blend all together and use to give a romantic massage. Please do not massage on the genitals as the Ginger.

Cinnamon and Cardamom are very warming oils and may turn your night from a fun to not so fun in just a few minutes.

One last thought, Although we do not recommend you ingest essential oils, as getting the right proportions is difficult, making them hard to use in cooking (just a toothpick drop is even too much sometimes).

You can use the following herb and spice powders to cook your romantic dinner.

The following herbs and spice powders are considered aphrodisiacs’ too and will invoke a wonderful smell throughout the kitchen as you cook.

Black Pepper(grind some fresh on your salad);

Cardamom (cookies, pastries or other dessert);

Cinnamon (can be used in lots of meat dishes and of course desserts);

Ginger (what a common spice in all kinds of foods!);

Nutmeg (again used in many desserts);

Vanilla (warm and wonderful in any dish).

How about some pumpkin pie or bars for dessert? With whipping cream on top!!

Let us know what you have planned and how it worked – we’d love to share with others. You may make some other couples anniversary or special day/night very memorable!

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Recipes to try

Mid-Back Massage Blend

Spearmint – 15 drops
Black Pepper – 10 drops
Eucalyptus globulus – 5 drops
Sweet almond – 2 ounces

Blend all in a PET plastic bottle. Use to massage the mid-back and the whole back as desired.

Make me Happy Blend

Ylang-Ylang – 20 drops
Bergamot – 20 drops
Lavender – 20 drops
Roman Chamomile – 10 drops vGrapefruit – 5 drops

Blend all in a glass bottle. Then diffuse in any diffuser or use in a Personal inhaler or on Aromatherapy jewelry.

Can also be mixed with Body spray or Linen Spray bases to use as a room spray. (Follow body and linen spray label instructions for amount to add to the bottle you are making)

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Vanilla Scented Shower and Bath Body Splash

Vanilla Absolute or V’Nillas Blend – 10 drops
Sandalwood or S’Woods Blend – 10 drops
Ylang-Ylang – 10 drops
Litsea Cubeba - 5 drops
Emulsifier such as Polysorbate 20 or Coconut Emulsifier – 1/2 teaspoon
Distilled water – 8 ounces

Add the essential oils and emulsifier to a PET plastic bottle, mix well. Then add the 8 ounces of water. Shake well. Pour a small amount on your hand and splash and rub on your skin.

For You and For Me Romantic Bath Blend

Sandalwood – 2 drops
Jasmine – 1 drop
Rose – 1 drop
Neroli – 1 drop
Bergamot – 1 drop

While running the water in the tub add these to your bath. If you have a large tub/larger room you may want to double the amounts. (Start with the amounts listed first.)

Fill the tub about 15-20 minutes prior to bathing to let the scents permeate the room.

You may want to make the water a little warmer than you normally would since you are filling the tub several minutes to using it.

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All the products listed in the article are available at our Shopping Site - see link below.

© 2009, 2014, 2015, 2017 Penny Keay All rights reserved Worldwide.
Please do not use my information without my permission.

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