According to a study published by Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, cancer patients have a particularly tough go at getting good sleep. Subjects were given aromatherapy over a 13-week period of time. The effects were very beneficial, producing more sleep for the patients. In fact, over 90 percent said they would continue use of the blend that included bergamot, lavender, sandalwood, frankincense and mandarin. (1)
Like lavender and roman chamomile essential oils, sweet marjoram essential oil combined together with the previous oils can produce a highly effective synergistic blend for insomnia. You should certainly be able to start feeling the benefit of a better nights sleep after you use these oils. Blend these three oils in different proportions to suit your personal preferences for fragrance, or check my recommended blend recipes below.
For now, you can look to books with essential oil profiles or online websites of essential oil suppliers for information on notes. And just like essential oil categories, the information you find on essential oils notes will vary. Some essential oils have one note while others are thought to have a combination of two with one of the two being more dominant than the other.
Sleep is something that everyone needs, and no one gets enough of. I know from personal experience how sleep can affect everything from mental clarity and sanity to your pain levels and immune system strength. In my last sleep post, I gave you my favorite Sleepytime tea & tincture recipe, in this post we're going to learn about using aromatherapy to help you and your family sleep better. With so many great essential oils for sleep, I have put together my recipe for my favorite sleepytime essential oil blend that I like to call, Good Night Sleep Tight! This calming essential oil blend is good for more than just sleep, I even use this to control my Restless Leg Syndrome!
First, thank you so much for posting these blends! I am so eager to try them. May I ask though – how does the size of your diffuser (and it’s water capacity) matter to the oil amounts in each ‘recipe’? For instance, my daughter has a smaller diffuser than me. Her’s holds a total of 120 ml. Mine on the other hand holds up to 300 ml. I almost never fill it to capacity with water, but it did start me wondering what water amount these blends were based upon.
You are what you eat! Your dietary practices can participate in how adequately you sleep, or don’t sleep. Eating and drinking the wrong things late in the evening, or having an unsatisfactory diet plan in general, can also be a variable. A late night glass of red or white wine, ale or shot of whiskey, may support you to drop off when you first retire but there’s a respectable risk it might result in you awaking midway through the night, or prematurely in the morning. Naturally there is also the chance that any stimulants you may be consuming could be inducing your sleeplessness.
Thanks for sharing these resources, Susan. I’ve read through them, and although there’s some really valuable and helpful info here, I don’t believe this settles the issue that a lot of people have with these big MLM companies. I mean, these sources are from YL distributors so they’re biased. Sure the information is good and possibly true, but it just seems like it’s better to get info from unbiased sources. Right?
I use Cinnamon Bark from Spark Naturals. I’m sure you could use either one, that is just the one I use. Also, make sure to get a good quality oil since diffusing the oil gets the particles and benefits into the air in your home and air you breathe. I also love to change up what I diffuse throughout the day! You can either use more than one diffuser so that you can let it run until the water/oil is gone, or just try not filling it all the way and using less oil so it can run for a shorter amount of time. That way, you’re not dumping out anything to change what oils you use. I usually let my diffusers run until what I have in the “tank” is gone and then I change what blend I’m using 🙂
I’m loving receiving your emails. What strategies you suggest are common knowledge, but having the time to sit back and think about them is another thing. I have used the 2 choices a lot this week. It’s amazing how it can work. Our power struggles have decreased, kids have been getting along together better. I know it has been only a week, but it feels like a massive change. I wish I had have signed up for emails 3 weeks ago and used the strategies on their school holidays lol.
Essential oils can act by triggering the central nervous system and circulatory system to promote sleep in the body. To test these effects, an increasing amount of scientific studies have been conducted to evaluate their effectiveness on humans. The following are considered the best essential oils for sleep due to their sedative, calming or stress-reducing properties.
I am enjoying learning about essential oils and am appreciating them so much! Thank you for this article. I do have a question for you … How do I choose and use a diffuser? I am currently using my old scentsy burner – water with a few drops of essential oil – as a diffuser, but it evaporates so quickly and the scent is so light. I’m guessing I need a diffuser, but there are so many, I don’t know what to buy. What do you suggest for longer lasting air diffusion? Thank you!
This reason alone makes it important to choose the right diffuser and my advice to reap all of the benefits of essential oils is to stick with a cold-air, nebulizing or ultrasonic diffuser. I DO keep a little plugin diffuser in my car, although that one does heat up, so I know I’m getting the calming benefits of the scents, but I may be losing out on some of the other aromatherapy effects.
I really enjoy Lea’s website too! One thing I recently learned about the 3rd party testing she had done though, was it may not be very reliable. She chose a chemist in France who used outdated testing equipment simply because it was the cheapest. And although I greatly appreciate her knowledge, she gets very defensive and on the verge of rude at times in the comments. I also know she doesn’t appreciate learning that isn’t taught by a certified aroma therapist.
Vetiver essential oil is made from tall perennial grass plants growing natively in India. It is an essential oil base note and therefore has a very calming, stabilizing, and grounding nature. Vetiver smells quite grassy and ‘strong’, so I have not had much luck using it on its own. However, together with Lavender, Sweet Orange, or both, it makes a fantastic sleep blend that you’re sure to come back to.
LAVENDER. This is the most popular essential oil for sleep and relaxation among my patients, and my first, general go-to recommendation for people looking to try aromatherapy for sleep. Lavender is a soothing scent that’s long been associated with relaxation and sleep, and used as a natural remedy for anxiety. Lavender is probably the most rigorously studied essential oil. A robust body of research shows lavender has anxiety reducing—or anxiolytic—effects, as well as beneficial effects on depression. Lavender can also help with pain relief, several studies show. One recent study showed aromatherapy using lavender oil reduced the need for pain medications in a group of 6 to 12-year-old children recovering from having their tonsils removed. Lavender also has sedative effects, meaning it can work directly to help you fall asleep. A number of studies point to lavender’s effectiveness for sleep: improving sleep quality, increasing sleep amounts, and elevating daytime alertness, including in people with insomnia.
This is so perfect. I have been studying so much on herbs and oils. I make my own herbal tea blends that I sell. I just finished mixing the oils for a calming aromatherapy oil. I used a 1oz bottle. I kind of go big or go home… And this is my first go at it. It has lavender, majorim, orange sweet, and sandlewood. They are “resting” now. I like to use oil like this before bed. So I decided to try my own mixture with what I have learned and my favorite and most soothing smells. I will then mix the rest with my carrier oil and have my first ounce of a blend. But it’s just for me. If it turns out well… I may make roll on scents to sell in my shop!
No that was my question! I was worried those smells wouldn’t blend properly (Lavender as the primary + rosemary with a touch of oak moss which i know will be hard with oak moss absolute as being thick!-I’ve been warned thicker than vetiver!) and the idea of the dried herbs(rosemary and lavender) in jasmine rice together… would I get lucky on any advice for mixing those oils with a general ratio in mind or if my OG idea of drop count sounded possibly safe?
While some of Organic Infusions essential oils are medical food grade, we do not advise the use of essential oils for internal use unless they are prescribed by your health care provider and certified aromatherapist. Only your health care provider and certified aromatherapist can prescribe the proper dosage and usage. Please check with your health care professional and certified aromatherapist before ingesting any essential oils.
Hello I just recently got a divorce. And for a couple weeks could not sleep so the dr. put me on sleeping medicine I do not want to be on them and I was wondering if you could tell me what would be the best essential oils that I could use for falling asleep I use a necklace infuser. By using that would that work or should I apply to the body like you have said in this site. I use lemon oil for depression. What would you have me used to sleep thank you so much for your helping and I really appreciate your time and knowledge on helping me learn thank you.
Spring for a good mattress. Pun intended! Again, it may seem obvious, but the mattress and pillows you use can make a huge difference in how well you sleep. Most mattresses have a lifespan of 9-10 years, if it’s good quality. Pillows can become worn out, too. Many advances have been made in the arena of memory and gel foam. Your sleep is a worthy investment in your health, not just a luxury.
As you’re using essential oils, pay attention to how you feel. Scent is a highly individual experience. Each of us react to smells differently. The right scents for your relaxation and sleep are the ones that make you feel relaxed and sleepy! You may need to experiment with different oils before you find the right one for your nightly routine. If a scent makes you feel alert and awake, it is NOT the right one for sleep. But you can use it in the morning to help get you rolling into your day.
If you want to opt for a more simple and straightforward essential oil blend, try experimenting with one drop of valerian and one drop of lavender in your diffuser. Lavender is literally the queen of essential oils when it comes to promoting a glorious night of deep sleep because it's known for its highly relaxing, stress-relieving, and calming properties. Just one drop is really all you need to be enveloped by lavender's magical scent.
There seems to be new essential oil companies popping up every day, but I’ve used doTERRA essential oils for nearly 4 years and I’ll never go anywhere else. The oils are third-party tested for purity (you can SMELL the difference if you compare them to other brands), ethically sourced around the globe, and I love that doTERRA is a humanitarian-geared company. Hearing stories like this of a Wellness Advocate who is working hard to help Ebola-ravaged areas of Africa makes me so proud to be associated with this company. I’m happy to personally help you get these oils in your home and tell you more about why I chose doTERRA-– click here to connect with me.
Thanks for your info Meaghan. It was very helpful. I have to say that I love, love essential oils. I did so much research and have used them for years. More than a year ago I decided to give Young Living a try after much research and even though I have tried other companies I have to say that I absolutely love Young Living. I know there are other great companies out there because I have used them. However Young Living is absolutely a wonderful company and their oils are amazing. I totally trust them and I have had such success with them health wise. I am a member of their Blue Spruce Club and everything I ever want to know about how to use essential oils is there. I love Thieves, YLs blend. It is amazing for everything. I still use other oils but YL is my favourite!
Hi Rachael. Great questions! Those high dilution rates (20% and 10%) are just so you can smell your EO blend mixed with a carrier oil to see if you like it or not. All carrier oils smell different, and they can effect how your blend smells in the end. That’s why I recommend testing your EO blends in different carrier oils at different dilutions to see what you like best. And, because the smells of EO blends change depending on what they’re mixed with, it’s always a good idea to test them in small batches before making bigger batches (hence using drops and not teaspoons or ounces!). Once you know what you like, you can then move on to making larger amounts of preblended oils (EO blend + carrier oil) for skin application using a lower dilution rate (3-5% for adults and anywhere from .25-1% for children depending on their age). This is my article on using EOs for children safely. There is a lot of different opinions on using EOs for kids. Since I’m not a trained aromatherapist, I tend to take the safe route with it comes to EOs. Hope this helps answer your questions a bit!! PS. Just for the record, higher dilution rates are often used in bath products (body wash, shampoo, shave creams, etc.) as they don’t sit on the skin, but are washed off fairly quickly. This decreases the amount of EO absorption you would have, therefore, higher percentages of EOs can go in those products so they smell stronger.
Clary sage essential oil – Containing some of the same properties as valerian, clary sage is a very effective sedative. In fact, when studied in comparison to lavender, chamomile, and rosemary, for the strongest anti-stressor, clary sage leads the pack and beat them all out. I love the relaxant properties of clary sage so much that I like to use it in both my Aunt Flo's Soothing Salve and my Don't Worry Be Happy anti-anxiety blend!
Sweet marjoram is not only a good herb for cooking, but also a popular essential oil used to aid sleep. Almost no research has been conducted to confirm or disprove its sedative properties. But Sweet marjoram essential oil is thought to improve voluntary breathing in asthmatic patients. (6) It is possible that involuntary breathing, such as that which accompanies sleep, is also improved. Those with sleep apnea may want to try sweet marjoram oil to keep their breathing even through the night.
Diffusers that requires water destroys the therapeutic health properties of the oils. The only type of diffuser you should use is a wood or ceramic and glass nebulizer diffuser. doTERRA are OK oils but they are, just like Young Living, way over priced and have both been found to adulterate some of their oils when the plant material runs low, real expensive or rare. Their members will argue saying, “No way all their oils are 100% pure”. Well think about it, the lab tests are run by the company itself. So people just tend to believe whatever the company tell them. I’m still doing the research and have found a couple of places to get high quality organic therapeutic grade oils at half the price and not the over priced marketing ploy of the big companies making big bucks off their loyal members. They can easily do this because most people don’t want to take the time to do the research themselves. Once I became disable with life threatening illnesses, (Cancer,ect.), I could no longer afford wasting money on high prices oils.
You can definitely add essential oils to lotion bases. The ratio will depend on the essential oils in the mix and how much area of the body they will cover. This will definitely require more research and perhaps consulting from an aromatherapist. There are also a lot of great books out there that teach you how to use essential oils in skin care products that could offer more information as well. Hope this answers your question!
Physiological causes of Insomnia: It’s true! Your own individual body can often times conspire to prevent you sleeping, and in many instances you will most likely be its accomplice. If you have allergies then that can trigger you to have troubles sleeping. It’s most likely no surprise that problems with pain can compel you difficulties getting to sleep, or in waking up when you don’t need to.
From my understanding and research (and I’m not an aromatherapist), all essential oils have particular qualities of smell as far as which are smelled first and which last a short while vs. a long while. This is why you blend them together based on those qualities (which are categorized as “notes”) so you can smell each oil among the others and have your blend last longer. Do you have to follow that rule? Of course not. If you’re making blends that are going to smell great and last a good while, should you follow that rule? Probably… I don’t know for sure as I’m not an aromatherapist and I don’t make perfume blends often.
A simple way to enjoy the sedative properties of essential oils is to directly inhale the aroma from the bottle. Hold the bottle 1-2 inches away from your nose and take several deep breaths. It’s recommended that you use a nebulizing diffuser for direct oil inhalation, but do not inhale the vapours directly, as these vapours can be very concentrated.
One notable benefit of sandalwood essential oil is its natural sleep aid properties. In a recent clinical trial, sandalwood essential oil was noted to have a depressive effect on the central nervous system, which helped promote relaxation and sleep. Sandalwood is one of the most popular essential oils for sleep aid remedies and one of the best essential oils for insomnia.
I’ve heard some really good things about CBD oil. I haven’t studied it enough to have an opinion, but it looks promising. As far as using essential oils for your autism goes, I’d suggest talking with a clinical aromatherapist as they’ll be the best person to help you identify the right oils to help you move in the direction you want to go. Best of luck, and thanks for your comment!
Humm, I can’t tell you much without seeing the version of the EO you purchased, Valerie, but one reason why they could have said that is that the EO you bought is a cold-pressed orange EO which can cause photosensitivity after sun exposure. Cold-pressed citrus oils are known to do that, as well as a few others. Here’s a great post on this topic. What you can do is use it for flavoring things, cleaning, diffusing, or in your skin care products during the winter months when you won’t get as much sun exposure and purchase a steam-distilled orange EO to use during the summer months. Hope this helps!
Hypnotic use has been associated with a 35% increase in developing cancer, and patients receiving hypnotics are more than 4 times likely to die than people who are not on the drugs. It appears that the dosage plays a key role, but “even patients prescribed fewer than 18 hypnotic doses per year experienced increased mortality, with greater mortality associated with greater dosage prescribed.” (3)
Most commonly, essential oils are used in an essential diffuser together with water. Aromatherapy works quite well over our olfactory system (=sense of smell) as many emotions can be triggered by certain cents alone. While there are other ways to use essential oils, diffuser blending is a fun art and hobby on its own that many essential oil enthusiasts enjoy.
From my understanding, the total number of oils is not the safety concern, it’s the total amount of EOs used (the final dilution) that matters. While there are various dilution guidelines, these are the most recent recommendations from aromatherapists I respect. Products that cover large portions of your body and sit on the skin for long periods of time (like lotions) need to be diluted more (1-2% depending on the strength of the EOs used). Products that don’t sit on the skin for long (like body washes) can be diluted less (around 5-10%, again depending on the strength of the oils used). Products that cover larger portions of skin (salve with EOs) should be more diluted (2-3%) compared to products that cover smaller portions of skin (roller bottle spot applications) which can be less diluted (5%). Age and health will also be a factor in dilution amounts. Children and the elderly need their EOs to be diluted more as their livers are slower at metabolizing EO chemicals than a healthy teenager or adult liver. Dilution also depends on the strength of the oil. For example, cinnamon bark requires more dilution than cinnamon leaf. Does this make sense? A lot of EO books (like this one) give recommendations and guidelines for this sort of thing.
Sleep is one of the most important and restorative processes for our body, and when we don’t get a proper amount of restful, uninterrupted sleep that we need, there are quite a few negative effects on our overall health. Fortunately, there are many excellent essential oils for sleep, which can leave you refreshed, rested and ready to face the world.
Using Leslie’s list as an example, several of the oils on her list are known to be phototoxic, but since she’s not applying her blend to her skin in any way, she doesn’t have to worry about that so much. Instead, she’s more concerned with some of the oils being irritating the the mucous membranes as she will be diffusing this recipe so she decides to diffuse her blend for short periods of time only to minimize this possibility.
In the United States alone, more than 40 million people suffer from chronic sleep disorders, and another 20 million suffer from acute sleep problems. These disorders can range from chronic insomnia to daytime sleepiness, restless leg syndrome, and various other sleep problems related to substance abuse, anxiety, depression, medication interactions and chemical imbalances. Pharmaceuticals prescribed for sleep disorders can often have extreme side effects and leave people feeling sluggish throughout their day. Experts recommend 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep per day for adults, yet in our fast-paced and demanding modern world, this can be very difficult.
When you start your diffuser blend, please start conservatively. A small amount of essential oil can produce a significant aroma. Be careful to not overload the diffuser blend right when you start pouring your first drops into it. Sometimes, the essential oil bottle droppers release the oils quite quickly. Start with a low pouring angle so the oil drops don’t come out too quickly for you, and you can accurately stop the flow after 1-2 drops.
I would start with about 5 drops of oil for your diffuser (for most) depending on room size and the strength of the oil… then can add more. 10 drops for a large room. So for a recipe with 3 different oils, I usually start with 1-2 drops of each and see how that goes. I can always turn it off and add more if I feel it can be stronger, and I’ll usually end up a little stronger in our main living space for example. In my room, I get away with closer to one drop of each oil since it’s a smaller room. Again you can always add more, but start small. 🙂