The 5 Best Essential Oils to Reduce Stress and Anxiety

From lavender to rose.

essential oils stress anxiety
Image via Christin Hume/Unsplash

A powerful essential oil can do so much more than change the entire fragrance of a room. It can help make your workout more efficient, can change your mood, and can help to improve your meditation benefits, and help you destress the way your body needs. It can also help reduce your stress and anxiety levels if you use it with an aromatherapy diffuser (like this fave from Vitruvi that boasts an 8,000-person waiting list). Check out these top five essential oils that’ll help you combat stress and anxiety in a mindful way.

The 5 Best Essential Oils to Reduce Stress and Anxiety

1) Lavender

In recent years, studies have shown that using lavender oils can help reduce anxiety in people undergoing heart surgery, despite their health issues.
For dental patients, reducing dentist anxiety (we’ve all had that fear at one time or another) could be possible by using lavender oil, another study shows. Researchers proved that “the pure essence of plants (essential oils) provides both psychological and physiological benefits when used accurately and safely”. They could be a simple and cost-effective way to lower anxiety… even in phobia-causing situations.

2) Chamomile

It’s one of our favorite calming teas, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that chamomile in essential oil form can also have an antidepressant effect, studies show. Alternatively, you can use chamomile capsules for a similar sedative and soothing effect.

3) Rose

A 2013 study showed that anxiety is one of the women’s top emotions during labor — understandably so, as they’re about to birth a human — but rose essential oil could be calming during the experience. According to researchers, using rose oil reduces anxiety by 71% in labor for women and can positively affect the mom-to-be and her baby.

4) Lemon

The yuzu citrus scent has been found to decrease stress and lower heart rate in as little as 10 minutes, a Japanese study reveals, and its effects can last for almost a half hour. The lemon-like fruit not only gives you the positive boosts of citrus scents, but its effects can also be felt for a significant amount of time. Now that’s an effective essential oil.

5) Bergamot

Bergamot, a similar citrus scent, can improve mood while fighting anxiety. In a study with elementary school teachers (an understandably stressed out group of participants), researchers found that using bergamot oil reduces anxiety and works more powerfully for individuals with higher anxiety. That means the more stressed you are, the more bergamot oil will work for you.

essential oils
Image: Courtesy of Unsplash

How to Use Essential Oils

Whether you prefer to apply topically — a couple drops behind the ears, on the inside of your wrist, or the nape of your neck — or to diffuse via a diffuser, the effects can be seen and surely felt. Opting for tried-and-true brands like dōTERRA, Young Living, and Saje means getting the most natural and trusted blends to help fight anxiety. Enjoy the scents and feel the anxiety dissipate.

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