A warm bath can provide so many big benefits that there’s actually a scientific name for it — Balneotherapy. Specifically, balneotherapy is a type of water therapy that’s been used for centuries to combat everything from inflammation to immune system issues. During one of these baths, your skin absorbs the minerals in the water, which in turn, help you feel and look better. The warm water not only cleanses your body and mind, but also refreshes and relaxes. It acts as a liquid suspension, meaning that you can literally stop feeling like the world is dragging you down.
But what does all of this have to do with aromatherapy?
I like to say that balneotherapy is aromatherapy’s best friend. Mix the two together, and you end up with some amazing results!
I like to combine some essential oils and some salt (Epsom, sea salt, or Himalayan — your choice) in my aroma baths. That way, you can get benefits from the oils and the minerals in the salt, in addition to just the water.
Aromatherapy baths are incredibly powerful because they allow you to interact with essential oils in two ways — they get absorbed through your skin while you inhale the powerful scent. In fact, science has shown that essential oils can penetrate the skin very quickly, even faster than the ions of sodium and chloride in the salt. As a result, you don’t have to spend hours in the tub. Even if you only have 10 minutes to spare, you’ll notice a difference!
But my favorite thing about an aroma bath is its versatility. There are a number of essential oils you can use — although, I don’t recommend using essential oils that can be irritating, like basil, cinnamon, black pepper, ginger, lemongrass, orange, fennel, and peppermint. Whether you use one oil or several, you can customize your aromatherapy bath to meet your exact needs and desires. Simply fill the tub with warm water, and then add your favorite essential oils right (diluted first in salts or one of the carriers mentioned below) before you get in. You’ll only need 8-10 drops of oil (any more than that is simply a waste!).
If you want to give your skin some added moisture, mix your essential oils with vegetable oil first. (As an added benefit, that will also reduce your chance of the oils irritating your sensitive skin.) For best results, gently move around in the tub so that your entire body can soak up the oils. You won’t need to rinse off after you’re finished. Just slip into a comfy robe, and let the oils continue to work their magic.
In addition to essential oils, you can also include things like apple cider vinegar, honey, and milk in your aroma bath. Each will give your skin an even bigger boost. Or, if you’re dealing with a specific skin issue, there are special recipes that can relieve it.
But your skin isn’t the only thing that will benefit from combining aromatherapy and balneotherapy. Depending on the oils you use, you can fight muscle pain, insomnia, PMS, fluid retention, colds, anxiety, circulatory problems, headaches, and rheumatism. And, depending on the oils you use, your bath can be relaxing, stimulating, warming, cooling, or even an aphrodisiac. The possibilities are endless!
Here are some of my favorite recipes:
Give it a try, and you’re sure to fall in love with balneotherapy as much as I have!
It’s easy to combine the power of balneotherapy and aromatherapy when you’ve got expert advice and high-quality essential oils from Aromandina!
© 2015, Cristina Proano-Carrion, Aromandina LLC