Aromatherapy is a branch of herbal based medicine that makes therapeutic use of essential oils. Aromatherapy, the term currently used for this alternative medicine practice, has only been in use since the 1920's when it was created in France.
Aromatherapy is the holistic treatment of caring for one's body with pleasant smelling essential oils such as rose, lemon, lavender or peppermint. Essential oils are the fragrant essences of plants in their purest, most concentrated state. These oils are found in different parts of plants such as the flowers, twigs, leaves, bark or in the fruit's rind. For example, it is found in the flowers of roses, in the leaves of basil, in the wood of sandalwood, and even in the sap of the frankincense tree. The essential oils can be added to the bath or massaged into the skin (aroma - massage), inhaled directly or diffused to scent an entire room.
Aromatherapy can be used for the relief of pain, to care for the skin, to relieve tension and fatigue and to revitalize the entire body. Essential oils can affect the mood, treat fatigue, reduce anxiety and promote relaxation. When inhaled, they stimulate the olfactory nerves, the brain and the nervous system.