One of the things I deal with on a daily basis is pain. Most often constant muscle and joint pain, which isn’t fun for anyone. So whether its an old injury playing up, chronic pain, or just old age creeping up on you, I thought it would be useful to share some of the natural remedies for pain relief that I use daily to help. I have split this into three posts. Here is part one on essential oils for pain relief.
In full disclosure I have a prescribed medicine too, or have been taking one. But as I don’t like the side effects I’m gradually reducing my dosage to focus on natural remedies as they seem to have the best results…
In this instance the essential oil(s) you use are best applied directly to the problem area. Of course mixing with a base oil first.
There are a few essential oils known for their pain relief properties. You can mix a few together, or experiment with each in turn to see which works best for you.
Essential oils for pain relief
There are many benefits to using essential oil for pain relief and inflammation, not only do they not have any of the side effects of prescribed or over the counter drugs, they also work with your senses to help you feel relaxed, uplifted, and to sooth your mind.
Lavender oil is most commonly known as an essential oil for relaxing and aiding sleep. It is so good at these things because of its sedative properties. These properties help you to relax both mentally and physically, which can help to release painful muscles and joints.
Lavender is also an anti-inflammatory, making it a good oil to use for tension headaches, migraines, menstrual cramps, lower back and neck pain, as well as muscles and joints.
It also relieves stress and anxiety which can be things that come hand in hand with pain and chronic pain.
Lavender is one of the few oils that is mild enough to use without a base oil, therefore you can rub a few drops onto or around the effected area to help alleviate your pain. You can also inhale the lavender scent to help with headache and migraine relief.
Ginger oil is great for easing joint pain and stiffness, and sore muscles. When rubbed onto the skin it has lovely heating/warming properties similar to those of cayenne pepper oil (or a deep heat cream).
Ginger is an anti-inflammatory and had analgesic properties similar to those of an ibuprofen or over the counter pain killing drug. This makes it an effective oil to use to massage into stiff or inflamed joints and muscles, treat rheumatoid and osteoarthritis symptoms, or to aid with menstrual cramps.
Peppermint oil is what is called an anti-spasmodic. These properties mean that it is great for treating stomach and intestinal problems as it relaxes the gut and surrounding muscles. Take in a capsule form, or add a few drops to a glass of water to relieve indigestion, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) symptoms, and other stomach upsets.
Peppermint is also anti-inflammatory, naturally anti-bacterial, and a natural decongestant as well as having menthol properties. All of which makes it a good oil to use for relieving blocked noses and painful sinuses, tension headaches, muscular aches and pains, and arthritic pain.
It also had a lovely cooling and refreshing affect.
Eucalyptus oil is very similar to peppermint in that is has both menthol and anti-inflammatory properties. It is also a powerful pain reliever. Eucalyptus is the best oil to use for nerve related pain, but can also be used for blocked sinuses, headaches, arthritis, muscle and joint pain.
Just a small amount of eucalyptus is enough to reduce pain, so it should be mixed with a base oil to apply topically, but make sure to avoid sensitive skin and your eyes!
Inhaling eucalyptus or using it in a diffuser can help relieve cold and allergy symptoms, relieve blocked sinuses and help you sleep too.
Chamomile oil is another powerful pain reliever. Its properties mean it is a good oil to use to sooth pain in inflamed joints and muscles, as well as being soothing which is why is it often used in tea. Its calming effects make it a good oil to use to relieve headaches, sore muscles and nerve pain (including sciatica).
Taken in tea form chamomile is also good at soothing stomach cramping and upsets in the digestive system.
For sore joints and muscles mix the chamomile with a carrier oil and massage onto the affected areas. For headaches and migraine pain you can inhale the scent of chamomile, or add a few drops of the oil to a diffuser or oil burner.
The flowers and roots of arnica plants have been used for centuries for their healing properties. Arnica oil is most widely know for helping to reduce bruising, but it has other healing properties too.
Although toxic in its pure form, once diluted with a base oil it can help reduce swelling, protect against infection and relieve pain. With its anti-inflammatory properties arnica oil is good to use to relieve joint and muscle pain and sorness and stiff joints.
Once mixed with a base oil you can massage the arnica directly onto any affected areas, or you can add a tablespoon amount to a hot bath to ease and relax your whole body.
There are plenty of other essential oils for pain relief, but those mentioned above are the ones I have so far used myself. I plan on trying out more essential oils that have anti-inflammatory properties, as well as doing a part 2 post on crystals for pain relief. So look out for both of those in the future!
Every person is different, so not every herbal remedy will work for every person. Find out whats right for you.
As always, if you have any questions or feedback I’d love to hear about your experiences.