Though the use of aromatic and herbal medicine has been around for thousands of years, the idea of having a registered clinical aromatherapist and certified herbalist on your health care team is not yet as common.
As the use of aromatherapy continues to become more accepted and mainstream, the abundance of information can be extremely overwhelming and intimidating, and people are beginning to seek the guidance of professionals in the field.
Just like we turn to a therapist, psychologist, and health coach for our mental wellness, or an orthopedist, acupuncturist, or physical therapist for pain management, here are 7 reasons you need an aromatherapist and herbalist on your health care team.
1. What you don’t know about essential oils could be damaging your body.
Have you ever heard of the term “I know enough to be dangerous”? That may be more accurate than you think.
As humans, we are wired to be part a community, so when someone within our circle starts raving about the latest and greatest, we might be curious enough to take what they shared and buy in immediately or do a little of our own research.
So you watch a couple videos about Frankincense, you read a couple of opinion posts, and you feel enlightened and decide to try it out for yourself.
There is SO much content, so many different sources, that you hope you choose to follow the right one. Except you don’t, and you don’t get the dilution rate right and end up causing burns all over your skin.
You knew just enough to be dangerous. Dangerous to yourself.
A trained and clinical aromatherapist would not only know the correct dilution rate, they could have warned you that it might mess up the current medications you were on.
Which brings me to reason #2.
2. Mixing certain herbs and essential oils with your pharmaceuticals could have negative results.
It can be frustrating when your prescribed medication doesn’t give you the results you had hoped.
Perhaps it’s your cholesterol medication or blood pressure medication. You take it exactly as directed, but your numbers aren’t improving, so you start to do your own research.
Not only do you find out about all the bad side effects of what you’re on, you also find natural remedies and decide to try them together.
This can lead to four different outcomes.
Best case scenario, you find the right combination on the first try and not only do your numbers improve, but you can now get off your prescription medicines; second scenario, what you take nullifies the effects of both medicines and neither are working to improve your health; third, it has no effect and you’ve just wasted money, or you have a bad reaction that can make you extremely sick or lead to death.
Do you really want to take that gamble?
But guidance from a professionally trained Aromatherapist and Herbalist can guide you toward aromatic or herbal medicines that will work alongside your current medications.
3. Plant-based therapy and Functional Aromatherapy is patient-centered to your unique needs.
Having been in the medical field for nearly two decades, I’ve watched primary care offices take huge hits as big changes have come through our healthcare system.
Though insurance rates have skyrocketed, something my family has struggled to adjust to, payouts to practices have not.
In fact, from my experience, not only have payouts not increased, but costs have. Which means having to fit in more patients into smaller time slots to make up the difference just to keep running.
Like my grandfather would say, “It’s like trying to put 150 lbs of dirt in a 5 lb bag”. It just doesn’t work.
On top of that, too many primary care physicians are trained to only treat the symptoms, not the cause, never getting to the root of someone’s unique ailment. It can be impersonal and frustrating.
A clinical aromatherapist and certified herbalist’s goal is to care for the patient as a whole, not just the symptoms. It’s more personal and about full circle health.
It’s about finding the right balance of integrative plant-based therapies that can bring you into full homeostasis.
4. You wouldn’t self-treat yourself with pharmaceutical medicine, so why would you self-treat with aromatic and herbal medicine?
This ties back into #1, but think about it. If you could just walk into a pharmacy and shop off the shelves, without any sort of pharmaceutical or medical training, you might be able to make semi-educated guests on the right medication for you, but it’s highly unlikely you would feel completely comfortable with your choice.
After all, many of us are already hesitant to try new drugs our highly trained doctors prescribe because we don’t know how the side effects might develop, let alone relying on our own guesses.
There are hundreds of aromatic plant extracts and herbal medicines out there that can affect us differently. Working with a professionally trained aromatherapist and herbalist helps you discover the ones that could be best for you.
5. It’s cost effective.
I’ve never met a single person who loves taking their prescription meds.
Most are taking them to get better so they no longer have to be on them. Having a chronic illness can usually lead to an expensive system of co-pays, specialists, pills.
But not only can you use herbal and aromatic medicine as a preventive form of treatment, which can save you a lot of money in the long run, integrating it into your current treatment could help eliminate some of your current medications down the road, saving you money.
6. If some of the country’s top research hospitals are using aromatherapy, why shouldn’t you?
It’s easy to dismiss something you don’t understand as pseudo-science, but the truth is that there are tens of thousands of research studies around the evidence-based results of using essential oils. After all, though the term “aromatherapy” is relatively new, aromatic medicine has been around since before recorded history.
Plus, research around the benefits of aromatherapy is always evolving, with new discoveries being made. Aromatherapy is so much more than scent therapy added to a massage, it’s quickly growing into a respected alternative and integrative practice in the medical world.
7. It just makes “scents” to have one in your repertoire!
If you’re reading this, chances are that you are looking to empower your health.
You may have been let down by your recent care and are looking for alternatives, or you have had minimal success before with aromatic and herbal medicine and are looking for a professional to take it to that next step.
You understand lifestyle wellness goes beyond taking a prescription for a symptom, and just like you would have a team of doctors if you were dealing with a terminal illness, having a well-rounded team of health care providers and options can improve your life for the better.
Having a registered aromatherapist and certified herbalist can benefit your physical, mental, and spiritual wellness.
So the real question is, why would you NOT want one on your health care team?