Eucalyptus Oil

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Your Guide to Using Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is widely recognized and used for its versatile therapeutic qualities. The cleansing camphor-like aroma of eucalyptus is very effective for alleviating breathing difficulties and respiratory ailments. Other unique properties include its use as an air freshener and all-natural insect repellant.  

What is Eucalyptus Oil?

How is eucalyptus oil made and where does it come from?

Eucalyptus oil is made from the leaves of the eucalyptus plant. There are many varieties of eucalyptus trees. The primary tree that is used to make the essential oil goes by the scientific name of Eucalyptus globules.

The eucalyptus tree is native to Australia, which is the primary producer of the essential oil. Other regions where it is grown include India and South Africa. Once the leaves of the eucalyptus tree are harvested, the essential oil is extracted using the process of steam distillation.  

credit: adampaulclay/pixabay.com
credit: adampaulclay/pixabay.com

 

How is Eucalyptus Oil Used?

Traditional benefits associated with using eucalyptus oil include its ability to relieve respiratory ailments. The intoxicating camphor-like aroma is quite effective for clearing blocked breathing passageways. It is often used in vaporizers or applied to the chest.

Other uses of this essential oil include strengthening the mind and lifting the spirit. Eucalyptus oil is very good for boosting mental alertness because of its rejuvenating properties. Its invigorating scent is excellent as a mood enhancer and for alleviating depression and tension.

credit: skyhp009/pixabay.com
credit: skyhp009/pixabay.com

An unusual use for eucalyptus oil is in repelling insects and bugs. The delightful fragrance can be enjoyed by burning incense that is infused with the essential oil to refresh the air and cleanse the environment of negativities.

As a stain and spot remover, eucalyptus oil is an all-natural alternative to using products that use harmful toxic chemicals. Plus, the essential oil will leave a crisp fresh aroma after you have effectively removed the stain and cleaned the fabric.

Aromatherapists and holistic practitioners love the uplifting scent of eucalyptus oil. It is often used as a massage oil to relieve sore aching muscles and to relieve tension during treatment. The essential oil can also be made into an ointment and applied to stiff joints to obtain soothing relief from pain.

 

Beneficial Properties of Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus oil is very therapeutic in treating a variety of ailments that afflict the body. Its cleansing aroma is recognized as being quite effective for alleviating breathing problems. Other popular uses include hair and skin care products and other products used within the household.

 

Treatment of Physical Health Ailments

Properties and benefits of eucalyptus oil when used to alleviate health ailments include:

  • Respiratory ailments

Eucalyptus oil is excellent for alleviating respiratory ailments. The strong camphor-like aroma is very effective when used to open the passageways so it is easier to breathe. It can be applied to the chest and neck area or inhaled with a vaporizer.

  • Anti-inflammatory

The essential oil of eucalyptus can be applied on sore and aching muscles as an effective anti-inflammatory. It can also be used to treat and soothe the discomfort of rheumatism and the pain associated with sprains.

  • Analgesic properties

When used as an analgesic, eucalyptus oil can help alleviate joint pain and muscle aches. Massage therapists use this essential oil for its therapeutic benefits by applying it to the skin during treatment.

  • Effective germicide

The strong germicidal properties of eucalyptus oil are effective for killing harmful bacteria that can lead to infection. The oil can be used on cuts and wounds both to help keep them clean and help them to heal faster.

  • Effective expectorant

When inhaled using a vaporizer or diffuser, eucalyptus oil is excellent for cleansing the body of harmful bacteria that can cause colds and the flu. It is also effective when added to hot water and inhaled while covering your head with a towel.

  • Digestive aid

The anti-microbial properties of eucalyptus oil can effectively eliminate parasitic germs and bacteria within the stomach. Drinking a warm herbal tea that is infused with eucalyptus oil can help keep the gut clean, healthy, and in balance.

  • Controlling blood sugar

The ability of eucalyptus oil to promote blood circulation within the body makes it effective for helping to control blood sugar levels for those that are diabetic. The benefits of this essential oil can be obtained through inhalation or skin application.

  • Mental stimulant

The wonderful aroma of eucalyptus oil is beneficial when used as a mental stimulant. It is very refreshing and lifts the spirits while clarifying and strengthening the mind. It is effective for boosting alertness and providing balance.   

  • Reduces fever

If you are suffering from a fever due to illness, applying eucalyptus oil topically to the skin can be effective in lowering your temperature. Eucalyptus is often referred to as the “fever oil” because of its therapeutic properties.

  • Stress reducer

The cooling properties of eucalyptus oil help eliminate levels of stress within the body. It is excellent for revitalizing the body and boosting levels of energy by removing negative energies. Harmony is restored to the spirit and mind.

  • Rejuvenation

The stimulating qualities of eucalyptus oil help to rejuvenate the body and mind. It is effective for alleviating lethargy and exhaustion and increasing levels of energy to optimal levels. Apply the essential oil to the skin or inhale the refreshing aroma.

 

Eucalyptus Oil’s Beneficial Uses for Skin, Hair, and Oral Health Care

Additional benefits and properties of eucalyptus oil for the care of the skin, hair, and mouth include:

  • Hair care 

When used with shampoo, eucalyptus oil will help to moisturize and nourish the hair. It is also effective for treating dandruff and alleviating an itchy scalp.

  • Antiseptic qualities

The antiseptic properties of eucalyptus oil make it an excellent skin care product for daily use. The essential oil kills harmful bacteria on the skin and is effective when used on cuts and scrapes. Insect bites can be soothed using an ointment.

  • Oral health

Mouthwash gargles with eucalyptus oil are effective for eliminating bad breath. As part of the daily oral health routine, this essential oil can help prevent the buildup of plaque on the teeth. This essential oil can help keep your mouth healthy and clean.

  • Eliminates head lice

Eucalyptus oil is effective when used as an all-natural treatment to rid the hair of lice. You can mix the essential oil with a base cleansing agent such as shampoo or mix it with water and apply it directly to the scalp. Let it soak before rinsing the hair.

  • Effective anti-microbial

Eucalyptus oil has strong cleansing properties that effectively kill harmful microbes. This essential oil rids the body of bacteria that can cause illness and infection.

  • Skin cleanser

The astringent and antibacterial properties of eucalyptus oil make it a natural cleanser for the skin. The invigorating aroma and clarifying qualities effectively remove bacteria and prevent infection to help promote healing.

 

Other Surprising Uses for Eucalyptus Oil

The effective qualities of eucalyptus oil include its use as an effective stain and spot remover. The essential oil can be used in a variety of fabrics including rugs and carpet as well as clothing. Use the test method and apply a small amount to check for reactions before treating larger areas.

For use as an allnatural household cleaner, you can add eucalyptus oil to unscented detergents and soaps to clean your dishes or do the laundry. It can also be mixed with water and used with a spray bottle for cleaning surfaces.

Incense that has been infused with eucalyptus oil is effective when used as an air freshener. You can also add the essential oil to a diffuser to disperse the invigorating aroma throughout your home. The benefits include no harmful chemicals often found in everyday products.

The wonderful camphor-like scent of eucalyptus oil is popular when used with aromatherapy. The refreshing scent of this essential oil has rejuvenating qualities that lift the spirits. It is effective for removing negativities within the environment and restoring harmony and balance.

As an all-natural insect repellant, the invigorating scent of eucalyptus oil is very effective for keeping annoying bugs at bay. There is no need to worry about toxic chemical insecticides. Mix the essential oil with water and spray lightly on the skin for its beneficial effects.

 

Possible Side Effects When Using Eucalyptus Oil  

Eucalyptus oil provides many beneficial qualities and is generally safe when used with care. As an essential oil, the product can be very toxic if used above the recommended dosage. Never use this essential oil without first diluting it before you apply it topically to your skin.

The strength of eucalyptus oil can cause skin irritation if not mixed with a carrier solution such as water or oils such as jojoba or coconut. Some reactions that may occur if you are not careful and apply it full strength include severe irritation of the skin and a burning sensation.

Other side effects, if consumed in large quantities, include digestive symptoms such as diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting. It is important to remember that if you are careful when using eucalyptus oil, you can still enjoy its many beneficial uses for treating health ailments and for household cleaning.

Health care providers do recommend that pregnant women and those that are nursing should not use eucalyptus oil. The essential oil should also not be used on children or babies. Individuals that are being treated for high blood pressure should also avoid using eucalyptus oil.

If you are being treated for a health condition, check with your physician to see if you can safely use eucalyptus oil. If you are taking prescription medications, ask your pharmacist about possible interactions that may occur when using the essential oil. If in doubt, ask questions.

 

The Importance of Quality in Essential Oils

Always insist on quality and purity when buying essential oils. Eucalyptus oil is usually packaged in very small bottles when it is manufactured. The essential oil can also be expensive. You want to get the best product for your money and you want it to be effective for its intended use to treat common ailments.

Eucalyptus oil can be purchased from a variety of sources including local health food stores. While you are browsing through the products on the shelves, pay close attention to the expiration date on the bottles. An expired product will not provide beneficial properties and is essentially useless.

Essential oils should still have a reasonable amount of time left in their shelf life to maintain their purity and quality. Ideally, you want a product that has a minimum of 6 months to 1 year left before it expires. Beyond that period would be even better, particularly if you do not use it every day.

If you cannot see or read the expiration date on the bottle of the essential oil, and are not sure it is still good, do not buy it. Some retailers keep expired products on their shelves to save money. They do this because they realize that many people never bother to check expiration dates while shopping.

You can also buy your eucalyptus oil online. You have more options with online shopping as you can check out several retail sites from the comfort of your home. Check out the customer reviews to see which products have the highest ratings from customers. This will save you time and money.

Store your eucalyptus oil property to ensure quality and a long shelf life. Avoid storing the essential oil on shelves that receive direct sunlight. Keep the product away from radiators and other heat sources. A cool, dry, dark cabinet shelf will protect the quality of the essential oil.

Depending on the uses for this oil, eucalyptus oil blends particularly well with benzoin, bergamot, clary sage, lavender, lemon, pine, sandalwood, thyme, and wild orange essential oils.

 

Sources

  1. Ehrlich, Steven, NMD. (2011). Aromatherapy – What is Aromatherapy? What are Essential Oils?
  2. Halcon, Linda, PhD. (2013). Are Essential Oils Safe? University of Minnesota – Center for Spirituality & Healing.
  3. Halcon, Linda, PhD. (2013). How Do I Choose and Use Essential Oils? University of Minnesota – Center for Spirituality & Healing.
  4. Halcon, Linda, PhD. (2013). How Do I Determine the Quality of Essential Oils? University of Minnesota – Center for Spirituality & Healing.
  5. National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA). (2016). Approved Standards for Professional Aromatherapy Education. 
  6. National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA). (2016). Exploring Aromatherapy – Safety Information. 
  7. U.S. National Library of Medicine – PubMed Health. (2016). About Essential Oils.
  8. U.S. National Library of Medicine – PubMed Health. (2016). About Essential Oils and Aromatherapy.
  9. http://www.quinessence.com/blog/eucalyptus-globulus-essential-oil
  10. http://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/eucalyptus-oil.aspx
  11. http://essentialoils.co.za/essential-oils/eucalyptus.htm
  12. http://www.sustainablebabysteps.com/eucalyptus-oil-uses.html

 

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