Myrrh Oil

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Your Guide to Using Myrrh Oil

Myrrh oil is widely used by aromatherapists for its therapeutic properties. Holistic practitioners often use myrrh oil for its recognized healing abilities. This essential oil can be used to treat a variety of everyday health ailments. The beneficial uses of myrrh oil also help to alleviate stress and relax the body.

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

Myrrh oil is made from a scented gum resin that is produced by the myrrh tree. This unique tree, which is also known by its scientific name of Commiphora myrrha, resembles an evergreen pine that has twisted angular branches.

Myrrh trees grow in dry desert-like regions around the globe including Africa, the Middle East, Arabia, and Ethiopia. Harvesting myrrh oil is a complex process. The resin is stored deep within the tree’s bark. Portions of the bark are cut away so the resin is exposed and can then be collected.

credit: wikimediacommons
credit: wikimediacommons

Once the resin exudes out of the bark it is collected by workers after it has dried and hardened. The process of steam distillation is then used to turn the hardened resin into the essential oil of myrrh. The resulting product is a golden color with an aroma that is described as woodsy and balsamic.

 

How is Myrrh Oil Used?

Aromatherapy practitioners find myrrh oil to be an appealing product because of its healing properties. It is effective for treating physical ailments and conditions on many parts of the body. Holistic practitioners also use this essential oil to help their clients relax by reducing stress and tension.

Myrrh oil is a very versatile product which is excellent for preventing infection because of its antibacterial and antiseptic properties. People use this essential oil for daily grooming practices, including skincare. Myrrh oil also works well at alleviating intestinal discomfort.

The essential oil of myrrh can be inhaled by placing the product in a diffuser or distiller. Some people like to add myrrh oil to hot water and breathe in the aromatic steam to clear their airways when they are congested and have a cold.

Other methods for using myrrh oil include mixing it with a carrier base oil or lotion and then rubbing it on areas of the skin. Hot and cold compresses are yet another unique way to take advantage of the many health benefits of myrrh oil.

 

Beneficial Properties of Myrrh Oil

Myrrh oil has numerous therapeutic properties that are effective in treating a variety of physical ailments and skin problems. This essential oil is also used in aromatherapy to soothe the senses.

Treating Health Ailments

Properties and benefits of myrrh oil when treating health ailments include:

  • Respiratory ailments

 As an essential oil, myrrh oil is very effective for relieving congestion within the nasal passages. When used with a diffuser, inhaling myrrh oil helps to ease difficulties in breathing such as asthma and bronchitis.

  • Digestive aid

 Myrrh oil is very good for alleviating ailments within the digestive system. This essential oil can be used to treat nausea, gas, constipation, and indigestion. It is effective when inhaled or applied to the skin area of the abdomen to obtain relief.

  • Antifungal

Because of its strong antiseptic and antibacterial properties, myrrh oil is useful for treating fungal conditions on the skin such as athlete’s foot and ringworm. It is very effective at killing bacteria and microbes.

  • Anti-inflammatory

 When used as an anti-inflammatory, myrrh oil can be effective for the treatment of arthritis and gout. This essential oil helps to reduce the swelling that is associated with joint problems and works to promote healing.

  • Oral health

Myrrh oil has natural antiseptic properties that make it effective for daily oral care. You can use this essential oil as a gargle to eliminate bad breath. It also works well for treating mouth ulcers by killing bacteria to help prevent infection.

  • Antiviral

Myrrh oil’s ability to kill bacteria and viruses can be very effective for helping to keep the body healthy. It combats fungi and eliminates infection causing microbes that can spread and cause harmful illnesses.

  • Pain reliever

The properties of myrrh oil are excellent for treating joint pain resulting from conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis. It is effective when massaged directly onto the sore joints or used with a hot compress.

  • Regulates thyroid

Myrrh oil is used by holistic health practitioners to help regulate the activity of the thyroid and keep it in proper balance. Trained aromatherapists use the essential oil by directly applying it to the throat area where the thyroid glands are located.

 

Other Health Benefits of Using Myrrh Oil

Additional health benefits and properties of myrrh oil include:  

  • Antioxidant

 Myrrh oil has strong antioxidant properties that make it ideal for targeting free radicals within the body. The essential oil of myrrh effectively eliminates the free radicals, which can cause illness by weakening your body’s immune system.

  • Eczema

 Because of its antibacterial and antiseptic properties, myrrh oil is effective for treating skin ulcers, eczema, and hives. You can apply the oil to the affected area or use a compress to help alleviate the skin condition.

  • Antibacterial 

You can effectively treat wounds and help them heal faster when using myrrh oil. The antiseptic and antibacterial properties are beneficial for preventing infection when used in a diluted base solution.

  • Menstruation

Myrrh oil is occasionally used to stimulate the menstrual flow in women. It can be used as an effective treatment to help alleviate irregular periods and promote a more regular schedule when used properly.

  • Strengthens immune system 

Because of its antioxidant properties, myrrh oil is quite effective at boosting your body’s immune system. The use of this essential oil helps to keep the body healthy and in balance by eliminating free radicals, which can make you sick.

  • Skin care

Myrrh oil works wonders as an anti-aging essential. It is effective as a moisturizer for dry chapped skin. The properties of this essential oil are very good for helping to keep your skin healthy, clean, and clear.  

 

Myrrh Oil and Aromatherapy Benefits

The scent of myrrh oil is often used in aromatherapy to soothe the mind and comfort the spirit. Properties and benefits include:

  • Aromatherapy massage

Holistic health practitioners like to use myrrh oil in conjunction with a soothing massage treatment. It is applied directly to the skin and massaged into the muscles to enhance relaxation. It is also used in incense because of its uplifting scent.

  • Alleviates stress

Aromatherapists often use myrrh oil in diffusers to disperse the scent of this essential oil into the air. Myrrh oil can also be directly inhaled to alleviate stress and provide a sense of tranquility.

  • Enhances mental clarity

As an essential aromatherapy oil, myrrh oil helps to clear the mind and lift the senses. Myrrh oil provides clarity and enhances focus and concentration. It is also good for boosting one’s memory by relieving tension.

  • Eliminates fatigue 

As an effective mood enhancer, myrrh oil is excellent for eliminating fatigue and inducing a sense of relaxation and serenity. The essential oil can be rubbed onto the skin, mixed with warm bath water, or inhaled using a diffuser.

Myrrh Oil and Potential Side Effects

Although side effects are not commonplace when using essential oils, myrrh oil is one of the few that can cause potential reactions in a handful of people. If you have a health condition that is being treated, err on the side of caution before you start using myrrh oil.

Some side effects that can occur include irritation to the skin. If you have allergies or if you often develop reactions when using skin care products, test a small area with a small amount of myrrh oil first.

Since myrrh oil can cause contractions, women who are pregnant should not use the product.

This essential oil has the potential to lower your blood pressure and cause irregularities in the heart when using doses above the recommended amount. Myrrh oil can also cause problems in people who have diabetes as it can potentially lower blood sugar levels.

If your doctor has prescribed a blood thinning medication for you, myrrh oil may possibly cause interactions and it should be avoided. The majority of people can benefit from essential oils as they are generally safe to use and rarely have side effects. If in doubt, check with your doctor before using one.

 

How to Choose Essential Oils

Quality and purity are important features when choosing essential oils as you want a product that delivers what it promises. Some essential oils are watered down, especially the cheaper products. They are not as strong as higher quality essential oils so what you end up getting is a useless product.

Try to do a little research and check out several companies before you spend money and order myrrh oil. Customer reviews are a good indication of high levels of satisfaction so read the ratings to get a good indication of the reputation of the company selling essential oils to consumers.

Essential oils blend well with one another, but myrrh oil blends particularly well with benzoin, clove, frankincense, lavender, sandalwood and all spice 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. Keville, Kathy. (2007). Aromatherapy: Myrrh. 
  6. National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA). (2016). Approved Standards for Professional Aromatherapy Education.
  7. National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA). (2016). Exploring Aromatherapy – Safety Information.
  8. U.S. National Library of Medicine – PubMed Health. (2016). About Essential Oils.
  9. U.S. National Library of Medicine – PubMed Health. (2016). About Essential Oils and Aromatherapy.
  10. http://www.quinessence.com/blog/myrrh-essential-oil
  11. http://articles.mercola.com/herbal-oils/myrrh-oil.aspx
  12. http://essentialoils.co.za/essential-oils/myrrh.htm
  13. http://www.sustainablebabysteps.com/myrrh-essential-oil.html

 

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