In going back through the 3 parts that I posted I found that maybe, just maybe I wasn't as clear as I would have liked to have been or should have been on a few points. So I will sort of clear up a few areas.
One of the biggest challenges to a good night sleep is stress. Plain old stress. In fact stress is at the center of almost every disease that a human being can end up with. Again, it does not cause it but it makes it far worse than it would be on its own. So in working with sleep we look at stress as a factor in the whole. Some may say, well the stress is just in your head. Well most stress is, but since it is in your brain, it is real, as real as anything in life. It has to be worked with just like anything else.
We talked about the parasympathetic and the sympathetic nervous systems and their roles in sleep and stress associated with sleep. What we need to keep in mind is that if the source of the stress is more or less driven by the parasympathetic system then w use a set of oils to deal with that, which many times is different than we would use for the other system driven issues. See with the parasympathetic the functions will want to function on their own being set off by a set of or a single act driven by the sympathetic system. For example eating, once you open your mouth, which is largely a sympathetic system action, then the parasympathetic takes over form there. The brain is running the process and to stop it it requires a signal to be sent to STOP. Stress will basically send that signal to stop digestion, for example, when stressed. It is conserving resources to do the flight or flight thing. Once the decision is made to "flight" "flee" "run" then a signal is sent to dump everything to lighten the load, so we end up with the runs when we try to flee. When we choose "fight" then all activity stops with digestions, because of energy being focused on how to carry it out and make it happen.
So since most people's digestion isn't working when stressed, we have to deal with the parasympathetic side by blocking that signal so that the digestive process will run on it's own, thus removing an element of stress. So we use an oil like I mentioned, like Marjoram. There are several that even works better, but that's for another discussion. Why because certain oils tend to interfere with the signal that is being sent to "stop" and we don't want it to stop. So as an indicator, it may tell you how you have chosen to deal with a stress situation by how the digestive process is going. Plugged up= fight. Loose bowls= flee. Somewhat simplistic I know, but it sort of illustrates the point.
Then over on the sympathetic side we have to deal with another deal, a whole different set of oils. Signals many times have to be sent to "go" "start". etc. Or even turn off a signal, such as when you get burned, by heat. We are usually working on the emotions or highly emotionally driven issues, such as being burned by heat. But being "burned" as in screwed over, well, driven by the same process, heavy with emotions. So we have to select an oil that on the sympathetic side thatwill numb the sympathetic driven pain and deal with the emotional stuff as well. We have a number of oils that do a good job on that as well. But a whole different set to work from than we would use on the para system. Those are incorporated into several of the blends. Comfort Touch is one of those. I have explained Comfort Touch in detail earlier, but we can go there if need be. Many times blends dealing with pain have these factors built into the formulation. Some of the emotional blends also have these 2 systems factored into the formulation.
As an overall generalization, oils from plants that we typically eat generally work good for the parasympathetic system driven issues. Plants that we don't eat or just smells good, generally works very good for sympathetic driven issues. This is a generalization. Sometimes we have cross overs.
When dealing with the parasympathetic driven solutions, one does not have to ingest the oils to get the best benefit from them. Many times, in fact almost all of the time topical applications and diffusing works far better and more efficient than ingestion. One must also remember that small amounts always work far better than large amounts. The same principle applies to the aroma. Subdued aromas many times will do far more good than an over powering aroma.
In this series I hope you realize how important sleep is and how to achieve it. Sleep disorders or lack of sleep is at the center of just about all of the human illness that we experience. Stress is the one overwhelming factors in sleep deprivation. This not to discount the roles of other things like proper nutrition, safe environments, etc. Even weight loss is a factor in sleep. Lack of sleep makes it impossible to loose weight. Now there are several other factors dealing with this issue that is beyond an individual's control that I would love to go into and will in other discussions. But as a side note, I think it is very cruel when these people gets themselves into a situation where they are somewhat fit, lost a lot of weight and then brags about how.. whatever they are and those that can't loose weight are losers and lack drive and yadda yadda. What they don't know is that there are maybe some factors that makes the person have the inability to loose weight. Those have to be worked with before weight loss can take place, and it is not their fault. Sort of in the same neighborhood as addictions. Very interesting stuff there too. And we will discuss it.
So does oils heal people? Can oils prevent disease? No, not really, the human body is the only thing that can do that to its self. It can only do that if you give it enough of the right materials and resources to make it possible. But people that responsibly use oils in a rational way have reported that it has helped them in making a recovery from the many insults and assaults that comes it way.
I have presented this material here as a self help, self educational type deal. In many parts of the world the oils are used in a clinical setting. When used in this setting it is usually done by someone that is qualified, as in very qualified to work at this level with them. A person working with the oils on a self help level should not try to be something they aren't or perform at a level that is above their aromatherapy construct. If you want to be there you can be, but it takes time, experience and education. No different than any thing else. But please keep in mind that even though I have worked with clinical level stuff, the information and ideas I present are on a self help level and should only be used in that light.
I hope this clears up some areas that I felt like I didn't cover very good. We are also introduced to some future topics. Stay tuned if it interests you and once again, thank you for your interest.
Written by Kent King.