Aromatherapy is a complementary therapy used by some people with multiple sclerosis.
Aromatherapy is the use of fragrances in the form of oils - known as essential oils, as they contain the essence of the plant from which they are taken. You can use oils in the bath (if heat sensitivity is not an issue), as a steam inhalation, in an oil burner or with a compress. Aromatherapy is sometimes used with massage - a few drops of the required essential oils are added to a carrier massage oil. It can also be used as part of a sleep routine.
Although there is no research evidence about the effects of aromatherapy on multiple sclerosis, it can promote relaxation and wellbeing.
Aromatherapy oils are usually used with no problems. Some people are allergic to some fragrances and some oils may cause a rash if they are applied directly to the skin. You can do a small patch test first to check if this might be a problem.
- Complementary Therapies in Nursing and Midwifery 2002;8(3):138-141. Summary Will aromatherapy be a useful treatment strategy for people with multiple sclerosis who experience pain?
Relaxation techniques can be helpful in MS for managing fatigue, relieving stress and promoting better sleep. Here are some ideas for you to try.
Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) refers to treatments that are not widely in use in conventional medicine, such as acupuncture and yoga.
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