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The Science of Scent




Scent can trigger emotion and memory. It can change our mood and transport us to a memory at the snap of a finger. It can make us take a sigh of relief and provoke a relaxation response or it can cause us to cringe.


As a scent is breathed in it is processed in a structure called the olfactory bulb. In seconds, it stimulates smell receptors and travels to the autonomic nervous and limbic systems to areas of the brain that are related to emotion and memory. It is then delivered to other areas of the body for further processing and results in various benefits mentioned below.


Considering the above, aromatherapy can be an exceptional delivery tool. Aromatherapy is the use of essential oil either in blends or on their own for therapeutic benefits. Essential oils are the distilled and concentrated essence and medicine of whole plants.


When aromatherapy is applied to the skin, it enters the bloodstream through small blood vessels called capillaries. By massaging the aroma into your skin, this stimulates blood flow and opens the capillaries allowing for rapid absorb of the essential oil.


Essential oils are made up of tiny molecules, making it easily absorbed to receive their full benefits. Within 12 hours of entering your body essential oils are then processed out of your body through your kidneys.


Because of how scent effects the brain and body, aromatherapy is used therapeutically for stress relief, relaxation, bringing balance back to the body, delivering peace and restoration, to re-energize, stimulate, increase immune function, pain relief, fight bacteria, and much more.


I absolutely love blending scents. It's one of my most favourite medicines to create harnessing the natural aromas of plants. My blends can be found in my shop, these have been carefully formulated for therapeutic use and each scent has a detailed description of what they do.


Ninetta M Savino

Herbalist




References:


  1. Walch, C. (2020, February 27). What the nose knows. The Harvard Gazette. https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2020/02/how-scent-emotion-and-memory-are-intertwined-and-exploited/

  2. Williams, S. C. P. (2014, March 20). Human nose can detect a trillion smells. Science Magazine. https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2014/03/human-nose-can-detect-trillion-smells

  3. Marin, A. (2015, January 27). Making sense of scents: smell and the brain. Brain Facts. https://www.brainfacts.org/thinking-sensing-and-behaving/smell/2015/making-sense-of-scents-smell-and-the-brain






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