Juliette Aiyana, L.Ac.
Steam inhalation therapy with essential oils is a simple and effective home remedy for headaches, sinus congestion, sinus pain and infections, respiratory ailments due to allergies, asthma, the common cold, influenza and bronchitis. Depending on the essential oils you use, steam inhalation can also calm the mind, nervous system and spirit.
What You Need:
- Filtered water
- Tea kettle or pot
- Glass or Ceramic bowl- medium to large
- Essential oils (see chart below to help you chose)
- A bath towel
You will notice the scent fades in about 3-5 minutes. You can perform this treatment over again if you like.
- Boil filtered or spring water in a tea kettle until it steams.
- Turn off the heat and remove the kettle using a potholder.
- Take care to slowly pour the steaming water into a large glass or ceramic bowl. Add a few drops of essential oil to the water.
- Place the towel over the top of your head so that it drapes over the sides of your head.
- Close your eyes, lean over the bowl allowing the sides of the towel to create a tent over the sides of the bowl.
- Inhale and exhale through your nose.
As mucus loosens from steaming, clear your sinuses by gently blowing your nose into the tissues and discard them. As the water begins to cool down from hot to warm, place your washcloth in the water, ring it out and place it on your chest or the back of your neck. The warm compress will help release chest tightness and congestion, relaxes and loosens your neck muscles. Ahhhhhh.
How To Choose The Oils
For upper respiratory and sinus congestion try one of each or combine the following:
For Headaches unrelated to sinus problems:
- Peppermint 3-5 drops
- Eucalyptus 3-5 drops
- Camphor 3 drops
Headache which are sharp or throbbing and may be combined with neck and shoulder tension try:
For stress headaches try:
- Cinnamon 5 drops & Myrrh 3 drops & Frankincense 3 drops
Relax the mind & calm the spirit with:
- Chamomile & Lavender, 5 drops of each
- Lavender & Chamomile 5 drops of each - or -
- Chamomile & Lemongrass 5 drops of each
- Curing Hay Fever Naturally - Bob Flaws
- The Tao of Health Eating - Bob Flaws
- Chinese Self Massage - Fan Ya Li
"Juliette wrote for the Pulse of Oriental Medicine website in its heyday, and we collaborated on a few other such efforts. She is one of the most professional, intelligent, and sensible practitioners of OM I know. She can teach complicated topics in an engaging and even entertaining way. I highly recommend her and her work."
- Dr. Kevin Scrigeour, L.Ac.