Around 80% of people in the United States will suffer back discomfort at some point in their lives. Back pain and its associated inflammation may be so painful, depending on the degree, that it makes work, hobbies, and daily activities impossible.
Back pain that is acute (short-term) may need bed rest and pain medication, but chronic (long-term) instances may necessitate lifestyle changes. The usage of essential oils may be one such option.
Some plants’ leaves, seeds, flowers, fruits, and bark are used to extract essential oils. Aromatherapy uses essential oils, which are diluted and administered topically. Clinical studies have indicated that several of these oils may help with a variety of illnesses, including pain.
9 best essential oils for back pain
With so many essential oil options, it may be difficult to know which ones will really assist you with your back discomfort. The oils listed below may be of assistance.
1. Peppermint oil
Peppermint oil is one of nature’s most powerful analgesics, perhaps best recognized for its menthol overtones. Pure peppermint oil contains at least 44% pure menthol, which has long been used to treat pain from a number of causes.
2. Wintergreen oil
It is a close cousin of peppermint and has comparable analgesic effects. Wintergreen, in particular, includes methyl salicylate, which is comparable to aspirin. If you’re using blood thinners or other medicines, talk to your doctor since wintergreen may make you bleed more easily.
3. Lemongrass oil
The antifungal effects of lemongrass oil have been extensively researched. Its anti-inflammatory effects were also investigated in a mouse research. Reduced inflammation may lead to less pain, but further research in people is required.
4. Ginger oil
Ginger, which is often used in cooking, has additional uses outside of the spice cupboard. Anti-inflammatory qualities are among its most prominent advantages, as shown by a 2016 research on rheumatoid arthritis.
5. Lavender oil
Lavender is a multifunctional essential oil for a range of illnesses. It is one of the most extensively researched and used essential oils. Lavender oil, according to one clinical study, may assist with headaches and muscular discomfort. These advantages may also apply to back discomfort.
6. Eucalyptus oil
Eucalyptus oil has analgesic qualities in muscles and joints and is known for its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial characteristics. According to a 2015 clinical study, the oil shows potential for treating arthritis, the flu, and wounds.
7. Roman and German chamomile oils
While chamomile is well recognized for its relaxing and soothing qualities (which is why many people drink chamomile tea when they are ill), the essential oil also has other well-known advantages. Reduced muscular spasms and inflammation are two of these benefits. If you have a ragweed allergy, be cautious while taking chamomile since the two plants are related.
8. Rosemary oil
Rosemary is a versatile herb that may be used in a variety of dishes. Rosemary essential oil has been scientifically shown to have many health advantages. Reduced discomfort from rheumatic diseases and menstrual cramps are among them. Back pain may benefit from anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties.
9. Sandalwood oil
Anti-inflammatory effects are found in sandalwood oil. The effects of such effects have been investigated since they are comparable to those of over-the-counter medicines. Sandalwood oil may also help to relieve pain by reducing inflammation in the back.
How to use essential oils for back pain
Finding the best essential oils for back pain is just the first step. Then you must understand how to use them correctly to avoid skin irritation and other unwanted effects. Aromatherapy uses essential oils, which may be breathed or diluted and used topically or in a bath.
Apply essential oils topically
Essential oils may be rubbed directly into your back or utilized during a massage, but they must first be diluted.
Mix 6 drops of a carrier oil, such as jojoba or olive oil, with up to 6 drops of your chosen oil. Do a patch test on a small area of skin using your diluted oil. If no discomfort occurs after 24 hours, you may probably apply the oil on a wider region of skin, such as your back.
Apply the diluted mixture generously to the back, rubbing it gently for better absorption. If you don’t want to irritate your eyes, wash your hands before touching your face. Also, avoid allowing the oil to enter your mouth.
Inhale them throughout the day
Another technique for pain and inflammation relief is to inhale essential oils. In a diffuser, add a few drops of pure essential oils to water and keep it running in your home or workplace. You may top up the diffuser with additional oil or water as required throughout the day.
Take essential oils–infused bath
A warm and soothing bath may help relieve pain and inflammation in a hurting back. You may also add 10 drops of diluted essential oils to running water to add to your bathwater. Take caution while entering and exiting the tub, since the oils may make surfaces slick.
Side effects and precautions
Essential oils should not have any significant negative effects when taken as recommended. Without appropriate dilution or patch testing, skin rash and discomfort may develop.
If you’re pregnant, nursing, or have any underlying medical problems, see your doctor. It’s important to remember that aromatherapy may have an impact on dogs, children, and anyone in the vicinity. Keep in mind that essential oils have a lot of power. Also, do not use them on or near your eyes or consume them by mouth.