Essential Oils and Their Place in Modern Medicine

Posted by Meg Shehad on

The ways of the world today are very different from the ways of our ancestors. Our ancestors had illnesses, headaches, muscular pains, bacterial and viral infections. Pharmacies were not just down the street. They had to rely on what they had. This usually included plants, flowers, roots, or resins found outside their door. Actually traditional medicine handled most illnesses well. Modern medicine gave us surgery and vaccines, and, yes, pharmaceuticals which primarily come from natural sources which have been synthesized. 

The pills derived from nature often synthesize the active ingredient and leave the rest of the plant behind. This opens us to side effects. Here are some side effects to Ibuprofen: dizziness, headache, shock, hives, facial swelling, seizures, mouth ulcers, rapid weight gain, ringing in the ears, and it goes on and on. Tylenol was primarily developed to be used in hospitals and short term pain issues because over use can cause liver damage. Aspirin naturally occurs in Nature in many plants like Willow but it also has side effects. Aspirin tends to thin the blood and this can cause heart issues, bowel problems with diarrhea, constipation, blood in the stool, kidney issues, and more. Wintergreen essential oil is derived from aspirin and is mostly the ester methyl salicylate (salicylic acid - aspirin). Wintergreen is often used for pain relief just as aspirin is. The oil is not taken internally but used externally. 

Are there safe remedies? Short term use of anything is usually safe. It is long term use that causes the majority of problems. What is nice about essential oils is that the body does not build up immunity to them as it does antibiotics. Essential oils also tend to have a faster rate of action than herbals. Take toe fungus. Oregano by capsule can take months to improve the fungal issue while essential oil of oregano can take a day or two before you see improvement. Essential oils are usually not recommended for oral use, but oils like peppermint can be taken orally in water or by drops to improve digestion, abdominal pain, or bloating (Vinegar water is helpful here too.). Results should be quick and no need for long term use. It seems that essential oils also support the body to fight against its own problems instead of weakening the body, so there is an increased sense of well being and strength.

Natural remedies used to be the only way to treat disease or discomfort, but they have been pushed aside because science believes that it has better answers. I often see science limited because it does not recognize so many other ways of treating an issue. Science is completely incapable of dealing with emotional and spiritual issues as they cannot be studied objectively. The issues of women often fall in the same category because women are considered unreliable test subjects and men often are substituted for women in studies as they are more reliable. How this gives women good information for treatment is beyond me to comprehend. Essential oils can help us deal with daily problems like a sore throat, a cough, lung congestion, allergies, fungal treatments, soreness in the body, teeth and gum treatment, pain relief, skin issues of all kinds, aging issues, and the list goes on. There definitely is a place for Essential Oils just as there is a place for Modern Medicine. 




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