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Tired of using OTC treatment prescriptions to treat your arthritis symptoms? Fortunately for you, aromatherapy has been effectively used for arthritis for hundreds of years. In this article, we will discuss the 8 best essential oils for arthritis and how to use them safely.
Arthritis Silently Affects Millions
Living with arthritic pain can have an enormous effect on your quality of life. Speaking from experience, it can get in the way of being able to function day-to-day performing normal tasks. To illustrate, cooking, cleaning, bathing, grocery shopping, working, and exercising are all painful, uncomfortable, and sometimes impossible situations for someone living with arthritis. Daily activities that most healthy people take for granted.
Arthritis affects millions of people in the US. Statistics show that one in five adults and one in 250 children have some form of arthritis. That’s 52.5 million people in the US alone with a projected 67 million to be diagnosed with arthritis by 2030.
This means that millions of people affected by arthritis are desperately looking for safe and effective treatment options. They want to get back to living their normal daily lives without being in constant pain and discomfort.
Many are turning to natural treatment options as an effective way to treat the worst symptoms of arthritis, including pain and inflammation. One of these treatment options is using essential oils for arthritis.
In order to understand how essential oils can help arthritis, it is firstly important to understand arthritis itself.
Arthritis is in fact, not a single disease. It is more like an umbrella term covering over 100 different rheumatic conditions and diseases that affect the joints. Simply put, however, arthritis is defined as a disease that causes painful swelling or inflammation in and around the joints.
Two Classifications of Arthritis
There are two general classifications of arthritis: osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
Osteoarthritis, often called Degenerative Arthritis, occurs when the cartilage between joints wears down, resulting in pain and inflammation. It can typically be found in the joints we use the most, such as the knees, hips, shoulders, spine, and hands.
- Severe pain
- Inflammation or swelling
- Pain related to weather
- Joint deformity
- Outgrowth in fingers or toes
Rheumatoid arthritis is characterized as an autoimmune condition. This means that the immune system attacks healthy cells in the body by mistake. In this case, white blood cells attack healthy cartilage, causing painful swelling and inflammation in and around the joints.
Rheumatoid arthritis symptoms:
- Pain in joints, back, and muscles
- Inflammation or swelling
- Lumps or redness of skin
- Bump on the finger
What Essential Oils are Good for Arthritis?
While aromatherapy cannot cure arthritis, it certainly can help alleviate some of the harsh symptoms. Using essential oils for arthritis is a safe and natural treatment option to use alongside medically prescribed treatment.
When choosing what essential oils for arthritis to use, first and foremost you need to decide what symptoms you want to target. However, the amazing thing about essential oils is their ability to target multiple symptoms at the same time.
Arthritis.Org reported on a study that showed that aromatherapy helped reduce arthritic pain and even improve the participants moods.
This shows a further benefit of using essential oils for arthritis. Essential oils can also help you mentally cope better with living with arthritis. Research has shown that essential oils are connected directly to our emotions. They can reduce stress, help you get better sleep, boost your energy, and so much more. Remember, improving your overall quality of life is the goal. And essential oils are the perfect key.
Below, we will discuss the 8 best essential oils for arthritis and why. We will also include the best essential oils for rheumatoid arthritis.
The 8 Best Essential Oils for Arthritis
1. Joint Relief Blend
Blends are amazing for many reasons. For instance, they contain the benefits of multiple essential oils that work synergistically together towards a certain goal, all wrapped up in one bottle. This means that you don’t have to worry about buying multiple bottles and creating your own blend. That is, if you don’t want to worry about the hassle or cost.
The Joint Relief Blend’s goal is to provide relief to aching, stiff, and inflamed joints. This blend contains many beneficial essential oils for rheumatoid arthritis. However, all types of arthritis can receive the wonderful, soothing properties.
2. Ginger essential oil
Ginger might be known more in the kitchen than in the medicine cabinet. However, ginger has amazing beneficial healing properties that have been scientifically proven to help arthritis. These include anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and circulatory stimulant properties.
One study conducted at the University of Miami concluded that ginger essential oil helped over 240 participants reduce their osteoarthritis knee pain and stiffness by an astonishing 40%!
3. Lavender essential oil
What we call the Queen of Aromatherapy, lavender essential oil truly is one of the most versatile oils. It has long been used to treat pain, anxiety, and insomnia. Research has shown that it can also be used for arhtritis.
One example is a study from 2016 showed that participants with osteoarthritis who rubbed a mixture of lavender essential oil with sweet almond oil onto their swollen joints 9 times over a three week trial period experienced a significant reduction in pain after the first week.
Lavender can also help you deal with discomfort and stress associated with your arthritis symptoms. Not to mention, it also improves your quality of sleep.
4. Eucalyptus essential oil
Eucalyptus essential oil is one of the best essential oils for arthritis because it has powerful analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. It also stimulates circulation in the body.
One study from 2013 on participants who underwent a total knee replacement surgery noticed a reduction in pain and lowered levels of blood pressure after inhaling eucalyptus essential oil for 30 minute intervals for 3 days in a row.
Simply putting a few drops in your diffuser and inhaling the soothing, herbaceous scent of eucalyptus may help your arthritis symptoms. Adding a few drops into your bath is another amazing and relaxing option.
5. Frankincense & Myrrh Blend
Frankincense and myrrh are both powerful essential oils on their own. When combined, however, they create a powerful synergy of healing benefits.
This recent study from 2019 showed that when frankincense and myrrh essential oils are combined, something almost magical happens. What takes place is a series of changes in their chemical components so that a new synergistic substance emerges. This creates powerful benefits such as synergistic anti-inflammation, synergistic anticancer, synergistic analgesic, synergistic antibacterial, synergistic blood-activation, and so on.
This blend is a truly amazing choice among the best essential oils for arthritis. Frankincense and myrrh also help relieve anxiety, stress, and insomnia.
6. Peppermint essential oil for arthritis
Peppermint essential oil is not just for toothpaste. This wonderfully soothing and cool essential oil also has pain relieving and anti-inflammatory properties that make it a great option for arthritis symptoms.
This is also because it is known to lubricate stiff joints, soothe muscle aches, reduce nerve pain, and support immune and lymphatic health.
Peppermint is one of the great essential oils for rheumatoid arthritis, in particular.
7. Basil essential oil
Another essential oil commonly found in the kitchen cabinet, basil essential oil has many potentially therapeutic properties.
Some of these properties include analgesic and anti-inflammatory, so it can relieve pain and swelling associated with arthritis.
8. Turmeric essential oil for arthritis
Lastly, turmeric essential oil is famous for being a powerful anti-inflammatory agent that also stimulates circulation. It has been used for thousands of years and pops up in Ancient Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines.
This essential oil can help a wide variety of health concerns. For example, a 2016 review published in the Journal of Medicinal food stated that the compound curcumin found in turmeric can be a “can therapeutic agent for relieving arthritis”.
How to Use Essential Oils for Arthritis
There are a few different methods to use essential oils for arthritis.
Using them aromatically is one method. For example, putting a few drops in a diffuser by your bed at night will help you receive the wonderful healing benefits as you sleep. Certain essential oils, such as lavender, or the Frankincense and Myrrh blend will help you get amazing sleep as well.
Another effective option is diluting the essential oils in a carrier oil and massaging the blend directly to the affected area. Using a moisturizing carrier oil, such as coconut or jojoba, will penetrate deeply into the skin and body for maximum healing to occur. It is important to avoid your eyes and for some oils, stay out of direct sunlight while they absorb into your skin.