If you are someone who suffers from chronic back pain, you are probably exhausted in your quest to find a cure. If you’re not getting the results you want, from seeing multiple doctors and specialists to trying prescription and over-the-counter medications, try essential oils. It may be time to use natural remedies to combat back pain. One of the most accurate tests known is the use of essential oils.
Why should you try essential oils for back pain?
Back pain is one of the most common complaints doctors receive. Common conditions like sciatica and rheumatism present with joint pain, edge pain, and muscle tension in the back.
Doctors often recommend nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen (advil) and naproxen (aleve). However, when these options are used for a long time, they have negative side effects, such as stomach pain and ulcers. Worse yet are the highly addictive opioids that have historically been prescribed by doctors and are causing the current opioid crisis.
Aromatherapy, which refers to the medicinal or therapeutic use of essential oils absorbed through the skin or scented, dates back to medieval Persia and offers a simpler approach to pain management that might be worth a try .
Essential oils are obtained from plants by steam distillation, mechanical pressing, or grating and peeling. Using these processes, the oil solution preserves the natural aroma and flavor of its origin.
Despite the long history of essential oils used to treat back and muscle pain, there is limited research on their effectiveness. However, the first results are positive. A 2016 study showed that the use of essential oil aromatherapy resulted in valuable pain relief. Another study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences revealed that essential oils exhibit anti-inflammatory and analgesic (pain relieving) properties.
Essential oils are an easy home remedy for pain relief with fewer side effects than conventional pain relievers.
However, the scientific evidence for its effectiveness is mixed, so if your pain doesn’t respond to over-the-counter and residential medications, you may need drug treatments such as prescription NSAIDs.
Top 10 Essential Oils for Back Pain and What They Do
When applied topically, the following essential oils have been shown to relieve back pain and soothe inflamed muscles:
Commonly used in cooking, ginger has powerful anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. These properties make ginger essential oils very effective in relieving pain associated with rheumatoid arthritis.
Laboratory studies have even shown that certain ginger extracts may work preventatively to combat joint deterioration and inflammation.
2. Peppermint oil
Peppermint is another herb with powerful pain-relieving properties.
It naturally contains menthol and limonene, which are commonly used to treat pain. Like ginger oil, peppermint oil is commonly used to reduce symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis. A burning sensation may occur when applied to sensitive or raw areas.
3. Frankincense oil
Frankincense is an aromatic resin obtained from Boswellia trees and used in classical medicine for centuries.
It has been shown to treat inflammation, pain, and stiffness. Mild skin irritation may occur.
4. Eucalyptus oil
Native to Australia, Eucalyptus is a well-known topical pain reliever and powerful anti-inflammatory. Distilled from the leaves of the eucalyptus tree, this oil can be used to treat muscle and joint pain and provides soothing relief.
A burning sensation may occur when applied to sensitive or raw areas.
5. Basil oil
Holy basil oil, also known as tulsi or tulsai, has been used for centuries in the Ayurvedic tradition to treat many conditions, including edge pain. It has anti-inflammatory properties and swelling-reducing properties.
6. Lavender oil
Lavender oil, one of the most recognizable essential oils, has a number of conditioning properties. In addition to calming and relieving tension, lavender essential oils are pain relievers that work well for relieving joint pain.
7. Chamomile oil
Known for its calming properties as a tea or topical cream, chamomile also helps control inflammation.
The calming properties of this oil have been shown to help with muscle spasms and rheumatism.
8. Clary sage oil
Classically used to relieve menstrual cramps and reduce pain during childbirth, sage can improve circulation and reduce swelling associated with back pain.
9. Rosemary oil
Rosemary can have silver, gold, or green stripes.
The green variety is often used for its medicinal properties, including its ability to calm inflammation and ease joint pain.
10. Turmeric Oil
In addition to being a delicious spice, turmeric also acts as an anti-inflammatory.
Curcumin, the active ingredient in turmeric oil, has been found to protect joints from inflammation.
Several essential oils represent analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce musculoskeletal pain and inflammation. Different oils are best suited for different underlying conditions, so carefully assess your symptoms and choose the one that’s right for you.