An ideal sleep environment is dark, cool, and quiet. No light, noise, or sweltering heat should disturb the body. What about aromas, though? This is one area that many people do not explore. In reality, your sleep can benefit from activating your sense of smell before bedtime. Specific essential oils exhibit abilities to promote relaxation and contribute to a better night’s sleep, according to sleep researchers.
In general, essential oils exhibit many different health properties. People can reap their benefits via topical application (so long as they are diluted in a carrier oil) or inhalation of their aroma via a diffuser. They may help to accelerate wound healing, reduce inflammation, promote clearer skin, calm anxiety, or help you relax and sleep better. Essential oils are fragrant and aromatherapy uses these scents to promote state changes in the body. According to research, inhaling certain scents can signal the brain that it’s time to relax.
If you choose to incorporate essential oils into your bedtime routine, you can add them to a diffuser or place a few drops under your pillow. If you shower or take a bath before bed, add some drops to the shower floor or bathwater. Since diffusers can be too intense for some, consider mixing essential oils with water for a quick under pillow mist. You can even mist your entire bed! Let us know if the following essential oils help you fall asleep by commenting below.
If you drink Earl Grey tea, you are somewhat familiar with bergamot’s aroma. It’s bright, citrusy, and exhibits powerful antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. According to several studies, inhaling bergamot essential oil’s aroma may slow heart rate and reduce blood pressure, preparing the body for sleep. It is similar to lavender and ylang ylang essential oils in that regard. Aromatherapists often use bergamot essential oil to promote stress reduction, which is beneficial for a better night’s sleep.
There may be more research about lavender essential oil’s ability to promote relaxation and sleep than any other essential oil on this list. Scientists identified that linalool, a floral and spicy terpene, in lavender may offer neuroprotective benefits via serotonin receptors in the brain. An additional body of research found that lavender may help improve sleep quality, especially for postmenopausal women. It may help reduce stress and anxiousness, making it an an excellent essential oil for nighttime relaxation.
It’s important to note that vetiver oil’s scent is not for everyone. The aroma isn’t as pleasing as the other oils on this list, but vetiver’s scent does help calm the mind in a powerful way. Vetiver oil’s aroma helps slow your thoughts, putting the mind in a relaxed state. If you find that you continually dwell on the day’s events, diffuse vetiver oil into the air before you go to bed. It may surprise you how quickly your concerns melt away.
A lot of people enjoy a cup of chamomile tea at night because it helps promote relaxation. Inhaling chamomile essential oil’s scent has similar effects. The floral aroma promotes a sense of calm, helping to quiet the mind and get the body ready for sleep. Studies show that the apple-tinged scent of Roman chamomile is especially beneficial for reducing anxiety levels. A 2017 randomized control trial confirmed that chamomile extract was able to improve sleep quality in 60 elderly patients.
Sandalwood essential oil exhibits a rich woody aroma that is very effective at promoting deep rest. Researchers attribute this ability to the mood-balancing properties. That’s why sandalwood essential oil stands out from the rest of the oils on this list. It may not chase away troubling thoughts, but it does balance emotions, which can help put the body in a more restful state. You may also find that inhaling the earthy scent reduces bedtime restlessness and headaches.
Pure vanilla oil is different from vanilla extract, which you commonly see in baking recipes. Vanilla oil offers a pleasant aroma that brings about feel good hormones in the brain. It may also help relieve tension, calming the mind and helping you fall asleep faster. In fact, inhaling vanilla oil’s scent may help you stay asleep longer. Studies found that vanilla oil also exhibits powerful anti-inflammatory, relaxant, and antioxidant properties.