Essential oils for Car Rides
Getting behind the wheel can bring out a whole other side of our personalities—and not always our good side. If you’re looking for a way to placate that inner rage of a commuter, look no further than aromatherapy for a safer and more enjoyable car ride.
Diffusing essential oils in your car can make your commute way less stressful. Portable essential oil diffusers that fit in your cup holders are perfect for cars, trucks, and RVs.
Get the Essentials
Essential oils are gaining popularity in professional and personal environments, not just for their nice aroma, but mainly because of the significant effect certain smells can have on your mood.
“Essential oils carry biologically active volatile compounds of flowers and plants in a highly concentrated form,” osteopathic physician Joseph Mercola states. “They are, in many ways, the essence of the plant and can provide therapeutic benefits in very small amounts.”
Consider using the following essential oils to quell the corresponding ailments you may experience while driving:
- Road Rage:
- Frankincense essential oil
- Rosewood essential oil
- Pine essential oil
- Ylang Ylang essential oil
- Bergamot essential oil
- Car sickness:
- Ginger essential oil
- Orange essential oil
- Peppermint essential oil
- Cardamom essential oil
- Lack of focus:
Although scents like lavender essential oil and chamomile essential oil have calming qualities, be wary about using them in the car. These particular soothing scents are known to cause sleepiness, and could be a danger to you on the road.
Diffuse the Situation
When it comes to filling your car with the scent you need, there are a few different ways to diffuse your essential oils on the road.
For the most powerful and low maintenance method, you can opt to buy an essential oil diffuser specifically made for use in the car, which is powered by plugging it into your vehicle’s cigarette lighter like the Traveler Essential Oil Car Diffuser, or even better, one that sits in your cup holder like the Aroma-Express Essential Oil Diffuser that actually puts out a regular puff of oil intermittently.
Tuazon suggests a quick and cheap way to diffuse oils in the car: attach a cotton ball to a safety pin and place a few drops of your essential oil(s) onto the cotton ball. Then, attach the safety pin to your car’s air vents and voila! You have a low-maintenance but effective homemade diffuser.
If you’re feeling crafty and want a diffuser to hang from your rearview mirror, buy a small sheet of wool felt from your local craft store. Fold the felt into a small, satchel-like ball and tie the top with twine (or string, thread, ribbon, etc.), including a loop for hanging. Then, drip your favorite essential oils directly onto the felt and you’re set!
Finally, for longer car rides and a more pronounced scent, you can fill a small spray bottle with water and add a few drops of your preferred oils for an occasional, uplifting spritz. This also serves as a refreshing way to cool off in times of especially warm weather.
Whichever method you choose, there will be a period of trial and error while you determine just how much of each oil to use. There’s a balance to be found between being overwhelmed with scent and not smelling the oils at all. This is different for everyone, so listen to your nose while sniffing out that aromatic sweet spot.
How Essential Oils Affect Emotions
So, how does this all work?
The parts of our brains that process smell (olfactory regions) are directly connected to the part of our brains that processes emotion (limbic system). This connection has been in the works and evolving for millions of years, aiding in the survival of our earliest mammalian ancestors.
Today, that link between smell and mood can help us survive in a different way, especially by reducing drowsiness at the wheel and road-rage confrontations.
The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety conducted a study on the correlation between lack of sleep and likelihood of getting in an accident. Drivers who get 4 to 5 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period are 4 times more likely to get in a car crash than those who got at least 7 hours of sleep, the study found.
If you’re feeling tired at the wheel and need a quick boost, essential oils may just do the trick. However, if you’re experiencing chronic and severe drowsiness, pull over and either try to take a quick nap OR call a friend to pick you up.
Similarly, driving while angry can also increase your chances of getting into an accident. According to the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, nearly 80% of drivers in the U.S. experience aggression while driving.
Aggression on the road doesn’t come without consequences either—by analyzing accidents and their causes from 2003 to 2007, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety was able to conclude about 56% of fatal car crashes were caused by aggressive driving behaviors.
So the next time you’re feeling sleepy or angry at the wheel, stop, take a deep breath, and smell the roses—rosewood and rosemary that is. Diffusing essential oils in your car may just be the key to restoring your sanity on the road and becoming an overall safer driver.
what are essential oils?
Even though essential oils have been around for thousands of years, we can enjoy the direct benefits of using essential oils today; through healing properties occurring naturally through the extracted plant substance.
Essential oils have been recorded throughout history to be used to enhance spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental health. The Egyptians were referenced as using cinnamon, myrrh, sandalwood, and frankincense as early as 4500 BC. Scholars in India developed the science of Ayurveda around 3000 BC. These people relied on essential oils in potions using some of today’s favorites, such as ginger and cinnamon.
The use of essential oils for remedies of ailments was recorded by Chinese scholars between 2067 and 2597 BC. However, probably the most common place we read about essential oils is in the Bible. Essential oils are mentioned over two hundred times in the New Testament and Old Testament of the Bible.
how do essential oils work?
If you are a beginner to essential oils, there are three primary ways essential oils enter the body: applied to the skin, inhaled, or ingested. When choosing the right method to use essential oils, always keep in mind the desired result you are wanting and then determine the best application for use. Essential oils can enter the body by being applied to the skin. This method can vary from using a compress, gargling, bath or even massage. It requires several drops of essential oils to be used topically in some manner. It is important to note that most essential oils should not be applied directly to the skin without being diluted.
While people inhale and diffuse essential oils for a variety of reasons, it has been shown that inhalation is most effective and best suited to treat a variety of respiratory complaints. Ingestion of essential oils has had much controversy, I suggest you do the proper research yourself and use safe practices. Cases of death, organ failure and hospitalization in the history of aromatherapy have been caused by ingesting essential oils.
benefits of essential oils
Essential oil benefits come from their antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. These healing oils are rapidly growing in popularity because they act as natural medicine without side effects. In fact, Clove essential oil is so useful as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic that it has been approved for use as a dental anesthetic by the American Dental Association. It is excellent when included in mouthwash recipes, particularly if you suffer from sore, inflamed gums.
While people traditionally see a doctor for an illness and get a prescription drug, many others have awoken to the fact that essential oils can be used in a powerful way, when it comes to healing and supporting the body’s emotional and physical well-being. The biggest question is what oil will work for my body the best. Because we are not all the same, essential oils do not function the same for each of us. If you are looking for a way to reduce the number of chemicals you use in your home, making your own products with essential oils is an excellent choice.
Disclaimer: The information contained on this site is intended for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for advice, diagnosis or treatment by a licensed physician. It is not meant to cover all possible precautions, drug interactions, circumstances or adverse effects. You should seek prompt medical care for any health issues and consult your doctor before using alternative medicine or making a change to your regimen.