The use of essential oils can provide relief from constipation, cramps or bloating. Many essential oils are suitable for this.
Essential oils can help with constipation
Even if occasional constipation will not have any serious consequences, it is very annoying and can cause hemorrhoids, for example. Chronic constipation, on the other hand, is a clear sign of massive problems not only in the digestive system, but in the entire organism.
Because when digestion falters, the gut flora appears to be imbalanced, and this factor alone can have far-reaching consequences since the gut flora is directly related to the performance of the immune system.
In the case of constipation, the first priority is natural measures that tackle the cause. Those who suffer from lack of exercise, lack of water and lack of fiber should first correct these deficiencies. Constipation can often be dispelled very well by restoring the intestinal flora or by sitting naturally in a squat position. The first successes usually appear very quickly. We have presented other home remedies for constipation in the previous link.
However, you can always use aromatherapy with essential oils, which has been practised in folk medicine for centuries. Selected essential oils can not only help to dissolve constipation, but also support the treatment of many other digestive problems – whether cramps, flatulence, a nervous stomach, etc.
A very important benefit of aromatherapy for constipation is that you need to take time for yourself first. Prepare the oils in peace and quiet, ensure a comfortable environment and lie down. The resulting relaxation alone has a healing potential that should not be underestimated – in contrast to oral intake of digestive aids, which can be swallowed quickly and easily.
Using essential oils for constipation
Although essential oils are natural, they are very concentrated plant extracts, so they should only be used diluted. In the case of constipation, the following applications are possible:
- Dilute essential oils with a base oil such as coconut oil, almond oil, jojoba oil or olive oil before applying it to the skin. Usually, you mix 2 to 5 drops of the respective essential oil with 1 teaspoon of base oil, thus containing a fragrant massage oil and massage it into the abdominal area.
- Mix a few drops of the selected essential oil into a natural body oil or body lotion that you already have at home and use this mixture to massage your abdominal area as well.
- Apply the essential oils to a warm, wet washcloth (2 to 4 drops) and place on the stomach like a hot compress.
- Inhale essential oils using an essential oil inhaler. The selected essential oil and hot water are poured into the inhaler according to the instructions. The advantage of the inhaler is that only the mouth and nose come into contact with the essential oils. The usual inhalation with a hot water bowl and a towel over the head can irritate the eyes. In the case of constipation, inhalation is rarely used, but it can certainly be used to support it. Because the essential oils get into the bloodstream via the respiratory tract and from there into the gastrointestinal tract.
Ginger essential oil for constipation
Although ginger is better known as a spice in the food sector, it is also a popular remedy for nausea and stomach problems and has therefore been part of Chinese and Indian naturopathy since the beginning of their time.
Essential ginger oil (2 drops) is best placed on a washcloth soaked in hot water and placed on your stomach. Make sure the water temperature is not too hot. Leave the washcloth for a few minutes until it begins to cool. Then massage the abdomen for 2 to 3 minutes in a clockwise direction.
Peppermint essential oil for constipation
Peppermint oil contains menthol, which is responsible for the cooling effect of this essential oil. Sensitive people do not tolerate menthol very well on the skin. Therefore, test your tolerance first on a small area of skin. If redness or burning occurs, switch to a different oil.
Peppermint oil has a relaxing and pain-relieving effect – both on the muscles in general and on those in the gastrointestinal tract.
If you have constipation or stomach problems, add 2 drops of peppermint oil to 1 teaspoon of warmed base oil. This small amount of oil is used to massage the abdominal area. Gently work the oil into the skin in a clockwise direction. Ideally, the massage should be performed three times a day.
Essential peppermint oil should never be used on babies and small children, as the menthol could lead to breathing difficulties up to and including respiratory arrest.
Fennel essential oil for constipation
An article published in the journal BioMed Research International reads that fennel can help with all digestive disorders, including constipation. The essential oils of fennel were mentioned as the particularly effective components of fennel.
Essential fennel oil can also be used as an aid in an abdominal massage, but it can also be inhaled. 2 drops of fennel oil are added to a teaspoon of base oil and massaged again in a clockwise direction around the navel. Start with small circles that you gradually increase in size. If feasible, you can also do both at the same time: inhale and massage, e.g. if you have someone who does the massage for you.
Lavender essential oil for constipation
Constipation is often the result of stress, because constant tension leads to blocked digestion. Essential lavender oil is the master of relaxation and is also often used to promote sleep. If you have a room diffuser, you can put the lavender oil in there in the evening and experience the stress-relieving effects of this essential oil.
Lavender oil is also an important oil for flatulence and stomach ache. Simply add 1 to 2 drops of this oil to 1 teaspoon of base oil, apply to the stomach and gently massage in a clockwise direction as usual.
Chamomile essential oil for constipation
Chamomile essential oil can be used alone or mixed with lavender essential oil. The two oils not only relax and decongest the mind but also the digestive system. They also improve intestinal peristalsis and relieve flatulence.
The two essential oils are mixed with a base oil (2 drops each for 1 teaspoon of base oil), applied to the stomach and gently massaged in clockwise – ideally three times a day.
Mixtures of essential oils
Now one could assume that a massage alone for constipation would certainly be very useful and beneficial and that you might not need essential oils for it. However, in a study published in the Journal of the Korean Academy of Nursing, abdominal massage with essential oils (here, a blend of rosemary , lemon, and peppermint) was found to be significantly more effective for constipation than massage alone.
Essential oils for constipation
In case of constipation, essential oils can be used very well. The scent alone has a positive and relaxing effect on the mood. Since the individual essential oils do not only have an effect on digestion, you can often discover other positive properties with their use at the same time.
Please discuss the use of essential oils in babies and small children with a pediatrician, naturopath or aromatherapist.