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Definition of «Aromatherapy»

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Aromatherapy: A form of alternative and complimentary medicine based on the use of very concentrated "essential" oils from the flowers, leaves, bark, branches, rind or roots of plants with purported healing properties.

In aromatherapy these potent oils are mixed with a carrier (usually soybean or almond oil) or the oils are diluted with alcohol or water and rubbed on the skin, sprayed in the air, inhaled or applied as a compress. They should never be consumed.

Practitioners of aromatherapy believe that the aroma of these "essential" oils directly stimulates the brain or that the oils are absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream, where they can affect the whole body and promote healing.

Some scents like lavender may, indeed, have real effects that promote a sense of well-being. However, aromatherapy has been claimed to be a virtual panacea: to boost immunity fight bacteria, cure herpes and shingles, relieve arthritis, heal wounds, improve memory, lift depression, improve the circulation, etc. Such claims are generally not supported by convincing scientific evidence.

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