Even though it is often overlooked, the olfactory system is one of the body’s most powerful communication channels. According to research, the whole procedure – from the initial inhaling of an essential oil to the body’s reaction – can take just a few seconds. For this reason, using aromatic essential oils is the most effective way to do this.

Have you ever wondered why cocaine is sniffed through the nose or why anesthesia is administered by inhaling?

It may come as no surprise that the popularity of how people use drugs is usually determined by how quickly the drug reaches the brain and how long it takes for the effects to occur. This is one of the reasons why anesthesia is inhaled and cocaine is typically sniffed through the nose.

It is important to keep in mind that inhaling a substance is one of the quickest routes of ingestion. That’s because the drug or other inhaled substance bypasses the digestive tract and, later, the liver, where the drug would have been metabolized.

When substances are inhaled, they enter the bloodstream directly through the nasal blood vessels. When drugs enter the bloodstream, they quickly reach the brain, causing intense effects in a short period of time.

Similarly, when essential oils are inhaled through the nose, they effectively cross the blood-brain barrier in the area around the olfactory nerve. In other areas, the barrier is made up of 8 endothelial cells thick. The barrier around the olfactory nerve is only 4-5 cells thick. As a result, when inhaling oils through the nose, they can easily pass directly into the brain.

What exactly is the blood-brain barrier?

As the name implies, this “barrier” of endothelial cells protects the brain from pathogens and toxins in the blood. At the same time, it allows nutrients to be transferred to “feed” the brain.

Because essential oils are fat-soluble, they dissolve in fat. Because the brain is fat and fat prefers fat, fat-soluble substances such as essential oils are extremely effective in brain and nervous system healing.


Energy and essential oils

Essential oils send energy signals to the brain as well. When we inhale essential oils through our nose, the aromatic molecules activate receptors in the mucous membrane, which sends information to the olfactory bulb at the base of the brain. The limbic system of the brain, also known as the “emotional brain,” interprets and transmits these “fragrant messages.”

The limbic system is the brain’s control center for emotions and feelings, as well as hunger, thirst, and sexual desire. This explains how aroma can affect appetite and sexual attraction.

It is also in charge of long-term memory, which stores our memories, via the hippocampus. The hippocampus is the area of the brain that plays a role when strong odors trigger emotions or memories.

These intense emotional responses in the limbic system activate other areas of the brain that are in charge of secreting hormones, neurotransmitters, and regulating body functions. Endorphins, for example, are released by the pituitary gland and can help relieve pain and promote a sense of well-being.

Thus, essential oils have the ability to stimulate or sedate the brain in order to promote or inhibit the production and release of various neurotransmitters, which then influence the nervous system, or hormones, which influence the endocrine system.

Emotions and essential oils

As a result, essential oils are particularly effective for dealing with emotional issues such as anxiety, depression, fear, worry, pain, trauma, anger, and self-abuse.

Emotions, along with thought patterns, can set off a continuous stress response in the body. Our stress response is unable to distinguish between physical and emotional stressors, as well as thinking. This inhibits our ability to heal.

The smell of essential oils can be a powerful tool for overcoming and releasing these thought patterns.