How To Use These 3 Essential Oils To Relieve Anxiety And Depression

One of the most effective uses for essential oils is to treat anxiety. It’s as simple as enjoying the oil’s scent or receiving a massage with a favorite essential oil blend. A UK study of psychiatric patients diagnosed with anxiety and depressive disorders found that aromatherapy, combined with massage, reduced anxiety and improved mood over a six-month period of use.

But besides increasing calm and well-being, using essential oils to treat anxiety also reduces the chances of developing stress and anxiety-related disease and complications like sleep problems, allergies, diabetes, arthritis, heart disease and cancer.

What Is Aromatherapy?

Essential oils used in aromatherapy are typically extracted from various parts of plants and then distilled. The highly concentrated oils may be inhaled directly or indirectly or applied to the skin through massage, lotions or bath salts..

3 Calming Essential Oils

Most anti-anxiety and antidepressant medication can cause dependence, aggravation of symptoms as well as other negative side effects. On the other hand, essential oils don’t have any side effects in most individuals (other then allergy symptoms).

1. Lavender

Perhaps the most versatile and popular of all essential oils, lavender is great for relaxation, heart health and well-being in general. There are many studies proving the effectiveness of lavender on stress, depression and anxiety.

A study showed that lavender essential oil aromatherapy reduced serum cortisol, which plays a main role in a healthy cardiovascular system and how the body responds to stress. The researchers concluded that, “These findings suggest that lavender aromatherapy has relaxation effects and may have beneficial acute effects on coronary circulation.

Lavender essential oil is an effective substitute for anxiety medications. investigated the use of lavender for Generalized Anxiety Disorder. An oral lavender oil capsule preparation taken over six weeks was shown to effectively relieve generalized anxiety comparable to lorazepam, a powerful anti-anxiety drug.

2. Bergamot

Bergamot is part of the citrus family and is fresh and uplifting. A study conducted using bergamot essential oilconcluded that even ten minutes of weekly inhalation of bergamot oil resulted in a significant reduction of blood pressure and heart rate, while balancing nerves and reducing anxiety. The study authors selected elementary school teachers known to work under significant stress as their subjects.

3. Sage

Sage is one of the basic herbs in European cooking. Not only does it have a wonderful, woody taste and smell, it also has antidepressant effects.

A controlled trial in 2013 suggested that clary sage S. sclarea essential oil may be useful—more so than lavender Lavandula angustifolia [Mill.]—in reducing stress for female patients undergoing urodynamic assessments.

Sage oil can be difficult to find in natural health food stores, but you can easily order it online or grow your own plant and rub the leaves between your fingers to release their oil.

Here are a few quick & easy ways to use essential oils:

1. Relaxing Bath Salts

The perfect way to calm down after an emotional day.


  • 1 cup Epsom salt
  • 1 cup kosher salt
  • ½ cup baking soda
  • 10 drops Clary sage (Salvia sclarea) essential oil
  • 10 drops Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata var. genuina) essential oil


  1. Combine salts and soda in a jar with a lid.
  2. Stir in essential oils & shake to promote even coating.
  3. Store in cool, dark place.
  4. Use about ¼ to ½ cup per bath.

2. Anti-Stress Mist

The on-the-go solution to staying grounded.


  • 5 drops of Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) oil
  • 3 drops of Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata var. genuina) oil
  • 2 drops of Bergamot (Citrus aurantium var. bergamia) oil
  • 4 oz of purified water


  1. In a 4 ounces spray bottle, carefully add all of the essential oils.
  2. Top off the bottle with purified water and tighten the cap.
  3. Mix well and store in a cool, dark, place.
  4. To use, shake and spray away from your face. Flick your wrist in a forward motion to brig the mist closer to your nose.

If you’re struggling with anxiety or depression and feel overwhelmed, talk to your doctor, naturopath or mental health provider to find a strategy to help you get back to your regular self. Aromatherapy is just one of the many tools that can help you recover.