Countless Americans deal with severe pain on a daily basis. Whether the pain is a result of an injury, poor lifestyle habits or excessive stress, those who suffer from chronic pain are desperate for relief.
Most pain sufferers rely on pain medications to get through the day. However, these medications are not meant to be taken over long periods of time. Over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications are known for their serious side effects that include heart attack, stroke, liver damage and ulcers (source).
Those who deal with severe pain often take opioid painkillers that have been prescribed by a doctor. These pain medications are notoriously addictive and can cause serious side effects. In fact, opioid-related deaths are becoming an epidemic in this country (source).
Fortunately, there is a way to relieve pain in a totally safe and natural way. For thousands of years, people have treated all kinds of pain with essential oils. These inexpensive oils contain chemical compounds that have been proven to alleviate pain.
In this article, you’ll discover which essential oils tackle pain most effectively. Plus, you’ll learn how to apply them in order to fully reap their benefits and be on your way to living a pain-free life.
Essential Oils for Pain
Essential oils treat pain in a completely safe way. This is because of the way that they are applied. Many essential oils contain pain-relieving properties that are so potent, they work when applied topically and inhaled. This eliminates the risk of overdose and internal damage caused by frequent ingestion.
When applied topically to the affected area, essential oils enter the painful tissue by absorbing through the pores of the skin. Once the oil has reached the tissue, it works quickly, alleviating pain while treating the underlying cause.
Lavender Essential Oil
One of the most popular essential oils in lavender. With its calming scent, this oil is frequently used in aromatherapy because of its incredible ability to relax the mind and alleviate stress and anxiety. What many people don’t know is that lavender essential oil also treats pain of all kinds thanks to its incredible anti-inflammatory properties.
Lavender essential oil is often used to treat headaches because of its ability to quickly get to the muscular tissue, reducing inflammation quickly. In fact, the oil has been well-researched for its pain-relieving abilities.
In one study, lavender essential’s chemical composition was examined in order to determine the potency of its anti-inflammatory properties. The study found that lavender essential oil is highly effective when it comes to reducing inflammation thanks to its unique chemical makeup (source).
In another study, lavender essential oil was massaged into the knees of patients who suffered from arthritis. The study found that the patients experienced a significant reduction in pain thanks to the oil’s unique ability to treat severe inflammation (source).
Lavender essential oil is often used in hospitals to treat patients who are simultaneously experiencing anxiety and intense pain. In one study, nurses massaged lavender essential oil into patients who were in emotional distress due to severe pain. The study concluded that lavender oil can significantly reduce pain while alleviating the emotional distress caused by pain (source).
In fact, lavender essential oil has also been proven to reduce pain that can disrupt sleep. Lavender oil has long been used as an insomnia treatment because of its ability to relax the mind. This demonstrates that the oil’s profound sedative properties can both treat physical pain and treat the negative emotions that occur when one is experiencing pain (source).
Lavender essential oil also has antispasmodic properties. When applied to an injury, it can prevent painful muscle spasms that cause knots and tension (source).
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil’s pain-relieving abilities are profound. The secret behind the oil’s ability to treat all kinds of pain is menthol, the oil’s leading chemical compound. Menthol is such a potent pain medication that many over-the-counter topical pain relievers contain high amounts of it. In addition to its ability to relieve pain, menthol helps open up the pores of the skin so that it can permeate the muscles very quickly.
When menthol is applied topically to the skin, it provides the affected area with a cooling, numbing sensation. This allows the tense muscular tissue to relax as circulation is stimulated to the area, allowing healing to take place. When tissue is inflamed, the brain perceives it as uncomfortable heat. Therefore, the cooling sensation that menthol provides tricks the brain into not perceiving the pain (source).
Peppermint essential oil is so powerful as a pain reliever that one study found it to be as effective as popular over-the-counter medications when it comes to treating pain. This has to do with the oil’s analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties. Most pain is caused by inflammation. Peppermint oil treats inflammation quickly by permeating the affected tissue and reducing the swelling. Meanwhile, the oil’s analgesic properties block the brain’s ability to perceive pain. This process is similar to that of opioid painkillers. However, peppermint oil does not come with the risks that are common with these prescription medications (source).
Studies have shown that applying peppermint oil is an excellent method for treating tension headaches. These headaches are caused by tense muscles that become inflamed. The oil relieves the tension while treating the underlying inflammation, resulting in total pain relief (source).
Frankincense Essential Oil
Another incredibly effective pain reliever is frankincense essential oil. While the oil is not as common in the household as peppermint and lavender, it tackles pain just as effectively thanks to its chemical composition. Frankincense essential oil contains high levels of monoterpene compounds that are renowned for their anti-inflammatory properties. These compounds give frankincense oil the ability to reduce swelling and tenderness caused by inflammation while stimulating circulation to the area, allowing healing to occur.
One study examined the pain-relieving properties of frankincense oil by testing the anti-inflammatory abilities of monoterpene compounds. According to the study, these compounds work similarly to popular over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications. The study concluded that frankincense essential oil is an effective natural alternative to popular medications (source).
A similar study compared the pain-relieving abilities of frankincense oil and popular anti-inflammatory medications. The study found that frankincense oil treats inflammation in a similar manner as these medications, proving that the oil can be used as an effective alternative (source).
In another study, frankincense essential oil was proven to behave like steroids when it comes to treating pain. This is because of the oil’s boswellic acids. These acids have a chemical structure that is very similar to popular steroid drugs (source).
Interestingly, it is believed that frankincense essential oil can actually prevent the breakdown of joint tissue. The breakdown of joint tissue is caused by overuse of the joints. Once this tissue begins to deteriorate, pain occurs. By applying frankincense oil to the joints, you can prevent chronic joint pain from occurring (source).
Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil is an incredible pain reliever thanks to its chemical makeup. Eugenol, the essential oil’s leading chemical compound, has anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and analgesic properties. Additionally, it behaves similarly to menthol in that it can numb pain and provide the affected area with a pleasant cooling sensation.
Clove essential oil is so effective when it comes to treating pain that countless studies have examined its pain-relieving abilities. For one thing, the oil is a powerful antispasmodic product. When massaged into the skin, it will stop painful muscle spasms that cause knots and tension. The oil’s chemical composition has been well-researched to confirm just how powerful its antispasmodic properties are. In fact, one study showed that the oil can stop spasms in the muscles along the airways of rats (source).
Another study proved clove oil’s analgesic properties. Analgesic medications work by blocking the brain’s ability to perceive pain from the nervous system. By simply inhaling the oil, you allow it to enter the brain tissue and stop pain dead in its tracks (source).
Clove essential oil is widely used for its ability to numb pain. For centuries, the oil has been used to numb toothaches. Amazingly, one study found that clove oil works just as well as benzocaine when it comes to numbing pain (source).
Clove essential oil has high levels of anti-inflammatory properties. One study tested the oil’s anti-inflammatory properties on mice. According to the study, the oil significantly decreased inflammation levels in mice (source).
Another study tested clove essential oil’s ability to treat arthritis pain. Because arthritis is a condition caused by severe inflammation of the joint tissue, clove essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties greatly reduced the pain of the subjects. The study concluded that clove essential can effectively treat pain caused by arthritis (source).
Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus oil is yet another essential oil with incredible pain-relieving abilities. The oil contains high levels of linalool and eucalyptol, two chemical compounds that are renowned for their anti-inflammatory properties. When applied topically to the affected area, eucalyptus oil quickly gets into the muscle tissue and reduces swelling and tenderness.
The oil’s anti-inflammatory properties are so potent that simply inhaling the oil will result in a reduction of pain. In one study, patients experiencing pain following knee replacement surgery were administered eucalyptus essential oil via inhalation. The study found that these patients experienced a significant reduction in pain (source).
Eucalyptus essential oil has the ability to ease tension within the muscular tissue. Massaging the oil into the affected area will increase circulation to the tissue, allowing quick healing to take place (source).
Eucalyptus essential oil also has the ability to numb pain. Eucalyptol, the oil’s leading chemical compound, acts similarly to menthol, cooling and numbing the tissue. For this reason, eucalyptus can often be found in topical pain reliever medications (source).
Rose Essential Oil
Many people use rose essential oil as a perfume thanks to its intoxicating floral scent. However, many people do not realize that rose essential oil is also an incredibly powerful pain reliever. In fact, the oil has been used for centuries as a pain reliever thanks to its unique chemical composition that gives it anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic and analgesic properties.
Rose essential oil’s antispasmodic properties give it the ability to quickly treat painful muscle spasms when applied topically to the affected area. Once the oil has entered the muscular tissue through the layers of the skin, it relieves tension, providing fast pain relief (source).
One study tested rose essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties in an attempt to find an alternative to over-the-counter pain medications. According to the study, rose oil’s unique chemical makeup gives it the ability to reduce inflammation as effectively as these popular pain medications (source).
The same study found that rose essential oil has strong analgesic properties as well. Analgesic drugs relieve pain by blocking the nervous system from sending pain signals to the brain. The study found that rose essential oil is an incredible pain reliever thanks to its ability to act simultaneously as an anti-inflammatory and analgesic medication when applied topically to the affected area.
Sandalwood Essential Oil
Yet another essential oil with amazing pain-relieving properties is sandalwood oil. This oil has incredible anti-inflammatory abilities that can relieve pain quickly and effectively. In fact, many studies have proven just how effective sandalwood essential oil is when it comes to reducing inflammation.
One study tested sandalwood essential oil’s ability to treat psoriasis, a skin condition caused by severe inflammation. The study found that sandalwood essential oil can effectively treat psoriasis and should be used for this purpose in clinical environments (source).
Another study found that sandalwood essential oil has powerful anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, making it a very effective pain reliever. While the oil’s anti-inflammatory properties quickly reduce the swelling associated with inflammation, the oil’s analgesic properties block the brain’s ability to receive pain signals from the nervous system (source).
Sandalwood essential oil can also alleviate emotional distress associated with severe pain. In one study, patients receiving palliative care were given the oil via inhalation. The study found that the oil can significantly decrease the feelings of anxiety that are caused by pain (source).
Rosemary Essential Oil
Like many other essential oils, rosemary oil tackles pain in a variety of ways. The oil boasts high levels of anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties, allowing it to treat inflammation while preventing the brain from perceiving pain. For this reason, the oil is commonly found in topical pain medications.
Rosemary essential oil’s analgesic properties have been well-researched. In one study, the oil was administered to mice alongside codeine, a popular prescription pain medication. The study found that rosemary essential oil’s strong analgesic properties give it the ability to treat severe pain (source).
Rosemary oil’s anti-inflammatory properties allow it to reduce inflammation in the muscular and joint tissue. By massaging the oil into the affected area, swelling and pain will go away in no time. Plus, the oil has antispasmodic properties, giving it the ability to stop muscle spasms while eliminating tension in the muscular tissue (source).
Lemon Essential Oil
Lemon essential oil has a unique chemical composition that gives it the ability to combat all types of pain. One thing that makes this essential oil unique is its high level of vitamin C. Having a vitamin C deficiency is incredibly common and can cause chronic pain as the joints depend on it. By ingesting the oil, you can ensure that you get your required daily dose of this crucial vitamin (source).
Like many other essential oils, lemon essential oil has strong anti-inflammatory properties. One study tested the oil’s ability to treat inflammation in rats. The study found that the oil can significantly reduce pain when inhaled (source).
Patchouli Essential Oil
Many people associate patchouli essential oil with exotic perfumes. Interestingly, this oil is also commonly used for pain relief in many regions of the world. The oil’s strong anti-inflammatory properties give it the ability to heal inflammation quickly, eliminating the need to take drugs. When massaged into the skin, the oil enters the inflamed tissue through the pores. Then, it reduces swelling and stimulates circulation to the affected area.
One study tested the oil’s anti-inflammatory abilities and found that its chemical makeup is packed with inflammation-fighting superpowers (source).
Cedarwood Essential Oil
Yet another essential oil renowned for its ability to fight inflammation is cedarwood essential oil. One study found that the oil can treat inflammatory skin conditions like psoriasis. Thanks to its chemical makeup, the oil can permeate the muscles through the skin, reducing swelling and treating pain effectively (source).
Cedarwood essential oil also has antispasmodic properties, giving it the ability to treat muscle spasms and relieve tension of the joints and muscles. When the oil reaches the affected area through the skin, it instantly relaxes tense tissue, providing the sufferer with fast relief.
Lemongrass Essential Oil
Lemongrass essential oil can simultaneously tackle inflammation and reduce the emotional distress that occurs when one is dealing with severe pain. One study found that lemongrass oil is a potent anti-inflammatory drug that works just as well as popular over-the-counter pain medications (source).
As for its ability to relieve stress, lemongrass essential oil has been proven to act as a natural sedative. Those who are in chronic pain tend to experience elevated feelings of stress and anxiety which in turn cause the muscles to tense up, resulting in more pain. Lemongrass essential oil can stop this debilitating cycle dead in its tracks by simultaneously treating pain and the negative emotions that result (source).
Oregano Essential Oil
Oregano essential oil is another strong anti-inflammatory pain-reliever. The oil’s anti-inflammatory properties are well-known around the world. By massaging the oil into the skin, the sufferer will experience quick pain relief as the oil reduces the swelling caused by inflammation (source).
Essential Oils Remedy For Pain Infographic
Now that you’ve discovered just how effectively essential oils can treat pain, you can ditch the dangerous drugs and take a natural approach to getting your life back. All of the oils listed above are safe and inexpensive. Plus, they’ve all been proven by science to effectively reduce pain.
Do you use essential oils to treat aches and pains? If so, tell us about it in the comments section below. If you know anyone who suffers from chronic pain, feel free to send this article their way.