HISTORY OF AROMATHERAPY
The most interesting bit of history of aromatherapy is in the nineteen-twenties, a French chemist who was working in a perfume laboratory accidentally lit his arm on fire. To put the fire out, he quickly plunged his arm into a vat of lavender oil, which just happened to be the nearest liquid. That French perfume maker soon discovered that the lavender oil caused his arm to heal very quickly and left no scar. From that point on, that same French chemist dedicated his life to aromatherapy.
Although it has been shown the history of aromatherapy reaches back as far as 40,000 years, but the earliest written record dates to 2650 when a book called "The Art of Aroma Therapy" was written by Tisserand. Some sources list the Egyptians for using plant oils in healing between four and six thousand years ago. They used the oils from plants for medicinal and cosmetic purposes, including bathing, perfuming, healing and even embalming. There is a documented history of aromatherapy throughout history
Aromatherapy Soon Recognized as a Healing Art
During the plague in Europe in the middle ages, the health benefits of essentials became part of the history of aromatherapy as there effects on healing and the immune system were first seen. It wasn't until the 19th century that scientists of Europe began investigating the healing properties of oils.
The term aromatherapy has been credited to Rene Maurice Gattefosse who, in a book, wrote about the anti-bacterial affects of essential oils. However, it wasn't until French Biochemist Madame Margaret Maury came up with massages using the essential oils of plants as a healing practice did the history of aromatherapy become realized.
California became part of the history of aromatherapy in the 1980's where it was introduced and health food stores today offer a wide range of oils and products as do a multitude of internet web sites. Based on the history of aromatherapy, many massage therapists, chiropractors and psychologists incorporate it into their practice.
While Europe has regulated the use of aromatherapy requiring prescriptions for oral doses and licensing procedures for aroma therapists, the United States has no licensing standards. However, many aroma therapists are working to achieve just that. They believe knowledge in botany, chemistry and physiology should be attained instead of just being able to rub people with oils.
While the history of aromatherapy has been a long one, people have been slow to embrace it as a part of medicinal health. However, today's aroma therapists believe that licensing standards will help the practice grow as more and more people understand and acknowledge the healing potential of essential oils.
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