I have loved wonderful smells all my life. Our home has bottles of essential oils in every room – whether it’s peppermint, vetiver, lavender, orange, or over a hundred others! I remember people as much by their smell as by their appearance. And it’s not just me – I walked down a local high street a week ago and noted there were three shops selling fragrances within 100 yards of each other.
And have you noticed that many restaurants used to (before Covid!) offer you peppermint sweets after a meal? Every wondered why? Yes, obviously they want to impress you with their generosity but why peppermint? Because peppermint has been known for centuries to aid digestion, which also sweetens breath.
Similarly, many cleaning products have a lemon aroma – because lemon has long been known to work as an air disinfectant. And lavender is known to be calming and settling. There are many other examples, but the point is that essential oils have specific effects on the body and the environment, and scientific research has demonstrated this, too.
What has this to do with Marma Therapy? Marma Therapy treatments – generally, but not always! – involve skin contact. It’s a gentle massage treatment of the body’s Ayurvedic vital energy points, or Marmas. Oil is very useful in massage, as it helps the hands slide over the surface of the skin. In addition, we use essential oil blends to enhance the therapeutic effect of the treatment.
Which oil to use?
There is a range of oils to choose from, including a number of Marma oil blends specially developed by my teacher Dr Ernst Schrott. These target the seven principal Marmas or are designed for a specific purpose. There is a wonderful oil blend – Ropana – for scar treatments. Another one – Adiprana – is very good for respiratory issues, including sinusitis. I have also found it helpful for patients who, for one reason or another – not necessarily Covid-related – have lost their sense of taste and smell. After a couple of treatments, some of the sense of taste and smell returned. That was amazing!
There are also some Ayurvedic oils such as Joint Soothe, which needs no explanation. Vata and Pitta oil blends are also popular. So how do we choose the right essential for a treatment? If we need an oil for a scar treatment or respiratory issue, then that’s simple – we just use Ropana or Adiprana oil blends. Otherwise, we let the client sniff two or three oils and see which one they prefer. There is a simple and wonderful principle in Aromatherapy. The oil that you like at a particular time is the oil that is best for you. Your nose doesn’t lie – you either like the smell or you don’t!
P.S. A few years ago I was thinking of studying aromatherapy but was so busy that I gave up that idea. Shortly after I gave up, a London publisher contacted me to ask if I would translate Dr Baudoux’s book ‘Aromathérapie’ from French into English. What a gift!