Essential Oils: What We Think We Know & What's Really True

Recently, we've seen an increase in the use of essential oils and diffusers in the homes of many college students. You can go into your local grocery store and find an arrangement of brands that are appealing to the eyes. But in reality, they are terrible for our health and our furry friends who inhale them daily. The thing we overlook when it comes to oils is what is actually in them.

Before the trend grew, other generations like my mother’s explored oils for not only the great smell but the health benefits. Working with oils for over six years, she has seen what can come with cheap products. As someone who grew up around oils, I’ve seen them used as medicinal remedies to replace over-the-counter medicines that can cause things like liver failure or decrease the length of one’s life span. Young Living, a company I know and stand by, can give you a list of ingredients that you can understand without searching them up on the internet. We shouldn’t be putting our lives in the hands of those who hide what they put in their products.

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A large reason for the growth in favoritism toward oil use in the college setting is due to some dorms' rules against owning candles in their buildings. You can never go wrong with diffusing water and oils into the air, replacing rank smells without breaking on-campus housing rules. But people overlook what exactly is being put in these cute little bottles. Something labeled as essential should not be unable to be ingested or come into contact with skin. Most of them, if you look, have ingredient lists that contain things that should not be inhaled or put onto our bodies. Even things that are supposed to come completely pure like tea tree or coconut oil can be mixed with other unneeded toxins that I believe will affect our health down the road. Even worse, they can take the lives of our four-legged friends.

These toxic oils that come into contact with animals are poisonous and can even kill them after just one inhalation. Even though these impure oils are terrible for animals, you need to watch out for the ones that are 100 percent pure as well. Oils that are good for us may not be good for animals. Some oils that are bad/deadly for dogs and other animals include wintergreen, pine, tea tree and many more. This can be scary, but I assure you there are many great smelling oils are safe for animals like lavender and frankincense.

But when it comes to our health, the oils aren’t the only thing that can cause us to weaken. The diffusers themselves are another player in the spread of the toxic oils. Many diffusers are made with basic plastic which breaks down over time. With recent news and what we are learning about what goes into making plastic, the breakdown of plastic over time releases unwanted chemicals that are then mixed with the oils and dispersed into the air that we breathe in. Brands like Young Living make their diffusers with medical-grade material that doesn’t break down over time, keeping them safe and useable for ages. Other companies don’t consider these facts when it comes to the health of those they sell to.

Essential oils are made to be therapeutic, help with health issues and overall smell great. We should be able to enjoy them without the worry that they are doing the opposite of what they are supposed to.

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