And… you’ve forgotten where you placed the car key for the third day in a row. So much for having the sharpest mind in class when you’re a teenager. The harsh truth is, brain fog doesn’t discriminate and you could be experiencing one even if you’ve always had good focus and memory.
Shaking off the sluggish mental state can be tough, but certain essential oils could help in reclaiming your mental sharpness. But not all essential oils are meant to address the mental fatigue that you’re experiencing. Read on and find out what’s the best aromatherapy oils that work.
What Is Brain Fog
Brain fog is a mental state where you find yourself losing focus and having trouble recalling memories. While it is not classified as a medical condition, brain fog is a symptom of medical conditions or other real events that you’re experiencing.
It’s never fun to have brain fog, especially when you have emails to answer or programs to code. You never know how long you’re stuck with a sluggish mental state. It could be a couple of hours and it could be days or weeks.
Top Causes Of Brain Fog
When you’re experiencing brain fog, it’s a sign that something has gone wrong in your lifestyle or health. Understanding the causes help you to take remedial action for the causes while working to reduce the immediate symptoms.
Here are the common causes of brain fog.
- Stress – You need a certain amount of stress to be productive. But too much of that and lack of proper stress management channel and you risk having brain fog. Chronic stress increases the amount of cortisol in your brain, which causes you to be constantly restless.
- Sleep Deprivation – Like it or not, your brain will start complaining when you’re not getting sufficient quality sleep. The familiar fuzzy mind will greet you in the morning and may extend until the next sleep cycle.
- Diet – The reason for your sluggish mind could be as simple as the meal you had for lunch. MSG and gluten are some notorious components that are known to trigger brain fog. Avoid them if you know you’re highly sensitive.
- Medical Condition – Some medical conditions like multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, and certain inflammatory diseases may cause frequent episodes of brain fog.
- Medication Side Effect – It may be more than a coincidence if you start feeling mental fatigue after starting on a new medicine. Talk to your doctor in such cases. Sometimes, a decrease in dosage may put an end to brain fog.
- Hormonal Change – Women may experience brain fog during pregnancy and menopause as the body undergoes hormonal change. The symptoms of forgetfulness and inability to focus are often temporary until the hormone level has stabilized.
How Essential Oils Help With Brain Fog
Essential oils have been used as a natural remedy for various ailments by civilizations for thousands of years ago. They are derived from plants that are believed to possess therapeutic properties. One of the common usages of essential oils is aromatherapy, which is the practice of inhalation of the fragrance for promoting well-being.
In aromatherapy practice, molecules of essential oil are picked up by the olfactory cells in the cavity, which is then brought to the brain. The olfactory system is linked to various parts of the brain, including the amygdala, hypothalamus, and cingulate gyrus. This explains how your memory, emotion, focus and other physiological function can be affected by essential oils.
To make it simple, certain types of essential oils could decrease stress hormone or increasing your memory, concentration and focus when inhaled.
How To Choose The Right Essential Oil For Brain Fog
There is a wide range of essential oils in the market but not all are meant to eliminate brain fog. With that said, manufacturers have flooded the market with products of varying quality that may confuse you as a user.
As a rule of thumb, never make a decision solely based on a cheaper price. Instead, consider the following:
- Buy undiluted essential oil only. You don’t want essential oils that have been mixed with foreign compounds, such as vegetable oil. Only purchase pure essential oil.
- Know the origin of the plant. To be safe, look for the scientific name of the plant that the oil is derived from. Some common names may include various sub-species with differing properties.
- Only use essential oils contained in a dark glass bottle. It prevents UV from destroying the properties of the essential oil. Avoid clear bottles and plastic ones.
- Check out the extraction process used in producing the essential oil. Commonly used methods are steam-distillation and cold pressed extraction. You’ll also come across a fairly new method named supercritical CO2 extraction which produces high purity essential oil.
Precautions When Using Essential Oil
Essential oils can promote healing but it could also produce negative consequences if you’re not using them correctly. Here are some precautions to take note of if you’re attempting an aromatherapy session at home.
- Never apply undiluted essential oil to the skin as it is very potent and may cause adverse side effects. Always dilute the essential oil with a carrier oil like coconut oil if you’re using it topically and test it on the back of your elbow.
- If you have kids, you’ll want to be careful about the choice of essential oil. Some oils that are known to be harmful to young children and you’ll want to avoid using them with a diffuser. A personal inhaler is a great alternative in such situations.
- If you’re pregnant, consult your doctor before using any essential oil.
- Some essential oils may interact with the medications you’re currently taking. Clarify with your health provider to be clear of the risk.
Best Essential Oils For Brain Fog 2020
It’s tough to choose the right essential oil for brain fog from possibly in possibly hundreds of choices. I’ve narrowed down the list to save your time in making an informed decision.
1. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil is arguably one of the most commonly used essential oil for aromatherapy. The history of the usage of lavender oil traces back to about 3,000 years where it was used for mummification in Egypt. Its therapeutic properties were then discovered by mankind about 500 years later.
The scent of lavender is known to be calming for the mind. It helps to reduce stress and anxiety, a common trigger for brain fog. A clinical trial in Iran involving 140 women with post-delivery emotional disorders were tested for the efficacy of lavender oil. The result clearly indicates the group exposed to lavender aromatherapy exhibits a significant reduction in postpartum depression and anxiety compared to the control group.
You’ll want to get high quality and potent lavender oil, such as one produced by Handcraft Blends. The oil is sourced from various places around the world and rigorously tested in an independent lab to ensure its purity is not compromised.Check Latest Price On Amazon
2. Frankincense Oil
Known for its woody and earthy scent, Frankincense oil is extracted from Boswellia Serrata, a tree that thrives in certain parts of Asia. Frankincense was derived from franc encens which translate into quality incense in French. True to its name, civilization from different parts of the world has been using Frankincense oil to combat various ailments for centuries.
Frankincense oil is particularly effective in easing stress and anxiety. In an experiment on an animal model, Incensole acetate, the active component in Frankincense, is proved to be an effective anxiolytic and antidepressive element. It’s an effective remedy when brain fog happens due to stress and anxiety.
Plant Therapy has a highly rated Frankincense essential oil that would be good for brain fog. It is derived from organically grown Boswellia Serrata and is assured to contain no fillers or additives. Each batch of the oil is tested against the GC-MS standard by third-party labs.Check Latest Price On Amazon
3. Vetiver Oil
You may mistaken vetiver for lemongrass, as they both are indeed from the same family of plant. Vetiver is a grass-like plant that grows in the region of India and has been an important herb used in Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years.
Vetiver is priced for its ability to soothe a tired mind and increase energy level. That may be what you need to get out of brain fog. Researchers have taken an interest in this unique oil and studies has shown that it does increase mental alertness in human subjects when inhaled.
To start filling your home with the scent of vetiver, you may want to get this vetiver oil by Nature’s Oil. It is certified organic by USDA and that puts any worries about pesticides away. The oil was sourced only from trusted farms and underwent rigorous GC-MS testing before being packed.Check Latest Price On Amazon
4. Peppermint Oil
The use of peppermint oil to address a variety of ailments dates back to ancient civilizations thousands of years ago. It contains a high portion of menthol that acts as the active ingredient of oil. Peppermint oil is one of the few essential oils that can be used internally, as well as for aromatherapy.
While the refreshing scent of peppermint offers many benefits, one reason for using it for brain fog is its ability to enhance memory. A clinical study that involves 140 volunteers in the UK has indicated an improvement in memory performance when peppermint oil is used.
ArtNatural offers an effective peppermint oil that will alleviate any brain fog that you’re struggling with. Its essential oil is unadulterated and is GC/MS tested for purity. It was extracted via steam distillation and that means you’ll get uncompromised therapeutic properties of the oil.Check Latest Price On Amazon
5. Rosemary Oil
When it comes to hair loss, rosemary oil is a popular natural remedy. But its virtue goes beyond inducing hair growth. Often used as a herb in roasted delicacies, the essential oil extracted from rosemary has been a priced remedy for thousands of years.
Its evergreen woody scent, when inhaled, produce a positive effect on the memory. The University of Northumbria, Newcastle has conducted a study on the effect of rosemary oil and has found that it is effective in increasing memory and focus.
One of the top quality rosemary essential oil is sold by Maple Holistics. It only uses natural sources in producing essential oil. You could expect a highly potent oil that works in boosting your memory, concentration, and focus.Check Latest Price On Amazon
6. Spanish Sage Oil
Chances are, you’ve heard of Clary sage and you wondered if Spanish sage is the same plant. No, Spanish sage or Salvia lavandulifolia is a lesser-known plant from the Sage family but has gained attention for its ability to enhance memory.
Like other essential oils extracted from the Sage family, Spanish Sage oil offers a soothing aroma and beyond. A clinical trial involving 44 participants in 2003 has demonstrated that Spanish sage oil is an effective remedy in increasing memory capacity in healthy young adults.
It’s hard to get Spanish Sage oil as they are lesser known than their popular counterparts like Clary Sage. But if you wanted to try out the healing properties of Spanish Sage, uh-Roh-Muh has the right product that you could rely on.Check Latest Price On Amazon
7. Cajeput Oil
You may have never heard of cajeput oil, or wonder how it is pronounced. To give you an idea, it is extracted from the white wood tree, which is also known as Melaleuca leucandendra scientifically. It belongs to the same species of tea tree and is commonly found in Malaysia and Indonesia.
The oil leaves a fruity aroma when diffused, and offers a calming experience that drives anxiety away. The therapeutic properties of the oil works wonder in increasing mental alertness and overcoming brain fog.
The Cajeput essential oil by Plant Therapy is extracted from the leaves and twigs of the plant and is free from any additives or fillers. The oils are tested rigorously by independent labs to ensure you receive a highly potent remedy that induces focus and concentration.Check Latest Price On Amazon
8. Lemon Oil
It’s hard to imagine that the same lemon that you made lemonade with can be used to produce essential oil. But lemon or rather lemon peel has been used to produce essential oil for at least a thousand years in India. Lemon oil is much sought after for its broad range of uses.
The scent of lemon oil is refreshing and does indeed mind-boosting. This can be associated with its anxiolytic and antidepressant properties which were discovered in the study conducted in Japan. Lemon oil is also linked to enhancing cognitive function in an animal model research.
It will be a hassle to make lemon essential oil on your own. Getting a one from a reliable brand like ArtNaturals is often a better alternative. The pure aroma of lemon will gradually help you to focus in a soothing environment. The oil is tested to ensure it contains what is specified on the label.Check Latest Price On Amazon
9. Mandarin Oil
Mandarin oil is derived by none other than the peel of the Mandarin fruit itself. It is characterized by its tangy aroma and is considered safe for children. A series of chemical compounds in the oil are responsible for the benefits it offers in aromatherapy.
Stress and mental fatigue are some of the common problems that can be alleviated with mandarin oil. The use of mandarin oil to combat stress was demonstrated in a study conducted by the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing in the United States.
If you’re attracted by the scent of citrus, this mandarin essential oil by Nature’s Oil is perfect for you. Its tangy aroma originates from pure undiluted oil that is extracted from organically planted mandarins. They are tested with the GC/MS standard for purity assurance.Check Latest Price On Amazon
10. Basil Oil
Basil is a plant where its leaves are commonly used in cooking dishes. Both the leaves and the flowers of basil, or Ocimum basilicum are used for producing essential oil. Its primary compound, d-linalool, is responsible for the broad range of health benefits it offers.
It may sound surprising but basil oil is an effective remedy for stress and anxiety with a similar effect of the prescription drug. This is evaluated in a study conducted by researchers in Iran where basil essential oil is found to be both anxiolytic and naturally sedating.
You can get a bottle of high-quality basil oil from Handcraft Blends. Only sustainably sourced basils that are free from harmful chemicals are used in producing the oil. Lab-testing was done to ensure each batch of oils is not compromised before delivered to customers.Check Latest Price On Amazon
Other Ways To Deal With Brain Fog
With all being said about reclaiming your mental sharpness with essential oil, it will be foolish to neglect other aspects of lifestyle when it comes to lifting brain fog. Here are what you should put into practice if you’ll want a sharper mind.
- Workout – If exercise means walking a couple of steps to the door, you’re putting your physical health at risks. Any health practitioners would tell you that an unhealthy body will cause affect your mental stamina and focus.
- Diet – Watch out for what you eat. If certain foods are triggering brain fog, avoid them. Some people are sensitive to gluten and MSG, and they are quite common in various foods.
- Sleep – Get help if you’re struggling with insomnia. But do check your bedtime routine. Are you fiddling with your mobile in bed? Getting quality sleep is key for a rejuvenated mind.
- De-stress – Stress is part and parcel of our life. Find channels to de-stress before you’re overwhelmed. Rockclimbing, yoga, meditation or having a go at bungee jump. They’re fine as long as you feel lighter and mentally sharper.
- Drink up – I’m not talking about coffee or alcohol. If you lack water, you’ll get dehydrated and that causes your mind to feel fuzzy. Drink enough water or set an alarm for a reminder and you may just escape the mental dullness.
- Take supplements – Like essential oils, some supplements are effective in increasing memory, concentration and focus. It’s great to include them in your routine.
How often do you suffer from brain fog? Have you used essential oils to regain focus and mental alertness? Share your thoughts in the comment below.
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