Peppermint Oil - April Featured Essential Oil


Peppermint has, since time immemorial, been considered to be intoxicating and refreshing and to have a powerful healing effect. A hybrid of Spearmint and Watermint it is the most pungent mint.

Peppermint contains a high amount of essential oil, which contains menthol, menthone, menthyl acetate and menthofuran. These compounds effect cold-sensitive receptors in the skin, mouth and throat. These compounds are responsible for the natural cooling-sensation that it initiates when inhaled, eaten, or applied on the skin. The essential oil, menthol also has analgesic (painkiller), local anesthetic and counter-irritant properties.

Peppermint is a decongestant herb that is anti-spasmodic, diaphoretic, digestive, antiseptic and slightly anesthetic. Externally it is used to ease bronchial and upper respiratory tract infections, sinusitis, itching skin, burns, ringworm, neuralgia, rheumatism and to ward off insects. It also bestows upon the user a high measure of momentum and soulfulness.

Special Blends

Add these essential oils to 20ml (4 tsp) carrier oil.
  1. Blend 1: To bring back zest to a tired mind:
    4 drops Rosemary
    2 drops Peppermint
    4 drops Grapefruit
  2. Blend 2: To ease the passage of rich food through the system:
    4 drops Peppermint
    4 drops Grapefruit
    2 drops Ginger
  3. Blend 3: To ease indigestion in children ages 2 to 10:
    2 drops Peppermint
    2 drops Neroli
  4. Blend 4: To soothe aching, painful muscles:
    2 drops Peppermint
    4 drops Rosemary
    4 drops Black Spruce
  5. Blend 5: To ease stomach cramps:
    2 drops Peppermint
    4 drops Ginger
    4 drops Nutmeg

Healing Properties

Easing the Mind

Peppermint essential oil clears the mind, helps you focus and relieves mental strain. Peppermint oil has a very soothing action on the nerves and alleviates nervous disorders, inflammation and hysteria.
  1. To overcome sluggishness and revive mental clarity take Blend 1 above and rub it into the neck and shoulders.
  2. To improve poor concentration, vaporize 3 drops Peppermint with 3 drops Rosemary.
  3. To refresh thought processes, vaporize 3 drops Peppermint with 3 drops Tea Tree.
  4. To clear mental muddle vaporize 4 drops Peppermint and 2 drops Cajeput.
  5. To ease fatigue, take a bath in 2 drops Peppermint and 4 drops Myrtle.
  6. To lift depression and bring a sense of release, vaporize 3 drops Peppermint and 3 drops Eucalyptus.

Healing the Body

Peppermint has analgesic, anesthetic, anti-galactagogue, antiseptic, anti-spasmodic, astringent, carminative, cephalic, cholagogue, cordial, decongestant, emmenagogue, febrifuge, hepatic, nervine, stimulant, stomachic, vasoconstrictor and vermifuge properties.

Peppermint relieves headaches and migraines caused by the weather.

It is used for flu, colds and sinus congestion. When rubbed on the chest or back, it helps with symptons caused by a cold.

The digestion is boosted by this oil and it is helpful for nausea and vomiting, while stimulating the gall bladder and secretion of bile. Furthermore it helps with a spastic colon and stimulates the lymph nodes.

It has strong analgesic properties and is useful for muscle pains, bruises, contusions and joints.

The antimicrobial and antiviral properties make it useful for a variety of topical applications. Peppermint herb is highly effective in topical creams used to treat a variety of skin issues. Examples include treatments for hives, rashes, poison oak or poison ivy. When applied to the skin, peppermint ointments have a soothing and healing effect. The peppermint in the ointment, helps to relieve itching and irritation and helps to cool the skin and reduce redness.

  1. To unblock the nose, use an inhalation of 3 drops Myrtle and 3 drops Peppermint.
  2. To unblock the respiratory passages during colds and flu, try an inhalation with 3 drops Peppermint and 3 drops Thyme.
  3. To cool and calm inflammation and reduce pain after sprains and strains, use a cold compress of 3 drops Peppermint and 3 drops Yarrow.
  4. To reduce inflammation, use a cold compress of 2 drops Peppermint and 2 drops German Chamomile.
  5. To relieve sore muscles, use Blend 4 above and apply it to the affected areas at least once a day.
  6. To ease nausea, or travel or morning sickness, inhale 2 drops Peppermint on a tissue.
  7. To ease indigestion or to reduce feelings of nausea, take Blend 2 above and apply it using a clockwise abdominal massage twice a day.
  8. To ease indigestion in children, take Blend 3 above and apply it using a clockwise abdominal massage.
  9. To soothe abdominal pain caused by indigestion or irritable bowel syndrome, take Blend 5 above and apply it clockwise to your abdommen twice a day.

Safety precautions and warnings

Peppermint essential oil must be used in moderation and the menthol contained in the oil may cause sensitizing to some individuals skin. It can irritate the mucus membranes if the dosage is to high.

If used in pregnancy, very small amounts should be used.

Not recommended for infants.

Sources

  1. The Essential Oils Handbook, Jennie Harding, Watkins Publishing, London, 2008.
  2. The Great Encyclopaedia of Healing Stones, Fragrances and Herbs, published by Methusalem, 2008.
  3. http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/peppermint.html
  4. http://www.fitday.com/fitness-articles/nutrition/healthy-eating/5-health-benefits-of-the-peppermint-herb.html#b
  5. http://www.ageless.co.za/herb-peppermint.htm