Peppermint in classical times was used for adornment and flavoring. Historically it has been used to soothe digestion, fresh breath, relieve colic, calm indigestion and ease headaches. In modern times it is found in candy, toothpaste, chewing gum, mouthwash and pain relieving products. Considered refreshing, cooling and stimulating peppermint essential oil clears the mind, relieves pain, aids digestion and soothes nausea.
The peppermint plant belongs to the labiatae family. Native to France, India, England and the United States it has a strong, clean, cool and fresh aroma. A tall invasive plant with tough root systems and oval green sharp toothed leaves, peppermint is a potent essential oil that can be irritating to sensitive skin. Steam distilled from leaves mentha piperita is rich in alcohol, menthol, and menthone.
Therapeutic properties of peppermint oil include: analgesic, antibacterial, anti-carcinogenic, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, antispasmodic, antiviral and invigorating. Physical symptom uses include nausea, motion sickness, migraine headache, fever, flu, fatigue, heartburn, hot flashes, varicose veins, aches and pains, sinusitis, swelling, excess gas, bronchitis and lung congestion. Mental and emotional uses include inability to concentrate, congested mind, depression, lethargy, apathy and mental fatigue. Peppermint essential oil is uplifting and can inspire enthusiasm, facilitate the digestion of new ideas and impressions and expand consciousness.
Peppermint oil blends well with clary sage, eucalyptus, lavender, lemon, lemongrass, mandarin, rosemary and tea tree essential oil. A 4% dilution is considered safe for most adults (24 drops per ounce (30ml) of carrier oil).
Peppermint Essential Oil Blends:
Add 2 drops peppermint, 4 drops ginger and 4 drops cardamom to 4 teaspoons (20ml) of carrier oil. Massage onto the abdomen.
Aches and Pains Blend:
Add 2 drops peppermint, 4 drops rosemary and 4 drops of black pepper to 4 teaspoons (20ml) of carrier oil. Massage onto affected areas.
Add 2 drops peppermint and 3 drops lavender to 2 teaspoons (10ml) of carrier oil and massage onto the forehead and neck.
Clear the Mind Blend:
Add 2 drops peppermint and 3 drops lemon to a diffuser or place on a cotton ball or tissue.
Crow, D. and Shutes, J. Aromatherapy Foundations Certification Program
Harding, J. A Guide to Essential Oils
Modern Essentials: A contemporary Guide to the Therapeutic Use of Essential Oils 5th Edition
About The Author
Juniper Wyndfyre RN, MSN, MA is a contributing writer for Ravenhawks Magazine on natural health topics. She is the founder of Juniper Healing Arts, a business specializing in energy healing, soul retrieval, soul-life coaching, intuitive readings and Laughter Yoga. Her goal is to help individuals discover and live the life of the true self and to remove the blocks and obstacles in the way. She enjoys laughing for no reason, dancing, hiking, reading, cooking and travel. Juniper lives in New Mexico with her 2 furry companions. Find her at Juniperhealingarts.net or firstname.lastname@example.org