In many parts of the country, pollen is currently circulating through the atmosphere. This time of year can create challenges for people with asthma, allergies, or illnesses affecting the sinuses, nose, and lungs. A year ago my immune system was lowered due to challenges in life and I developed a respiratory focused illness. I chose not to see a doctor because I knew he or she would only be treating the symptoms with antibiotics, inhalers, and other chemicals that can do more harm than good. Instead I looked to other areas for healing methods.
Here are a couple strategies that improved not only my symptoms, but also my overall perception of the impact our body can have on improving and restoring our own health:
Symptoms of stress can be caused from our internal representation of life challenges. How we perceive stressful events creates a state of emotions or feelings in our body that can then produce negative behaviors. Sometimes when ill, we can adopt a poor attitude. Consider this a primal protective mechanism, like that of an injured animal swiping away perceived predators. Our compromised physiology affects our state and affects our behaviors.
Aromatherapy has been around for thousands of years and is highly effective at providing remedies as well as breaking states of feelings or emotions and invoking more desired ones. The olfactory system has a direct pathway to the brain and can change the neural responses linked to memories, states, and even behaviors. Recall a time when you smelled a scent that reminded you of someone or something you loved or changed what you were thinking.
When we stop to smell, it’s a pause in what we are thinking or acting. It creates a different internal chemistry. Essential oils are the spirit and blood of the plants. Consider it to be the purest and deepest part of living flora. When we breathe in the essences of plants, we are literally breathing in their life. Their prana, or life force, influences and adds to our prana.
These essential oils can have therapeutic results when combined with our own chemistry. This is a wonderful symbiotic relationship when we reciprocate with taking care of the plants and trees around us that sustain our living and even our thriving. Have a personal blend prepared specifically for you and your symptoms and use this oil when employing the next strategy.
Tip: Find a local aromatherapist who uses only one hundred percent plant based remedies. Most conventional and commercial products are diluted with unnatural scents, filler, and chemicals that you do NOT want to inhale and mix with your own internal chemistry. Contact Jasmine at Essance for personalized aromatherapy and skin care products. She is a leader in her field, having worked at one of the largest manufacturers in the industry. Clients getting into private labeling often consult with Jasmine for feedback on their essential oil compositions.
Yogic Breathing Exercise
There are dozens of breathing exercises that influence our prana, immune function, and states. Bhramari, or Buzzing Bee Breath, is a pranayama (breathing strategy) that opens up specific energy channels, opens the sinus pathways, and drains mucous membranes. It was named after the sound of the bee’s wings flapping rigorously to produce the bee buzz.
Bhramari is done by humming with the lips closed and focusing the buzzing vibration into a specific location. The higher the pitch, the more localized the experience is to the throat. The deeper the tone, the farther away from the throat and closer to the extremities the buzzing sensations can be felt. This single breathing strategy helped me feel relief in my respiration and nasal congestion by unclogging and draining the sinuses. You might do this preceding nasal cleansing with a neti pot and treatment with aromatherapy.
How to do Bhramari:
- Sit or stand in a comfortable position.
- Exhale all your breath.
- Inhale until your chest and collarbones are felt raising closer to the chin.
- Soften the lower jaw and keep the mouth closed, then hum and produce a buzzing sensation in the back of throat.
- Repeat as necessary.
Additional tips may include holding your face parallel to the ground to produce the vibration closer to the face surface or while folding forward to break up layers of congestion deep in the sinus cavities. Closing off the ears and eyes also intensifies the sensations throughout the skull and face.
Enjoy both of these strategies that have helped millions of people over thousands of years. These ancient techniques can be an example of the brilliance of simplicity and utilizing naturally occurring elements for an increase in health and well-being.
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