The Effectiveness of Aromatherapy and Broken Heart Syndrome

Essential oils such as Rose (rosa damascena), Bergamot, Ylang Ylang and Lavender may reduce the effects of stress on hormones, improving sleep patterns and reducing anxiety...

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During these unprecedented times, many are coping with other profound circumstances – such as becoming a caregiver, grieving the loss of someone close, or the end of a relationship. When intense emotional distress causes a surge in stress hormones, symptoms appear that can mimic those of a real heart attack – this syndrome, known as Broken Heart Syndrome, has been known to affect women more than men. Stress and depression affect women’s hearts more than men’s (***). Thankfully, in most cases individuals make a full recovery.

Essential oils such as Rose (rosa damascena)*, Bergamot, Ylang Ylang and Lavender may reduce the impact from shock, grief, and loss – and help manage stress. Below are some ways essential oils may support emotional well-being and improve sleep patterns:

Calming Rose Lotion

2 drops rose otto essential oil

1 tsp. unscented lotion

Blend ingredients and massage on hands, inhale the sweet, rosy fragrance.

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) ** essential oil has been shown to reduce anxiety, promoting rest and relaxation.  This multi-tasking, versatile EO may reduce headaches and muscular aches, too.

Lavender and Rosemary Headache Relief Blend

2 drops lavender essential oil

1 drop rosemary essential oil

1 tsp. unscented lotion

Blend oils with unscented lotion and apply to temples and behind neck.

Also, try tapping a few drops of lavender essential oil into a bowl of water and ice. Dip a clean, cotton washcloth into the bowl, ring out excess water and place on forehead while inhaling the sweet, calming fragrance.

Aromatherapy is not a cure for ailments, rather, it is a complimentary treatment used only to help alleviate symptoms of ailments. It is not meant to take the place of diagnosis or treatment by a qualified medical practitioner. Consult with your physician if you are pregnant or under treatment for a chronic condition (essential oils may contraindicate prescribed medications).

If you have sensitive skin or allergies, it is recommended to perform a skin patch test first. Always dilute EOs in a carrier oil before topical use, never ingest.

Bio: Angela Peterson is an aromatherapist and writer who has created hand poured, blissful essential oil candles available at

Angela is a supporter of The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA), and, and Chopra.comcontributor. She attended The School for Aromatic Studies.


*rose essential oil and blood pressure study Thailand



**Many citrus EO’S increase sun sensitivity when used topically, avoid prolonged sun exposure on same day of use, it is recommended to use sunscreen with SPF +15. 

Avoid contact with eyes/mucous membranes when using EO’s.

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