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How Scent Affects Our Mood
How Scent Affects our Mood By Dawn Turner
Everyone has a scent that they love, hate, or one that just brings them back to a special time or a special someone. Some scents are universally pleasant, such as that of brewing coffee or stew simmering on the stove. There’s no doubt that scent affects our mood. But, just how does it do it, and are there specific scents that can create specific moods?
There are two main systems of the body that directly affect scent and mood. One is the olfactory system, which is responsible for sensing and processing odors. While this part of the brain is responsible for actually detecting the smells, the olfactory system also has a direct relationship with the limbic system. It’s this system that responsible for holding all of our emotions and moods. It’s also the limbic system that is responsible for our long-term memory, which is one reason why the memory of scent stays with us for so long. The scent of smell is the only scent that has a direct relationship with the limbic system.
It’s because of this relationship that the brain has with scent and mood that the business of aromatherapy is so booming! Everyone wants to simply light a candle or use reed diffusers to enhance their moods. But what kinds of scents can help our mood? For sharper clarity or clearer concentration, the aroma of eucalyptus, juniper, clove, and peppermint work very well. For times when you want to calm down and relax, chamomile, clary sage, and lavender are particularly useful.
Even though aromatherapy is very effective and many people love it, it still comes with its share of problems, mostly in how the scent is released from the essential oil of the herb to the air. Traditional methods such as burning candles, burning incense, or burning oils, all rely on flame to carry the scent. This is a problem as it can be dangerous to have a flame burning, especially in a child’s room or in a classroom, plus the walls can become filthy with soot. Also, although the flame leaves behind the scent, it also leaves unpleasant pollutants in the air that can actually make it difficult to breathe.
Reed diffusers take away this problem because they release the scent without heat! Simply place the diffuser reeds in a jar containing the essential or fragrance oils (blended in a reed diffuser base) and the cells or "channels" inside the reeds will pull the oil up the diffuser reeds and out the other end into the air. So you can have all the relaxation, energy, or clarity you need, without having to worry about that flame burning in the corner !
Dawn Turner, currently residing in a small town in central Wisconsin is the proud mom of two teenagers. She is an expert in fragrance diffusion and owns TheDiffusery.com. The diffusery sells quality reed diffusers and supplies. Dawn, a self professed scent junkie, loves to travel with her husband, listen to music and take long bubble baths.