If you seek natural remedies for your bodily discomforts, these amazing essential oils for muscle pain will not disappoint.
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11 Essential Oils for Muscle Pain Relief
1. Lavender Essential Oil
High up this list is the ever famous lavender oil. If you’ve ever soaked in a lavender-scented bath or used a stuffed pillow, you’re well familiar with this herb’s calming properties.
While lavender is commonly used for relaxation and as a sleeping aid, it is also one of the best essential oils you can use for muscle pain. It has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties that can help with pain brought by muscle tension and stress.
This essential oil can also improve blood circulation and ease swelling. It can relieve muscle spasms caused by anxiety and stress.
Unlike other essential oils, lavender isn’t as potent so you can use it without diluting it with a carrier oil. You can apply it on your skin directly and it won’t cause any irritations.
For people on the go, rubbing a few drops into your palms and inhaling its scent deeply and slowly is a quick and easy way to get relief.
2. Arnica Essential Oil
Arnica oil is great for relieving pain from inflammation, carpal tunnel syndrome, osteoarthritis, and post-workout muscle fatigue. In fact, a few studies have recorded its pain relieving properties.
A Rheumatology International study found out that topical arnica oil works as a pain reliever for osteoarthritis in the hands and knees. Another study in the European Journal of Sport Science found that those who used arnica oil post intense workout experienced less pain and muscle tenderness after 72 hours.
To use arnica oil, mix and dilute it first with a carrier oil like grapeseed or almond oil. But there are also high-quality ready-to-use arnica preparations available in the market.
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3. Peppermint Essential Oil
Even just the word peppermint in itself can conjure a vivid image and scent, can’t it? We have menthol, its active ingredient, to thank for this.
Aside from the invigorating scent of menthol in peppermint essential oil, this active ingredient is also a mild analgesic and antispasmodic that can reduce pain, pressure, and tension. The cooling effect that comes with it can soothe and relieve weary and sore bodies while also calming the mind.
Mix 4 to 6 drops of peppermint oil with 1 teaspoon of any neutral carrier oil. Jojoba or olive oil works great.
Once fully concocted, simply rub and massage the solution into the affected areas for about 10 to 30 minutes as frequent as you might feel necessary.
You can also use it in a diffuser, add it to a bath, or use it in hot or cold compress.
Helichrysum is one of the best essential oils patients suffering from fibromyalgia can use. This essential oil extracted from the Mediterranean Asteraceae plant has antioxidant, antispasmodic, and anti-inflammatory properties.
It also works well in relieving pain for patients with sciatica, nerve pain, carpal tunnel syndrome. and rheumatic conditions.
You can inhale this essential oil for its calming properties, used it in a diffuser, add it to a bath, or apply it topically.
5. Juniper Essential Oil
Juniper oil has been long used as a pain and inflammation reliever, a stress reducer, an antioxidant, and a detoxifying agent. This essential oil has potent antiseptic, antirheumatic, and analgesic properties.
In its distilled form, juniper is very strong and should not be used as it is. Dilute 2 to 4 drops with a neutral carrier oil before applying to the affected areas.
You can also use it in a bath adding 10 to 15 drops into warm water.
6. Turmeric Essential Oil
The wonders of this Indian herb aren’t at all a secret. It has been used for thousands of years as a dying agent, as a spice, and for its healing properties—it’s actually one of the most used herbs in Ayurvedic medicine.
This oil extracted from the root of the turmeric plant has strong antibiotic, antioxidant, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and antimicrobial properties. Its chemical properties can block enzymes that damage muscles and bones making it a great pain reliever for patients with arthritis.
Add 4 to 6 drops of turmeric essential oil with carrier oils like jojoba, coconut, or moringa to create a pain-relieving salve with deep, penetrating effects.
For best results, we recommended getting 1 to 2 turmeric oil massages a day.
7. Rosemary Essential Oil
Rosemary is truly one of mother nature’s amazing herbs. This earthy essential oil has high contents of antioxidants making it an effective anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic agent.
A particular antioxidant in rosemary, carnosol, is a well-known anti-inflammatory substance making it great for relieving muscle pain caused by inflammation.
Mix 4 to 6 drops with your desired neutral carrier oil to create a soothing massage oil. Combining rosemary and peppermint makes for an invigorating balm:
- 3-6 drops rosemary oil
- 2-4 drops of peppermint oil
- 1 teaspoon coconut or olive oil
8. Thyme Essential Oil
Thyme essential oil is a blessing to acute and chronic pain sufferers. This oil has been used for many years for soreness, inflammation, and muscle pain.
Thyme essential oil contains carvacrol, a compound proven to reduce COX-2 activity. Its analgesic and antispasmodic properties work together to reduce and relieve pain.
COX-2 Definition: Cyclooxygenase-2 is an enzyme that can speed up the production of prostaglandins, the chemical messengers that promote inflammation. To reduce inflammation, COX-2 activity has to be blocked.
To create a thyme massage oil solution, mix 2 to 4 drops with a teaspoon of your desired carrier oil. This solution is great for releasing muscle tension and reducing muscle pain.
You can also add thyme oil in a bath. Add 10 to 15 drops into warm bathwater to enjoy its soothing effects.
9. Clove Essential Oil
Clove essential oil is one of the strongest natural pain relievers. As a mild anti-neuralgic, it can temporarily numb the skin when applied topically providing much-needed relief from pain.
Also known for its warming effects in the body, clove essential oil can revitalize and relieve sore and aching muscles, loosening them up to allow tension and pressure release. It also has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antimicrobial properties.
Because of its potency, you must dilute it first with a carrier oil to prevent irritation. Add 2 to 4 drops with a teaspoon of carrier oil to create a pain-relieving massage oil.
10. Black Pepper Essential Oil
Who knew one of the most common spices used in households can actually be made into a pain-relieving essential oil?
Black pepper essential oil is great for post-workout muscle pain, arthritic pain, sore muscles, and rheumatic conditions. Additionally, its warming effects can also improve blood circulation.
11. Ginger Essential Oil
Ginger essential oil contains the potent anti-inflammatory compound zingibain. This makes it helpful in reducing pain caused by inflammatory conditions.
A 2014 study comparing the effectiveness of traditional Thai massage and Swedish massage with ginger oil in 140 older adults with chronic lower back pain showed that the latter was more effective in reducing pain.
Aside from using it as a massage oil, you can also use ginger oil with a warm compress. For a better aromatic experience, you can mix it with orange or lavender essential oils.
Here are some additional essential oils for sore muscles from Way of Will:
If you seek natural remedies for muscle pain these amazing essential oils will not disappoint. But while these essential oils may help with managing muscle pain, it is still best to consult your doctor, especially if home remedies do not work with the pain anymore.
Also, consider giving your body a boost from the inside with a healthy mix of daily vitamins. Try this Vitamin D3 supplement.
Do you have any recipes of essential oils for muscle pain and inflammation you want to share? Let us know in the comments section below!