Friday, 9 March 2012

Research - Melissa leaf essential oil for agitation

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Research into uses in clinical aromatherapy

J Clin Psychiatry. 2002 Jul;63(7):553-8.

Aromatherapy as a safe and effective treatment for the management of agitation in severe dementia: the results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial with Melissa.


Wolfson Research Centre, Newcastle General Hospital, Institute for Ageing and Health, Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom.

Advances in Psychiatric treatments

Aromatherapy is one of the fastest growing of all the complementary therapies (Burns et al, 2002). It appears to have several advantages over the pharmacological treatments widely used for dementia. It has a positive image and its use aids interaction while providing a sensory experience. It also seems to be well tolerated in comparison with neuroleptic or sedative medication. The two main essential oils used in aromatherapy for dementia are extracted from lavender and melissa balm. They also have the advantage that there are several routes of administration such as inhalation, bathing, massage and topical application in a cream. This means that the therapy can be targeted at individuals with different behaviours: inhalation may be more effective than massage for a person with restlessness, for instance. There have been some positive results from recent controlled trials which have shown significant reductions in agitation, with excellent compliance and tolerability (e.g. seeBallard et al, 2002). aromatherapy in dementia (Holmes & Ballard, 2004


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