Aromatherapy has experienced a tremendous boom in recent years. Those among advocates of natural lifestyle, natural cosmetics and alleviation of health problems with natural remedies, who have not yet heard about essential oils and hydrolates are fewer and fewer. Due to their gentleness, hydrolatess in particular are recommended to be used by less skilled and more sensitive users. Unlike essential oils, they can hardly be overdoses.
Hydrolates can be plastically described as aromatic waters formed during the distillation of plants. They are formed by the condensation of water vapour which is being enriched with aromatic molecules. They do not contain noteworthy amounts of essential oils since essential oils get extracted during the distillation process and float on the surface of the hydrolates. Also, hydrolates are much milder than essential oils and safe to use, yet effective and pleasant. If they result from a high quality distillation and no preservatives are added, they have also therapeutic effects. As not all hydrolates meet desired standards, it is ever more important to get hold of a high-quality hydrolate coming from a trustworthy manufacturer.
The fact that hydrolates have a number of therapeutic effects has been scientifically proved. These effects can be relaxing, anti-inflammatory, anti-stress, regenerative… Especially important in combating colds are anti-inflammatory effects which are due to the ester and alcohol contents. We can thus use plant hydrolates, which have long been known in folk medicine as a useful assistance against colds. Those are hydrolates of sage, thyme, fennel, oregano, peppermint and more. The choice depends on our health issues and our aromatic preferences.
How should we use them? In fact, the use is very simple and is the same as with any other plant extracts that we take for relieving respiratory problems. In case of a sore throat, spray the affected area several times a day with hydrolate. Especially suitable in that case are hydrolates in spray bottles, allowing us to almost directly reach the inflamed area. It is recommended that hydrolates be used at the earliest possible stage of inflammation. That method is also a bit more convenient than gargling teas, as we can have a bottle of hydrolate at hand at all times.
Hydrolates can also be used in inhalations. Add them to the hot water in the inhaler and inhale several times a day. They can also be added to salt water in special rinsing cups in order to rinse the nose. This method came to us from the East with the spread of the Ayurveda knowledge.
An additional advantage of the mentioned hydrolates is their gentle effect on the oral mucus and the great anti-inflammatory effect on gums. Talking about remedying two things in a single action! You can blend hydrolates as you wish and thus compose your own individual blends against colds or inflammation in the oral cavity. If we add that diluted they can also be used with children, there are more than enough reasons for their permanent place in your home pharmacy.