February 11, 2023
Aromatherapy has been one of the most common complementary and alternative treatments for psychological diseases, such as sleep disorders, anxiety, and depression. Essential oils have high efficacy with fewer side effects as compared to conventional drugs. However, the underlying mechanisms that mediate the beneficial effects of essential oils in the treatment of psychiatric disorders remain to be elucidated.
Anxiety is one of the most common mental disorders and is characterized by excessive and uncontrollable nervousness and fear. Typical subtypes of anxiety include generalized anxiety disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder (with or without agoraphobia comorbidity), and phobias. The first-line medications for most anxiety subtypes are selective serotonin (5-HT) reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), including paroxetine, sertraline, citalopram, escitalopram, fluvoxamine, and fluoxetine. However, the long-term use of these SSRIs is associated with various adverse effects, such as bleeding, digestive problems, hyponatremia, excessive sweating, emotional blunting, and increased risk of suicidality.