According to Aromahead (2015), Ginger (Zingiber officinale) is warming, anti-inflammatory, antiemetic – which is good for relieving the symptoms of nausea. It is also a rubifacient which helps improve blood circulation, and its diaphoretic properties can help to expel unwanted wastes from the body. When combining with Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia), its anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-viral functions are more complete (Aromahead, 2015). In fact, the combinations of these two oils are great for healing mouth ulcers such as canker sores or other skin issues. These two combinations can be used to make a safe, versatile and an effective blend for healing purposes.
½ oz (15ml) Beeswax
1.5 oz (45ml) Coconut Oil
10 drops Ginger essential oil
10 drops Tea Tree essential oil
I used a double boiler to melt the beeswax. After it was melted, Coconut Oil was added. Finally essential oils were added after taking the double boiler from the heat. Then, mixed well and put the final mixture to lip balms. I used about 10 lip balms, which meant that the dilution of oil was only 2% per lip balm.
The main purpose of Coconut Oil is its moisturizing and anti-inflammatory properties. It comprises large proportion of the whole formulation as it is mild to the soft palate of the mouth, and reduces the irritations to the ulcers or other skin inflammation to a larger extent. Instead of directly applying the essential oil(s) to the affected areas, the client will feel more comfortable when essential oils are mixed with some carrier oils as a buffer, although the strength may not be as strong as using the essential oils alone. Beeswax is added for its solidification purpose, and its anti-inflammatory property.
In the oil combination, apart from the properties mentioned at the very beginning, there are other factors needed to be taken into account.
First, Ginger essential oil is a warming oil, it can open the pores and expel the unwanted wastes such as toxins and damp heat. To counter the warming effect of Ginger, Tea Tree, the cooling oil is added. In this way, the whole combination would not be harsh to the affected areas of my client.
The consideration of using a lip balm is for easy application and hygiene. The client can apply wherever, and whenever he or she wants.
The following are some case studies for using the balm for healing
1. Canker Sores
My client who works in an insurance company as a secretary, contracted recurrent canker sores from time to time. They are very painful, which make drinking or eating difficult. Also, the stress that she is facing at work and at home makes her mouth ulcers difficult to heal – it takes a month for her to recover completely. Besides, she goes to bed late. Long-term insomnia further complicates the healing process.
She came to me to ask for help. To resolve this ailment, I gave her the balm for healing. The formulation keeps the usage of oils, be it carrier oils or essentials oils, to a minimum to avoid any irritations to the soft palate of the mouth.
The consideration of using a lip balm is for easy application and hygiene. The client can apply wherever, and whenever she wants.
Day 1: After 15 minutes of the first application, her pain was relieved. However, when she had lunch, her pain got back to her whenever the affected areas were in contact with the food.
Day 2: There was no pain with continuous applications. However, she still experienced pain when she ate.
Day 3: Her canker sores were all gone. She could live a normal life now.
That said, without essential oils, her healing process took about a month. But now, it takes her 3 days to get rid of the ulcers. It was also found that her canker sores did not recur since then. She used to have mouth ulcers once a month.
2. Other mouth issues
The dilution was very low, only 2% per lip balm, but synergistically, it worked exceptionally well in combating the issue of mouth ulcers. I have a client who would have wounded tissue on the soft palate whenever she has hot symptoms (according to the TCM). She liked to apply the lip balm to the affected areas; and after two applications, she would not feel the pain anymore. In three days, the wounded areas would heal even without further applications of the formulation. When she had sore throat, she would apply the lip balm to the bottom of her tongue, in this way, her sore throat could be heal in a quicker way without turning into a disaster. The mild formulation is safer, and milder compared with using the essential oil alone.
3. Skin Inflammation
A client has inflamed spots all over her arms, and around the TMJ on her face. After uses two balms, her inflamed areas turn to normal skin color.
Week 1 & 2: The inflamed area subsided, and turned to dark spots.
Week 3: Half of the dark spots on her arms turned to normal skin color.
Week 4: Naked eye can hardly notice any dark spots.
4. Skin rashes on the right shine bone
I saw my classmate having skin rashes one day when she came to school. I then gave her the balm to apply. The healing process did cause some complications because there is a mild tingling effect after using it for quite some time, and she went to see a dermatologist and used some prescribed medication topically, together with the balm. She then went for vacation without applying either prescribed medication or the balm. Here is the healing process:
Week 1: Got some improvement after the applications
Week 2: Started to feel a mild tingling effect in the first few minutes, and then subsided. She listened to what her friend who made aromatic soap told her that Ginger is warm and might be the culprit. She then visited a dermatologist and applied the prescribed medication, together with the balm. There was little sign of improvement. I then explained to her the blend in details. I then found out that she had an itchy skin. She often scratched the other areas of her skin, except the area that had applied the balm.
Week 3-4: She went for vacation and did not apply anything
Week 5: She gave up using the prescribed medicine and only used my balm. Things got a lot better.
Week 6: When she used hot water to take shower, her rashes were itchy again. Then she used the scrub to scratch it. That area became red again, but those areas that did not scrub were healing fast. I then told her to use iced water on the itchy areas instead of using a scrub to scrub it.
Week 7: I gave her an Aloe Vera Gel for cooling purpose of her skin. After applying the aloe vera gel, she then applied the balm. At the end of the week, she told me that her skin was almost returned to normal.
In this case, confidence and perseverance is needed to heal. It did take a longer time, but the result is satisfactory.
As said, Ginger essential oil can help improve blood circulation, this is important in expelling the toxins from the affected areas, while at the same time nourishing the areas. With the added antiseptic properties of Tea Tree, its power in combating the infections is undoubtedly strong. Not to forget that Coconut Oil is also a cooling and moisturizing agent, which provides an anti-inflammatory to the whole formulations. Another rationale for mixing the oil with the agents of beeswax and coconut oils is that it can help the essential oils to stay longer on the superficial layers of the soft palate. In this way, they can slowly permeate the sores, inflammation or rashes, and deeply and completely does their work on healing.
An effective formulation needs not to be complicated and strong in dilution. A Mild one with few ingredients can also work great if combined properly.
Aromahead Institute. (2015). Datasheets: Ginger. Retrieved from http://www.aromahead.com/datasheet/data-sheet/aromatherapy-certification-program/ginger
Aromahead Institute. (2015). Datasheets: Tea Tree. Retrieved from http://www.aromahead.com/datasheet/data-sheet/aromatherapy-certification-program/tea-tree
Cantele, L., & Purchon, N. (2014). The complete aromatherapy & essential oils handbook for everyday wellness. Toronto, Ontaria: Robert Rose.
Zhu B., & Wang, H. (2011). Case Studies from the Medical Records of Leading Chinese Acupuncture Experts. London, UK: Singing Dragon.