The Oils and Plants Oil Finder Database, helps you quickly find which Essential Oils to use for which ailment. Type in the name of an Essential Oil or an Ailment to find the definition. You will find fuller explanations on our Ailments and Essential Oil pages.

Please note that this is only a guide to help you identify which oils are good for which ailments and vice versa. Once you have found the oil that suits your needs, please read the whole article for that oil to find out any contraindications and if it is the right oil for you.

Here are the results for the letter s

Sandalwood is said to have been used for over 4000 years as a perfume and temple incense. It has a sweet, buttery, woody aroma that is very sensual. It is uplifting and relaxing and is beneficial for all types of skin. Traditionally burnt as an aid to meditation and much used in religious ceremonies. Creates an exotic, sensual atmosphere with a reputation as an aphrodisiac. Excellent skincare oil. useful for dry and damaged hair and as a body fragrance.

See our Sandalwood Oil Page for indepth information.

Scabies is a distressing condition, with intense itching, caused by a minute insect, the itch-mite (sarcoptes scabei). Creams prescribed by doctors to kill the mites can be very damaging to the skin, especially if used repeatedly, as may often be needed. Aromatherapy treatment usually combines external treatment with creams and baths, with garlic capsules to be taken several times a day until all the mites have gone. A combination of oils of Lavender and Peppermint is one very effective treatment, alternatives being Cinnamon, Clove, Lemon and Rosemary. Garlic can be included in the formula for a cream if the smell will be tolerated, otherwise restrict it to use in capsules.

The term sciatica is often used incorrectly to mean pain very low in the back, but correctly used, it indicates pain at any point along the sciatic nerve, caused by pressure on, or irritation of that nerve.

It is important to realise that the pain of sciatica is a symptom, and treating the pain alone is no treatment. The cause must be found and treated. This will often involve examination and treatment from an osteopath where pressure is involved, and obviously chairs and posture need to be looked at. While the pain is bad, massage is not advisable, but cold compresses over the painful area with Camomile or Lavender will reduce the irritation and lessen the pain. Gentle massage with either of these oils at times when there is less or no pain can be very beneficial, and baths can help too - they should not be too hot.

A good number of essential oils are sedative in effect - that is, they have a calming effect, particularly on the central nervous system.

Among the most effective sedative oils are Camomile, Lavender, Bergamot and Neroli. Others are Rose, Benzoin, Clary Sage, Hyssop, Jasmine, Marjoram, Melissa and Sandalwood and there are still others, though these may be less used.

The most effective means of using these oils are in massage and in baths, most particularly before sleeping, when they will help to prevent insomnia. The choice of a particular oil will depend very much on the individual for whom it is to be used; on that person's preferences for a particular aroma, and on their situation at the time. Every one of the oils mentioned has many other properties, in addition to being sedative, and one or more of these may determine the final choice from among the wide range of oils available.


See our Sexual Disorders Page for a fuller explanation of this condition.

The condition is caused by the same virus as chickenpox, Herpes zoster, which can lie dormant in the body after an attack of chickenpox, and flare up many years later, usually in adult life, and most often when the person is stressed or physically run down.

The essential oils of Bergamot, Eucalyptus and Tea tree are very helpful in easing the pain and drying the blisters. These oils are analgesic, and have an anti-viral action, and they seem to work better in combination than either of them alone. It is interesting to note that Bergamot is one of the finest antidepressant oils in the whole repertoire of the aromatherapist, and people who develop shingles are often tense, anxious or depressed before the attack. The pain of an attack is, in itself, cause of further depression, so this oil would be valuable if that were its only action. But the fact that it is also active against the Herpes virus makes it doubly so.

Your body enters shock when you don’t have enough blood circulating through your system to keep your organs and tissues functioning properly. It can be caused by any injury or condition that affects the flow of blood through your body. Shock can cause multiple organ failure and lead to life-threatening complications.

There are several essential oils which are useful in cases of shock. Inhaling Peppermint or Neroli directly from the bottle, or on a handkerchief or tissue can be a valuable first aid.

The sinuses are bony cavities behind, above and at each side of the nose and opening into the nasal cavity. They act as a sound-box to give resonance to the voice - this can perhaps be best understood by considering how flat and lacking in resonance the voice sounds when the nose and its associated cavities are blocked.

Frequent (up to 5 or 6 times a day) steam inhalations are the best treatment. Eucalyptus, Lavender, Peppermint, Pine, Thyme and Tea tree oils are all effective, and you should alternate several of these. Lavender and Thyme are the most effective when there is much pain, Eucalyptus, Peppermint and Pine are very good at relieving the blockage and stuffiness, while Tea tree is the most powerful antiseptic of these - very important in eradicating the infection. Garlic decongests, detoxifies and disinfects, so include plenty of fresh garlic in the diet of anybody prone to sinusitis, and during an acute attack give garlic in the more concentrated form of tablets or capsules.

The majority of essential oils are perfectly safe when used on the skin in the dilutions used by most aromatherapists, i.e. 3 or occasionally 4 per cent for most massage blends, with lower dilutions for children and people with sensitive skin, or when using oils that are known to be potentially somewhat irritant, use 1 or even as little as half a percent in such instances. See our article on Dilution Rates for more information.

A skin patch test is a method used to determine if a specific substance causes inflammation of the skin. It is often used to test for allergens. Any individual with suspected allergic contact dermatitis and/or atopic dermatitis needs patch testing.

If you have sensitive skin and you are not sure if you may be allergic to some Carrier Oils and/or Essential Oils, it is strongly advised that you perform a skin patch test before using any of our recipes for the first time.

All you need to do is to mix 1 drop of the oil you wish to test, with a teaspoon (5 ml) of carrier oil - such as sweet almond oil or grape seed oil. Apply a small amount of this mixed oil to the inside of your wrist or elbow and leave uncovered for twenty four hours. This area must not be washed for this period of time. If no sign of itching, redness or swelling occurs after the 24 hour period, it should be safe for you to use the oil.

If you have never used any form of carrier oil on your skin, it would be advisable to first do a skin patch test using only the carrier oil.

You need to make this one in advance as it takes up to four days to synergize, but it should last several months providing the top is secured tightly.


1 Tablespoon Grapeseed Oil
1 Tablespoon Almond Oil
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 Tablespoon Jojoba Oil
10 drops Lavender Essential Oil
10 drops Juniper Essential Oil
10 drops Marjoram Essential Oil
10 drops Rosemary Essential Oil
5 drops Black Pepper Essential Oil

Mix all oils together in a small dark amber or blue bottle, shake well to blend. Let set to for 4 days to synergize. After 4 days, massage a few drops into sore muscle area or add a few drops to a warm bath for a sore muscle soak.

A sore throat (also known as pharyngitis or tonsillitis) is a symptom of a disease affecting the pharynx or the area around the tonsils. It can be the result of an infection by a virus or bacteria, a mechanical irritation from coughing, or a trickle of catarrh from the nose, for example. A sore throat may be symptomatic of the condition itself or one of a number of symptoms realting to a wider illness such as flu and glandular fever. >A combination of lemon oil and eucalyptus oil are an effective sore throat remedy. Add 3 drops of lemon oil and 1 drop of eucalyptus oil to a glass of warm water, gargle for 10 seconds and then spit it out. Never swollow Essential Oils! Also, they can both be diffused in the air during the day and by your bed when you sleep at night. Oil of oregano and clove oil can also be used.

Antibacterial, antifungal, antiinflammatory, deodorant, relaxing, and skin tonic. Spikenard is helpful in the treatment of allergic skin reactions and skin cancer. It may also help with allergies, Candida, indigestion, insomnia, menstrual difficulties, migraines, nausea, rashes, bacterial infections, stress, tachycardia, tension, and wounds that will not heal. It strengthens the heart and circulatory system.

See our Spikenard Oil Page for indepth information.

The most effective treatment for a sprain is a cold compress, and firm but not too tight, strapping with a crepe bandage. A SPRAIN SHOULD NEVER BE MASSAGED. The description sprain is used for a joint injury in which the ligament which supports that joint has been damaged. The joint will be swollen and often feel hot, and will usually be too painful to prevent it being used normally. Analgesic essential oils such as Lavender or Camomile are the most helpful, and will help to reduce inflammation and heat while easing the pain. The joint should be rested as much as possible, and strapping is important to provide support until the ligament has healed. The less the joint is moved, the sooner the ligament can mend.

Essential oils can be used to great advantage in sprays, particularly to replace potentially dangerous aerosols. Depending on the choice of oil, the spray can be used to repel insects, to deodorise a room, to help prevent the spread of infection during epidemics or simply to create a pleasantly perfumed atmosphere. Bergamot is one of the most deodorising oils, and is also a very good insect repellent, either alone or mixed with Lavender. Any of the Lemon-scented oils - Melissa, Lemon Verbena, Lemon-grass or Citronella - will deter insects too.

Stress, and stress related illness, are among the most prevalent health problems of 'civilisation' and certainly figure prominently on any aromatherapist's case-list.

A huge array of essential oils are at our disposal in coping with stress: all the sedative and antidepressant oils initially to induce relaxation. These include Bergamot, Camomile, Clary Sage, Jasmine, Lavender, Marjoram, Neroli and Rose.

See our Stress Page for a fuller explanation of this condition.

There are many time tested herbal treatments that may bring you some relief. Allergies are the result of a hypersensitive immune system. With every breath we take, we breathe in millions of microscopic particles such as dust, pollen, plant spores, viruses, bacteria and even pollutants in the form of chemicals in the air. Hay Fever, (Allergic rhinitis) is a common illness often caused by pollens from trees, grass or weeds.

See our Summer Allergies Page for more information.

Nothing is more annoying than trying to enjoy the outdoors in summer while avoiding the bites and stings of insects or brushing through plants and trees that can sting or prick you. Here are some aromatherpay recipes to help with insect bites and stings and rashes caused by poisonous plants and trees.

Lavender should always be at hand during the summer months. It can be applied 'neatly' (without dilution) to the affected area as needed. Remember to make up these remedies beforehand in glass amber bottles if possible.

For mosquito or other insect bites that don't require much attention, a simple dab of essential oil of Lavender or Tea Tree provide relief. Camomile and lavender essential oils reduce swelling, itching and inflammation, and together with tinctures of Echinacea and Plantain often prevent an allergic response. (If an allergic reaction does occur, take 1/2 teaspoon of echinacea tincture internally).

See our Summer Safety Kit Page for various natural remedies to help this condition.

Sunburn should be treated like any other burn. Even mild sunburn needs to be considered seriously, because it often covers a large area of the body.

Camomile oil will soothe and cool burning skin. The fastest and most effective way to relieve a large area of redness and stinging is to take a lukewarm bath with 5 or 6 drops of Camomile oil added to the water. This can safely be repeated at intervals of a few hours until the burning sensation subsides. If it is a child who is burnt, dilute 3 or 4 drops of Camomile oil in a little almond oil before adding it to a bath.

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