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"There is fire within the soul of thyme, the fire to summon the most mighty angels to our assistance," writes aromatherapist Valerie Ann Worwood in Aromatherapy For the Soul. She also says the emotional benefits of thyme essential oil (Thymus vulgaris) are to encourage alertness, balance, courage, tolerance, supportedness, and warmth.
The same species of plant can produce essential
oils with different chemical components when the plant grows under
different conditions, such as variations in soil type, climate, and
altitude. These variations are called chemotypes.
Thyme has a number of different chemotypes. One of the most commonly recommended in aromatherapy is thyme ct. linalol (also spelled linalool). The chemical component linalol makes up 70–80% of the oil. This chemotype, along with thyme ct. geraniol (containing about 37% geranyl acetate and 25% geraniol), are considered the mildest and safest of the thyme oils.
Other thyme chemotypes include:
Essential Oil Safety, 2nd Edition, for detailed breakdowns of some of
the chemotypes. Another reference: Essential Oil Characterization of
Thymus vulgaris from Various Geographical Locations.
Plant family: Labiatae/Lamiaceae
Production: Steam distilled from leaves and flowers/buds.
Aroma: Fresh, herbaceous.
Perfume/Aromatic note: Middle
Is thyme safe to use during pregnancy? Most sources say no.
Is thyme essential oil safe for children? Recommendations vary. Do not use any of the chemotypes with babies or children under age 2 (some sources say under age 5 or 7). For older children, thyme linalol is generally recommended, highly diluted.
Cautions: Risk of skin sensitization ranges from low with the mild chemotypes to high with the stronger ones. Know which chemotype you are buying and use appropriate precautions.
Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art: Thyme may help relieve infections. Emotionally, use the oil to help reduce mental instability, fear, melancholy, and nightmares and to help prevent memory loss. Spiritually fortifying.
The Heart of Aromatherapy: Use thyme ct. linalol for respiratory support, soothing allergies and clearing sinus congestion, easing sore throats and coughs, helping reduce infection, reducing swelling, relieving sore muscles and joints, and promoting energy, focus, and optimism.
The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Use thyme ct. linalol to help relieve colds, flu, coughs, sinusitis, laryngitis, sore throat, congestion, poor circulation, cold limbs, numbness, muscle pain, tendonitis, arthritis, rheumatism, chronic fatigue, general debility, acne, warts, lethargy, and inability to concentrate.
The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils (updated edition): Skin care uses for thyme essential oil include abscesses, acne, bruises, cuts, dermatitis, eczema, insect bites, lice, gum infections, oily skin, and scabies. The essential oil is also useful for relieving arthritis, cellulitis, gout, muscle aches and pains, poor circulation, rheumatism, sprains, and sports injuries. The oil may also help relieve asthma, coughs, mucous, laryngitis, sore throat, colds, flu, headaches, insomnia, nervous debility, and stress-related conditions.
Aromatherapy For Healing the Spirit: In Traditional Chinese Medicine thyme is a powerful tonic of the body's yang energy and supports the functions of the Lungs, Heart, Kidneys, and nervous system. The oil's energy is hot and dry, and its main elements are water and metal.
Aromatica: A Clinical Guide to Essential Oil Therapeutics, Volume I: Psychologically, thyme ct. linalol promotes emotional stability and renewal. Physically, the essential oil restores hypotonic/weak conditions. In Traditional Chinese Medicine the essential function of the oil is to tonify the Qi, resolve damp, and harmonize the Shen. You can use thyme ct. geraniol interchangeably with thyme ct. linalol.
Subtle Aromatherapy: Thyme essential oil is strengthening and energizing at every level of being. The oil supports the conscious mind and is useful if you tend to be dreamy and detached and need to deal with the mundane tasks of living.
The Essential Guide to Aromatherapy and Vibrational Healing: Spiritually, thyme fortifies and increases courage, helping you live your life in alignment with your soul. Mentally, the essential oil supports better memory, concentration, and focus. The oil can also help release emotional blocks.
Aromatherapy and Subtle Energy Techniques: Thyme clears energy blocks, strengthens, and energizes. The oil is especially useful for the third chakra to promote self-confidence, personal strength, self-control, courage, and motivation.
Thyme is often used in blends to get rid of head lice. Here's one option:
You'll probably need to repeat for several days in a row.
Source: 101 Ways To Use Essential Oils by Dr. Axe
Adapted from 18 Best Immunity Oils by aromatherapist KG Stiles.
Add the castile soap and essential oils to the bottle. Tighten the top. Shake gently. Use as desired. Source: Aromahead
Thyme is a popular ingredient in household cleaners to help get rid of germs.
Combine all ingredients in a spray bottle and shake well. Spray on surfaces and wipe clean with a damp cloth or sponge.
This formula is great for neglected ovens. For baked-on grease or food splatters, use fine steel wool to scrub those areas. Use a little more salt if needed.
Source: Natural Cleaning and Recipe Book
All-Purpose Spray Cleaner
A great cleaner to use on kitchen countertops and bathroom surfaces.
Source: Nikki Loscocco-VanZandt. "Spring Cleaning with Essential Oils." NAHA Aromatherapy Journal, Spring 2013.1, p. 38.
Photo Credit: 123rf.com