It is a good thing to use essential oils for psoriasis skin treatment? I have been asked on many occasions if essential oils can help with psoriasis and the answer is an emphatic YES. Essential oils can decrease the number of skin outbreaks and flare-ups as well as help to alleviate the severity and discomfort of symptoms.
There are several oils known to be beneficial for the psoriasis patient, some are carrier oils and others are essential oils, and some are omega-3 oils. Some are primarily used internally (olive oil, omega-3 fish oil), others externally like sweet almond oil, rose hip seed, jojoba. Some oils can be used advantageously both internally as well as externally like avocado oil, and walnut oil.
Apart from oils, I also recommend that you try a good quality vitamin A or E oil or cream, especially on those stubborn spots like elbows or around the ears. Wheat germ oil, apricot kernel oil, jojoba oil, and rose hip seed oil are other good choices for the “problem” areas.
Carrier oils are oils that you can use either alone on your skin, or in a mix with an essential oil, as they “carry” the essential oil. You use a lot more carrier oil than you would an essential oil. Essential oils are a lot stronger and you would only add drops of these potent oils to a carrier oils.
The carrier oils I highly recommended are Sweet Almond, Rose Hip, Tamanu and Jojoba, all of which have beneficial properties to help soothe and heal irritated skin. In my opinion, jojoba oil is one of the best oils to carry essential oils that you will want to use on your psoriatic skin, and it is highly recommended that you try this product on several occasions after your bath or shower to see if you get any benefit, I know that I have received excellent feedback when I recommended jojoba oil in the past. It is actually a kind of “liquid wax” rather than an oil, jojoba grows in the extreme heat of outback Australia and when you find a plant growing under the toughest conditions in the world, you can imagine its benefits to your body. The oil that jojoba contains has been specially developed by the plant to help protect it against the incredibly harsh conditions it grows in. I’ve used jojoba oil for many years for massage and have found it to be a most pleasant oil to use. I purchased a large litre bottle over twenty years ago, and it is the same quality as it was when I first bought it, it never seems to “expire” or go rancid.
There are many other different kinds of carrier oils, and I encourage you to try many different kinds and settle on one you find the best in your situation.
The Medical View
You will find that there are many medical websites on the Internet who do not support the use of essential oils for psoriasis, citing “there is limited scientific evidence for essential oils used against psoriasis at present”. You can read this for example on this page.
Using Essential Oils With Psoriasis:
Topical application: Use around 2 to 2 ½ percent essential oil dilution, around 12-15 drops of the essential oil to around 1 oz (about a tablespoon) of your chosen carrier oil. Apply daily to the affected area for best results. You may also find it useful to read Four Reasons To Apply Oils And Creams.
Best Essential Oils For Psoriasis
There are many different essential oils to use with psoriasis, but in my clinical experience, the best essential oils for psoriasis are bergamot, helichrysum (sunflower), cajeput, carrot seed, German or roman chamomile, lavender, juniper, sandalwood, tea tree, calendula infused oil, and cranberry seed oil.
- For Stress – Using essential oils (aromatherapy) is an effective an easy way to help calm the body and the mind, reduce stress and even mild depression, and therefore reduce the chances of experiencing any increase in the frequency or severity of any skin flare-ups. Some of the best oils to use for stress and psoriasis are lavender, rose, clary sage and German chamomile. These help to relax the person with psoriasis and are known to decrease the stimulatory effect of the sympathetic nervous system, as well as being anti-inflammatory. You can use one, both or all three of these essential oils in your blend. They can be used in a diffuser, direct inhalation, baths, body lotion, massage or used with a carrier oil in spot applications.
- Relaxation – Essential oils can help you relax, and the best oils here are geranium, lavender, vetiver and sweet marjoram.
- For Meditation and Visualisation. You will be able to read a lot more in other booklets of The Psoriasis Program about how important it is for you to relax and take it easy, especially if your psoriasis is chronic. Regular meditation and visualisation can give you the breakthrough you may have been looking for if you have especially chronic and severe psoriasis. Here are the best essential oils to use: bergamot, cedar wood, Frankincense, Patchouli, and Sandalwood
- Skin Softening – By adding a few drops rose, geranium, mandarin or palmerosa you will be softening your skin. These oils can be used for diffusion, inhalation or spot application when used with a carrier oil.
- Wound Healing – Bergamot, lavender, thyme, tea tree oil or calendula are all examples of herbs that assist in wound healing.
Essential Oils, Psoriasis and Massage
Some people are worried about massage and psoriasis, but I had a massage clinic for three years when I was a student of naturopathy and saw patients with psoriasis regularly. It’s no big deal. Massage is very relaxing, helps to calm you down and is perfect for people with psoriasis because stress and anxiety are two of the biggest triggers when it comes to psoriasis. Use from 5 to 20 drops of essential to 1 tablespoon of carrier oil like jojoba or sweet almond oil.