It is interesting to note that among the most common ailments besieging modern women are those involving the reproductive system. Pre-menstrual symptoms or PMS, menstrual cramps and menopause are just some of the problems plaguing the female population.

There are a lot of available medications for each of these problems. There are a number of prescription and non-prescription drugs and several lifestyle changes, which can help relieve the symptoms or totally treat or prevent these problems from happening. And one effective way of treating some of the most common female problems is through aromatherapy.

Aromatherapy Cures for PMS

Although there are still no conclusive reports on what really causes pre-menstrual syndrome or PMS, the role of the ovarian hormone called prostaglandin is slowly being established as its most probable cause. Studies indicate that a certain prostaglandin called PG2 can initiate some of the symptoms of PMS. The onset of headaches, nausea, water retention, breast tenderness and bowel changes before a woman's period can be attributed to this hormone. PG2 was also proven to induce mood swings, irritability and alcohol craving.

To help ease these problems, aromatherapy experts generally suggest using cinnamon, cloves, garlic, ginger and thyme to lower the level of PG2 in the body. In alleviating the other symptoms of PMS, experts agree on the following suggestions:

. The use of essential oils of chamomile or lavender can help relieve menstrual cramps due to their relaxing and analgesic properties. The essential oils of melissa or marjoram can also be effective in reducing these symptoms.

. Headaches can be prevented by inhaling lavender, melissa or marjoram essential oil.

. Prevent water retention by using essential oils of carrot seed, grapefruit or juniper.

. For depression associated with PMS, the use of clary sage can be extremely beneficial. Other essential oils of choice are jasmine, neroli and ylang-ylang. These oils are considered to be very effective antidepressants and can provide a soothing relief to frayed nerves.

Help Relieve Menopausal Problems with Essential Oils

The cessation of a woman's menstrual cycle or menopause is usually associated with a number of discomforting symptoms. That is why most women usually dread the onset of this phase in their lives. Among the most common symptoms associated with menopause are hot flashes (or flushes), skin and vaginal dryness, thinning hair, fragile bones (osteoporosis), anxiety and depression. To help relieve these symptoms, the following suggestions can be of great help:

. The dryness of the skin and the vaginal walls can greatly benefit from a rejuvenating massage oil or cream. Geranium and lavender oils are highly recommended for this purpose.

. During menopause, the level of a woman's female hormones (estrogen and progesterone) starts to decline. This hormonal imbalance brings about most of the menopausal symptoms a woman experiences. Therefore, stabilizing the hormones can be very beneficial and may help alleviate the symptoms associated with menopause.

According to a well-renowned pharmacologist, many essential oils are observed to take on hormone-like activities and have the tendency to react with the same receptors as the original hormones. Considering this, a menopausal woman can benefit greatly from using estrogenic oils such as clary sage, anise, angelica, coriander, cypress, fennel and sage.

Michael Russell

Your Independent guide to Aromatherapy

Michael Russell - EzineArticles Expert Author