Essential oils to relieve pain have been used for many centuries. There are many essential oils for pain management that have similar, and sometimes more effective, pain-relieving properties than drugs. I’m often asked, “Doc, what’s the best essential oils for pain management?” There are many essential oils for pain management that are both safe and effective. They work by relieving inflammation and changing the nerve receptors in a painful area. Given the recent opioid crisis, it is imperative you try these 3 essential oils for pain management before turning to drugs or surgery.

1. Lavender: To use lavender oil for pain relief, add a few drops of lavender essential oil to your diffuser. Inhale the therapeutic vapors deeply for around 15 minutes until your headache or migraine pain has eased or gone away completely. Alternatively, rub several drops of lavender oil directly onto a painful muscle or joint to help relieve acute and chronic pain.

2. Peppermint: Peppermint oil is a great natural remedy for arthritis and intestinal problems. Peppermint oil can relieve arthritic pain, is also antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and kills off fungal infections. Peppermint oil is also a natural decongestant and can help to relieve painful blocked sinuses. Peppermint essential oil is refreshing and cooling and contains a significant amount of menthol. Amongst its many uses, peppermint oil is known to relax and ease headaches, muscular aches and pains.

3. Frankincense: Another essential oil which has analgesic and anti-inflammatory properties is frankincense essential oil. Frankincense reduces pain and muscle tension by helping you relax and reduce stress. Frankincense oil can be combined with a carrier oil like coconut oil or arnica and rubbed into joints for effective pain relief. The Journal of Ethnopharmacology in 2016 published a study showing how frankincense has powerful pain-reducing qualities. The oil works to block COX-2 (an enzyme connected with inflammation) and “exhibits significant anti-inflammatory and analgesic effects.”   All these essential oils for pain management have a multipronged action as they contain many active compounds, some acting to soothe muscles and relax nerves, while others have an invigorating action on the mind and body. The medicinal properties of many essential oils overlap, so if you are allergic to some essential oils, it shouldn’t keep you from trying others. Some of the pain-relieving essential oils can be mixed together to get the benefit of their combined action. An expert practitioner in herbal remedies and essential oils can formulate a mixture that suits your needs, or try making your own by trial and error. September is Drug-Free Pain Management Month. This nationwide annual campaign is so critical in raising public awareness of drug-free pain treatment as the preferred first-line approach to avoid the use of dangerous opioids. As you know, Rx painkillers are often recommended for low back, neck and neuro-musculoskeletal pain and often lead to dangerous side effects or addiction. What we are doing nationally — combined with your local efforts — will elevate public awareness and utilization of drug-free pain management as the optimal approach to pain management that averts opioid use and abuse. As always, thank you for your time and continued support in helping to raise positive awareness about the benefits of non-surgical, drug-free care offered at Spine Wellness Cincinnati.


Do not ignore your body pain, it can become worse overtime. It’s important to consult with the doctor and understand the root cause of body pain.

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