Aromatherapy Massage


Healthworks Practitioner: Alison Leishman (SPCertA, MIFPA)

Tel: 01309 672864

Aromatherapy uses the therapeutic properties of natural aromatic oils (essential oils) obtained from plants, to benefit health. It is a holistic therapy which seeks to treat the whole person – not just physical symptoms. The oils can be inhaled, applied directly to the skin by way of massage (in a carrier oil or lotion) or used in the bath.

Each oil has different therapeutic properties, for example, oils may be analgesic (relieve pain), relaxing, stimulating, decongestant, hormone balancing, warming… these are just a few examples. The oils’ properties are many and varied. When essential oils are inhaled or absorbed through the skin they reach the bloodstream and are then carried to every part of the body including the brain, enabling them to affect the physical body and the emotions.

History of Aromatherapy

Essential oils have been in use for thousands of years. Their benefits were well known to the ancient Egyptians and the Bible contains many references to them. The oils were in common use until the 19th century when natural remedies began to be replaced by modern drugs. At the beginning of the 20th century the benefits of essential oils were rediscovered by doctors treating the wounded during the first World War. Since then the use of essential oils has spread rapidly and aromatherapy is now used in many hospitals, hospices and nursing homes.

What happens during an Aromatherapy treatment?

An aromatherapy session at HealthWorks lasts about 11/2 hours. The aromatherapist first spends time finding out about the client and their background, building up a picture of lifestyle, diet, stresses, etc., as well as medical history and current problems. This enables the therapist to decide which particular essential oils (usually 3 or 4 from a choice of over 60) would most benefit the client. Treatment is usually by way of full-body massage, for which the essential oils are dissolved in a vegetable ‘carrier’ oil. If a full massage is not suitable, a partial massage may be given or the client will be advised on other ways of using the oils.

Who is it for?

Aromatherapy is suitable for almost everyone including the elderly and children. It can be used to treat many conditions including stress related conditions, muscular strains, emotional problems, hormonal imbalances (e.g. PMS), headaches, digestive problems, insomnia, general aches and pains, rheumatism, asthma, bronchitis, skin problems and many others. It has been found to be of great comfort to people suffering from terminal illnesses.

Particular Applications / Emphasis

Alison’s particular massage technique is flowing, gentle but firm and very relaxing. The treatment has been described as uplifting, soothing, calming and nurturing. If appropriate, advice will be given on using essential oils at home. Alison has a special interest in working with the elderly, including dementia sufferers. Even those who are bedridden can enjoy and benefit from massage. When someone is unable to take exercise massage can encourage the circulation and digestion to work better. An aromatherapy treatment is so effective because it combines the many benefits of massage with the powerful healing properties of essential oils.

Case Histories

A 75 year old woman who had suffered years of rheumatic pain awoke the day after her first aromatherapy massage to discover that her neck and shoulders were pain-free for the first time in years. With regular sessions she became pain-free for longer, she was less anxious and slept better.

A 30 year old oil rig worker who worked ‘2 weeks on, 2 weeks off’ was suffering from constant tension and insomnia – sleeping on the rig was a particular problem due to the noise. At the first aromatherapy treatment a full-body massage was given and the therapist made up a body lotion containing essential oils to help these problems. At the second treatment, the client reported using the lotion every day while off-shore and ‘sleeping like a log’ at nights.

Further Reading

“Aromatherapy for Common Ailments” – by Shirley Price
“Aromatherapy Workbook” – by Shirley Price
“Aromatherapy an A-Z” – by Patricia Davis
“Aromatherapy for Healing the Spirit” by Gabriel Mojay

Healthworks Practitioner: Alison Leishman (SPCertA, MIFPA)

Alison Leishman is a fully qualified professional, clinical aromatherapist. She is a graduate of the Shirley Price International College of Aromatherapy (one of the longest established training bodies in the country) and a Member of the International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists.

Professional Organisation

International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists -

IFPA House, 82 Ashby Road, Hinckley, Leics. LE10 1SN.
Tel. 01455 637987

For further information or to make an appointment, please contact Alison as above.

Evening and Saturday afternoon appointments are also available. Home visits can be arranged and gift vouchers can be purchased. Alison gives talks and demonstrations to organisations.