The Liberators of Aromatherapy - Oxides

Based on their distinguishing qualities, each of the 12 chemical families can be divided into 12 Archetypes and their characteristic Elemental Powers.

These 12 archetypes, and their chemical families, tell us about the therapeutic properties, actions and effects of essential oils.

You can select essential oils to use alone, or in a formulation, to promote healing for specific conditions, based on their specific archetype and therapeutic chemical properties, actions and effects.

PLEASE NOTE: Depending upon the percentage(s) of a chemical component that comprises an oil, it can be classed in more than one chemical family.

Oxide - Archetype: The Liberators

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The most common oxide in aromatherapy is 1,8-cineole. Also known by a number of synonyms like eucalyptol and cajuputol.

Oxide molecules are chemically very stable and found in many essential oils. They have an oxygen atom within a ring structure and are usually made from an alcohol. They are named after the alcohol with the ending being oxide, i.e. linalool oxide.

Essential oils having a camphoraceous scent usually contain oxide formations, i.e. eucalyptus (the eucalyptol content is highest in the globulus and smithii variety than in other eucalyptus oils), rosemary cineole and cajeput.

1,8-Cineole has been shown to have expectorant properties and to stimulate the respiratory and digestive systems.

A study published in PubMed showed the anti-anxiety effects of 1,8-Cineole on Preoperative Anxiety. 

Another PubMed study showed anti-inflammatory effects of 1,8-Cineole when used as co-medication in inflammatory airway diseases. 

It was concluded in another study that use of 1,8-cineole correlates with improved cognitive performance following exposure to the aroma of rosemary

Oxide Fragrance Chemicals found in Essential Oils:

Rose oxide
Linalool oxide
Sclareol oxide
Pinene oxide

Oxide Actions & Effects:

Mild stimulant - an agent that quickens the physiological functions of the body, temporarily increases body or organ function, good for convalescence, poor circulation, listlessness, physical fatigue.
Anti-anxiety - relieves anxiety.
Anti-inflammatory - calming and soothing, reduces inflammation.
Tonic - strengthens and enlivens the whole or specific parts of the body.
Rubafacient - warming, agent which reddens skin, dilates vessels increase blood flow.
Decongestant - relieves or reduces congestion, inflammation.
Expectorant - helps promote removal of mucus from respiratory system, stimulates the action of decongestion for the entire body, heals respiratory system.
Anti-viral - controls, inhibits viral organisms and infections, destroys virus.
Insecticide - insect repellent.
Mental stimulant - increases mental function.

Essential Oils in this class include:
Preferred distillation method, part of plant used, and some of best locations for production.

EUCALYPTUS - (Eucalyptus smithii, globulus & radiata), steam distilled leaf, Australia.
NIAOULI - (Melaleuca quinquenervia), steam distilled leaf, Madagascar.
CHAMOMILE GERMAN - (Matricaria recutita), steam distilled flowers, Bulgaria.
ROSEMARY ct. CINEOLE - (Rosmarinus officinalis), steam distilled, Morocco.
RAVINTSARA - (Cinnamomum camphora), steam distilled leaf, Madagascar.
SPIKE LAVENDER - (Lavandula 
latifolia), steam distilled flower, France.
MYRTLE - (Myrtys communis), steam distilled leaf/fruit, Morocco.
BAY LAUREL - (Laurus nobilis), steam distilled leaf, Jamaica.
CAJUPUT - (Melaleuca leucadendron), steam distilled leaf, Australia.
HYSSOP - (Hyssopus decumbens), steam distilled whole plant, Spain.
ROSEWOOD - (Aniba rosaeodora), steam distilled wood, Brazil (endangered).
INULA - (Inula graveolens), steam distilled flowering herb, Corsica.

CAUTION: Skin irritant. Maximum dermal use level is less than 2% to avoid skin sensitization. Use caution when using with those with breathing issues like asthmatics. Avoid use with children under age 10. Please check each essential oil for more specific safety cautions.

READ next article in this series, Aromatherapy Archetypes - 12 Natural Healers: The Warriors of Aromatherapy - Phenols.

READ first article in this series, Aromatherapy Archetypes - 12 Natural Healers - The Male Athlete.

†These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. All statements on this website are intended for informational purposes only.

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