The Power of Diffusing
Diffusing is one of the most popular methods of enjoying the aromatic and therapeutic properties of essential oils. “Diffusing” simply means dispersing the volatile compounds into the air. If you’re an oils’ fan, you’ve probably experienced this with your very first introduction to them through your 2-legged, mammalian, aromatic-emitting friend. I’ve written previously about many of the benefits this method of aromatherapy has. These include immune support, air purifying without toxic chemicals, stress relief, and more, which you can read about here.
Many oilers have told me that they have enjoyed this aromatic evaporation exercise as a comfortable and effective method for providing the health-promoting properties of these secondary metabolites. This is especially true for homes with sensitive and delicate family members, including infants and pets.
I have always advocated for diffusers to my clients who live in contaminated environments. I’ve found that for those surrounded by toxic mold or sneeze-inducing circulating microbes, certain essential oils emitting from a misty diffuser can be a saving grace. In fact, it may even make mold detection undetectable!
You can read about various methods to diffuse here, but recently, I’ve learned a few things since my recommendations on diffusers.
The Two New Things I’ve Recently Learned About Essential Oils Diffusers
In short, here they are:
- Humidity matters
- Atomizers aren’t guaranteed in all diffusers
Let’s Talk Humidity
I discovered the importance of this in reference to diffusers the hard way with my recent little escapade of toxic mold. Thankfully, I’m finally crossing the finish line from it. Sparing you the details, this is what I discovered:
(1) Most diffusers are humidifiers and diffuser combos. This is not a problem if your humidity levels are kept in check. For me, I was stuck in an air-tight apartment, with an HVAC (notorious for mold) and hardly any circulation.
Key Point: Mold makes itself welcome in humidity.
(2) I found that my three diffuser/humidifier combos were increasing the already hard to control humidity. (Measured myself and by my helpful landlord.)
My altered suggestion:
My short-term remedy for those in air-tight environments with high humidity and HVACS are to purchase fan diffusers for the summer, and use the regular diffusers in the winter. I also suggest remediation, potentially relocating, and this if mold is an issue…but that’s another topic.
Most of my clients live in homes with plenty of air circulation and this is not an issue; however, I’ve had two clients just recently where humidity increased over 70% in their new apartments. Therefore, I wanted to get this information out to everyone.
What Are Atomizers?
The second thing I learned about diffusers is not to confuse “atomizer” with “ionizer.” This is very important because they are different.
Many in the diffuser world feel atomizers are the best diffuser type for receiving all the benefits of essential oils’ therapeutic properties. This article had a good explanation from a respiratory therapist. Though it may be biased, it makes sense to me.
A Pubmed search for atomizers yields mostly results for medication delivery. I did find a few hits with “essential oils and atomizers,” seven were noted. I also found this one. To me, this is some evidence that this technology is a powerful concentrator of therapeutic constituents, albeit, it is indirect.
If you search Amazon and googl diffusers, they will note the characteristics of their products that they sell. Note the word “ionizer” is not in the description of what you will find there, at least I didn’t.
I was able to find an atomizer from a reputable essential oil brand, and I purchased that. I want the most benefit for my family. You can search your company and other brands and see what you can find.
I now suggest if you can swing an atomizer, at least get one of them in your home.
Diffuse for benefits, atomize for more concentrated benefits, either way, your benefiting, so diffuse!
If anyone has feedback on their diffusers, please share!
Disclaimer: This information is applicable ONLY for therapeutic quality essential oils. This information DOES NOT apply to essential oils that have not been tested for purity and standardized constituents. There is no quality control in the United States, and oils labeled as “100% pure” need only to contain 5% of the actual oil. The rest of the bottle can be filled with fillers and sometimes toxic ingredients that can irritate the skin. The studies are not based solely on a specific brand of an essential oil, unless stated. Please read the full study for more information.
This material is for information purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or prescribe for any illness. You should check with your doctor regarding implementing any new strategies into your wellness regime. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. (Affiliation link.)