Lesson 1 of 11
In Progress

The Science of Oils and Emotions

Kara Edstrom March 15, 2021

When talking about emotions, we must mention the limbic system. The limbic system is a system of nerves and networks in the brain that controls basic emotions and drives. It is often called the “emotional switchboard of the brain” because it’s responsible for carrying sensory input from the environment to the hypothalamus and then from the hypothalamus to the other parts of the body.

It supports five major functions:

  1. Emotions
  2. Behavior
  3. Motivation
  4. Long-term memory
  5. Sense of smell


Why Use Essential Oils With Emotions?

Essential oils can have dramatic effects on limbic function, your emotional state, and how you feel because they can tap directly into the limbic system to stimulate memories and emotions. As you inhale essential oils, the tiny molecules enter the nasal cavity and pass by the olfactory bulb as they make their way into your bloodstream.

Your olfactory bulb is a part of your limbic system, and therefore your response to an aroma is going to be emotional before it can be rational.

This is great news! That means you can use essential oils to recall memories, both good and bad. If they are bad, you can use the oils to help you release cellular memories stored in the body, allowing you to process and move past them.

We all regularly come in contact with reactions to smells. You walk into the house at dinner time and smell your favorite meal being prepared; your emotions are instantly triggered to the fond memories you have of that meal, and you feel joy.

You smell the cologne your grandfather used to wear, and it instantly triggers emotions based on your relationship. If you had a good relationship, you may feel emotions like love and joy. If you had a bad relationship or he has passed away, you may feel anger or sadness.


Young Living has unique essential oil blends designed for bolstering and releasing emotions, so we’ll look at those next!