What is an aromatherapy inhaler?
An aromatherapy inhaler is just a device that allows you to smell essential oils. The word “inhaler” is almost a misnomer and makes it sound like a medical device in my opinion. I sort of wish it had a different name. The point isn’t to deeply inhale the essential oils and get them into your lungs, but rather to get them to the olfactory nerves in your nose.
There are two different ways to do this (believe it or not). One is just what you’d imagine, you put the inhaler up to your nose and sniff it. The other method is to pull air in through your mouth and then exhale it through your nose without inhaling it into your lungs. They both do the same thing so it’s a matter of personal preference.
Why use an aromatherapy inhaler versus a diffuser?
In a word, courtesy. There are a wide variety of diffusers available on the market, from large ones for the home to models designed for cars to personal devices like necklace diffusers. What they all have in common is that they make the air in the area smell of essential oils.
That’s what they’re supposed to do, but what if you’re at an office cubicle and the curmudgeon in the next cubicle doesn’t like the smell of lavender? That’s where inhalers come in. They are the only essential oil delivery devices that keep the smell very localized to you and your nose. This is useful not just for office curmudgeons, but for around your home if you are using oils that give you energy and your spouse is using some other oils to induce sleep.
Are aromatherapy inhalers safe?
Inhalers are just another way of delivering essential oil scents to your nose. That means they are as safe as the essential oils you’re using. Is that an actual concern? Yes, there are some legitimate concerns here. Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young authored a very comprehensive book on the topic if you’re interested, titled Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals.
Because you’re using these oils medicinally, another related safety concern is the quality of the oils you’re using and whether they are what they claim to be. There are synthetic essential oils on the market and they won’t have all the same properties as real essential oils.
Can I make my own aromatherapy inhaler?
The short answer is yes. Aromatherapy inhalers are relatively simple in their construction, so you can make them from inhaler kits you can buy on Amazon or even fashion your own if you’re a real DIYer.
All the inhalers I’ve seen on Amazon are of the sort that you sniff. The only one I know of that you use by pulling air in through your mouth and exhaling through your nose is the Zen Monq line.
The Monq is very attractive compared to other inhalers and it uses pre-mixed essential oils for specific purposes like inducing sleep. As you’d imagine, it’s also more expensive but it’s a good option for those that don’t want to get their hands dirty. We have a special coupon code for 10% off the Monq if you're interested.
This short video shows you exactly how to create your own inhaler using one of the inhaler kits from Amazon: