• 16/06/2024 02:50

How to overcome depression: scientists have named 4 aromas that ease symptoms

If you don't know how to overcome depression naturally, consider aromatherapy. For centuries, people have used it for its therapeutic benefits, including emotional regulation. Research is now looking at how it can be used to combat specific mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.

Content How to Fight Depression with Essential OilsFamiliar ScentsLavenderBergamotChamomile

WomanEL lists four specific scents that researchers recommend for reducing symptoms of depression.

How to Fight Depression with Essential Oils

A 2022 study published in the medical journal Frontiers in Neuroscience examined the connection between the sense of smell and the likelihood of developing depressive symptoms. Olfactory enrichment in the form of aromatherapy modifies brain structures and improves cognitive and emotional status, researchers write.

Although there are many beneficial essential oils, use these:

Familiar scents

A new study published last month in JAMA Open Network suggests that familiar scents may improve symptoms in people with depressive disorders. This is because people with depression have a harder time recalling specific autobiographical memories. However, smelling familiar aromas helped subjects recall more memories.

Kimberly Young, an assistant professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh and co-author of the study, told NBC News that with a little training, people with depression may be able to reduce their symptoms by using scents that evoke positive memories.

Any scent you remember will do. Scents used in the study included orange, vanilla extract, cumin, whiskey, red wine, sanitizer, shoe polish and more.


Many of us associate lavender with calmness. According to the latest study, this association likely enhances its ability to reduce depression and anxiety. However, research shows that there appear to be other mechanisms for the antidepressant and anxiolytic (anti-anxiety) effects of lavender.

This plant has a healing effect on many diseases, such as anxiety and depression, through its inhibitory effect on GABA. Researchers also note that lavender has anti-inflammatory effects and helps regulate serotonin levels.


Bergamot is a citrus fruit that is too bitter to eat. However, bergamot oil is commonly used in perfumery and aromatherapy and is touted for its ability to enhance mood.

Fifteen minutes of exposure to bergamot essential oil improved participants' positive feelings compared to the control group (17 percent higher). This is according to a 2017 study published in the journal Phytotherapy Research. The study authors note that bergamot is characterized by high levels of limonene, linalool and linalyl acetate, three compounds that have antidepressant and anxiolytic effects.

They ultimately concluded that “aromatherapy with bergamot essential oil may be an effective complementary treatment to improve people's mental health and well-being.”


Chamomile essential oil helps with depression, Source: freepik.com

A 2021 study published in the International Journal of Molecular Sciences found that chamomile is another aroma that can improve mental well-being when used as aromatherapy. A study noted that inhaling chamomile oil helps reduce levels of depression, anxiety, and stress in older adults. The anxiolytic and antidepressant effects are associated with suppression of sympathetic nervous system activity.

A 2022 study published in the journal Explore found that inhaling chamomile or lavender may have antidepressant effects that last long after exposure. These researchers saw “statistically significant improvements in levels of depression, anxiety, and stress immediately and one month after the intervention in the lavender and chamomile groups compared to the control group,” the study said.

Your diet also plays an important role in how to overcome depression: learn about the rules of healthy eating.

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