Essential Oils and Pain Relief – Decreasing Pain Through Natural Oils

Essential oils have become extremely popular in the last decade, being used to scent the air, rub on your body, and even to clean household surfaces. But what is the big hype and do they really work? This is a look at the best essential oils out there today for pain relief, how they work with the body, and how they can be used to decrease pain quickly.

How To Use Essential Oils for Relief of Pain

Essential oils and pain relief is an important topic right now as essential oils have become more and more common in everyday households. But what are they? 

Essential oils are liquids extracted from aromatic plants that have been used for centuries for medicinal purposes. Most essential oils come in individual glass bottles that produce drops when tipped upside down. 

Some can be added directly to the painful area of your body but many need to be added and mixed with a carrier oil, such as certain vegetable oils, waxes, coconut oil, or other fatty oils in order to decrease skin irritation. The carrier oil “carries” and dilutes the essential oil so that it can be spread over a larger area of the body. Some other essential oils can be purchased already mixed in a carrier oil. 

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Below are three essential oils that are known to relieve pain and help improve daily life.

Deep Blue for Pain Relief

One of the most popular essential oils today for pain relief is Deep Blue. This is an essential oil blend known for its abilities to decrease inflammation, relieve pain, and reduce soreness. The blend usually combines the essential oils:

  1. wintergreen: contains methyl-salicylate, which has cortisone-like properties
  2. camphor: an analgesic (pain-relieving) and is an anti-inflammatory
  3. peppermint: an anti-inflammatory and has a soothing, cooling effect
  4. blue tansy: an analgesic (pain-relieving) and is an anti-inflammatory
  5. german chamomile: an analgesic (pain-relieving), antioxidant, and is an anti-inflammatory
  6. helichrysym: Improves circulatory funtion and is an anti-inflammatory
  7. osmanthus: used in Chinese medicine to improve circulation and reduce pain 

As you can tell, this variety of oils are known for their pain relieving and inflammation reducing properties. Combined together, they have a synergistic effect and have a greater ability to relieve pain. 

A few of the essential oils contained within Deep Blue will be covered below as individual aids in pain relief. Deep Blue is sold as an oil and also as Deep Blue Rub. The Deep Blue Rub is convenient because you do not need to add it to carrier oil and can just apply it topically right away.

The Essential Oil Wintergreen for Pain Relief

Wintergreen is a natural plant that is known for its strong, minty aroma. As an essential oil, Wintergreen is often used to alleviate chronic pain, as well as bone and joint pain. Wintergreen has a cortisone-like action, acting like a steroid to decrease inflammation and pain at the sites of application. It can be applied with no dilution or 1:1 with a carrier oil for larger areas on the body.

Rosemary and Pain Relief

Rosemary is a well-known ingredient in many or our foods today, however it is also used as a great essential oil to decrease inflammation at the site of pain. Historically, rosemary was regarded as a sacred plant used to help drive away evil spirits and diseases. In more recent studies, rosemary has been found to have high antioxidant properties and has even decreased the perception of pain in patients with arthritis when applied topically. 

Rosemary can be applied with no dilution when used topically and should be applied directly to painful areas. It can also be used orally as one drop in 1 tsp. of honey, but should not be consumed by children under six years old.

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Where to Get These Great Essential Oils

There are a vast number of essential oils out there today that are great for pain relief. The three highlighted above show promise for relief and are a great place to start when exploring the large world of essential oils. 

There are a lot of companies selling essential oils today and it can be hard to search through all of them to find the best. My personal favorites are the doTERRA Oils and Ellia Oils, but at times buy others such as Aura Cacia and Young Living. These are great companies that have quality oils for pain relief.

Please note: Ask your doctor before using these essential oils if pregnant, have epilepsy, have allergies or skin sensitivities, or are dealing with high blood pressure.

Reference: Modern essentials: A contemporary guide to the therapeutic use of essential oils. (2012). Orem, UT: Aroma Tools.

Have a favorite essential oil that has helped your relief of pain? Share it below!


  • Kristena

    OMG!! I am so glad that I found your site. I suffer from back pain and I have tennis elbow in both my arms due to constant typing and using a laptop. I am right now taking arthritis medication and have muscle relaxers and pain relievers for those occasions where I throw my back. I was diagnosed with arthritis in my back and a compression fracture in my lower vertebrae (a tiny crack in one of my vertebrae) and every once in awhile I will bend over and have shooting pain in my back where I can barely move. I would love to be able to just rub some cream/oil on myself and have instant relief (the pills take a bit to kick in). How fast do these work? Also, can this work on my son’s legs. He suffers from flat feet and the pain shoots up his legs?

    • Laura

      These oils and creams work very fast and should help both you and your son with your pain symptoms. It may not get rid of the pain 100% but it feels great and will definitely decrease the pain you both are experiencing.

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