Glossary of Therapeutic Properties

Many studies have been conducted and science has now confirmed what aromatherapists have known for centuries; that pure essential oils have therapeutic properties for our overall wellbeing.  The properties from the oils can be inhaled via the olfactory system or absorbed through the skin.  

The constituents that naturally occur in essential oils play a major role in defining the therapeutic properties of any specific oil.  Each oil has therapeutic benefits and you can reference them by referring to the therapeutic benefits listed. 

The glossary will define each specific therapeutic property to give you a deeper understanding on the possible effects the oil can provide.  Please note some terms may not be listed.  This is just a guide please speak to a trusted medical professional before seeking alternative treatments.

List of Therapeutic Properties

Analgesic:  reduces pain sensation

Anthelmintic:  repels intestinal parasites

Antibacterial:  prevents bacterial growth

Anticatarrhal:  effective against catarrh

Anticoagulant:  reduces blood clotting

Antidepressant:  alleviates depression

Antifungal:  prevents fungal growth

Anti-infectious:  prevents uptake of infection

Anti-inflammatory:  alleviates inflammation

Antimicrobial:  prevents microorganism growth

Antioxidant:  inhibits oxidation

Antiphlogistic:  acts against inflammation and fever

Antiputrescent: acts against putrefaction

Antirheumatic:  relieves symptoms associated with rheumatic conditions

Antisclerotic: prevents hardening of cells and tissues

Antiseborrheic:  relieves excessive secretion of sebum

Antiseptic:  destroys mictobes and prevents their development

Antispasmodic:  prevents or relieves spasms, convulsions, or contractions

Antisudorific:  prevents sweating

Antitoxic:  able to neutralize toxins

Antitussive:  relieves coughs

Antivenomous:  used against the effects of venom

Antiviral:  prevents viral growth

Aphrodisiac:  increases sexual desire

Astringent:  contract or tightens tissues

Balsamic:  soothes sore throats, coughs etc

Calmative:  sedative, calming agent

Carminative:  relieves flatulence, easing abdominal pain and bloating

Cholagogue:  promotes the evacuation of bile from gall bladder and ducts

Cicatrizing:  promotes the formation of scar tissue, thus healing

Circulatory:  promotes flow of blood and lymph

Cytophylactic:  promotes cell turnover, thus healing

Decongestant:  reduces congestion such as mucus

Deodorant:  masks or removes unpleasant smell

Depurative:  cleanser, detoxifier

Diaphoretic:  promotes perspiration

Digestive:  helps in the digestion of food

Disinfectant:  helps fight the spread of germs

Diuretic:  promotes the removal of excess water from the body

Emmenagogue:  induces or regularizes menstruation

Emollient:  soothes and softens skin

Expectorant:  promotes removal of mucus from the body

Febrifuge:  an antifebrile (antifever) agent

Galactagogue:  induces the flow of breastmilk

Hemostatic:  arrests blood flow

Hepatic:  acts on the liver

Hypertensive:  raises blood pressure

Hypnotic:  sedative effect

Hypotensive:  lowers blood pressure

Immunostimulant: stimulates the action of the immune system

Laxative:  assists in bowel elimination

Mucolytic:  breaks down mucus

Nervine:  acts on nerves; relieves nervous disorders

Pectoral:  beneficial for diseases or conditions of the chest and respiratory system

Regenerative:  tends to regenerate

Restorative: strengthens and revives the body’s systems

Rubefacient:  a counterirritant producing redness of the skin

Sedative:  relaxes psychological and physical activity

Soporific:  induces, or tends to induce, sleep

Spasmolytic:  eases smooth muscle spasm

Stimulant:  increases overall function of the body

Stomachic:  good for the stomach; gastric tonic, digestive aid

Sudorific:  promotes perspiration

Thermogenic:  stimulates heat production

Tonic:  invigorates refreshes, restores the body and bodily functions

Vasodilatory:  promotes dilation of blood vessels

Vermifuge:  expels intestinal worms

Vulnerary:  heals wounds and sores by external application