Can essential oil inhalation reduce the stress and anxiety of a potential COVID-19 diagnosis?

Aromatherapy + COVID-19 Testing

The COVID-19 global pandemic produces unprecedented levels of stress, particularly those in the hardest-hit nations such as the United States. While fear and anxiety about the novel virus is present throughout a pandemic, it is amplified during times of increased uncertainty–such as the lapse between SARS-CoV-2 exposure or symptom onset and the receipt of test results.

This transient anxiety differs from generalized anxiety disorders as it is directly associated with the uncertainty which stems from the potential of a COVID-19 diagnosis. As a result, there is a need for non-invasive environmental approaches to stress reduction which would not intervene with potential treatments for the virus.

Aromatherapy–the inhalation of essential oils–has been found to be effective at reducing feelings of stress and anxiety during transient stressors. It is not known if this practice can provide benefit during pandemic-related uncertainties. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the potential benefit of aromatic plant extracts combined with breathing exercises to reduce stress associated with the wait for results from a COVID-19 test.

About this Project

What kind of study is this?

This is a multi-arm randomized controlled clinical trial (RCT) measuring the effects of essential oil inhalation via a scent strip on state anxiety scores.

Approximately 100 people will be recruited and provided a scent strip for an intervention assessment.

This is the first known trial to evaluate the role of aromatherapy in the COVID-19 pandemic. It measures immediate effects of aromatherapy inhalation, allowing the practice to be put to use easily in homes around the globe.

This study will provide insight into the potential for a non-invasive holistic practice such as aromatherapy to improve overall quality of life during the pandemic.

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Get Involved

There are several ways to get involved! 1. Spread the word! Our team is looking for people who are being tested for COVID-19 and are willing to participate. Volunteers receive $25 for participating. 2. Help fund this project! Clinical research is a labor-intensive and expensive endeavor. Every contribution makes a difference. 3. Stay Updated! Enter your email in the form below to receive updates about this study.