Aromatherapy Intangibles Study
[with AIA]


Actions of essential oils often utilize standard medical terminology, such as expectorant or antifungal. More commonly, however, aromatherapy benefits do not follow medical norms. Many essential oils are known through experiential use to be grounding, invigorating, calming, or uplifting. These effects have long been considered to be intangible–factors which are unable to be measured–thus unable to be scientifically substantiated. However, psychological measurement tools have been developed which are able to measure mood states related to these effects.

This study identifies and measures these “intangible” benefits of essential oils among adults females who experience aromatherapy inhalation through the use of multiple validated psychological measurement tools.

This is a single blind randomized, controlled clinical trial which identifies and measures the effects of single-oil aromatherapy exposure on outcomes often considered to be intangible among otherwise healthy adults during the study period. Outcomes are related to mood states, subjective wellbeing, overall wellness, and mental/cognitive state.

Frequently Asked Questions

How will the money raised for this study be spent?

Costs for this study remain low thanks to the volunteer efforts of the FHRF research team. Funds raises by the AIA cover overhead expenses as outlined below:

This covers all of the start-up costs, including fees for ethical authorization to conduct the research, study regulation, and the preparation and submission of all other regulatory documents and associated fees.

The funding for this phase covers the bulk of the actual research activity such as recruiting, screening, consenting, and funding a random sample of eligible volunteers, data collection licenses, oversight, and monitoring of the whole project.

After the study is finished, our team must file closeout records with oversight agencies, present the findings, develop manuscripts using industry-accepted formats, and then pay author publishing charges for dissemination in a peer reviewed journal.

How is a study like this conducted?
How is it possible to evaluate holistic outcomes that vary from person to person?
How big is this study?

This project is being conducted in partnership with the Alliance of International Aromatherapists (AIA). Founded in 2006, the AIA, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is a professional organization representing aromatherapists.

The AIA is funding the project through donations from its members, and the Franklin Health Research Foundation is independently conducting the research.

Get Updates

This clinical trial began late 2019 and was expected to be completed early 2020. This study was halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants for this study are required to gather indoors in small groups for extended periods of time, which is not safe during the pandemic. When it it safe to resume, the study will continue.