Between little league practice and laundry, we can use the power of smell and scent to boost our mood and reduce stress.
Scent has a significant effect on mental health and cognitive behavior. That’s because scent, memory, and emotions are intricately linked. Have you ever smelled something and were instantly transported to your childhood? The flowers in your grandparents backyard, your mom’s cookies baking in the kitchen, the smell of chlorine. Fragrance reminds us of our past because olfactory signaling, memory, and emotional processing occur in the same part of the brain. Additionally, certain fragrances have been shown to reduce cortisol levels and improve wellbeing. These scents stimulate the limbic system and promote the release of serotonin and dopamine. Let’s look at four specific ways that lighting a candle affects our brain.
1. Stress Management
Calming scents, such as lavender and chamomile, regulate overactive nervous systems by interacting with GABA receptors. GABA receptors are frequently the target of anti-anxiety medications.
2. Mood Regulation
Certain scents, such as citrus, are associated with energy, while others, such as cedar, are associated with focus. In 2018, a Japanese research team conducted mice studies in order to show that the smell of lavender increases the flow of chemicals that contribute to improved mood.
3. Mental and Physical Health
Scent plays a role in the mind-body connection. In fact, pleasant scents have been shown to increase pain tolerance. Aromatherapy is a growing field of study that acknowledges scents' role in psychological well being.
4. Positive Memories
Some scents transport us into the past. Using scents to invoke positive memories has been shown to beneficially impact mood.
Scented candles can change the atmosphere of a room.
- Citrus is energizing and can make you feel awake and productive
- Lavender is often used to enhance sleep and relaxation
- Vanilla is calming, warming, and sensual
- Cinnamon helps with exhaustion and fatigue
- Floral scents boost mood
Check out Gold Canyon’s Heritage Collection for a wide variety of mood-brightening and calming scents.