Ah-CHOO!

When you go through life not being able to smell you don’t realize how much you are missing. Think about it. People who are hard of hearing or deaf are missing one out of their five crucial senses. A crucial way for us to interpret the world. If you can’t hear your world is limited severely. Now there have been breakthroughs in science and technology that have allowed for cochlear implants. This issue causes people to find alternative solutions to cope with life.

TXCBs

Imagine if you don’t have sight. You might not be reading this blog. However you might be listening to it on a text to speech software. I don’t say this to be rude just to point out the truth that seeing changes things. How many times have you needed to see a word written down to know if it’s spelled correctly? It makes a world of a difference to have that sense.

However when it comes to smelling it’s no big deal. Right? I mean come on you can go through life without being able to smell very well and your quality of life won’t suffer too much. Right? Well though it’s not anywhere near as severe as not being able to hear or see, not being able to smell leaves you lacking in a part of experiencing the world around you. Smell also effects your sense of taste. And I have heard that smell is one of the strongest links to memories. So if you can’t smell you may not be making as strong or as many memories as someone else. Smell allows for you to have enjoyment of things like fresh baked bread as you walk into the local market.

I don’t know when it started. Or how long I couldn’t smell anything. My nasal passage was constantly congested. I tried everything. All over the counter medications. All for only temporary relief. I tried neti pots. Steam treatments. I even broke down and went to a doctor and got a prescription nasal spray. Which also only provided some temporary relief.

The only thing I have yet to find that works for the full 24 hours it claims is an OTC nasal spray called Nasacort that recently came on the market for non-prescription use. When I first saw the commercial for Nasacort I was interested because I was willing to try something new. The commercial was a very good at explaining why there is a difference between Nasacort and other antihistamine products that were available. Nasacort “blocks more of the chemical responses that can cause nasal allergy symptoms than antihistamines”. This makes a difference when confronting congestion caused by allergies.

nasacort

I finally found a wave of relief from my nasal congestion. I was able to smell again. And back came all the pleasant smells I had been missing. But one thing I didn’t think about was that there are not just good smells in the world. In fact I started smelling all the bad smells too. And boy let me tell you they stink! There is probably way more bad smells then there are good smells!

Day 29 of Claudia’s book Become An Idea Machine.

This day is an exercise about arguing for and against Aromatherapy.

EOs

Pro:

1. The scents of essential oils used in Aromatherapy causes the release brain chemicals that make you feel pleasure. Therefore the pleasure created is a direct benefit of aromatherapy.

2. Scent creates the strongest memories. When you have a pleasant experience in an aromatherapy session, all you have to do is smell the scent again when you are stressed out and it will mentally take you back to that place of peace.

3. Testimonial proof of aromatherapy’s positive effects and benefits. I have personally used essential oils as part of a my steam treatment for congestion and it did offer some relief.

4. Natural products where created for the purpose of being used. This point plays on people’s belief that everything exists for a reason and it seems reasonable.

5. The Placebo Effect. If you think it woks then it works because the result is the same.

Contra:

1. Essential oils are snake oil. Aromatherapy is “unproven medicine…with questionable or unverifiable quality or benefit.” In our world of scientific proof there is no point in doing something that has no empirical evidence. Smells don’t do anything medically. It is not possible for smells to actually have a positive health effect on your body.

2. Price. High prices for unproven medicine? Clearly they are just making money off your ignorance or naiveté.

3. Bias against practitioners and consumers of aromatherapy. The practice is often preformed with and by people of a certain hair growing, non-shaving, non-deodorant using, crunchy granola eating lifestyle. Clearly these people are odd and shouldn’t be trusted.

4. Pro medical system bias. Clearly Big-Pharma has never done anything wrong. The government sanctions their actions with the almighty approval of the FDA. Aromatherapy is unsanctioned. It must be that way for a reason.

5. Source bias. You can’t trust they oils are made of what they say they are. If you even can find out who manufacturers them, it is not possible to know the purity of the oil.

______________________________________________________

“ ‘Yo homes smell ya later’
I looked at my kingdom
I was finally there
To sit on my throne as the Prince of Bel Air”

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