Lemon balm, or melissa, is an herb that has a pleasant sweet scent, leaves with jagged edges, and flowers that can be yellow, white, or pink. In the 16th century, an Oxford professor advised his students to use lemon balm to improve their memory and clear their mind. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, the Psychoneuroendocrinology journal indicated lemon is a stimulant that can improve one’s mood. If you’d like to chase your blues away, try inhaling the scent of lemon balm.
One very simple and effective way to feel lemon balm’s mood enhancing effect is to put a few drops of the oil in a bowl of hot water and inhale the steam. Note that if you decide to do this, you should be sure to keep your face a safe distance away from the water so you don’t burn yourself. Another way to vaporize lemon balm is to use it in a burner. Electrical burners are available, and so are burners that come with a candle. You can also use a plug-in aromastone or a radiator diffuser to vaporize the oil. A lightbulb ring works well, too, but you must make sure the essential oil is poured into the ring and not applied to the bulb. A more powerful way to use lemon balm to improve your mood is to mix it into a carrier oil and massage it into your skin. This method allows the oil to penetrate your skin as you inhale its scent. If the massage is performed by a reputable licensed massage therapist, you’ll be on your way to a heavenly state of bliss in no time.
Keep in mind that if you use a burner that comes with a candle, you should not leave the candle unattended after it is lit. You should never ingest lemon balm essential oil. Furthermore, you should refrain from using this oil if you are pregnant.
Aromatherapy, An Illustrated Guide; Clare Walters; 1998