There are a couple of essential oils for Achilles tendonitis you can try when it comes to soothing pain and healing. Achilles tendonitis is a form of painful inflammation in the tendons, which are the chord-like parts of the body that connect muscles to bones. Essential oils can be used to ease the pain, relieve the soreness, and speed up the healing process of the tendon.
People who are over 40 years old tend to experience tendonitis more than younger people, but really anyone can develop symptoms depending on how damaged versus elastic tendons become and lifestyle. The damage, which mostly results from overuse, tears the tissue muscle connecting the back of the heel to the calf muscle. This condition is prevalent in runners who do not have a consistent running duration or intensity.
If medications aren’t easing your pain, you might be interested in essential oils for achilles tendonitis. Essential oils are highly fragrant substances found within the petals, stems, roots, and other parts of plants. They’re typically removed from the plant though steam distillation.
The Achilles tendon is a band of tissue that connects a muscle to a bone. It runs down the back of the lower leg and connects the calf muscle to the heel bone. Also called the heel cord, the Achilles tendon facilitates walking by helping to raise the heel off the ground.
Tendonitis can happen in any tendon in the body and has many different names, depending on the joints that are being affected and also on the causes. Tennis elbow, Golfer’s elbow, Jumper’s knee. Common symptoms of tendonitis include:
- Pains and aches around a specific ligament, joint or muscle
- Swelling and tenderness
- Increased pain when moving or exercising
- Trouble sleeping due to pain
Rest, physical therapy, and pain medication are often recommended and even surgery can become urgent, in case of ruptures. But there are also many essential oils for Achilles tendonitis you can use. Using essential oils seems logical when you consider that oils have been used to treat muscle-related problems for many years.
Essential Oils for Achilles Tendonitis
1. Lavender Essential Oil
Lavender is known for alleviating pain and it also has analgesic qualities. Lavender also works as a myorelaxant and this makes it great it limiting injuries. Its sedative effects also relieve stress and promote sleep. This comes of great benefit in case of sprains or injuries that need surgery. Lavender also decreases the swelling that comes along with inflammation (1).
2. Ginger essential oil
Ginger is another herb that has a long history of use in pain medication, notably in China and India. Ginger’s calming qualities come from a trio of powerful antioxidative ingredients: zingiberene, gingerol, and shogaol. One 2005 study showed that ginger might be more powerful than many non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) in relieving pain and swelling (2).
3. Peppermint essential oil
Peppermint essential oil for Achilles tendonitis has antispasmodic qualities, which make it excellent in reducing tendon inflammation and joint pain. It soothes aches and reduces inflammation and has a cooling, refreshing effect when applied on the injured area. Peppermint stimulates circulation, when used topically, which in turn stimulates nerve healing (3).
4. Wintergreen essential oil
Wintergreen essential oil is beneficial when dealing with any soreness and pain in the muscles. It is known to alleviate pain in the muscle tissues. This oil has a large content of methyl salicylate which is why it acts well as cortisone. It is perfect for tendon pain since it is a natural inflammatory (4).
5. Geranium essential oil
Geranium can decrease pain transpiring in muscles and joints. It has anti-inflammatory qualities and soothes emotions at the same time. Geranium oil can limit the skin’s inflammatory response and help the body fight many health-related problems. For example, Achilles tendonitis is inflammation of the bones and joints, and heart disease is inflammation of the arteries (5).
6. Sweet Marjoram essential oil
This essential oil for Achilles tendonitis is a mild sedative and acts as an excellent natural painkiller. When applied to the affected area, this oil has potent effects on any tenderness in the muscles and the pain. Tendonitis causes some dull pain which can be well relieved by this oil. It works very well with osteoarthritis and rheumatoid. It can reduce the inflammation that occurs in the joints that are affected. Its compounds can work on joint stiffness and muscle spasms (6).
7. Lemongrass essential oil
Lemongrass boosts the mood when inhaled, but also soothes pains, aches, and other inflammatory symptoms in joints, tendons, and muscles when applied on the affected areas. This is a great essential oil for Achilles tendonitis (7).
8. Clary Sage essential oil
This essential oil works very well as the massage oil for aching joints and muscles. Topically massaging the affected place helps to relieve the muscle cramps and to reduce the tenderness. It gives some relaxing effects on the person who is using it. Sometimes it is combined with chamomile to form a blend that is used to relieve stress and tension (8).
9. Chamomile essential oil
Chamomile Essential Oil has anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving properties. Its compounds are good for sore muscles. This oil also has a calming effect on the skin, nervous system, and joint pain. It works its magic when diffused, but especially when applied topically, in compresses, hot baths, and massages (9).
10. Helichrysum essential oil
This oil has a significant percentage of anti-inflammatory compounds known as the sesquiterpene hydrocarbons. It also has some compounds which have a relaxing effect on the muscles, and it can reduce the tension that occurs in the tissues around the place of injury. It has small portions of di-ketones which are pain-reducing and analgesic. It works very well when relieving joint pains (10).
11. Eucalyptus essential oil
Research suggests that eucalyptus oil is an excellent essential oil for Achilles tendonitis. In fact, many popular over-the-counter creams and ointments used to soothe pain from conditions like osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis contain this essential oil. Eucalyptus oil helps to reduce pain and inflammation associated with many conditions (11).
12. Frankincense essential oil
Frankincense has anti-inflammatory effects that may help reduce joint inflammation. It can be beneficial in helping prevent the breakdown of the cartilage tissue and has been shown to significantly decrease levels of critical and painful inflammation, making it a natural treatment option for pain-related conditions that affect the muscles, joints, and tendons (12).
13. Juniper essential oil
Juniper berries are rich in essential oils and flavonoids that function as potent antioxidants and may help reduce inflammation. Juniper eases tension and eliminates muscle spasms. It relaxes muscles and tendons and helps cure spasmodic cholera as well. Being an antispasmodic, it helps cure many other problems related to cramps or spasms (13).
How to Use Essential Oils for Achilles Tendonitis
Anyone who has had a spell with the swelling and the pain that accompanies tendonitis can immediately testify to how significantly tendon inflammation can affect your life.
Essential oils can be inhaled or applied topically when mixed with a carrier oil. Never apply undiluted essential oils for Achilles tendonitis directly to the skin. Do not swallow essential oils. Do a skin patch test before applying diluted essential oils to your skin.
If you have been diagnosed with tendonitis and are considering essential oils as a form of treatment, it’s best to have a discussion with your doctor first.