CAPE CORAL, FLORIDA -
For decades people have used essential oils like lavender and citrus to relax and de-stress. Now doctors in Southwest Florida are working to understand the science behind the oils.
Cape Coral Hospital has launched a new experiment that tests the effects on their stroke and pain patients.
"One little drop is all it takes." Noemi Vasquez is undergoing a new experiment. "Rub it on your skin."
Doctors are testing how lavender oil helps her recover from a major skin infection.
"Mmm it smells so good!"
She's one of 80 patients who are monitored each month.
"This is something that your grandmother or great grandmother would have incorporated in your home care," Elizabeth Robinson, the Orthopedics Nursing Director said.
Now hospitals are bridging the gap between community and healthcare, approaching the oils with science.
"This is one of the research studies that we reviewed," Tammy Booth, a nurse said. "The antioxidant effect of lavender helps reduce brain injury by increasing blood flow."
Patients see immediate effects.
"They'll have a lower length of stay and that will turn reduce the cost," Scott Kashman, an executive at Cape Coral Hospital said. So far the feedback has been 100 percent positive. "The oils went into both pillows and it was nice and relaxing. I slept good last night," Vasquez said.
The hospital plans on introducing the oils to more areas of care.
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