Aromatherapy rice bags are a simple way to relive minor aches and pains, but are also invigorating, relaxing and mood-enhancing when you add the right scents. You can easily make your own aromatherapy rice bags with uncooked rice and essential oils or dried herbs.
Making the Bag
Several options are available to make your own rice bags. If you need relief quickly, fill a sock with rice and herbs, and tie the top of the sock closed. Heat the rice in the microwave for a few seconds to make a hot pack, or store it in the freezer for 45 minutes to make a cold pack. You can buy a new pair of socks to make the rice bags if you prefer.
If you sew, make a bag from cotton, tightly-woven muslin, or cheesecloth. Cut the fabric in a rectangle, fold the fabric in half, sew three sides of the fabric together, and add the scented rice or rice and herb mixture. Add a zipper at the top of the bag to re-scent the rice with essential oils as needed, or just sew the top of the bag closed.
To scent the rice, mix it with the desired essential oil 24 to 48 hours before pouring the rice into the bag. Some possible scent combinations include the following:
<li>Lavender is a relaxing scent that is often included in stress-reducing aromatherapy blends. Lavender buds are a sweetly-scented alternative to lavender essential oil.</li>
<li>Combine vanilla extract and peppermint essential oil to stimulate creativity. Use pure vanilla extract, or make your own extract with vanilla beans and vodka.</li>
<li>To combat fatigue, scent the rice with sweet orange oil. Combine the orange essential oil with patchouli to create a clean scent with musky undertones, or add grapefruit and lime essential oils to sweet orange for a bright, uplifting scent.</li>
<li>Add clean, fresh camphor and eucalyptus to the rice bag during cold and flu season, as these scents help reduce nasal stuffiness.</li>
<li>When using herbs to scent the rice bag, add about one cup of the desired herbs per six cups of rice. Some herbs to consider using include chamomile, ylang ylang, dried peppermint leaves, bergamot or marjoram.</li>
Use essential oils with caution, as they are very concentrated. Add just a few drops of the desired essential oils for each cup of rice.
Heating the bag enhances the scents, but isn't necessary to enjoy the aromatherapy benefits. If the scents weaken over time, open the top of the bag to add more essential oils, or replace the rice and herb mixture with a new batch.