-Client intake form: this is a form we fill in when we meet with the volunteer for our case study. We record information about them, their health, and the conditions that they would like to address with aromatherapy. Based on the client's health and medications, we can identify contraindicated essential oils that need to be avoided and also determine the dosage and dilution for the blend.
-Oil Chart: once we determine the primary conditions that we will address in the case study, we need to determine which essential oils we'll include in the blend. This chart helps us to do that.
-Blend design: once we determine the oils we're going to use, we need to determine what method of application we'll use. Will this blend be a lotion applied to the skin? Or will it be diffused in the air? There are many different modes of application, depending on what conditions we are addressing.
-Blend: then we make the blend and give it to the volunteer. They get to use the blend for a few weeks, and hopefully their conditions improve with use.
-Log: during the time that the client is using the blend, we check in with them weekly to record notes on their health and any changes in their conditions.
-Report: once the study is complete, we take final comments from the volunteer and make recommendations.
-Resources: throughout the case study, we need to consult various reference texts in order to gather information about the oils, their properties, their cautions, etc.
I was pretty intimidated by my first case studies. There is a lot to learn! Also, it's scary to be creating something that has the power to influence someone else's physical body. So far, everything has been going well, though - praise the Lord! I've created 6 different blends and all have had positive results. In one case, the blend improved all three of the client's reported issues. I am thankful and joyful that the Lord has given us these plants for healing and the wisdom to learn how to use them.
So far, I've made 2 lotions, 1 bath salt blend, 2 oil blends, and 1 diffuser blend. I'm starting to feel a little more experienced when it comes to various types of products.
I've also started storing my oils more thoughtfully. Those which oxidize quickly are now carefully labeled and stored in a cool place. Other oils are labeled as they are purchased with the date and kept in a dark, sealed location. I have a box for my tools (mixing bowls, measuring cups, spoons, funnels, etc) and a box for my supplies (glass bottles, jars, etc). My outdated oils are stored in a separate location.
I've also been getting more books to support my studies. For Christmas, Nathan got me The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy which is an excellent reference text. I recently also purchased some shorter books that specifically look at household cleaning products, oil profiles, and the emotional-physical connection.
Once I'm ready to hand in these five case study reports, I'll be cleared to take my midterm. I'm taking advantage of the time now to begin to studying for it. The midterm covers over 300 pages of textbook about safety, chemistry, botany, processing, history, essential oil and carrier oil profiles, and other topics. Whew, I feel like I'm just starting to set roots down into this field. :)
I'll have a set of 10 more case studies after the midterm and then a final exam for AT101. I probably won't complete these until the end of the year or early next year. If anyone would like to volunteer to participate in a case study, let me know! :)