A new study into the effectiveness of damask rose aromatherapy has shown it can reduce pain in burn victims.
What is Damask Rose?
Whatever the reason the damask rose, named for Damascus in Syria, has been prized throughout history.
Our ancestors’ didn’t know that damask rose contained Vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, C and K nor did they know it contained citric acid, malic acid, pectin, tannis, flavoinoids and carotenoids, but they were aware that it cured sickness and producing relaxant effects.
Modern scientists have uncovered many secrets of the damask rose but more recently they’ve tested it effectiveness as a pain reliever.
Pain from burn wounds is debilitating, not least because dressings need to be changed each day which provokes extra pain on top of natural healing pain. Patients with burns report it is the worst kind of pain.
Conventionally burn pain is treated with drugs such as morphine. Unfortunately morphine and other narcotics can produce side effects of vomiting, nausea and dizziness. Some patients also build a tolerance to morphine and need increasingly higher doses to manage their pain.
What was the study?
‘The effect of inhalation aromatherapy with damask rose (Rosa damascena) essence on the pain intensity after dressing in patients with burns: A clinical randomized trial’ looked at the effects of inhaling a distillation of damask rose on the pain caused by changing burn dressings.
50 participants with second and third degree burns took part. Baseline pain was logged 30 minutes before their dressings were changed. The experimental group inhaled 5 drops of damask rose essence 40% in distilled water, whereas the control group inhaled five drops of distilled water only.
Pain was measured 15 and 30 minutes after the dressing changes were complete using the Visual Analogue Scale.
What were the results?
The experimental group who inhaled damask rose essence experienced less pain, at the 15 minutes and 30 minutes intervals post dressing changes compared to the control group.
Researchers concluded that inhalation aromatherapy could be used as a complementary therapy for pain relief in burn patients.
So What Does This Mean?
It means more options for burn victims already facing a daily struggle with exhausting and disfiguring pain.
Aromatherapy is an attractive option to patients because medication’s side effects make the healing process so much harder. Notwithstanding pain, patients have to manage bowel issues and sickness amongst others effects too. Aromatherapy is well tolerated by most people and health services will no doubt be attracted by aromatherapy’s cost-effective, and non-invasive nature.
Studies like this serve to highlight that we ought to investigate more fully into the remedies our ancestors used as medicine. Damask rose has always been highly prized, and this study underlines another reason why.