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Eifel working group, essential oils for trauma management after the flood hangover disaster in the Eifel on 13/14.07.2021

Eifel working group, essential oils for trauma management after the flood hangover disaster in the Eifel on 13/14.07.2021

  1. December 2021 from Verena Grewenig

Essential oils to the trauma overcoming after the flood catastrophe in the Eifel on 13/14.07.2021

On 01.10.2021, unfortunately, the historic water mill in Birgel could not be visited, because it was also severely damaged by the flood hangover disaster on 13/14.07.2021.

The working group found online on the topic:

essential oils for overcoming trauma after the flood catastrophe took place.


Definition of Trauma:

Trauma (Greek: wound) is a stressful event or situation that the person cannot cope with and process. It is often a result of violence – both physical and psychological. Figuratively, it can be understood as a “mental injury.”

Traumatizing events are generally defined as stressful events such as serious accidents, illnesses and natural disasters, but also experiences of significant psychological, physical and sexual violence, as well as severe experiences of loss and neglect. They can leave deep wounds in the soul that affect a person for life.

Just as a physical injury takes time to heal, trauma is an injury to the soul that also takes time to heal.



The following criteria fulfill a traumatic event:


“The person was themselves a victim or witness to an event in which their own life or the lives of others were threatened or resulted in serious injury/loss.


The person’s reaction include feelings of intense fear, helplessness, or horror.”

Flood losses:

  • Family members and friends
  • Loss of own house/apartment/uninhabitable.
  • House destroyed, no longer available
  • Pets
  • All mementos, personal belongings
  • Livelihood, existence, job, school kindergarten
  • Own security, trust, daily rhythm
  • Social contacts, lack of infrastructure
  • Homeless

Symptoms of trauma:

  • Anxiety (esp. when a lot of rain is expected).
  • Panic attacks
  • Insomnia, nightmares
  • Anger, aggression
  • Inner emptiness, listless, “as if paralyzed
  • Palpitations
  • Tension
  • Concentration problems
  • Isolation
  • Compulsion to control

Secondary traumatization:

Volunteers, rescue workers, federal armed forces, THW, fire department, paramedics, emergency chaplains, police, …

All these professional groups and helping persons can themselves suffer symptoms of trauma through what they have experienced and the individual fate reports of traumatized people ->secondary traumatization.

Essential oils for trauma management:

a few examples:

Vetiver – Vetiveria zizanoides

45-50 % sesquiterpenes

35 % sesquuterenols

15 % sesquiterpene ketones


Mood-lifting, grounding, regenerating, restorative, balancing, calming the nerves.

It frees from headiness and grounds us again, helps to open up again without fear of new injuries


Grapefruit – Citrus Paradisi

90-98 % limonene

Stimulating, mood-lifting, promotes concentration, provides zest for life and lightness


Mandarin red – Citrus reticulata

90-95 % limonene

0.85 % methyl anthranilate

Mood-lifting, sleep-promoting, anxiety-relieving, strongly relaxing, gives security

e.g. dreams blissful & sweet

Benzoin – Styray tonkinensi

60-80% Aromatic esters

10-20% Aromatic Acids

Gives warmth and security, relaxes and is anxiety-relieving e.g. Inner peace, Pleasant night’s sleep


Ylang Ylang complett – Cananga odorata

55-70 % sesquiterpenes

15-20 % aromatic esters

Mood-lifting, grounding, vitalizing, balancing, soothing, balancing, eroticizing

Dissolves fears, gives warmth and security


Possible applications of essential oils:

  • In aroma care oils
  • Fragrance lamps
  • Inhalation pens
  • Roll on for on the way
  • Scented decoration
  • Room spray

There followed a nice exchange of experiences among the participants of the working group, here the positive effect of Patchouli was mentioned several times and the mixture Mandarin red with Grapefruit.


Ruth von Braunschweig, Plant Oils, ISBN 9783943793680, 6th edition 2018.

Ruth von Braunschweig/ Monika Werner, Aromatherapy Practice, ISBN 9783132434714, 6th edition, 2020.


Olzheim, 17.12.2021

Verena Grewenig

AK-Leadership Eifel

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