Okay, you caught me! I spent a lot of time at the Remo booth at the national conference for the American Music Therapy Association last week in Jacksonville!
The Aroma Drum is not new. It has actually been around for several years. But, recently, I began investigating essential oils like the ones used in the Aroma Drum. The Aroma Drum comes with four different essential oil diffuser packs: lavender, pink grapefruit, patchouli and eucalyptus. You can see the drum up close in this video. Although the video is a bit contrived, it does get the point across!
I used to think that the aromatherapy component of the drum was just a nice gimmick, but I have discovered that some of the essential oils may have statistically provable anxiolytic effects. My investigation so far has revealed that the lavender essential oil may be the most widely and historically used oil for stress relief.
One randomized controlled study, by Sultani et al. (2013), found that post-tonsillectomy pediatric patients used significantly less acetaminophen (Tylenol) than a control group.
In another study, dental patients spent time inhaling lavender while waiting for treatment (Kritsidima, Newton, & Asimakopoulou, 2010). The patients who waited under the influence of lavender aromatherapy had significantly lower state anxiety levels.
These are just two of many studies relative to lavender essential oil. In light of the growing research base that confirms historical and anecdotal evidence of the effectiveness of essential oils, I find the combination of essential oils and drumming a wonderful partnership!
Unlike the lady in the video,however, I think the Aroma Drum used in a drum circle setting might be more effective, especially inside, where the scent could be more concentrated. A drum circle setting where a drum leader or facilitator would be walking around and waving the drum might more easily diffuse the lavender aroma.
In any case, I think this drum is worth checking out! It is sold by itself or as a set with an accompanying CD and stress management guide. You can also purchase refill packs of the essential oils. Let me know if anyone out there has used one for yourself or in therapy. I am interested to know your thoughts!
Kritsidima, M., Newton, T., and Asimakopoulou, K. (2010). The effects of lavender scent on dental patient anxiety levels: A cluster randomised-control trial. Community Dentistry and Oral Epidemiology, 38, 83-87.
Soltani, R., Soheilipour, S., Hajhashemi V., Asghari, G., Bagheri, M., and Molavi, M. (2013). Evaluation of the effect of aromatherapy with lavender essential oil on post-tonsillectomy pain in pediatric patients: A randomized controlled trial. International Journal of Pediatric Otorhinolaryngology, 77, 1579-1581.
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