“Treating the person not the condition” is an adage that one hears often in the world of aromatherapy. Indeed I have used it myself on more than one occasion but what does it actually mean?
For myself, it means taking an holistic view of the human being I am working with. If they have an headache, I may well be able to get rid of it by doing a head massage with appropriately chosen essential oils. However if the headaches is the result of stress it makes far more sense to also use some essential oils that help in dealing with stress. (Unless of course I want the client to keep getting headaches so they come back to me regularly to get rid of them!) If it is a woman who gets more stressed around the time she menstruates, I will choose oils specifically to help with that. Is sleep or lack of it a factor? Again, in order to really do the best for my clients I need to know the answer .
This is why my normal appointment length is 90 minutes as this allows time for a full body massage and a consultation which lets me get to know my clients well enough to give an holistic treatment.
I would also say that the time pressure on those working in conventional medicine and the resultant appointment time of fifteen minutes or less much of the time results all too often in the treatment of secondary symptoms without ever getting at the root of the issue.
There are however a few times when it is important to treat the condition first and only move on to holistic treatment later. If someone needs resuscitation or has some other acute life threatening condition, then and only then do I treat the condition and worry about being holistic later. Of course, some would argue that seeing what needs to be done urgently and doing it is working holistically!