The Use of Aromasticks to Help With Sleep Problems: A Patient Experience Survey

Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2016 Feb;22:51-8. doi: 10.1016/j.ctcp.2015.12.006. Epub 2015 Dec 12.


To document the use of aromasticks to facilitate sleep in a cancer centre in the UK. Sleep disturbance is a common problem amongst patients diagnosed with cancer. Essential oils may be inhaled by means of an aromastick (a personal inhaler device containing essential oils) as a means of improving sleep. A prospective audit of aromasticks given to help facilitate sleep. Sixty-five aromasticks were given out over a 13 week period. 94% of patients reported that they did use their aromastick to help them sleep and 92% reported that they would continue to do so. An improvement of at least one point on a Likert scale measuring sleep quality was shown by 64% of patients following the use of an aromastick. Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) and sandalwood (Santalum austrocaladonicum); and frankincense (Boswellia carterii), mandarin (Citrus reticulata) and lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) were the essential oils used in the two blends chosen by patients.

Keywords: Aromastick; Cancer; Essential oils; Sleep.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Aromatherapy / methods*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms / complications
  • Oils, Volatile / therapeutic use*
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Sleep / physiology
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / complications
  • Sleep Wake Disorders / therapy*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Young Adult


  • Oils, Volatile