Short-Term Effects of Aroma Therapeutic Herbal Steam on Heart Rate Variability and Stress
Peerada Damapong and Pongmada Damapong
American Journal of Applied Sciences
This experimental research aims to examine the short-term effects of aroma therapeutic herbal steam on heart rate variability and stress. In this experimental study, the participants were 60 diabetic patients with stress who had rated their stress in the Suang-prung Stress Test-20 at the level of 3 or higher. They were divided into the treatment group (n = 30) and the control group (n = 30) using a simple random sampling method. The former was administered aroma therapeutic hot steam, whereas the latter received standard conventional medical care. Both before and after the experimental period, both groups were assessed in terms of their Heart Rate Variability (HRV). The within-group HRV values, namely SDNN, RMS-SD, LF and HF, for both the treatment and the control groups pre- and post-treatment differed significantly (p<0.05). Additionally, when the between-group values post-treatment were considered, the SDNN, RMS-SD and LF values for the treatment group were significantly higher than those for the control group (p<0.05). Based on the findings, it can be concluded that aroma therapeutic hot steam will interact with factors triggering stress and enhance parasympathetic nervous system function, thereby reducing stress levels. This is proof that the treatment should improve the conditions of diabetic patients suffering from stress.
© 2018 Peerada Damapong and Pongmada Damapong. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.