Pregnancy and essential oils
Essential oils can be extremely beneficial during pregnancy, labour, birth and the postpartum period. I read a couple of well known aromatherapist’s books often on referral, one in particular is Stephanie Fritz’s book Essential Oils for Pregnancy, Birth and Babies, Stephanie is a midwife also and has substantial evidence how essential oils used on a daily basis, and proof how essential oils are one of the best way to eliminate a mother's emotional stress levels, mental wellness, the outcome of her pregnancy and also her baby’s well being.
First things first - essential oils are the ‘essence of the plant’ they are powerful. You must only use essential oils that are of therapeutic grade (Ora Aromatherapy only use pure high grade therapeutic oils) but there are a lot of rubbish oils out there. Be aware. A lot of the ‘scary’ stuff you read out there (on the internet) are not always based on proven fact. A lot of inaccurate studies are reported - where the type of oils are not clear, and most studies carried out have been used on pregnant animals not human pregnancies. My best advice is to know your body, your intuition and practice common sense!
Rule of thumb being pregnant - half the dilution you would normally. For pregnant women and children alike- less than 2% of essential oil- always diluted in a carrier like Almond Oil or Coconut. You will read that there are some oils to avoid in pregnancy - and for some that is true - but others may be used safely past 12 weeks - for example - Peppermint - has some controversy on whether one can use it or not - but in all professional aromatherapy books and throughout my training, it is good for many things in pregnancy when used correctly - but it is always good to check with your midwife if you are unsure.
If you smell something and you do not like it, this is a good intuitive reason not to use that oil.
Always use a carrier, never ‘willy nilly’ apply oil to your skin, bath or diffuser- count the drops. Keep well ventilated areas when using oils (especially around babies and pets). Know that essential oils are a beautiful and natural thing we are lucky enough to have access to in life - and there are much worse things out there!
My go to safe pregnancy oils:
- Peppermint and Spearmint (use sparingly in the first trimester and near the end - due to its effect on milk production)
- Labour time - Clary Sage, Jasmine
These oils are amazing for help with sleep, anxiety, needing a boost of energy and optimism, relaxing and finally assistance and pain relief in labour.
Handy Ora Aromatherapy tips & products to note:
Labour: Birth Blend - A blend with Lavender, Peppermint and Clary Sage which is the active ingredient in Birth Blend which when used aromatically or topically during labour, supports the efficacy of and encourages the regularity and effectiveness of contractions, increase mental clarity and decrease the normal pain associated with labour once the contractions are strong.
Post Labour Perineal Care: Soak with Salt Gypsy for a soothing and healing epsom salt bath. Also, using a witch hazel and chamomile mist applied direct or to pad will help with healing and pain.
Swollen feet & ankles: Custom Blend - Massage 2 drops to 2 teaspoons of carrier of Grapefruit and Almond Oil or Coconut oil to ankles massaging up towards the heart.
Nausea: Hayfever and Sinus remedy has been known to help with nausea with the component of Peppermint and Lemongrass - also, Flow essential Oil - 1 drop mixed in with a carrier applied behind the ears and soles of the feet. Again, use in moderation.
Cracked sore nipples: Moon Gypsy face serum or - the Frankincense in this healing blend will really help, also Pepe baby massage oil - a gentle soft blend with soothing healing chamomile, lavender and calendula. Allow time before breastfeeding. These oils will be absorbed.
Check out Ora’s Pregnancy selection of safe and super beneficial products to get you through!