Evidence is certainly mounting in favour of using complementary therapies in pregnancy and childbirth; especially Aromatherapy. It is best to use minimum quantities of 100% pure essential oils, and avoid all use during the first trimester. It is also important to know some contraindications during pregnancy and while breast feeding.
Essential oils to be avoided during pregnancy include: Anise, Basil, Birch, Carrot Seed, Cedarwood, Cinnamon, Clary Sage, Clove, Cypress, Dill, Fennel, Hyssop, Juniper, Myrrh, Myrtle, Oregano, Parsley, Pennyroyal, Pine, Cypress, Rosemary, Sage, Sweet marjoram, Tansy, Thyme & Wintergreen.
Essential oils to be avoided while breastfeeding include: Anise, Basil, Birch, Carrot Seed, Birch, Black Pepper, Carrot Seed, Cedar, Cinnamon, Clary Sage, Clove, Cypress, Dill, Fennel, Hyssop, Juniper, Marjoram, Myrrh, Myrtle, Nutmeg, Oregano, Parsley, Pennyroyal, Rosemary, Sage, Tansy, Thyme & Wintergreen.
Now let's look at the positives! There are many essential oils that alleviate the physical & emotional stresses pregnancy may bring: morning sickness, fatigue, anxiety, heartburn, insomnia, stretch marks, constipation, haemorrhoids, varicose veins, cramps, oedema, infections, breast & nipple care, baby blues, post-natal depression.
Some essential oils, blended using the correct dilution rates, are safe during pregnancy and safe when breastfeeding.
With this in mind, our natural product range, at this stage includes:
Leila - Morning Sickness
Azure - Stress Relief
Serena - Antenatal Headaches
Empress - Labour & Childbirth
Shanti - Baby Blues & PND
Athena - Self Healing
Rosetta - Baby Whisperer (3-12 month old bubbas)
Coconut Virgin Oil - Breast Care
Jojoba Virgin Oil - Stretch Marks
Now the question you really want answered ... Labour and labor pain?!? Over the years, evaluative studies have been conducted to determine whether aromatherapy helps the mind and body, physically and emotionally, during the labour process.
Such studies have concluded the following as labour pain relievers: lavender, frankincense, rose, jasmine, clary sage, peppermint & lemon (diluted with a carrier oil to massage abdomen or back, add to cool baths or drop on to the forehead and palms of the hand).
Furthermore, an 8-year evaluative study at Oxford Brookes University found that aromatherapy was effective in managing labour pains during childbirth. The Study (of 8058 women) showed a drop in opiate pain relief by those who used aromatherapy. The expected 30% uptake of opiate pain relief dropped to 0.4%! Wish I knew then what I know now!
It has taken time, energy, formal study, independent research and several trials ... But, with much love, passion, care and consideration, I formulated Empress. She is your Ultimate Labour Blend and my favourite product because it is such a quintessentially unique blend that is shared on such a meaningful, magical and memorable day. But how will Empress help you throughout labour and childbirth?
Sneak peak at how Empress will help you in labour and childbirth:
🌿Lavender – pain management alternative for labour & delivery
🌿Peppermint – Transition Stage of labour
🌿Frankincense – Breathing & respiration
🌿Clary Sage – Enhances contractions
🌿Lemon – Energises & uplifts mood
NOTE: Recommendations are for use after your first trimester
Diffusers 3-5 drops per 130ml and diffuse intermittently in open area.
(Safe to diffuse during first trimester, no more than 2 hours per day).
Body massage 3-4 drops essential oil diluted with 1 tblsp (15ml) carrier oil. Avoid sensitive areas and eyes
Full Bath 5-10 drops essential oil diluted with 1 tblsp (15ml) carrier oil
Roller bottle apply to wrists, neck, behind earlobes, forehead or temples every 2-3 hours. Avoid sensitive areas and eyes
Inhalation 1 drop essential oil from a tissue or handkerchief
Shower 1-2 essential oil drops onto washcloth or sponge while standing under running water. Avoid sensitive areas and eyes
OR DIY :)
The recommended ratio is 1% dilution during pregnancy (1 drop of oil per teaspoon of your favourite carrier oil).
Safe essential oils to use include:
Bergamot, Chamomile Roman, Clary Sage (after 37 weeks), Eucalyptus, Frankincense, Geranium, Grapefruit, Lavender, Lemon, Lime, Mandarin, Orange, Patchouli Light, *Peppermint, Rose Damask, Sandalwood, Tea Tree, Ylang Ylang.
* Please Note: It has been suggested that Peppermint may affect milk supply while lactating. This claim has also been dismissed due to lack of evidence. My practice follows the advice of the Tisserand Institute, Valerie Ann Worwood and the Australian College of Aromatherapy.