Essential Oils and Pregnancy
In the "natural" product world, (another blog on what's considered "natural" in the retail world soon to come...), essential oils are all the rage. The internet is an endless sea of suppliers and manufacturers of various degrees and qualities of E.O.s so much so that it almost turns your brain to mush. Then add hydrosols on top of that and you might just implode trying to figure it all out. As a studying herbalist years deep in self taught curriculum, books and research as well as being mentored by elders and taught in various classes, I have literally shed tears (and the occasional book toss...though nothing was ever proven...ooommmm) over trying to retain the amount of information there is on herbs, herbal medicine, hydrosols, essential oils and using/applying said methods and items safety and effectively. Hang in there...
While exhausting its a good call to do your homework. Ever felt nauseous by an overpowering perfume or E.O.? Thats your body communicating with you and thank the universe something on this planet still does... Grabbing and using E.O.s without the proper information, advice or at least some decent reading up first can be dangerous. You have kids dumping E.O.s in wax and calling it "healing" or "aroma therapy" and you could possibly be inhaling (or dare I think it...ingesting or absorbing) the exact opposite of said claims. This would be a novel if I dove too deeply into all of that, so please do your research. However as a mother, one topic in particular seems important to mention as I myself, use essential oils in my products, and feel its important to mention the following topic, Essential Oils and Pregnancy.
Did you know that it takes:
256 pounds of peppermint leaf to make 1lb of peppermint E.O.
150 pounds (or more) of lavender flowers to make one pound of lavender E.O.
Thousands of pounds of roses to make 1 pound of rose essential oil
Thats some serious concentration, and anything heavily concentrated (especially THAT heavily) should be used with care and caution, as it easily gets absorbed into he skin and into..ahem..YOUR BLOODSTREAM. Ya, serious...
Plain and simple some E.O.s should be avoided during pregnancy, most people don't know that or fail to mention it...and with every Tom, Dick and Harry throwing them around like leaves to wind, you don't know what you're getting, or if its safe, and while it is YOUR responsibility to educate yourself (and I cannot stress that enough!), I believe it is also the providers responsibility to at least mention the following (among other things, but again, not a novel today) risks or at the minimum, cautions. Yes, I hear you... "its not like its a shot of whiskey or a turbulent roller coaster at 6 months along"... but it's your BODY and your BABY, and if you're going to stay away from toxic things while pregnant well hell...too much water can kill you too (look it up eye rollers) so nothing is a small thing when you're making life. Our skin is the biggest organ we have, wether you like it or not, you absorb WHATEVER your skin comes in contact with or is exposed to, including the BS chemicals they put in lotions, creams etc...Ultimately, your body your choice always, the information is merely here for those who wish it to be.
The following is a list of essential oils that should be avoided during pregnancy, why..? In that I encourage you to research it, as it is my goal to empower everyone with the ability to naturally and safely use herbs and plants etc for a healthy life, and that can only be done if you LEARN, not just read and blog an go for it. Herbalist/medicine worker in every town, city and village, the world would be so much healthier... Along with the disclaimer (as required...*insert annoyed grunt here) that while I have no formal documentation to wave in your face that says I have the official brain mass to state such things, its is backed with years of passionate research, as it is a major passion of mine and becoming my life's work, articles and studies done by those who DO have said degrees and pretty certificates, (as well as the obvious ability to find any and all information you need via the blessing and curse we all know as: the internet, but don't bite everything they feed you kids...), and that this may not be a complete list, and only to be used for education/entertainment purposes only and not a replacement for sound professional medical advice or cure for any medical issues, always talk to a licensed professional regarding use and medical issues.., yada yada and so on...at least its just a place for you to start, because as I've said before, Its our own responsibilities to educate ourselves on what we are putting on or in our bodies, PERIOD. I imagine thats why after years of side effects, allergic reactions and injury, they've now made it law to list ingredients in all edibles and beauty products, and thank the universe for that! Wether or not they are listing the ingredients truthfully and completely..well again...thats another blog (possible rant) entirely... no novel today folks..
E.O.'s to avoid during pregnancy
8.Clary Sage (occasionally used during labor by midwives safely)
13.Horseradish (major caution here...)
18.Mugwart (should not be used by anyone, they say...)
And again, these are the ESSENTIAL OILS, not the herbs, so don't go avoiding any nutmeg/cinnamon cookie cravings and then hate me for all eternity because your food was boring during pregnancy, go ahead and put Oregano in your spaghetti sauce...the spice, not the EO... Happy baby brewing, Namaste.