At our July meeting, we had the honor of welcoming Sally Beredo, a doTERRA Independent Consultant, to speak with us about the uses of Essential Oils for Maternity. Much of the information given that night was a basic introduction to essential oils, what they are, the different types, and the basics of how to use them. Sally offered to set up a more informative maternity session with the help of another consultant, Shyanne, who came in to help teach the class from Utah. Many thanks to both Sally and Shyanne, who gave their time and talents to hold such an informative class for anyone interested in essential oils and their benefits.
For those who were unable to make the meeting or the class in Arlington, we sure did miss you, and hope that this information is helpful when you are looking to use essential oils for the pregnant, postpartum or nursing mama. If you would like more in depth information, look for contact info for our wonderful presenters below. They would be happy to speak with you more about any of the information here and would also be happy to assist you in getting the oils you need.
ESSENTIAL OILS FOR MATERNITY
What is an Essential Oil?
Essential Oils are natural aromatic compounds found in plants and are drawn from the plants by methods of steam distillation or cold pressed extraction. Essential oils provide powerful, safe benefits without any side effects.
Grades of Essential Oils
When looking to use essential oils for health benefits, be sure to watch out for the 'grade' of the EO. SYNTHETIC grade EO's are only for use as perfumes and to 'smell good'. FOOD grade EO's must be held to GRAS (Generally Regarded As Safe) standards, but will usually say 'not for internal use' on the bottle. THERAPEUTIC grade EO's are more commonly used for health benefits, but many will still stay 'not for internal use' on the bottles, and are generally used by diffusion or diluting and rubbing on the skin. doTERRA's oils are CPTG, or Certified Pure Therapeutic Grade, oils and have supplement facts on the bottle to show they are safe for internal use.
How to use Essential Oils
Aromatic - You can diffuse EO's into a room either with an electric diffuser that sends a continuous mist of the EO into the air, or by placing some on your hands then cupping and inhaling, bath salts, or cotton wick.
Topical - You can also apply EO's directly to the skin for systemic or localized effects. Some topical application methods include massage and reflexology. These methods provide immediate comfort and immune support.
Internal - Some EO's are able to be consumed as a dietary supplement for targeted wellness of the digestive system, mouth and throat, liver and urinary tract.
General Essential Oil Safety
Essential oils are very safe and gentle with few side effects. However, you do want to try and be sure to keep out of the eyes, ears and nose. Skin sensitivity is the primary safety issue, so be sure to follow all label directions for safest use. Some oils require dilution before use, but be sure to use other oils, not water.
*PLEASE NOTE: There are 2 oils that are not meant for routine maternity use. The first being Clary Sage. Clary Sage can induce labor and is NOT meant to be used before labor begins. Also, the use of Peppermint oil in late pregnancy can reduce lactation, and therefore should not be used once a woman is full term.*
COMMON MATERNITY DISCOMFORTS
Nausea and Indigestion
Apply 3-5 drops of Peppermint, Ginger, Fennel or DigestZen Blend on abdomen. For some, just open the bottle and smell for relief or just put a small amount under your nose.
Lavender, Sandalwood and Ginger into FCO (Fractionated Coconut Oil) and massage abdomen. OR Put 3-5 drops of Fennel, Ginger, or Peppermint into a capsule and swallow. Ginger and Lemon, 1-2 drops each, mix in water with honey or stevia for nausea.
Heartburn and Acid Reflux
Apply a couple drops of Peppermint, DigestZen Blend, or Wild Orange on ears or in mouth.
Geranium, Cypress, or Lavender oils diluted in FCO then applied to hemorrhoid.
Apply Lavender and Myrrh or Immortelle diluted in FCO to stretch marks.
Soak feet in a warm bath with 5 drops Geranium, 10 drops Lavender and 2 drops Cypress.
Swelling and Water Retention
Apply 3-5 drops of Lavender and Lemon, Orange, Grapefruit or Cypress diluted in FCO and massage into hands, feet and ankles. For internal remedy, try 3-5 drops of Grapefruit, Lemon and/or Lime into every glass of water you drink (between 3-4 qts a day). Elevate your legs 3 inches above the heart.
BEST CHOICES FOR LABOR
- Balance - Apply to feet to help instill confidence throughout the labor process.
- Serenity or Elevation blends - Reduces anxiety and promotes calm. Gives energy and stimulates circulation.
- Deep Blue, PastTense, Peppermint or White Fir - Helps ease pain from back labor
Recipe once labor has started:
15 drops carrier oil plus:
5 drops Ylang Ylang
4 drops Helichrysum
2 drops DigestZen
2 drops Peppermint
2 drops Clary Sage
Massage on the inside of ankles, lower stomach and low back for nausea and muscle pain.
Geranium and Lavender in 1 oz of FCO for 3-6 weeks prior to due date to be used for perineal massage.
Recipe for Crowning
20 drops Helichrysum with 2 Tbsp FCO and apply all over perineum. Helps to stretch tissue while minimizing swelling and avoiding tears. Also helps prevent bruising on baby's head.
OILS FOR THE NEW BABY
Frankincense on the crown of head and spine.
Myrrh on umbilical cord to help seal tissue and protect all systems of the body.
Balance on feet to ground and align babe.
Melissa on bottoms of feet.
POSTPARTUM FOR MOM
White Fir and Lavender on tummy for after pains.
Immortelle Blend, 20-30 drops in empty 15ml spray bottle, fill rest with FCO, and use as a Peri Spray. May be used on circumcisions as well.
Balance on feet morning and evening for grounding.
Geranium, Lavender, Sandalwood, Ylang Ylang. Diffuse 2-3 drops of each to promote peace and calm.
Lemon, Vetiver, Balance Blend, Elevation Blend
1 drop Lavender
3 drops Grapefruit
1 drop Ylang Ylang
1 drop Bergamont
1 drop Grapefruit
1 drop Clary Sage
1 drop Wild Orange
3 drops Frankincense
Relief from dry, cracked nipples
Dilute 1:1 drops of Myrrh, Geranium or Sandalwood with FCO and apply to nipples.
Melaleuca, Thyme, Clove, Rosemary or Wild Orange and Lavender. Massage into breast and lymph nodes under the armpit.
Increase Milk Flow
2-3 times a day, massage either Fennel, Basil, Geranium or Clary Sage into breast tissue or in capsule, but AVOID the nipple.
Decrease Milk Supply
2-3 drops of Peppermint, 3-5 times a day.
WELL BABY CARE
Frankincense on back. Balance on feet everyday to balance all body systems.
Geranium and Lemon on feet to help support the liver in breaking up bilirubin.
Colic or Tummy Aches
DigestZen or Fennel on tummy, 1:1 ratio with FCO if needed.
Sandalwood or Myrrh diluted in FCO, then lightly coat affected area. May also use Immortelle, Lavender, Helichrysum or Melaleuca.
If you would like to learn more about Essential Oils and their uses, whether in maternity or just for general health, please be sure to contact Sally Beredo at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also purchase any of these oils from her site at http://www.mydoterra.com/sallyberedo/