Category: Women

Essential Oils and Pregnancy

By , August 16, 2010 8:58 pm

The skin becomes more permeable and sensitive during pregnancy. During the therapeutic application of blended essential oils, tiny molecules of essential oil permeate the skin thus allowing essential oils into the blood stream and other tissue fluids, consequently essential oils are able to cross the placental barrier. It should be pointed out that there is no evidence to suggest that unborn babies have been harmed as a result of their mothers using essential oils during pregnancy.

Nevertheless there are a number of essential oils that stimulate menstruation during the first trimester. In reality a woman would need to apply a very high concentration of essential oils to cause miscarriage or toxicity, certainly far more than is used in the therapeutic application of blended essential oils. However it is always best to err on the side of caution. If you are at all concerned about using essential oils or have a history of miscarriage it is best to avoid using essential oils during the first trimester of pregnancy.

As skin sensitivity is increased during pregnancy it is advisable to complete a skin test before using any product containing essential oils. Let us know if you are pregnant or trying to become pregnant as we recommend using a lower dilution of essential oils in therapeutic application and will blend products accordingly. There are several essential oils that can help with itchy skin, restless legs and prevent stretch marks, all of which are common during pregnancy.

LIST A – Oils to use with safety during the whole pregnancy:

Benzoin
Bergamot
Bitter Orange
Black Pepper
Cedarwood
Eucalyptus
Frankincense
Geranium
Ginger
Grapefruit
Lemon
Mandarin
Neroli
Petitgrain
Pine
Ravensara
Rose geranium
Rose Otto
Rosewood
Sandalwood
Sweet Orange
Tea Tree
Ylang Ylang

LIST B – Oils which have very mild diuretic or emmenagoguic properties but are never the less considered safe to use during the whole pregnancy dependant upon client history:

Chamomile German
Chamomile Moroccan
Chamomile Roman
Lavender
Marjoram Sweet
Marjoram (Spanish)
Thyme Sweet
True Melissa

LIST C – Oils which are safe to use during the second half of the pregnancy:

Basil
Cajuput
Clary Sage
Cypress
Myrhh
Niaouli
Rosemary

Unless recommended by an aromatherapist, it is best during pregnancy not to use any unknown oils or any not mentioned in lists A, B and C.

LIST D. Oils contain ketones or phenols and, although they have not been proved to be dangerous at the low levels always recommended for aromatherapy, they are best used only by therapists at this time. They should be treated with the greatest respect at all times.

Angelica
Aniseed
Basil
Camphor
Caraway
Clove
Cinnamon
Fennel (Sweet)
Hyssop
Juniper
Lemongrass
Nutmeg
Origanum
Parsley
Pennyroyal
Savory
Tarragon
Thyme (Red)

HT Therapy for Relief

By , August 13, 2010 8:29 pm

This study, which reports increased tumor size and lymph node spread in patients using E+P, adds to the evidence against the use of long-term HT therapy in asymptomatic older women. For symptomatic women who are younger (ages 45 to 55 years) and at less risk for breast cancer as a function of age, HT can still be considered for relief of moderate-to-severe menopausal symptoms after full discussion of the risks and benefits and consideration of other alternatives. This study should increase our caution in using HT, and stresses the need for individual discussions and use of the lowest effective dose of both estrogen and progestin for the shortest duration.

Research is needed regarding the safety and efficacy of lower doses of estrogen alone, more creative progestin dosing for uterine protection such as menopausal progesterone intrauterine devices (IUDs), and additional options for vasomotor relief such as the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) and serotonin/norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs).

The question then remains as to whether all patients who have had breast cancer should be denied the benefits of estrogen replacement therapy. This is particularly relevant in the patient who has serious quality of life issues before her. At present, therapy with ERT/HRT is indicated in the management of quality of life issues, using lowest possible dose of hormone for shortest duration of time possible. Is it appropriate to deny a woman the option of taking replacement therapy for relief of her symptoms when there is no clinical evidence that it adversely affects outcome?