Learn how to use essential oils during pregnancy and breastfeeding
Essential oils can be useful for creating a healthy body, supporting the immune system, soothing feelings of discomfort, and more.* Because of these powerful benefits, essential oils are useful and effective during every phase of life—even during pregnancy. By following proper safety guidelines, you can feel confident in using essential oils during pregnancy.
When you are pregnant, your body goes through a wide variety of changes. These changes often bring feelings of discomfort and sensitivity throughout the body. While every pregnancy is a little different, the goal is to support the healthy, proper function of the entire body. Along with proper nutrition and regular exercise, essential oils can be used during pregnancy to help support a healthy body and healthy baby.
Is it safe to use essential oils while I’m pregnant?
You might be wondering, “It is safe to use essential oils during pregnancy?” Due to the ethical issue of testing expecting mothers and their fetuses, there are limited clinical studies addressing the safety of essential oils during pregnancy. However, we can rely on the history of safe use to determine which essential oils to use during pregnancy.
It is important to remember that during pregnancy, it is not uncommon for a woman to be sensitive to essential oils. Due to these sensitivities and all of the changes that occur in the body when pregnant, it is important to consult with your doctor before using essential oils during pregnancy.
Talking to your doctor about using essential oils while pregnant
Even if you’ve used essential oils before without incident, you should still inform your doctor of any essential oils you plan to use during your pregnancy. Your doctor knows you, your specific health concerns, and the status of your pregnancy, and therefore, should be aware of any and all essential oil products you plan to use during pregnancy.
Because each pregnancy is different, your doctor is the best resource for making a treatment plan and determining which essential oils are best to use during pregnancy for each individual. Your doctor can give you a good idea of what to avoid during pregnancy, and any other safety measures you should take based on your personal health and the health of your growing baby.
Other safety guidelines for using essential oils when pregnant
As mentioned, it is not uncommon for pregnant women to experience increased sensitivity to essential oils. You might consider adapting the amount of oil you use or application methods when using essential oils during pregnancy to help with any sensitivities that arise.
It is also important to remember that not all essential oils are created equal. It is crucial that you use pure essential oils during pregnancy—you will want oils that are free of toxins and contaminants. All doTERRA essential oils are thoroughly tested to ensure purity and safety, and when used appropriately, provide a safe option during pregnancy.
What essential oils are safe to use during pregnancy?
Once you’ve talked with your doctor about your pregnancy and essential oils, you can start to safely use essential oils during pregnancy. Here are a few ideas for how to use essential oils during pregnancy:
Essential oils for morning sickness and nausea:
- Peppermint oil and Cardamom oil can alleviate occasional stomach upset when taken in veggie capsules or added to water.
- Ginger oil may help reduce occasional nausea when taken internally.
- Spearmint oil offers many of the same benefits as Peppermint oil, but serves as a milder option to help with sensitivity or stomach upset that occurs during pregnancy.
- The DigestZen® Digestive Blend is doTERRA’s tummy tamer blend and provides a healthy, natural way to soothe an upset stomach.
Essential oils for heartburn: DigestTab® Chewable Tablets are infused with the DigestZen tummy tamer blend, delivering digestion-supportive oils, and the acid-neutralizing benefits of calcium carbonate. Calcium carbonate helps maintain stomach acid balance to help you deal with the discomfort that comes from heartburn and indigestion—without the chalky aftertaste.
Essential oils for pregnancy back discomfort: Massaging soothing essential oil blends like Deep Blue® on the lower back can be helpful when experiencing back discomfort. When discomfort in the legs or feet arise, rubbing the AromaTouch® Massage Blend on the lower extremities can help these problem areas.
Essential oils for better sleep during pregnancy: Good sleep and rest are paramount during pregnancy. Blends like doTERRA Balance®, doTERRA Breathe®, doTERRA Serenity®, are full of calming and soothing essential oils and can be used aromatically create a relaxing environment. Other essential oils like Clary Sage, Dill, Lavender, and Sandalwood promote feelings of calmness and can create an ideal atmosphere for achieving a good night of rest. In addition to diffusion and aromatic use, these oils can also be applied topically or used internally when appropriate.
For restful sleep during pregnancy, try the following suggestions:
- Place a few drops of essential oil on your blankets or pillows at nighttime.
- Diffuse calming essential oils for 30 minutes before going to bed.
- Add one to two drops of Lavender oil to a cup of hot water for a relaxing tea that can help you unwind at bedtime.
Essential oils for better skin during pregnancy: A pregnant woman’s body is ever changing, and this includes changes in the skin. As the body works to keep up with a growing fetus, the skin can often become stretched and taut. Another challenge that many women experience during pregnancy is an increase in oil production of the skin. Thankfully, many essential oils can help to reduce the appearance of oily skin, reduce the appearance of blemishes, and beautify the skin.
Here are a few of the best essential oils for skin during pregnancy:
Essential oils for emotional support during pregnancy: In addition to all of the changes occurring in the body during pregnancy, the changes in a woman’s hormones can cause heightened emotions. To manage mood during pregnancy, consider using any of the essential oils from the doTERRA Emotional Aromatherapy System™. This collection provides a variety of oils to help you deal with the wide range of emotions that you’ll encounter throughout your pregnancy. Use these oils and any of your favorite calming, soothing, or uplifting oils to help manage your mood during the emotionally taxing months of pregnancy.
Essential oils for labor and delivery:
Because essential oils promote uplifting and calming feelings, they can be extremely useful during labor and delivery when stress, anxious feelings, and emotions are running high. Research shows that women who use essential oils during labor and delivery have reported less anxious feelings and felt more positive about their experience, when compared to women who did not use essential oils.
- Use Black Pepper and Basil oil diluted with Fractionated Coconut Oil on the lower back to ease discomfort during labor.
- The combination of doTERRA Balance® and Wild Orange oil make a good blend, especially during delivery when you want to balance emotions and dispel anxious feelings.
- Try using the AromaTouch® blend topically for comforting and relaxing effects. This blend helps to soothe the mind and the body, and is especially helpful for soothing areas of tension and stress when applied to the back and shoulders.
- Clary Sage oil can be used to reduce tension, which is helpful for contractions. Consider blending Clary Sage with other calming essential oils like Lavender oil or Geranium oil.
Is it safe to use essential oils when breastfeeding?
In addition to concerns about essential oils and pregnancy, many people ask, “Is it safe to use essential oils while breastfeeding?” While the body changes significantly during pregnancy, these changes don’t end with the birth of the baby—your body will continue to change as you adapt to post-partum life. Just as you should discuss the use of essential oils with your doctor before using them for pregnancy, you’ll also want to consult with your physician when you begin nursing.
Again, your doctor is the best resource for advice when it comes to your body, your baby, and any special concerns you might have. Just as you would check with your doctor before using any new products when breastfeeding, it is important to discuss your essential oil use with your healthcare professional when you become a nursing mother.
Like pregnancy, breastfeeding places a lot of demands on a mother’s body. When nursing, the goal is to maintain a strong and healthy body that will support a healthy newborn. With the help of your doctor, you can use essential oils and essential oil products that support healthy function of the whole body.