Why Use Aromatherapy during Pregnancy ?
Aromatherapy and massage have proven to be useful tools during pregnancy and giving birth/ labor. The therapeutic use of aromatic plant extracts and essential oils can offer a pregnant woman a gentler way of achieving most favorable wellbeing during the antepartum period, along with labor. This is so, since aromatic plant extracts and essential oils can help deal with many of the physical and emotional symptoms of pregnancy. This form of therapy is not commonly used in the first trimester, particularly the first three months of pregnancy. If used earlier than the above stated period, there are chances that the aromatic oils may cause nausea as well as headaches.
Use in Pregnancy and Labor
The use of aromatherapy largely helps women to effectively manage discomfort from varicose veins, backache, and nausea, prevent as well as reduce stretch marks. You should use aromatherapy massage in the last trimester to relieve backache, and to promote relaxation and mental wellbeing. Internal use of aromatherapy oils should be undertaken with caution in pregnancy. This is so, since there have been significant reports of side effects related to oral ingestion or vaginal use, due to higher doses. These doses are likely to find their way to the fetus, given the fact that the placenta is permeable to aromatherapy oils because of their small molecular structure.
Aromatherapy throughout pregnancy can provide immense support and benefit. Normally, physiological and hormonal changes, accompanied with anticipation, fear and concern for the baby’s wellbeing may potentially lead to anxiety at different stages in pregnancy. These factors can significantly be aggravated by sleeplessness and fatigue. Therefore, the support provided with the use of aromatherapy goes much further than providing a satisfyingly sweet-scented development by helping minimize maternal stress. In addition, aromatherapy contributes to both positive health of the expectant mother and child.
Anxiety reduction during labor: therapeutic use of aromatic plant extracts and essential oils in baths or massage to assist with reduction of anxiety during labor is basically the most renowned use of aromatherapy during pregnancy. From a specialist point of view, anxiety during labor may impact the health of both mother and child. With that said, the use of aromatherapy on anxiety reduction to both you and your baby may potentially contribute to the following: greater control of labor. Greater partner involvement; reduced use of opioid medication; reduced cases of mechanical innervations; greater control over pain. Optimum placental oxygenation; and giving birth to a more alert baby who is able to suckle.
Recommended Aromatherapy Oils in Pregnancy
Lavender: This aromatherapy oil gently sedates a pregnant woman, and it also nurtures, calms, sooths, and relaxes the body.
Marjoram: This is one of the deep relaxing oils in aromatherapy, which comforts, warms, and deeply sedating. In addition, the oil relieves aches, pains and relaxes the muscles.
Jasmine: This particular aromatherapy oil will normally uplifts you, provide you with the much needed warmth, and relieves cramps.
Clary sage: Unlike other useful aromatherapy oils, this one is more suitable in labor than during pregnancy. The oil does the following-uplifts, balancing, reduces tension and relieves cramps.
Sandalwood: This is useful aromatherapy oil during pregnancy and giving birth. Since it provides strength, helps to center as well as stabilize the pregnancy, brings courage and soothing the pregnancy.
Frankincense and cedarwood: frankincense provides comfort, sooths and deeply relaxes the mother’s body as well as the pregnancy. On the other hand, cedarwood relaxes the body and relieves any stress associated with pregnancy or labor.
Lemon and mandarin: These aromatherapy oils are both emotionally uplifting and refreshing. You can effectively blend these oils with other aromatherapy oils in order to enhance their full potential.
Cypress: This is powerful aromatherapy oil, which is useful for respiratory problems, and provides reliable therapy for varicose veins, cramps, and fluid retention.
As much as aromatherapy is referred to be the most preferred way of managing pregnancy and labor. You need to take into consideration the following. Aromatherapy oils that are generally considered safe include: cardamom, clary sage, geranium, lavender, rosewood, sandalwood, cedarwood, neroli, mandarin, sweet orange, ginger and coriander. Those that are considered safe to use externally include: mace, lavandin, yarrow, fennel, lavender spike, and rosemary. Those that need to be used with caution include. But are not limited to the following: rue, perilla, oakmoss, cotton lavender, cangerama, and Artemisia. Those that you need to generally avoid as much as possible include: Savin, Spanish sage, plectranthus, Parsley leaf, and camphor. You should; however, not directly use aromatherapy without the guidance of aromatherapy specialist.