Do you have your essential oils for birth?
Essential oils are an important part of my daily life and have been for many years now. I love the positive effects they can have and the benefits that my family and I see when using them. We diffuse them in our home to create different moods and treat our daughters when they are sick. I also use them religiously in my practice as a birth doula and postpartum doula. Essential oils are very potent remedies and require precise knowledge when using them. I am happy to report that this month I will be finishing my certification to become a licensed Aromatherapist!
What are Essential Oils?
Essential oils are the fragrant, highly concentrated and natural, yet volatile, constituents that have the ability to move us. They are found in plants and are extracted in various ways. They can be used alone, or with others, or diluted in many types of carriers.
People around the world use essential oils for various reasons, including physical and emotional healing, to develop skin care products, and to create safe home and work environments.
Aromatherapy in Birth
Aromatherapy can be a wonderful tool to use during your labour. It can enrich the experience, ease pains and even nurture the mother. There are some essentials oils for birth that can strengthen contractions while also reducing pain. As well, the right essential oil can help create the right mood, reducing stress and anxiety. Some women have not only reported quicker labour when using essential oils but also a lower rate of medical interventions.
How To Choose Essential Oils For Birth
As a birth doula, finding out what smells you like most is the first really important step. This is done in the form of a smell test at one of our prenatal meetings. I love helping women access their own personal smell memory. Aromas can evoke positive associations and memories, which can calm anxieties and reduce stress levels. (Or the contrary! We’ll then stay away from the smells you don’t like.) Then, during labour, I bring the oils or blends that I created specifically for you, to recreate these positive memories to make you feel good.
For example, I had a client who liked to bake a lot and we made a scent that smelled just like molasses! In the hard throes of labour, I pulled it out and just smelling it relaxed her and helped her to labour on. My goal is to help soften the mood and help you feel relaxed so that you remain in the moment and feel confident about your birth.
Top 5 Essential Oils For Birth
There have been many studies that have looked at the benefits of using of essential oils in hospital birthing centres. Here are some of my favourite essential oils to help you with some common labour ailments:
Lavender and Bergamot
If birth is stressing you out, this one’s for you! Diffused into the air, either with a diffuser, or just by putting a few drops onto a cotton ball, lavender and bergamot together can reduce maternal anxiety.
Women in labour often feel nauseous due to the amount of pain they are feeling, or the medication that they’re taking. The smell of peppermint essential oil can reduce nausea and vomiting and allow you to feel better.
One of my favourites, we can use clary sage to increase contractions and stimulate labour when needed. I like to waft the smell of clary sage around the birthing room (like a fairy godmother!) or use in a cream to massage specific acupressure points.
In the early stages of labour jasmine essential oil can relieve the pain you may be feeling from contractions. It can also be used to strengthen contractions when needed.
Sometimes, we need to change the mood in the birthing room. Whether you’ve been sick or have just had enough and getting discouraged, sweet orange essential oil has a very uplifting and refreshing effect and can give you that extra boost of encouraging energy.
Warning: Safety in Pregnancy
It’s important to know, however, that not every essential oil is safe for use during pregnancy. If you are unsure about which ones to use, please consult an aromatherapist.
Please give us a call at 514-975-8973 and book an appointment with me if you’re interested in learning more about how essential oils can help you during birth! I would love to chat.
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