Aromatherapy is a wonderful way to enhance your physical and mental health during pregnancy and labour. It can help you feel calmer, and help with those common pregnancy discomforts. We sat down with Lisa Heeney, Aromatherapy expert, founder of Aromabump and author of The Belly Bible for Aromatherapy in Pregnancy who shared her top tips for using essential oils and some of her favourite blends.
1. Safety first! If you're using essential oils on your skin or in the bath - they must be first be diluted in a carrier oil like grape seed or sweet almond. A very safe 1% dilution which is safe for pregnancy is 50ml of your chosen carrier oil and 13 drops of essential oil(s) in total.
2. When vaporising your essential oils, no need to keep your diffuser on all the time. Choose 3-4 drops of your essential oil add to your burner/diffuser and leave on for 30 mins and then turn off for one hour. Refresh your oils and repeat. No carrier oil is required when vaporising.
3. Essential Oils are not really recommended for children under 2 yrs. A more gentle solution is to use floral waters like lavender, or chamomile and spray that into the air using an atomiser.
4. The aim of aromatherapy is to improve the mental, physical or emotional state of an individual - you do not need to use a lot, just enough - too much of any essential oil may have the opposite effect to what you're aiming for.
5. Perfect vaporiser sleep blend diffused in your home in the evening time could be: 2 drops lavender, 1 drop mandarin, 1 drop frankincense essential oils
A good vaporiser blend to help encourage a healthy immune system could be: 2 drops lemon, 1 drop eucalyptus, 1 drop pine essential oils
One of the most common ailments during pregnancy is sleep deprivation. Many mums to be experience insomnia, especially in the second to third trimesters, when pregnancy symptoms increase and a growing bump makes it harder to get comfortable in bed. The below blend is great to use in a warm evening bath before bed, giving you that zen to lull you into a deep sleep.
Aromatherapy offers an alternative choice for easing the pain and discomfort of labour and relieving physiological symptoms. You can prepare the below blend in advance and start massaging in when labour starts
Feeling tender down there? A sitz bath is a great way to relieve pain after labour. A sitz bath is a pool of water that you sit in, with only your hips and bottom submerged. You can take a sitz bath using a special basin designed for this purpose and placed securely on a toilet seat, or you can fill up your bathtub with a small amount of water and create a sitz bath that way.