As the second trimester winds down to a close, I realized how little I’ve been posting about using essential oils in my own pregnancy!!
How silly of me, someone who works with essential oils almost daily, not to be sharing my own experiences. You see, lately I’ve been consulting as an aromatherapist and writing for a few other blogs, so my time has been super limited.
But I really wanted to get this post out because I think so many people want to use essential oils while pregnant, but aren’t sure which oils are safe to use.
I’ve done a lot of research on essential oil safety during pregnancy in my aromatherapy education and consulting work. There’s so much debate on what is and isn’t safe to use.
In my opinion, there are three categories of essential oils during pregnancy: oils that are definitely safe, probably safe, and not safe.
I only use oils from the definitely safe category. I also use essential oils in low dilution (1%). You’ll see the list of what I’ve been using at the bottom of the article.
Essential Oils to Avoid During Pregnancy
Julia Lawless states in her text the Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils these oils should be avoided during pregnancy:
- Anise star
- Bay laurel
- Celery seed
- Cinnamon leaf
- Clary sage
- Sweet fennel
- Spanish sage
- Plus few more obscure oils, but these are the big ones.
The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy suggests avoiding these essential oils during pregnancy, labor and breastfeeding:
- Basil ct. estragole
- Parsley (seed or leaf)
Safe Essential oils for Pregnancy
The International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists (IFFA) suggests that these oils are commonly used and safe during pregnancy:
- Bergamot (Citrus bergamia)
- Black pepper (Piper nigrum)
- Chamomile German (Chamomilla recutita)
- Chamomile Roman (Chamaemelum nobile)
- Clary (Salvia sclarea)
- Cypress (Cupressus sempervirens)
- Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus smithii,)
- Frankincense (Boswellia carteri)
- Geranium (Pelargonium graveolens)
- Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
- Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi)
- Juniper (Juniperus communis)
- Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
- Lemon (Citrus limon)
- Mandarin (Citrus reticulata)
- Marjoram Sweet (Origanum majorana)
- Neroli (Citrus aurantium amara flos)
- Petitgrain (Citrus aurantium var amaraol)
- Rose Otto (Rosa centifolia)
- Sandalwood (Santalum album)
- Sweet Orange (Citrus sinensis)
- Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia)
- Ylang Ylang (Cananga odorata)
My list is somewhat LOT shorter. Here are the oils I have been using during my pregnancy:
- Chamomile (German and Roman)
- Juniper (berry)
- Sweet Orange
- Tea Tree
- Ylang Ylang
Essential oils during the first trimester
I’ve read many texts that say to avoid essential oils altogether during the first trimester, but the NAHA and other resources indicate that normal, low dilution topical application and inhalation of safe essential oils should be find during the first trimester.
I used essential oils sparingly during the first trimesters of both of my pregnancies and suffered no ill effects.
Also, I am in the group of aromatherapists who take a firm stance on not ingesting essential oils (whether during pregnancy or otherwise). You can learn a little bit more about my stance on ingestion in this article on Essential Oil Safety.
Next week, I’ll be posting 10 recipes for pregnant moms. Stay tuned!