Let’s talk about essential oils and aromatherapy… and how it may help you in your  life: physically, mentally, emotionally and even spiritually. We are continuing the tips on how to use them during labour and childbirth.

Did you read my post on 5 Essential Oils for Labour? Otherwise here are my favourite oils for childbirth. Now we are exploring how we can actually use these pure essential oils whilst labouring and giving birth.

Not all essential oils are appropriate during pregnancy, birth or postpartum so please refer back to this and this article and always check with your midwife, doula and general practitioner (gp).

How to use Essential Oils – safely?

I wrote this post specifically about safety and essential oil use. But now we are exploring how to enjoy the healing power of aromatherapy for labour and childbirth. And here is the list of oils perfect for this special time.

Preparation is key for essential oil use during childbirth. At the time you just want to tell people what to do. So get your mix blended, massage oils prepared, any flannels or diffusers ready.

1 Massage oils

For massage 1% dilution should be sufficient (and definitely safe). This equates to 1 drop of essential oil in 5ml of base oil. In a 20 ml bottle you can add a total of 4 drops of essential oils of your choice. Adding an extra 1 or drops in a 20 ml bottle/cup is fine too. Especially the lighter citrus oils.

Mix it into a cold pressed vegetable oil of your choice: sunflower oil, coconut (or fractionated), grapeseed, or almond. There prepared Mother’s Massage Oils like this that can be used throughout pregnancy.

Have the mix ready and at hand whether you birth at home, hospital or midwife centre. As your birth partner to massage where you feel pain and enjoy being touched. Lower back, thighs and feet are often favourites. As are neck and shoulders to help relax and breathe easier.

2 Diffuse the scent

Add your favourite oils to an electric diffuser such as this one or a cheaper easier option such as this one (which can even be used in the car).

Alternatively find your favourites and add a drop or two on a tissue or flannel to inhale.

3 In the bath

You might not be able to use oils in the birthing pool. One reason being that babies are too delicate for these powerful essences. But while you are labouring and taking baths you can definitely enjoy aromatic baths. If used in a bath mix it with a shower/bath gel such as this one, bath oil similar to this or shampoo or liquid soap. Never use it neat as essential oils don’t dissolve in water.

I hope this will offer you ideas on how to enjoy the aromatic oils for this very special time in your life. And remember to check which oils you like. Scent is so personal and changes during pregnancy. If something doesn’t feel or smell right for you – then try something different. It has to work for you!


nhs guidelines

Tisserand safety article

Notes from Advanced Aromatherapy for Pregnancy CPD course with Neal’s Yard Remedies

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