When it comes to essential oils, there are a million uses. Mix them together in a new combination and you have a mix specifically suited for your needs.
But have you thought about using essential oils during labor and delivery?
While they can’t relieve all your labor pain, they can help ease tension and anxiety. It is an all natural pain relief method with surprising benefits during labor and after delivery.
If you’re looking to incorporate an all natural pain relief method, then look no further! Here’s 15 essential oils to help you through labor and delivery!
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Everybody knows about the calming properties of lavender. In the essential oils for labor and birth world, lavender is the first line of defense for sleep and anxiety.
Other benefits of lavender include:
- Accelerates wound healing
- Lowers stress levels
- Relieves pain
- Contains anti-bacterial properties
- Improves digestion
- Promotes urine flow
- Helps blood circulation
I find the best benefit of lavender is stress relief. My main goal during labor is to remain calm and breathe through contractions. But what about relieving the pain of labor?
The New York University Medical Center found lavender essential oil added to oxygen after major surgery significantly improved pain control. Lavender can also be used as a message oil to reduce muscle tension, spasms and backache.
Lavender essential oil would have been perfect for my first labor because I had complete back labor. During labor, lavender could be messaged into tense muscles wherever you tend to carry stress including the back and shoulders.
If you’ve had a previous labor that was particularly stressful, lavender would be the perfect addition to your labor bag to reduce stress and pain levels.
Best uses for labor and delivery: Massage into sore muscle tissue of the shoulders and back for contractions; add into a warm bath to relieve painful contractions and lower stress; inhale to lower stress.
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Like lavender, peppermint is able to lessen muscle and joint pain. On top of decreasing pain, peppermint is known for its ability to decrease nausea and headaches.
Labor and delivery comes with more than just painful contractions. Some women do experience tension headaches and nausea, especially during the transition phase of labor. Which makes it one of the life saving essential oils for labor and birth during transition!
Other benefits of peppermint:
- Increased energy levels
- Improves IBS symptoms
- Decreases itchiness
- Reduces colic in babies
Best uses during labor and delivery: Use peppermint for a boost in energy in between contractions; combine peppermint and lavender with a carrier oil to make a message oil to soothe sore and tense muscles; inhale during the transition phase to fight nausea; use as a colic relief for baby after delivery (always talk to your doctor before doing this).
Frankincense has been used for centuries as far back as biblical times. While it serves many purposes during labor and delivery, frankincense also has other benefits.
Other benefits of frankincense:
- Relieves stress
- Promotes scar and wound healing
- Reduces inflammation in the joints
- Improves the immune system
- Improves digestion
Many women report that frankincense promotes brain development in newborn babies after birth. Although I couldn’t find any evidence to back this claim, frankincense is considered to be safe for babies.
Best uses for labor and delivery: Combine frankincense with a carrier oil to apply to the perineum area to prevent tearing during delivery; use after delivery to reduce the appearance of stretch marks; apply frankincense message oil to babies head for brain development; inhale during labor to reduce anxiety.
Myrrh is another essential oil for labor and birth that’s been used for centuries along side frankincense. This essential oil is known most for speeding up wound healing.
Other benefits of myrrh:
- Eases muscle spasms
- Contains anti-inflammatory properties
- Improves blood circulation
- Strengthens the immune system
- Prevents fungal infections
- Decreases microbial infections
While you can use myrrh for easing muscle spasms during labor, many women use it after delivery for healing the umbilical cord site.
Best uses for labor and delivery: Message on the umbilical cord stem to advance healing for your newborn; use on the perineal area to help heal a tear after delivery.
5. Clary Sage
Caution: Clary sage is not to be used during pregnancy! It is known for inducing contractions.
Therefore, clary sage should only be used as an essential oil for labor and birth if you are over your due date. Always seek the guidance of your doctor first before using natural remedies for inducing labor.
Clary sage oil works best when applied to the stomach, ankles and shoulders with a carrier oil.
Other benefits of clary sage:
- Alleviates menstrual pain
- Reduces labor pain
- Balances hormones
- Improves circulation
- Decreases blood pressure
- Lowers stress levels
- Reduces insomnia
- Prevents bacterial and fungal infections
Best uses for labor and delivery: Use for inducing labor; jumpstarting contractions of a stalled labor.
Caution: Jasmin is not to be used during pregnancy! It is known for inducing contractions.
Just like clary sage, jasmine essential oil should only be used if you are past your due date.
One of the best benefits of jasmine is its ability to reduce stress. Jasmine is best used during labor if used as a message oil. Message your stomach, shoulders and back to jumpstart contractions, while easing tension and stress.
Studies have found that jasmine has the ability to reduce anxiety and improve emotional and physical signs associated with low energy.
Other benefits of jasmine:
- Lowers depression
- Reduces anxiety
- Helps remove infections
- Improves the immune system to fight infections
- Helps diminish scars
- Decreases heart rate to promote relaxation
- Improves concentration
- Promotes better sleep
- Alleviates post-pregnancy symptoms
- Helps with lactation
Best uses for labor and delivery: Combine with a carrier oil to promote relaxation; help jumpstart contractions or a stalled labor; reduce the appearance of stretch marks or C-section scars; improves concentration to focus on labor; help to balance hormones after delivery; promotes breast milk production after birth.
7. Stress Away
Stress away by Young Living is an essential oil blend that includes lime, lavender, vanilla extract, cedarwood, ocotea and copaiba. Together they make an essential oil blend with a name that says it all.
This essential oil has the ability of calming your mind and promoting a relaxing environment. Stress away is easy to use for labor because it is in roll-on form. All you have to do is apply to the wrists and back of the neck when it gets stressful during labor.
Stress away is a perfect blend for women who want easy use of essential oils and who don’t just want a typical lavender or jasmine smell.
Best uses for labor and delivery: Use any time during labor to help calm emotions and promote a calm environment.
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When I think of essential oils I always think of eucalyptus as a powerful oil that works wonders for colds.
While eucalyptus helps relieve cold and flu symptoms, it’s also known for relieving pain. In a study published by Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, eucalyptus oil was inhaled for 30 minutes, three days after knee replacement surgery.
The results of the study found when inhaled eucalyptus oil can be used as “an intervention for pain relief.”
Other benefits of eucalyptus:
- Helps with respiratory issues
- Relieves coughing
- Reduces seasonal allergies
- Helps fight infections
- Reduces inflammation
- Reduces sinus pressure and pain
- Relieves headaches
- Contains antiseptic properties to help heal wounds
- Improves mental clarity
Best use: Inhale eucalyptus when you need to boost energy and relieve pain and inflammation; relieves headaches and promotes wound healing of the perineal area after delivery.
Chamomile comes in many varieties, but the best chamomile oils are considered to be Roman chamomile and German chamomile. While Roman chamomile works better for improving menstrual flow, German chamomile is better for inflammation.
Both essential oils for labor and birth can be used! It just depends on personal preference.
Other benefits of chamomile:
- Removes toxins caused by infections
- Prevents infections
- Fights depression
- Roman chamomile reduces feelings of anger
- Helps digestion
- Reduce the appearance of scars
- Relieves pain
- Alleviates gas
- Improves nervous system function
Best uses for labor and delivery: Use when you’re feeling depressed or angry during labor; inhale or combine with a carrier oil for a message oil to relieve pain; rub on your stomach after delivery to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks or a C-section scar; use after delivery to help promote healthy digestion and help alleviate excess gas.
10. Citrus Fresh
Like Stress Away, Citrus Fresh is an oil combination from Young Living. It contains a variety of essential oils that include tangerine, orange, lemon, mandarin, grapefruit and spearmint.
Not only can Citrus Fresh be inhaled, diffused or used as a topical oil, but it can also be ingested to purify drinking water and promote weight loss. Although it can be ingested, always consult a doctor first!
Other benefits of Citrus Fresh:
- Relieves anxiety
- Improves concentration
- Provides a sense of calmness or relaxation
Best uses for labor and delivery: Use to relieve anxiety and help relax you during contractions; use when you need a concentration boost, especially during transition.
Essential oils have a multitude of benefits. With one of those benefits being relieving pain during labor and delivery, why not add them to your hospital bag?
It’s important to remember with essential oils that different oils will produce different results. Jasmine and clary sage are only to be used if you’re past your due date because they are known to cause uterine contractions.
With oils, it’s all up to personal preference:
- What benefits you want to receive during labor and delivery…
- What scents you prefer…
- Whether you want to inhale or mix with a carrier oil…
If you prefer to apply essential oils to you skin, always make sure to mix with a carrier oil. Never apply straight essential oil to your skin because it can cause extreme irritation.
If you plan to inhale essential oils straight from the bottle, there is an easier way… With essential oil jewelry! All you do is add a few drops of oil to a diffuser pad or bead and get hours of benefits from essential oils!
Whatever oil and method of diffusion you choose, there’s sure to be an oil to help alleviate pain, accelerate wound healing and provide you with stress relief!