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Aromatherapy 101- The Essentials

Jun 23, 2017 0 comments
Aromatherapy 101- The Essentials

Welcome to Honestly Essential! If you are reading this post then you probably have decided that 1) aromatherapy is a tool you want to use for your and your families health BUT 2) you have no idea how to use them.

 

Well you have landed in the right place. In this post we will go over:

  1. Common Essential oil myths and misconceptions
  2. Carrier oils and Essential oils and why you need both
  3. Formula tables- how to know if you are using the right amount of essential oil or not
  4. Lists of suitable oils for babies and pregnant women

 

Before we delve into formula tables and concentrations, lets go over some of the nasty myths about essential oils that seem to be circulating the industry as of late:

 

Myth 1: All essential oils are safe.

NOT TRUE! Essential oils are powerful plant concentrates that are made up of chemical constituents. These chemical constituents provoke strong reactions in the body (reactions for good, mostly). If used incorrectly or too often or with incorrect dosages, your body will react negatively towards the oils. Some of these reaction can lead to long term or permanent sensitivities towards essential oils.

 

Think of it this way: Say you have a headache and someone tells you to use 2000mg of tylenol everyday for months/years (which is a very high dosage of tylenol). Two things will begin to happen: 1) your liver, which metabolizes the tylenol, will eventually start failing because tylenol is toxic over time and 2) the effects of the tylenol will stop working after a while because your body learns to develop a tolerance towards it. The exact same thing happens with essential oils because what tylenol and essential oils have in common are their chemical constituents that provoke change in the body. Even though essential oils are natural derivatives, they still need to be metabolized through your liver. Overtaxing that liver will lead to these long term effects previously mentioned.

 

Remember, with Essential Oils, less is oftentimes more!

 

Myth 2: Essential oils are safe to take internally because of their natural sources.

Not true. RARELY do you want to take essential oils internally and when you do you want make sure they are diluted and that you are doing it under the guidance of a Certified and experienced Aromatherapist. For example,  A common fad we see is people adding lemon or orange essential oil to their water. Drinking a drop of lemon or orange essential oil water every now and then is not going to harm you. Doing it daily or several times a day will. Remember, these oils are HIGHLY concentrated. It took thousands of lemon or orange peels to squeeze out that essential oil you're ingesting so be careful. Instead, we would suggest you using the whole lemon or orange for your water the way Mother Earth intended. The concentrations and other contents of the whole fruit are suitable for daily eating and drinking.

 

Myth 3: Essential oils are safe for everyone.

Wrong again. They definitely are NOT safe for everyone. You wouldn’t give high doses of tylenol or ibuprofen to a newborn so why would doing the same thing with plant therapy seem logical? Ask any pregnant woman and they will tell you that they ask their doctors permission before taking any new medication or pain. The same caution should be taken with essential oils. Newborns shouldn’t have essential oils used on them until the are 3 months old and even then, the essential oils you can use on them are limited and should be highly diluted. (A list of oils suitable for babies is listed below).

 

Other people unsuitable for essential oils are people with liver and severe digestive issues. An experienced Aromatherapist should help guide these people with essential oil used.

 

Lets talk Carrier oils and Essential Oils

 

As you know, an essential oil is a highly concentrated oil derived from plants. However, if you were to take these essential oils and rub them on your body, you will most likely get burnt or your skin will get irritated. Why? Because you need a carrier oil to dilute the essential oil to a state that your body is able to tolerate well. Even if none of these reactions occur immediately, continuous use of undiluted essential oil on your skin (or taken internally) can lead to permanent sensitivity to the essential oil. Many Aromatherapists who use essential oils daily use gloves as to avoid this exact thing from happening to them.

 

That’s why we need a carrier oil, to dilute the essential oil. Carrier oil are not only a medium for essential oils but they also have healing effects and are crucial with any form of aromatherapy. Just like essential oils, carrier oils have their own healing profiles that help aid the body with different ailments. Not all carrier oils are the same and

 

Formulations and Formulation Tables

 

CALCULATION OF ESSENTIAL OIL DROPS IN CARRIER OIL

 

As a rule of thumb, you will always have more carrier oil than essential oil when formulating.

The following table below indicates Minimum, Preferred, and Maximum drops of essential oil per carrier oil, cream, lotion or gel.

 

MINIMUM DROPS: Are suited for children, people with sensitive skin and the aged.  

  • Calculations are based on no less than 1 drop per 5 ml of carrier oil

PREFERRED DROPS: Are appropriate for adults who do not fall into the Minimum category, and is ideal for normal use with excellent results.  

  • Calculations are based on no less than 2-3 drop per 5 ml of carrier oil

MAXIMUM DROPS: Are recommended for individuals who desire to use stronger blends for various reasons, which may include: treating an illness, chronic condition, chronic pain, or simply their preference for stronger blends.  

  • Calculations are based on no more than 5 drop per 5 ml of carrier oil

 

For example:

A 30ml bottle of carrier oil shouldn’t exceed 30 drops total of essential oils.

Remember, 30 ml = 1 oz. So never exceed 30 drops of essential oil per ounce of carrier oil

 

For many treatments, e.g. full body massage, the concept of 1 drop per 1 milliliter is too concentrated and therefore the preferred calculations should be used.

MINIMUM DROPS: Are suited for children, people with sensitive skin and the aged.  

  • Calculations are based on no less than 1 drop per 5 ml, which is 25% of the carrier medium i.e. oil, cream, lotion or gel.  

PREFERRED DROPS: Are appropriate for adults who do not fall into the Minimum category, and is ideal for normal use with excellent results.  

  • Calculations are based on no less than 2-3 drop per 5 ml, which is 50%-60% of the carrier medium i.e. oil, cream, lotion or gel.  

MAXIMUM DROPS: Are recommended for individuals who desire to use stronger blends for various reasons, which may include: treating an illness, chronic condition, chronic pain, or simply their preference for stronger blends.  

  • Calculations are based on no more than 5 drop per 5 ml, which is 100% of the carrier medium, i.e. oil, cream, lotion or gel.

 

MINIMUM, PREFERRED, AND MAXIMUM DROPS ESSENTIAL OIL PER CARRIER OIL

CARRIER OIL

MINIMUM DROPS ESSENTIAL OIL:

25% PER 1 ML

(¼ DROP PER 1 ML)

PREFERRED DROPS ESSENTIAL OIL: 50%-60%  

PER 1 ML

(½ DROP PER 1 ML)

MAXIMUM DROPS ESSENTIAL OIL:

100% PER 1 ML

(1 DROP PER 1 ML)

5 ml

1 drop

2-3  drops

5 drops

10 ml

3 drops

5-6  drops

10 drops

15 ml

4 drops

8-10 drops

15 drops

20 ml

5 drops

10-12 drops

20 drops

25 ml

6-7 drops

13-15 drops

25 drops

30 ml

8 drops

15-18 drops

30 drops

50 ml

13 drops

25-30 drops

50 drops

100 ml

25 drops

50 drops

100 drops

 

 

Children and Pregnancy:

A quick not worth mentioning, many people seem to think that because essential oils are natural that they can liberally slather their babies with it (Refer to myths previous mentioned). We, here at Honestly Essential, want to stress the importance of understanding just how incorrect that is. Using essential oils incorrectly on little ones can hugely affect their liver function and lead to much more serious and permanent chemical sensitivities down the road.

 

The following information listed is for quick and easy referencing. For detailed information, refer to Cecilia Salvesens book, Aromatherapy for Natural Health and Beauty

ESSENTIAL OILS SUITABLE FOR PREGNANCY

Bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, lime, mandarin, neroli, orange (sweet), petitgrain, tangerine.

ESSENTIAL OILS TO BE USED WITH CAUTION

Benzoin, clove, coriander, eucalyptus, frankincense, garlic, lemongrass, lemon verbena, niaouli, palmarosa, patchouli, sandalwood, tea tree, vetiver, ylang ylang.

ESSENTIAL OILS UNSUITABLE FOR PREGNANCY

Aniseed, arnica, basil, black pepper, cajeput, chamomile (German and Roman), camphor, cedarwood, cinnamon, clary sage, clove, cypress, fennel, geranium, ginger, hyssop, jasmine, juniper, lavender, marjoram, melissa, myrrh, oregano, peppermint, pine, rose, rosemary, sage, thyme.

Note: Not all oils have been mentioned. A few additional oils which need to be avoided but are not dealt with in this blog are: boldo, birch, calamus, caraway, cassia, costus, elecampane, horseradish, jaborandi leaf, mugwort, mustard, parsley, pennyroyal, rue, sassafras, savin, savory, tansy, tarragon, thuja, wintergreen, wormwood. It is necessary to check the safety of unfamiliar oils before applying them.

ESSENTIAL OIL DROPS: PER AGE, PER 25 ML CARRIER OIL

Babies 0-3 months: No essential oils - carrier oils only. Almond and olive oil are most suitable

Babies 3-6 month:1  drop

Babies 6-12 month:1-2   drops

Toddlers age 1-2 years:1-2   drops

Children age  2   years: 1-2   drops

Children age  3   years: 2-3   drops

Children age  4   years: 2-4   drops

Children age  5   years: 3-5   drops

Children age  6   years: 3-6   drops

Children age  7   years: 4-7   drops

Children age  8   years: 4-8   drops

Children age  9   years: 5-9   drops

Children age 10  years: 5-10 drops

Children age 11  years: 5-11 drops

Children age 12  years: 6-12 drops

Children age 13  years: 6-13 drops

Youth age 14  years: 7-14 drops

Youth age 15  years:8-15 drops

Youth age 16  years:8-15 drops

Youth age 17  years:9-15 drops

Youth age 18  years:9-15 drops

Do not exceed maximum which is 15 drops.

ESSENTIAL OILS SUITABLE FOR BABIES 0-3 MONTHS   

No essential oils.

ESSENTIAL OILS SUITABLE FOR BABIES 3-6 MONTHS

Bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, neroli, petitgrain, tangerine.

ESSENTIAL OILS SUITABLE FOR BABIES 6-12 MONTHS

Bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, neroli, petitgrain, tangerine, benzoin, chamomile (Roman), eucalyptus, lavender, tea tree, niaouli.

ESSENTIAL OILS SUITABLE FOR CHILDREN AFTER 12 MONTHS

Bergamot, grapefruit, lemon, mandarin, neroli, petitgrain, tangerine, benzoin, chamomile (Roman), eucalyptus, lavender, tea tree, niaouli, camphor, clove, frankincense, lemon verbena, palmarosa, patchouli, sandalwood, vetiver, ylang ylang (for epileptic seizures).

ESSENTIAL OILS UNSUITABLE FOR BABIES AND CHILDREN

The following essential oils must not be used on babies or children:

Aniseed, arnica, basil, black pepper, cajeput, *chamomile (German), cedarwood, cinnamon, clary sage, cypress, fennel, geranium, ginger, hyssop, jasmine, juniper, marjoram, melissa, myrrh, nutmeg, oregano, peppermint, pine, rose, rosemary, sage, thyme. *Chamomile (German) may be used in moderation if the condition warrants it such as diaper rash or eczema, etc.

 Here at Honestly Essential we strive to make essential oil use as effective as possible. Not only do we research the industry for you but we try to keep you as informed and up to date as possible with essential oil and other health uses and issues. Should you have other questions or concern feel free to brows our other blogs for information or just give us a shout out via email or facebook or instagram. We are here to serve you and your health, always.  

 


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