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Creating Space, Continued

This is an arm up the wall sequence that is very helpful for creating space in the torso, but also releasing neck and chest tension.  This can be very helpful for nursing mothers, especially if there is a tendency for clogged milk ducts and mastitis.

 

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Safe Use of Essential Oils during Pregnancy and with Children

Aromatherapy in regards to Pregnancy, Infants, Toddlers and Children.

I have been practicing aromatherapy for more than 20 years. I started when my children were under 5 years old, so I learned the hard way. It is very easy to overdose young children (and for that matter pregnant and older folks too). So I tend to be conservative when it comes to these circumstances.

Hydrosols and essential oils were created by humans to have a concentrated aromatic
plant material available all year long. When folks were “settling the west” they distilled
their large amounts of collected aromatic material, saved the “waters” they distilled
and threw away the essential oil that floated on top because it was “poisonous”. Make
no mistake about it, essential oils are powerful (most oils when undiltued can burn the
skin and it is so easy to put too many drops on a tissue or a diffuser or pillowcase.
It takes 17 lbs of spanish thyme to create 1 lb of thyme essential oil and 2 tons of rose
petals to create 1 lb of rose oil. As you can see, this concentrated material that needs to be handled with knowledge and care.

For the pregnant moms and children under 5 years old, I highly recommend hydrosols. The easiest and best application for babies is spraying in the air or place a half a dropperful in a bath. Internally, I would recommend 1-2 drops of hydrosol in a sippy cup for those who are drinking out of cups until they are 3 and 4 drops until they are 5. For those 5-10 years old 8 drops in water, and for those over 10 you can use a dropperful.

The following are my favorite essences for children:

  1. Rosa Damascena

Rose is excellent for soothing the heart center, as well asbalancing hormones. So during pregnancy this is an excellent headache remedy. For pregnancy or anyone having hotflashes or night-sweats put 1 tablespoon of rose hydrosol (rose water) in a large pitcher of water and drink all day long. You can also spray on the face which feels lovely.

  1. Melissa Officinalis (Lemon Balm)

This is an antiviral so it prevents colds and flus, as well as treats colds and flus. It’s also
excellent for cold sores and any type of herpes. Melissa is excellent for anything to
do with unsettled nerves including ADD, ADHD, panic attacks and insomnia.
Hydrosol or 2 tsp dried leaf per cup or boiling water; apply tea to cotton pad and place
on cold sore several times a day.

  1. Lavendula Vera (Lavender)

Lavender is excellent for bug bites, for burns including sunburns and for calming the nerves. Lavender hydrosol can be sprayed over a fussy baby or mommy to help them relax and fall asleep. I had a yoga student who sprayed lavender hydrosol over her twin
babies as a bedtime ritual to help calm her and her children.

An excellent book about hydrosols is: Hydrosols: The Next Aromatherapy by Suzanne
Catty.

Rose water can be found in gourmet markets, Middle Eastern and Indian grocery stores
and in liquor stores (some alcoholic drinks have rosewater in them).

If you are interested in highest quality hydrosols, Mountain Rose Herbs is an excellent
source (mountainroseherbs.com).

Hydrosols should be stored in a cool dry place and usually need to be replaced after a
year.

Beginnings in Understanding the Power of Nature

I began my interest in Natural Medicine alternatives when my infant son developed allergies.  I had great assistance from alternative practitioners and from other like-minded mothers.  I wanted to be able to begin healing him when I noticed something coming on, not wait for a full blown ear infection or intense suffering from the allergies.

In my learning, I found a great book, Natural Medicine for Children by Julian Scott, Ph.D. that broadened my world view.  In it he gives multiple choices for each “dis-ease”, massages, flower remedies, herbs, and homeopathy.  When my daughter came along I expected that I was prepared, but alas she was a different person, with different issues and I had more to learn.

I had always had a interest in herbs, but didn’t know all their endless possibilites. The ease of putting the flower remedies in juice or water and, for me, drops under my tongue was very appealing.   At the same time I was studying yoga and aromatherapy and I found placing essential oils very diluted in the bath or diffusing into the room very helpful.  But sometimes they would over-power my children.

As I taught pregnant and nursing women and heard their concerns I steered them towards the book Natural Medicine and encouraged their use of 5 flower formula/rescue remedy (same essence, different manufacturers).  I found that this was easy for them to remember and took care of many issues.

(Truth be told the more we panic about a situation the worse it gets, so when we ease into using 5-flower formula the problem mellows or sometimes goes away!!)