"Nature is the healer of disease."---Hippocrates, Physician

Essential Oils -- Caution

Pure essential oils are like precious jewelry or fine wine.  They are the life force of natural, organic substances.  Essential oils are highly concentrated—70-100 times more concentrated than dried herbs.  This is easily demonstrated in the thousands of petals needed to produce a single drop of oil.  Because they can penetrate the skin, they actually beautify within.

Safety Guidelines: 

In general, commonly available essential oils are safe to use for aromatherapy or household purposes.  However, due to their high concentration and potency it is important to be aware of the following safety information that applies to all of our oils.

Almost all essential oils should NOT be taken orally unless you would normally eat the source such as orange or grapefruit; and then make sure that they are 100% pure essential oils and not adulterated.

Store away from sunlight; keep closed.

Avoid all contact with mouth and eyes.

Do not apply oils to the skin undiluted.  While some oils can be applied directly to skin, it is best to add the oil to a medium such as a carrier oil (olive, almond, jojoba, etc), water, nature alcohol, and other ready-to-use cosmetics.

Essential oils may cause skin irritation in people with very sensitive or damaged skin.  Do a skin patch test first, if itching or redness occur on skin, place a cold, wet cloth on the area until the redness or itchiness disappears, and discontinue use.

More is not better when it comes to essential oils; please use oils as directed.  They are generally used by the drop.

If you get an essential oil into your eyes, add a base oil to area and absorb this with a soft cloth before rinsing eyes with lots of cold water.

Bergamot and citrus essential oils are phototoxic.  This means that they may cause skin discoloration in bright sunlight.  Bergamot comes in a BF form which can be worn in bright sunlight.

Keep all essential oils out of the reach of children and pets. 

Pregnant women and persons with health problems must consult doctor. 

Avoid if  you suffer from high blood pressure, pregnant, nursing, or suffer from epilepsy (see list below).

Do not use on infants.

Keep away from candles, cigarettes, and fire since they are flammable.

Do place bottle on wooden furniture; the oil could damage the finish of the wood.

Being natural products, essential oils are prone to variations due to geographic location, altitude, climate, season, methods of collection, wild or clonal change and method of distillation.  Example:  Oils obtained from one location during different seasons in the year can show variations in the chemical analysis and scent. 

Safety Guidelines 2:

The following information is from Julia Lawless book The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils.  If you are planning on working with essential oils it is very important to research the oils and know the safety data about each oil you use.  The book "Essential Oil Safety A Guide for Health Care Professionals" by Robert Tisserand and Tony Balacs is also a very good reference book.

Hazardous Oils:  Bitter Almond, Arnica, Boldo, Broom, Buchu, Calamus, Camphor, Cassia, Chervil, Cinnamon (bark), Costus, Elecampane, Fennel (bitter), Horseradish, Mugwort, Mustard, Oregano, Pennyroyal, Pine (dwarf), Rue, Sage (common), Santolina, Sassafras, Savine, Savory, Tansy, Thuja, Thyme (red), Tonka, Wintergreen, Wormseed and Wormwood. 

Toxicity:  Essential oils which should be used in moderation (only in dilution and for a maximum of two weeks at a time) because of toxicity levels are:  Ajowan, Anise Star, Basil (exotic), Bay Laurel, Bay (West Indian), Camphor (white), Cassie, Cedarwood (Virginian), Cinnamon (leaf), Clove (bud), Coriander, Eucalyptus, Fennel (sweet), Hops, Hyssop, Juniper, Nutmeg, Parsley, Pepper (black), Sage (Spanish), Tagests, Tarragon, Thyme (white), Tuberose, Turmeric, Valerian.

Dermal/Skin Irritation:  Oils which may irritate the skin, especially if used in a high concentration:  Ajowan, Allspice, Aniseed, Basil (sweet),  Black Pepper, Boreol, Cajeput, Caraway, Cedarwood (Virginian), Cinnamon (leaf), Clove (bud), Cornmint, Eucalyptus, Garlic, Ginger, Lemon, Parsley, Peppermint, Tyyme (white) and Turmeric.

Sensitization:  Some oils may cause skin irritation only in those people with very sensitive skins or can cause an allergic reaction in some individuals.  Always do a patch test before using a new oil to check for individual sensitization.  Oils which may cause sensitization include:  Basil (French), Bay Laurel, Benzoin, Cade, Canagaa, Cedarwood (Virginian), Chamomile (Roman and German), Citronella, Garlic, Geranium, Ginger, Hops, Jasmine, Lemon, Lemongrass, Lemon Balm (melissa), Litsea Cubeba, Lovage, Mastic, Mint, Orange, Peru Balsam, Pine (Scotch and long-leaf), Styrax, Tea Tree, Thyme (white), Tolu Balsam, Turmeric, Turpentine, Valerian, Vanilla, Verbena, Violet, Yarrow and Ylang Ylang.

Phototoxicity:  Some oils are phototoxic, meaning they can cause skin pigmentation if exposed to direct sunlight.  Do not use the following oils either neat or in dilution on the skin, if the area will be exposed to the sun:  Angelica Root, Bergamot (except bergapten-free type), Cumin, Ginger, Lemon (expressed), Lime (expressed), Lovage, Mandarin, Orange and Verbena.

High Blood Pressure:  Avoid the following oils in cases of high-hypertension:  Hyssop, Rosemary, Sage (Spanish and common) and Thyme.
Epilepsy:  Fennel (sweet).

Diabetes:  Hyssop, Rosemary, Angelica, and Sage (all types).

Homeopathy:  Homeopathic treatment is not compatible with the following:  Black Pepper, Camphor, Eucalyptus and Peppermint.

 For more information on essential oils and their uses, just give us a call.