Using essential oils while pregnant is a topic that is widely discussed. Many people have different opinions on the matter – however, thousands of women worldwide use essential oils during pregnancy and for centuries. After having two babies and using essential oils throughout both pregnancies (especially during the first trimester), I cannot imagine how it would have been if I didn’t use them. The aromatic, emotional, and physical support they provided me was undeniable.
Because the first trimester is a critical stage during pregnancy, some medical advice says to avoid essential oils altogether due to the risk of exposing your child to a toxic or potentially harmful substance. Before deciding to use essential oils, speaking with your medical provider first is best. If you do use essential oils, they are not meant to be ingested, and using them topically should be done by diluting the oil first in a carrier like almond or coconut.1,2
Essential Oils to Avoid During Pregnancy
Essential oils to avoid during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester, include:1,2
- Blends that contain those essential oils
5 Best Essential Oils for the First Trimester
From my experience, there are at least five essential oils you cannot live without, especially during the first trimester:
One oil that seems to be a favorite for newly pregnant moms is peppermint. The aroma is minty, refreshing, and rejuvenating. You can inhale it in the mornings or diffuse it throughout the day to help with nausea, nasal congestion, muscle aches, and possibly headaches. The use of peppermint oil is controversial, however. Side effects, when used topically, can include skin rashes and irritation. It can also affect a child’s breathing if they inhale it.3,4
Some women love how Peppermint Vitality makes their tummy feel when they add a drop under their tongue or in a cool glass of water.
Lavender is one of the mildest and gentlest essential oils. It is a huge favorite for women who are pregnant. Its pleasant aroma is extremely soothing, making it a favorite for sleep and rest during pregnancy. It even helps with emotions during this ever-changing time in a pregnant momma’s body and life. On top of that, Lavender is also wonderful for the skin. Women love using it on their faces or applying it on their growing bellies.1,2,3
Though Frankincense is an entirely different essential oil. It has very similar benefits and uses as Lavender for pregnant moms. For emotions, rest, and mental clarity (pregnancy brain), the aroma of Frankincense is known to be highly beneficial due to its naturally occurring properties. As far as skin goes, Frankincense is an age-old favorite, used for thousands of years by women. Many moms love adding drops of Frankincense and Lavender mixed with coconut and vitamin E oil for a homemade belly balm.1,5
4. Lemon or Lemon Vitality
Many newly pregnant moms love the refreshing and citrusy aroma of Lemon. Like peppermint, since it is mild and fresh in smell, this is an oil that many moms don’t have a problem inhaling for mental acuity and energy. Diffusing this essential oil for its cleansing properties in the home is also an extremely common practice. Lemon Vitality is a favorite for many moms to drink in a glass of water or to add under the tongue after meals. Since Young Living’s Lemon Vitality is distilled from the rind of a lemon, not the citrusy acidic fruit part of a lemon, it is very easy on the tummy. Lemon Vitality is known to ease the digestive system and support moms through the first trimester. If you add this oil to a beverage, do so only in glass or stainless steel containers.1,2,5
5. Stress Away
This essential oil blends copaiba, lime, cedarwood, vanilla, ocotea, and Lavender essential oils. The distinct mix of vanilla and lime gives this oil blend a unique and pleasant aroma, making this tropical-yet-citrus-smelling oil a favorite for pregnant moms. Inhaling Stress Away can bring a sense of peace and tranquility, especially for pregnant moms who already have children or are experiencing the newness of pregnancy for the very first time.
But How Do I Use Them?
Here are some quick references that explain what oils to use for certain first-trimester experiences:
- Easy Tummy: Lemon
- Digestive Support: Peppermint Vitality and Lemon Vitality
- Emotional Harmony: Lavender, Stress Away, and Frankincense
- Energy Boost: Lemon and Frankincense
- Pretty “Pregnancy Glow” Skin: Lavender and Frankincense
- Stretching Skin: Lavender and Frankincense
- Restful Sleep: Lavender, Stress Away, and Frankincense
Pregnancy is a beautiful thing. It should be a beautiful experience, too! Choosing to use something natural and highly beneficial during this ever-changing stage of motherhood is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made for myself and my quickly developing babies. Plants were designed to assist our bodies in every stage of life – even when life is growing inside you!