Important Safety Information about Essential Oils

  1. Essential oils don’t mix with water.
    a. A mister (spritzer) must be shaken prior to each use, mixing the oils into the water.
    b. When applying oils to the skin, they must be mixed with a carrier oil or a cosmetic nut butter unless instructed otherwise by a knowledgeable practitioner..
    c. When using essential oils in the bath, they must first be mixed in salt or a bath gel.
  2. People with sensitivities or who are allergic should use caution when using essential oils. Test diluted oils safely on the bottoms of the feet or patch test on the inside of the forearm using 1-2 drops of essential oil on a bandaid  for up to 48 hours.
  3. Certain oils may cause phototoxicity. Exposure to sun light or tanning lights should be avoided for up to 12 hours following application to the skin of the following oils: Bergamot, Lime, Tagetes, Cumin, Angelica Root, Bitter Orange, Lemon, Grapefruit.
  4. FIRST AID: Some essential oils are highly irritating to the skin and can cause skin reactions when they come in contact with the skin in undiluted form. When we work with essential oils, we often don’t realize we have them on our hands until we wipe our face and eyes.
    a. EYE – apply fractionated coconut oil (olive oil or whatever is handy) to a Q-tip and touch it to the inner area of the eye nearest the nose. Hold the Q-tip in place – it will draw the essential oil to the Q-tip as essential oils are oil loving rather than water loving. Repeat until symptoms resolve.
    b. SKIN –  1) wash gently with soap and water then 2) apply olive oil to the area with a paper towel (or other carrier oil – vegetable cooking oil works – whatever is handy); wipe, remove and repeat until symptoms resolve.
    c. KEYNOTE: Putting water on an essential oil ‘spill’ is kind of like putting water on an electrical fire – it only makes it worse, spreading the oils onto a larger surface area!
  5. In most situations, essential oils should not be applied directly to the skin undiluted or come in contact with the mucous membranes, unless directed by a trained aromatherapist (two exceptions are lavender and tea tree essential oils). Essential oils that should never be applied, taken internally or applied to the mucous membranes undiluted:
    a. Oregano
    b. Clove leaf, Clove bud
    c. Savory
    d. Thyme ct Thymol and Carvacrol
    e. Cinnamon
  6. Store essential oils out of reach of children
  7. Oils with a high menthol content (especially peppermint oil) should never be used near the neck or throat of children under the age of 30 months. This chemical component can cause a bronchospasm in young children, which can be a medical emergency.
  8. Essential oils should not be taken internally unless directed by a qualified health professional.
  9. Use of essential oils during pregnancy should be done under the direction of a qualified and trained health professional.

Peppermint plant in background.

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