I bet that title got your attention. There are a couple reasons why I do not list therapeutic essential oil blends/formulations in a blog. You could do a simple Google search such as “essential oils for allergies” and you will find many posts, memes, pins, etc, on how to “treat” your allergies. The issue here is multifaceted, the first being that many of the recommendations would not be effective. Another is the method of use (recommending oil in a capsule) is not the most effective or safe for allergies. Lastly, more often times than not basic safety is not covered when these blends are shared, possible contraindications listed or even safe diluting advice given.
So you may be thinking, if I know all of this information, why am I avoiding sharing good formulations for the general public? Up to this point, I have taken the path of education, talking about proper use, scientific facts, and touching a little bit on chemistry.
The main reason that I do not share therapeutic blends/formulations online is the fact that everyone is different. Sure, essential oils have basic therapeutic properties that cross the board for most everyone. BUT if my neighbor, you, or I had bronchitis and needed some help with a few days of suppositories, it is more than likely that we will all have a different formulation based on medical conditions, medications, age, weight, and basic constitution. The same would apply if I made an allergy inhaler, blend for a nebulizer, or steam tent. This would likely require three different blends based on many of these things with the addition of likes and dislikes where aromatics are concerned.
What Is A Contraindication?
Many essential oils come with what are called contraindications. These are specific instances when an oil should not be used because it might be harmful, for example, anyone with a history of seizures, asthma, blood clotting disorders, taking certain medications or are pregnant or nursing to name a few. There are certain oils not recommended for children for various reasons. Some oils increase the risk of skin irritation when applied topically (more so for those with sensitive skin), while other oils are phototoxic.
This slowly begins to paint a picture as to why sharing therapeutic blends can be an issue.
When Things Backfire
As an aromatherapy educator and someone who is present in social media, I have seen more essential oil “accidents” then I care to think about.
-A woman contacted me with chemical burns on her mouth and chin from the application of diluted cinnamon and clove to a cold sore. The burns lasted a couple weeks and were extremely painful and slow healing with continual cracking of the skin.
-I have had a panicked mom in the ER contact me as her daughter was covered in hives and patchy red sores/blisters from a one-time application of a blend to her chest for a cough.
-I have had a mom contact me panicked that her child was listless after a nap where a recommended blend from Pinterest was recommended for peaceful sleep.
There are many others, but I listed these three as they were the ones that were really upsetting to the individuals affected. Luckily, all three cases recovered nicely and are ok today.
Do I Give Advice?
Am I willing to give advice to others on social media or over the phone? I am willing, at times, to do so privately if I feel the situation warrants it, although I tend to stick to the facts surrounding safety in all things. Before I do this I ask proper questions such as: Do you have any medical condition I need to be aware of? Are you taking any medications? What is your overall health like? Do you have sensitivities? Do you have allergies? Depending on the possible recommendation I ask: Do you have any small children in the home? Do you own pets?
There is much to be considered.
As a trained aromatherapist, I took an oath of “do no harm”. First and foremost, my thoughts are on keeping you safe. If you follow my FB page, you may have made note of something special that I add to posts when I share something that is written by others that contain a recommendation within, whether it is for an herb or sometimes, rarely an oil or oil blend. It reads something like this:
**Make note, as I do not know your medical history please do your own research before following the recommendations within.
At the very least, this is appropriate.
It is also the responsibility of the professional aromatherapist to understand that we are not to treat medical conditions. “Diagnose, prescribe, or treat” are things we should not and do not do. What we should do is look at the whole body, the whole person. We work to restore homeostasis by addressing the whole body, in all it fabulous layers and complexities.
This quote addresses this aspect quite nicely:
“To reach the individual we need an individual remedy. Each of us is a unique message. It is only the unique remedy that will suffice”.- Madame Marguerite Maury
Madame Marguerite Maury (1895-1968) was an Austrian born biochemist who became interested in what was to become aromatherapy. Look again at the years of her life…have we veered too far from her quote and lost the true art of aromatherapy? She was a very wise woman indeed.
What Can Be Done
Let’s take a brief look at what I consider to be beginner’s blends. These are very basic blends that do not carry with them cautions or contraindications. Essential oils that when used are safe for everyone. I do share these at times. These do not address specific ailments. As a professional, if I can assist in helping to get essential oil enthusiasts feet wet using the oils in a safe manner, I have done a great service to our community as a whole. Everyone starts at the beginning. This is very different than a more complex blend that is specific to the individual. Two different uses, if you will. These very basic beginner’s blends may not affect everyone in the same way but do help to see which oils complement each other, as well as the basic use of the oil. The more therapeutic use of essential oils needs to be recommended after a one on one consultation with an experienced aromatherapist.
Take A Step Back
There are plenty of responsible aromatherapists with years and years of experience out there that have written blogs, books, and more that do list recipes/formulations for potential ailments. I own and recommend many of these books to my readers/clients. Every professional in the field works from their own level of education and experience, no two of us are alike, and I see this as a beautiful thing. I have a deep respect for everyone and their views, this is what makes us unique.
I have a large following of friends, family, and acquaintances that reach out to me to make sure what they are doing is appropriate. There are, however, much more out there who are not utilizing proper information, as there is so much of it out there it can be difficult to determine what is factual and what is misguided opinion.
What You Should Look For
The best that you can do as a home user is to do your own research. If you are reading blogs they should have plenty of resources and references for you to dig deeper. If you come across an article giving recommendations with no references to speak of, I would keep looking.
Other Things To Consider
Is the publication recent?
Is the author respected “in the field”? In the field is an important piece as many health guru’s have moved over to the essential oil industry without the proper education to back them or their recommendations up.
This is my take on sharing them more therapeutic essential oil recipes/formulations, and why up until now have decided not to do so. If you are in need of recommendations of where to look for quality, accurate information, take a look at my “Aromatherapy Resources” section above.
To your health! <3
Like so many practices in life I encourage you to become educated on the proper use of essential oils. When using them, please do so cautiously, understanding that there is often misinformation on the internet. You can be assured that I support only educated and proven resources. While essential oils should not be feared they should be respected and used properly to ensure the safety of the individuals using them.
Please note that I am not a medical practitioner. The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider. By using this website, you assume full responsibility and liability for your own actions.