Aromatherapy is the administration of concentrated plant-derived essential oils in a variety of ways including by massage, inhalation or in water. Aromatherapy is considered to be a holistic form of complementary medicine due to the combined effect of the aromas on the limbic system (which affects mood) and the pharmacological action of the chemical constituents in the oils.
Research has shown that in childbirth aromatherapy can aid relaxation and maternal well-being, ease physical discomforts and psycho-emotional issues, aid pain relief, facilitate uterine action in labour, and also assist in the recovery from labour and the adaptation to motherhood.
Aromatherapy can help you in the following ways:
- Relief of stress, anxiety, tension, fear, tiredness, insomnia.
- Relief of physiological discomforts e.g. backache, nausea, oedema, constipation.
- To promote labour in a post-dates pregnancy to avoid medical induction of labour.
- To help recovery from birth, adaptation to parenthood, and breastfeeding problems.
- To prevent or reduce the impact of postnatal depression