Please note that these essential oils safety precautions are not exhaustive and it is recommended that you do thorough research on any essential oils you intend to use.
Essential oils are highly concentrated volatile plant extracts and can be harmful if not used carefully, however bringing aromatherapy into your life need not cause undue worry. By using essential oils carefully and following the simple essential oils safety precautions below, you will on the way to safely enjoying the many benefits that aromatherapy has to offer.
These essential oils safety precautions are not a complete safety reference for the proper use of essential oils. When in doubt, consult your doctor and/or a qualified and trained aromatherapy practitioner.
Essential oils should never be used undiluted on the skin.
Even Lavender and Tea Tree oils which are generally thought of as safe to use undiluted can cause severe sensitivity, so the safest course of action is never to use any essential oil undiluted.
Some oils can cause sensitization or allergic reactions in some individuals.
When using a new oil for the first time, do a skin patch test on a small area of skin;
Place 1-2 drops of a diluted essential oil on the inside of your elbow.
Apply a plaster and keep the area dry during the test.
If you feel the onset of any irritation or if any reaction occurs immediately remove the plaster and carefully wash the area with mild soap and water.
If no irritation occurs after 24 hours, the essential oil, in its diluted form, is safe for you to use on your skin.
Even if a particular essential oil does not irritate you, it still can irritate someone else.
Bear in mind that if you are allergic to a particular plant, you are more likely to be allergic to that plant’s essential oil.
Some essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy or by those with asthma, epilepsy and other health conditions.
Be sure to research/review the safety precautions associated with each essential oil that you use.
Less is More.
When using essential oils use only the minimum recommended amount to serve your purpose.
Not all essential oils are suitable for use in aromatherapy.
Wormwood, Pennyroyal, Onion, Camphor, Horseradish, Wintergreen, Rue, Bitter Almond and Sassafras can be highly toxic and should only be used by qualified aromatherapy practitioners, if ever.
Never let children use essential oils.
Most essential oils smell wonderful and many essential oils such as citrus oils can smell very tempting to drink. Keep your essential oils away from children.
Be extremely careful when using essential oils on children or the elderly.
Essential oils are very potent and should only be used with extreme caution and reduced amount with children and the elderly. Make sure you do your research before use.
Essential oils should not be taken internally.
Essential oils should only be taken internally after receiving a detailed consultation and prescription from a trained and qualified aromatherapy practitioner.
Essential oils should never be used in intimate areas of the body.
Essential oils are flammable.
Keep them away from naked flames and other fire hazards.