chamomile essential oil improves contraction intensity and birthing satisfaction

Giving birth is difficult, and anything safe that can help is welcome to mothers. So, this beautiful essential oil should be very welcome.

This group of researchers wanted to see what effect chamomile essential oil would have on contractions and on the overall birthing experience. Research reported by some of these same authors earlier found that chamomile essential oil significantly reduces labour pain (International Pharmacy Acta 2018;1(1)).

In the new study of 127 womem, the active group had two drops of chamomile essential oil applied to a gauze pad; the control group had drops of water applied to the gauze pad. The pad was held 7-10cm from their noses three times every thirty minutes during labour.

There was no difference in the number or duration of contractions. There was also no difference in the intensity of contractions at 3-4cm or 8-10cm of dilation. But there was a significant reduction in intensity in the chamomile group at 5-7cm dilation.

Perhaps most importantly, the women who used the chamomile essential oil were significantly more satisfied with their birthing experience. 64.4% of them were satisfied, and 81.1% said they would use the chamomile essential oil again. In the control group, none of the women were satisfied, and 78.5% said they would not use that method again.

So, chamomile essential oil may be a safe, pleasant, affordable way of making labour a more pleasant experience.

Complement Ther Clin Pract 2018;32:61-64

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