Essential oils have been used for more than 4000 years in Egyptian, Chinese and Indian medicine for treating menstrual health problems. Now there are a few recent scientific studies that confirm their anti-inflammatory, analgesic and antispasmodic properties responsible for the relieving of pain and the reducing of menstrual bleeding.
Painful menstruation (dysmenorrhea) and abnormally heavy or extended menstrual flow (menorrhagia) represent a common problem for many women, especially during periods of intensive stress or in premenopause. Against dysmenorrhea, conventional medicine recommends a relatively vast array of painkillers, but these are toxic for the liver and not always efficient. And other remedies are also relatively beneficial. Fortunately, maternity and gynecology researchers have recently discovered that pain and excessive bleeding can be significantly decreased by massaging the lower abdomen with certain essential oils.
Scientists from Egypt’s Mansoura University conducted a study on 95 nursing women between the ages of 17 and 20 years. For seven days prior to menstruation, some of them received a 10 minutes abdominal massage with a mixture of essential oils which included cinnamon essential oil (1 teaspoon), clove essential oil (1 teaspoon), lavender essential oil (1 teaspoon) and rose essential oil (1 teaspoon), diluted in 10 ml of almond oil. The intensity and duration of pain and also the quantity of blood lost in the first 3 days of menstruation were measured and compared between the women that received the essential oils massage and those that received only a simple almond oil massage. The results showed a remarkable 57% decrease of both menstrual pain and excessive bleeding in the first group of women.
Similar results were obtained by Korean researchers in a 2006 study involving 67 students. In this study, they used a mixture of lavender oil (2 drops), clary sage oil (1 drop) and rose oil (1 drop), diluted in 5 ml of almond oil. The results showed a decrease of more than 50% in the severity of menstrual cramps and bleeding.
Alternative essential oils mixture for menstrual pain
Besides the two mixtures mentioned above, the next one has also been proven to be efficient for relieving menstrual related health problems:
- Lavender essential oil (4 drops)
- Geranium essential oil (3 drops)
- Chamomile essential oil (2 drops)
- Dill essential oil (2 drops)
- Olive oil (20 ml)