Rosemary essential oil is known to support a healthy immune system, encourage healthy brain function and improve short and long term memory and protect the body from disease with its powerful antioxidant properties. However, as with all medications and essential oils, precautions should be taken when using the oil, especially because rosemary is incredibly potent. Here are some basic guidelines for administering the oil but keep in mind that the effect of rosemary essential oil is different for everyone.
Can you consume rosemary oil?
Rosemary as an herb is a common additive to many types of dishes and its oil can be used in its place most of the time. Since usually only a small amount, less than a drop, is used in a dish there is usually little chance for a negative reaction. The oil can also be safely added to water or tea to consume. However, the oil should never be taken in large amounts alone. Consuming large amounts of the oil alone can result in vomiting, uterine bleeding, kidney irritation, increased skin sensitivity, skin redness and allergic reactions. Always keep the oil out of reach of small children and pets.
Can you inhale rosemary oil?
Rosemary oil is safe to inhale and doing so can help with many different ailments, as the oil molecules enter the blood stream through the nasal passages. To safely inhale the oil, it may be diffused throughout a room. Try to only diffuse the oil for fifteen minutes out of an hour. If you do not have a diffuser, add a few drops to a pot of boiling water, place a towel over your head and lean over it to inhale the steam. If you want to inhale the oil on the go, either inhale directly from the bottle or add a few drops to a cotton ball or tissue. Take a few deep breaths but take a break every few minutes. If you begin to feel nauseous or dizzy after inhaling rosemary oil, stop immediately.
Can you put rosemary oil on your skin?
Rosemary oil is safe to apply to the skin but like most other essential oils, it should be diluted. Mix the oil with a carrier oil, such as coconut, almond or jojoba, and then distribute over desired areas but only after a test patch has been conducted to rule out any allergies. To conduct a test patch, place a drop of diluted oil on the inner part of the arm near the elbow. If there are no signs of irritation after a day, you should be able to use the oil over large surface areas without worrying about irritation. If there is redness or bumps that develop, you may either try another test patch with a higher concentration of carrier oil or make the decision to avoid the oil.
Can rosemary oil be used on children or infants?
Rosemary oil should be completely avoided in infants and children under the age of 4. If you decide to use rosemary oil on a young child, it should be heavily diluted and closely monitored for allergic reactions and undesirable side effects.
Should pregnant women use rosemary oil?
Pregnant women should avoid rosemary oil as there is a chance that it can stimulate menstruation or affect the uterus and possibly cause a miscarriage if the oil is taken by mouth. With limited scientific research regarding pregnancy and topical applications of essential oils, it is best to avoid rosemary in body care products during a pregnancy, especially the first two trimesters. Rosemary is most likely safe when it is added to food though. Because infants should not be exposed to rosemary, it should be avoided by breast feeding mothers as well, as it may travel through the breast milk to the child.
Should rosemary oil be diluted?
Yes, rosemary oil should always be diluted with a carrier oil. Cold-pressed oils work best with rosemary but any carrier oil will work. Even once diluted with a carrier oil, avoid contact with the eyes, mucus membranes and sensitive areas of the body. If a diluted topical application still causes irritation, use a towel dipped in vegetable oil to remove the product, as water can make the irritation worse and will not remove the oil.
Can pets be given rosemary oil?
Rosemary is often a common ingredient in commercial dog foods. It is considered safe for healthy dogs and can have the same benefits in their bodies as it does in a human. For example, it can help their digestive systems and improve their mood. It also stimulates blood flow and can help reduce free radicals in their systems. However, if poor quality oil is used or if too much is administered, a dog may experience a seizure, but usually only if they have a history of seizures.
Cats should never come into contact with any essential oils, as they lack an enzyme that allows their body to metabolize the oil. If you still want to use rosemary to help your cat’s digestive system or other conditions, look into oil hydrosols, which are a by-product of essential oils. If there is any concern with using rosemary for your pets, contact a veterinarian.
What precautions should be taken with Rosemary oil?
As with all essential oils, rosemary oil should be used with caution. While safe for most, allergic reactions are possible which can range from mild to severe.
Rosemary oil should be avoided by people who are allergic to aspirin, as it contains salicylate, which may cause a reaction in people who are allergic to aspirin. The oil should also be avoided by people with bleeding disorders, as it may increase of risk of bleeding and bruising. If a person suffers from a seizure disorder, they should absolutely avoid contact with rosemary oil, as it can make the disorder worse.
Before medicating with rosemary oil, it is best to seek approval with your doctor, especially if you are taking any prescribed medications.