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Q: Dear Dr. Power, What are some essential oils that offer support for women experiencing symptoms of menopause (such as hot flashes)? Any input is appreciated. Thank you in advance. R.W.
A: Dear R.W., Thanks for your interest in aromatherapy. Several essential oils are considered helpful for symptoms of menopause. Geranium essential oil is considered a hormonal balancer and Rose is traditionally believed to tone and cleanse the uterus and help to regulate the cycle. Fennel essential oil has also been said to relieve menopausal symptoms. All of the anti-depressant oils, such as Clary Sage, Jasmine, Lavender, Ylang Ylang, Neroli and Sandalwood may help balance emotional responses to menopause.
You may use any of these oils in the bath or in a massage oil. For use in a bath, add 4 to 6 drops of essential oil to a teaspoon of milk and put in a warm bath. For massage oil, add 2 drops of essential oil per teaspoon of carrier oil (such as Sweet Almond oil, Grapeseed oil or our Massage Base) and massage into the abdominal area. For a full body massage, you may use up to 6 drops of essential oil in 3-4 teaspoons of carrier oil.
If you combine any of the oils to make a blend, do not exceed the total number of drops recommended, i.e. if you're using a combination of Jasmine and Lavender in your bath then add 2-3 drops of Jasmine and 2-3 drops of Lavender.
I would suggest using essential oils, either in a bath or for massage up to once a day. More than once a day is unnecessary. You should not use any specific oil for more than two weeks without taking a one week break from it.
Peppermint, Geranium, Lemon and Sage essential oils are all very cooling. Use a few drops in your bathwater or lotion (be sure to mix well if using lotion). Peppermint essential oil especially has an immediate cooling effect. A lukewarm foot bath with a few drops of peppermint oil is also very relaxing and cooling.
To read more about how to use essential oils for menopause (plus recipes!), check out our Menopause & Essential Oils Blog Post.