The Doctors: Truth About Essential Oils + Risks Vs Benefits

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The Drs: Real Deal On Essential Oils

The Doctors: Truth About Essential Oils + Risks Vs Benefits

The Doctors shared the real deal on essential oils and weighed the risks versus the benefits. (filmfoto / Shutterstock.com)

The Doctors wanted to know the real deal about essential oils. Dr Jennifer Ashton said she likes the concept of essential oil therapy because it’s attributed to Ayurvedic medicine, which is Eastern Indian philosophies. She said it’s a complimentary approach and she has certainly had patients who have tried and used them in moderation for things like migraines.

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Dr Ashton said in risk versus benefit, there is very little risk and potentially some benefit, but there is little literature on essential oils themselves. Dr Travis Stork shared that in one of the emergency departments that he used to work in, they actually had an essential oil machine that was used as aromatherapy. He said he actually loved it but then he was reading some things about some of the dangerous uses of essential oils.

The Drs: Risks Vs Benefits Essential Oils

In some cases, people are actually drinking essential oils, which they shouldn’t do. Plus, because the oils aren’t regulated, there have been cases of people buying oils that turned out to be different than what they thought. Make sure you trust the company you’re buying from.

Dr Ashton said she’s read about women soaking tampons in tea tree oil and inserting it to treat a yeast infection. That can actually cause a chemical burn. There’s also been some research that lavender and tea tree oils have been endocrine disruptors in kids.

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As usual, anything in moderation can be okay, but you have to be really careful about not applying essential oils directly. Dr Ashton said the oils are so strong that some people could have adverse reactions to the smell and experience headaches or nausea. Dr Ashton said she uses a few drops of lavender oil mixed with an entire bottle of sunflower oil and uses it as a body moisturizer.

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