Having a baby is a wonderful blessing – over the last ten years we have welcomed 5 little ones into our home. It’s a very exciting time – the oldest get the opportunity to care for their smallest sibling, and in the process, everyone learns to adjust to life with “one” more sibling.
With each child, I also had the amazing opportunity to breastfeed once again – breastfeeding was an amazing experience, but it didn’t come without it’s challenges.
I am SO thankful I was able to breastfeed all of my 5 kids – some nursed for longer than others, our oldest nursed for over 2 years. That’s a LONG time! 🙂
As the last baby arrived, my older two girls (ages 2 and 9) were able to see Mom nurse their new sister and our 2 year old actually carries her baby around the house nursing her every few hours too – it’s cute to see her understand the things I’m doing to care for the baby. And just as amazing that she’s learning about breastfeeding at such a young age – because although she breastfed as an infant, she probably doesn’t remember her first year all too well.
Although my experience as a breastfeeding Mamma was largely successful, it didn’t come without some hiccups, too. One thing I learned about my breastfeeding journey was how to use Essential Oils while breastfeeding.
How I Discovered Essential Oils While Nursing
In 2013, our fourth child was born – and while she breastfed from the get-go, at just around 4 months of age, she lost interest — for a short time. That short time led to a decrease in milk supply – I tried several remedies to no avail, and I was left frustrated and saddened at the same time.
I remember that week like it was yesterday – with the other children, I breastfed AND pumped extra – so I had plenty frozen. But with the fourth, I opted not to pump extra – and I wish I would have done that. I quickly tried supplementing with Organic formula, and Goat’s Milk – but she was not interested. I reached out to a long time friend for support – this friend had breastfed her 3 kids and she recommended using Fennel Essential Oil.
After using Fennel for a few days, my milk returned and I was able to continue breastfeeding until she weaned herself at the age of 1 1/2.
Using Essential Oils while Breastfeeding
One of the best books to invest in if you are a using Essential Oils in your family with children is Gentle Babies, by Debra Raybern. Although the book does not touch the subject of breastfeeding, it’s still important if you plan on using Essential Oils with your baby & kids.
One thing to remember when using Essential Oils is that not every oil will work the same for everyone – your body may respond to oils differently – so it’s important to test oils to see what oils work the best for you.
Even more, when breastfeeding your child(ren) it’s always important to remember that many health conditions may affect your breastmilk supply – your diet and stress also play a large role, as well as any other underlying health conditions.
While Essential Oils are just one of many tools in your arsenal of health, it’s incredibly important to know that not as a breastfeeding mom, you won’t be able to just go out and use ANY essential oil.
Fennel Seed has been known to support the body and maintain healthy lactation in women – it can also be helping to aid in digestion for both mom and baby. In most cases, the oil is more potent than the tea (if you have tried the tea unsuccessfully).
To use Fennel Essential Oil, apply on the breasts around the lymph area – do not apply while breastfeeding, immediately before breastfeeding OR on the nipple. You can also apply on the spine, at the breast level. Use a carrier oil like Coconut Oil, Almond Oil or Grapeseed Oil (or, Jojoba Oil if you wish) to dilute the oil. Just one or two drops of Fennel in a quarter size of carrier should be sufficient.
Fennel is not recommended for use more than 10 days in a row – so if you wish to use Fennel, it’s best to use for a few days and break after a few days before returning to the oil.
Basil Essential Oil is another oil to help support a healthy milk supply. Basil can be applied the same way on the breasts (diluted with a carrier), and down the spine at the breast level as well. Unlike Fennel, Basil can be used for more than 10 days.
Lavender Essential Oil is considered safe for breastfeeding moms – it helps support a restful sleep, provides emotional support, and is a great oil to help you relax.
Peppermint and Oregano Essential Oils are not recommended for post-pregnancy or breastfeeding – it may affect your milk supply so it’s best to avoid using it if you are a nursing mama.
When using essential oils to support healthy breastfeeding, ensure that you stay away from applying them directly on the nipple area before feeding.
More Milk Blend for Nursing Mamas
To support healthy breastfeeding, here’s a blend for nursing Mamas:
To make: Mix 4 drops Fennel Essential Oil in a 10 ml Roller Bottle and and top with carrier oil.
Apply to the breast (excluding the nipple) after nursing to encourage milk for the next feeding. Can also be applied down the spine at the breast level.
What Essential Oils are Best?
While there are many out there, there aren’t many that I can vouch for – you can see what I recommend HERE. Many Essential Oils you find in store are merely fragrance oils – and should never be applied to your body OR ingested. These oils are created as synthetic substances – the smell is a mere imitation, but the therapeutic properties are not present.
I personally recommend Young Living because not only do they have their own fields, they have a Seed to Seal promise that ensures that they are providing oils that are genuine, free of synthetics and of unmatched purity. From the time the seeds are planted to the time they seal their bottles, they are undoubtedly providing a wonderful final product without compromise.
I also love a company who has opened up their farms ANY time – that’s transparency at it’s best.
How to Get Started with Essential Oils
- See more Essential Oil recipes HERE and HERE
- Find out how to buy Essential Oils at Wholesale Cost (24% OFF) + earn $40 in Bonus Goodies, too!
The content that we shared, above, is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice or treatment. It’s always best to check with a qualified health provider for questions you might have.
Moreover, this information has not been evaluated by the Food & Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
Good morning Sheryl! How many times a day would you recommend applying the fennel/basil? I done this 4.5 years ago and I can’t remember!!! We have 6 children (12, 11, 7, 4, 18 months, 4 months) but this is only my 4th baby to nurse, some lasting way longer than others! I hope to at least make it to a year ❤ thanks so much!!!
Hi Jaska! I would do it maybe 4-5 each day, and try to do it 30-45 minutes before feeding. I nursed mine too.. and some went for longer than others (3 years)… one child I struggled with (child 4) and fennel is what pulled me through. I hope this helps you! Keep me posted!