I am 37 weeks pregnant with di/di boy/girl twins. This pregnancy was amazing, even ecstatic until about 10 days ago when my belly started to itch. At first, I blamed it all on the over-sized belly and my favorite wool sweater. Two days later my behind started to itch. Then my legs... Then I could not sleep anymore from itching. I spent my night in my bathtub soaking up in baking soda and lavender essential oil and begged my husband for a sheet of sandpaper. I tried crushed garlic and coconut oil, since both are anti-fungal and antibacterial. In the morning I ran to see my OB. The diagnosis was PUPPS (Pruritic Urticarial Papules and Plaques of Pregnancy), also known as PEP (Polymorphic Eruption of Pregnancy) is a fairly common itchy rash that appears on the stomach during late pregnancy. "So, if it is that common, there is a solution!", I thought. Unfortunately, the exact cause of PUPPS rash isn't known. And there is really no cure for it other than delivering your child. But if you ever had PUPPS, you would know that every day is unbearable and waiting for even a week would be like going through 9 circles of Dante's Hell every second over and over again. Google promised me some relieve with the use of Grandpa's Pine Tar Soap . Somehow it works. Lather it up and keep it on for a few minutes for a temporary itch calm. But be ready to start over 30 minutes later. In addition, it dried up my skin. Naturally, I turned to my essential oils.
ROMAN CHAMOMILE (Chamomilla nobile) was my first choice since this light & floral essential oil is effective at treating irritated, itchy skin and rashes. It is also considered to be an antidote for skin inflammation and can relieve eczema, dryness and stressed skin. Chamomile essential oil contains flavonoids (those inhibit enzymes involved in the inflammatory response and may counteract inflammation in the skin. (More information) Since my condition is related to overstretched, stressed, allergic, and inflamed skin, roman chamomile essential oil was put on my test list.
LAVENDER (Lavandula angustifolia) oil is the most versatile and well-used of all the essential oils because its lack of toxicity and the fact that it can be applied directly to skin without dilution, making it a valuable remedy for everyday use. As a first aid remedy it is often used on abrasions, wounds, burns and insect bites. It also helps with dermatitis, eczema, acne, psoriasis, and scarring. Lavender oil reduces redness, soothing inflammation, and helps with dryness, eczema, acne, and psoriasis.
GERANIUM (Pelargonium graveolens) was chosen because it is antiseptic and anti-inflammatory, making it appropriate for dry, inflamed skin. It also promotes new skin growth, exactly what was needed after all the scratching and tagging that I did.
SANDALWOOD (Santalum album) is known to protects our skin against impurities, pollution and unwanted microbes in addition to its natural anti-inflammatory activity. In a 2013 study, santalol (a constitute found in this oil) was shown to significantly inhibit isolated cytokine and chemokine cells, two indicators of inflammation. The effects were noted to be similar to ibuprofen. So, pain, pain, go away naturally. A separate 2017 study concluded that sandalwood essential oil may provide therapeutic benefits for patients with mild to moderate inflammatory conditions.
FRANKINCENSE (Boswellia carteri) is natural anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving oil. Frankincense is often used in topical formulations and regarded as one of the best essential oils to reduce swelling, promote healing and may even improve skin tenderness. A recent clinical study suggests that this essential oil has promising abilities to influence the cellular processes of inflammation and tissue regrowth. A 2016 study concluded that frankincense oil may be useful in treating patients with inflammatory conditions because of chemical constitutes found in frankincense essential oil were shown to inhibit the release of leukotrienes (inflammatory compounds) in isolated cells.
TEA TREE (Melaleuca alternifolia) is regarded to be highly antiseptic and can combat many different kinds of bacterial infection, including streptococcal and staphylococcal types, and has also been shown to have significant anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. So, technically this oil should be one of the first oils on my list especially because it is safe to be used directly on the skin without dilution. Tea tree oil has the ability to stimulate the immune response and works effectively when there are signs of infection present. It is also a mild analgesic. Nice addition to sandalwood's pain relieving properties.
PEPPERMINT (Mentha x piperita ) - optional, and not advised to be used for this mix postpartum but it does give an amazing cooling relief to your skin. It is antiseptic and antimicrobial properties, helping cool down the skin.
Then it was time to find a few good base and carrier oils and I naturally turned to my favorite COCONUT OIL. It contains potent fatty acids to replenish my skin. It is naturally antibacterial, which can help prevent the spread of bacteria over the skin.
JOJOBA OIL is nourishing and will moisturize your skin instantly.
EVENING PRIMROSE OIL is high in Vitamin E and beneficial for psoriasis and eczema. And my belly is one big trouble that needed evening primrose oil's loving and care.