When you’re breastfeeding, there are many things you have to consider that you wouldn’t usually think twice about. Certain things that you’re used to using or consuming may be unsafe for your baby.
Tea tree oil can be very beneficial to pregnant women, and can be used to treat infections, reduce acne, and more. However, this oil has estrogenic and anti-androgenic properties, which means it shouldn’t be applied around the breasts. You should also avoid consuming tea tree oil orally when breastfeeding.
Can Tea Tree Oil Pass Through Breast Milk?
There’s currently no definitive data that confirms whether any of tea tree oil’s components can pass into breast milk. There’s also very little research about the safety of tea tree oil when used by nursing mothers or infants.
For this reason, you may feel that it’s best to avoid applying tea tree oil to the breasts when you’re breastfeeding. It’s much better to be safe than sorry.
If you’re unsure, speak to a physician. They may give you the green light to use a particular tea tree oil product, or they may be able to recommend an alternative product that’s safe for your baby, depending on what you’ve been using the oil for.
Is Tea Tree Oil Generally Safe to Use Whilst Pregnant?
Tea tree oil is safe to use by pregnant women. However, it is recommended that you don’t use tea tree oil until you reach the second trimester.
Keep in mind that, although tea tree oil is a natural product, that doesn’t automatically mean that it’s safe.
Tea tree oil, like all essential oils, is highly concentrated. This makes it a potent substance that, while tolerated by adults, may have adverse effects on infants.
When you’re pregnant, you can apply a small amount of tea tree oil to your skin daily, being sure to mix the oil with a carrier oil, like coconut oil, beforehand. Don’t ingest tea tree oil – and it’s best not to even gargle it in case of accidental swallowing. You also shouldn’t consume tea tree oil supplements while you’re pregnant.
Using everything in moderation is safest during your pregnancy. You can always consider alternatives to tea tree oil if you’ve been using the oil for skin issues. Again, discussing the matter with your doctor is best, here. If your doctor does give you the go-ahead, make sure to buy 100% pure, organic oils that are well within date.
There are ways to reduce your risk when using tea tree oil during pregnancy. These include
- Mixing a small amount of tea tree oil into your moisturizer or cleanser, which will increase its effectiveness without going overboard.
- Adding a few drops of tea tree oil to your shampoo, which will help you to deal with dandruff without being harmful to your baby.
Additionally, you could look at products that contain tea tree oil extract. Just make sure that the oil is 100% pure and that the overall product is safe to use during pregnancy.
What other essential oils should I avoid while breastfeeding?
Aside from tea tree oil, there are several other essential oils that you should either avoid or take caution with while you’re pregnant. This full list of oils is as follows:
- Roman Chamomile
- Clary Sage
- Red Clover
- Sweet Basil
- Ylang Ylang
To reiterate, it’s wise to consult your doctor before using tea tree oil or any essential oil in the above list while you’re pregnant or breastfeeding. Your doctor can let you know either way whether you are safe to use the oil. For peace of mind, however, you may want to avoid using essential oils altogether until you’re no longer nursing.