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W2 will be offering a wide variety of herbs and essential oils in the future.  Herbs and Essential Oils have many beneficial properties, and many are completely benign. However some are quite potent and there are a few precautions to take into consideration with their usage.

Herbal Precautions

Bee Pollen: Avoid if allergic to bee stings

Catnip: Avoid use during pregnancy

Chamomile:  Avoid use if allergic to ragweed

Coltsfoot: Use with caution. Avoid long term use. Do not use during pregnancy

Comfrey: External use only. Do not use for extended periods of time.  Avoid use during pregnancy

Eucalyptus: Avoid in cases of inflammatory gastrointestinal diseases.

Horehound: Avoid use during pregnancy

Lemongrass: Avoid use during Pregnancy

Licorice:  Avoid prolonged use. Avoid if suffering from hyper tension, edema, cirrhosis of the liver and diabetes.
Avoid use during pregnancy.

Mugwort:  Avoid use during Pregnancy

Red Clover:  Avoid if pregnant or taking blood thinners

Sassafras:  Avoid prolonged  or excessive use

Yarrow:  Avoid use during pregnancy

Yellowdock:  Avoid use if history of kidney stones exists.

Essential Oils

General usage of essential oils: Many essential oils are highly toxic do not ingest any essential oil unless under the supervision of a Licensed homeopathic practitioner. Keep essentials away from the eyes and mucus membranes

As a rule, essential oils are extremely potent and should never be applied directly to the skin. The are few exceptions such as lavender, tea tree, chamomile, sandalwood and ylang ylang, however most essentials will cause burning and skin irritation if applied undiluted.

It’s a good practice to do a patch test when using a new essential oil solution (particularly those containing mint, cinnamon and citrus oils), by applying a drop of the diluted oil to the inside of the elbow first. If you notice any discomfort, redness or burning, rinse the area with cool water immediately.

It is also a good practice to vary your essential oil usage. Using the same essential oil over a prolonged period of time can result in skin irritation or photosensitivity.

Storage: Essential oils are best kept in tightly sealed dark bottles. Citrus and citrus based oils such as Neroli, should be stored in the refrigerator when the weather becomes extremely warm, to prevent the oils from spoiling.

Keep essential oils away from heat, light, children and pets. If an essential oil is ingested by a child or pet, seek medical attention for them immediately.

Pregnancy: Because of uterine stimulation or possible toxicity, during pregnancy and breast feeding, nursing mothers and pregnant women should always consult a licensed aromatherapist or homeopathic practitioner before using essential oils.

Interactions: Those who have chronic health problems or are taking medications should consult their health care practitioner before using essential oils.

Those with the following conditions should avoid these essential oils:

High Blood Pressure Rosemary
Epilepsy Fennel, Rosemary
Pregnacy Rosemary, Basil, Fennel, Cedarwood, Clary Sage Marjoram, Geranium, Peppermint, clove Bud, Myrrh, Tea Tree

The following Essential oils  can cause skin irritation if used excessively:
Cinnamon, Mint (all)
Eucalyptus, Pine Needle, Clove bud.

The following Essential Oils can cause photosensitivity if used incorrectly: 
Citrus oils (all), Bergamot.

Please note: This not a full and comprehensive listing of Oils and interactions, if you have any questions concerning the usage of any oil, consult your licensed healthcare practitioner.