Hormone imbalances contribute to some of the symptoms of menstrual discomfort, premenstrual syndrome, menopause and postpartum mood disturbances. The estrogenlike properties of clary sage essential oil may help restore your hormone balance and alleviate some of your symptoms. If you're pregnant, nursing or have ever had any estrogen-related cancer, such as breast cancer, avoid clary sage. Clary sage essential oil isn't appropriate for everyone. Before using this oil to treat any condition or symptom, consult your health care provider.
For an essential oil blend to ease hormonal depression, combine 2 drops of clary sage oil, 2 drops of bergamot oil, 2 drops of sandalwood oil and 1 drop of ylang ylang or geranium oil, recommends American Herbalists Guild member Mindy Green. This type of blend is appropriate for use in some essential oil diffusers. Other diffusers require adding the oils to water. If you don't own a diffuser, apply a few drops of this blend to a handkerchief and cotton ball, then place the handkerchief or cotton ball near you or periodically sniff it. Never apply pure essential oils to your skin. If you want to apply these oils to your skin, first blend them into 1 ounce of carrier oil such as almond oil, apricot kernel oil or sesame oil.
If hormonal imbalances cause cramps or discomfort during menstruation, massaging your abdomen with a clary sage aromatherapy blend may help. Women with moderate to severe menstrual cramps experienced significantly less cramping after an aromatherapy abdominal massage, found a study published in the July-August 2006 issue of the "Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine." This study used a blend of 1 drop of clary sage oil; 1 drop of rose, or Rosa centifolia, oil; and 2 drops of lavender oil in 5 cubic centimeters, or 1 teaspoon, of almond oil.
Soaking in an aromatherapy bath is another way to benefit from clary sage. Blend your chosen oils and mix them into a dispersant such as bath salts or 2 or 3 tablespoons of full-cream milk. Then add this mixture to your bath water just before you get in. For menopause symptoms, try 2 drops of clary sage oil, 5 drops of geranium oil and 3 drops of cypress oil mixed into 1 cup Epsom salt, suggests Melissa Clanton in a paper for the Australasian College of Health Sciences. Add this to your bath, stir to disperse the mixture and soak in the bath for 20 or 30 minutes.
While clary sage alone may alleviate some of your symptoms, combining this essential oil with others provides more potential benefits. Experimenting with different combinations helps you find the blend that works best for you. In your blends for menopause symptoms, try essential oils with estrogenlike properties, such as cypress and fennel. If you're experiencing menopause-related insomnia, relaxing oils like lavender, chamomile and bergamot may help. Lavender may also help lessen mood swings. For premenstrual syndrome and menstruation problems, blend clary sage with rose, ylang ylang, bergamot or geranium. For safety reasons, keep the concentration of your essential oil blends at around 3 to 5 percent. Three drops of essential oil in 5 cubic centimeters, or 1 teaspoon, carrier oil is a concentration of 3 percent.
- Metropolitan State College of Denver; Aromatherapy – Essential Oils for Health and Wellness; Mindy Green; February 2009
- The University of Minnesota; How Do I Choose and Use Essential Oils?; Linda Halcón; April 2009
- "The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine"; Effect of Aromatherapy on Symptoms of Dysmenorrhea in College Students; SH. Han, et al.; July-August 2006
- Australasian College of Health Sciences; Menopause: Understanding and Managing the Transition Using Essential Oils vs. Traditional Allopathic Medicine; Melissa A. Clanton
- "Natural Health"; A Woman's Guide to Self-care: Everything You Need to Know to Treat the Symptoms of Menstruation, Pregnancy, and Menopause Safely and Naturally; Claire McDonald, Susan McDonald; January-February 1998