Please Don't Ask Me to Go There

Jul 18, 09:42 PM

I'm a healing arts professional, so it is my nature to want to be of help whenever I can. One of the reasons Aromaceuticals' website has an Aromatic Library and the AromaBlog is so that people can have a reliable source of credible, complimentary information on proper and safe usage of essential oils. I spend a great deal of my time doing educational community presentations on various facets of aromatherapy, such as the cancer support presentation I'll be giving at Medical City Hospital next week. Providing all this information can be exhausting, but it is very rewarding.

Lately, however, my inbox has been overflowing with requests for people wanting help. All of them are in need, most of them have little to no experience with aromatherapy, and the majority of them do not want to pay for a consultation. A number of them have used essential oils inappropriately and are panicking over the results. Wading through these e-mails (most of them unsigned and without contact information) is taking up an extraordinary amount of time and energy.

I feel I need to make an official policy statement regarding these requests, so here it is:

- As a seller of essential oils and aromatherapy products, I cannot give free advice on aromatherapy for your particular health condition, nor supply you with specific protocols on how to use essential oils for your personal situation. It is not only unethical and unprofessional for me to do so, it is illegal. The FDA and FTC feel very strongly about this, and they do enforce the rules. If you are one of my private clients, I may give you advice within my scope of practice, recommend essential oils for your specific conditions and prepare custom blends for you. To become a private client, you must schedule a paid consultation.

- Should you decide to schedule an aromatherapy consultation, you will be required to sign a consent form and provide a health history. This request is not unusual, and is common practice among healthcare professionals, whether in holistic or allopathic practice. If you are requesting help for another individual (i.e., a grandchild, elderly parent), you must sign a consent form and supply their complete health information.

- Please do not ask me for information on how to use essential oils that are not sold by Aromaceuticals. If you purchased an essential oil elsewhere, I cannot ascertain its quality or effectiveness. I don't even know if you are using a product that comes from a named botanical source. Please contact the store where you purchased the product or ask the distributor for appropriate information.

- If you experience an adverse reaction to an essential oil or aromatherapy product that is not sold by Aromaceuticals, please do not phone or e-mail to ask what you should do. I have no way of knowing what ingredients are in the product that caused your reaction, and unless you are a private client, I have absolutely no knowledge of your medical history or any possible drug interactions that may have occurred. Contact the nearest poison control center or a physician, and be prepared to supply a list of all the offending product's ingredients, all your medications and known medical conditions. Contact the distributor or manufacturer of the product and supply them with the same information.

- Be safe. Prior to using essential oils on yourself, family, friends or pets, take an introductory class or read a few reputable books on the subject. A recommended book list is posted in the archives of AromaBlog. I teach aromatherapy classes on a regular basis. You may also find listings of reputable classes on the Alliance of International Aromatherapists or National Association for Holisic Aromatherapy websites.

- Enjoy your essential oils, and use common sense when experimenting with any aromatherapy product.

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