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Often touted as a go-to remedy for many aches and ailments, essential oils have quickly become one of the most popular natural products for self-care and women's health. But just because something is natural doesn’t mean it’s safe during every stages of life. That’s especially true during pregnancy.

You can absolutely use essential oils safely when you are expecting. You just have to know which ones to use and how to use them. Equipped with the right information, essential oils can actually be a powerful wellness ally during your pregnancy (and beyond). But first, you need to know which ones to avoid, as some of them have been linked to birth defects and miscarriage. But no need to worry, we’re here to give you the lowdown on what essential oils NOT to use when you’re expecting.

Here’s a list of 44 essential oils you should avoid during pregnancy and why you should avoid them. And if you’re trying to get pregnant or are breastfeeding, it’s a good idea to steer clear of these oils as well.

Oils that could damage our livers. This is especially true if you take them in large amount. That not only puts mama-to-be at risk, but also her unborn baby.

  1. Buchu ct diosphenol
  2. Buchcu ct pulegone
  3. Calamint

Oils that may prevent implantation. When you’re pregnant or trying to get pregnant, it’s a smart move to avoid anything that might interfere with the embryo’s ability to attach to the uterus.

  1. Spanish Sage (possible teratogen)
  2. Anise/ Star Anise
  3. Fennel (sweet and Bitter)
  4. Myrtle/ Aniseed
  5. Wormwood
  6. Yarrow (possible teratogen)
  7. Carrot seed

Oils that can interfere with baby’s in vitro development. Substances that can cause malformation of an embryo are known as teratogens. The three oils below, along with other oils that are listed in other categories, are teratogens and should therefore not be used during pregnancy.

  1. Hibawood
  2. Sweet Birch
  3. Wintergreen

Oils that can induce miscarriages. The oils below are high in compounds that have been linked to miscarriage or have resulted in miscarriage when used in large amounts.

  1. Savin (possible teratogen)
  2. Juniper
  3. Pennyroyal
  4. Rue
  5. Parsley
  6. Indian Dill

Oils that are neurotoxic. These oils, like mercury and other neurotoxins, have the potential to damage a baby’s developing nervous system, including their nerves and brain.

  1. Aretemesia Vestita
  2. Genipi
  3. Mugwort
  4. Dalmatian Sage
  5. Tansy
  6. Thuja
  7. Western red cedar
  8. Wormwood (possible teratogen)
  9. Hyssop
  10. lanyana
  11. Ho Leaf ct camphor
  12. Feverfew
  13. Spanish Lavender
  14. Dalmatian Sage

Oils that can inhibit blood vessel formation. It's incredibly important for blood vessels to form between mother and her placenta, and the placenta and her baby. Without these pathways, nutrients and oxygen can't pass to the baby from mom. And waste can't pass from the baby to be eliminated. The oils below may prevent those very important blood vessels from forming.

  1. Myrrh
  2. Costus
  3. Araucaria
  4. Black seed
  5. Atractylis
  6. Blue Cypress
  7. Zedoary

Oils that can be toxic to the baby. These essential oils may have any number of toxic effects on a developing baby. Though the oils of these three plants are thought to be unsafe during pregnancy, it’s perfectly safe to eat both cinnamon and oregano in normal amounts during pregnancy.

  1. Cassia
  2. Cinnamon bark (possible teratogen)
  3. Oregano

Oils that can alter our body’s hormonal balance. Some oils have the potential to balance hormones, which can be a good thing. But pregnant women are generally encouraged to avoid herbs or essential oils that may have an impact on their sex hormones. That is, unless their doctor tells them otherwise.

  1. Chasteberry (also known as vitex)
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Baby stuff comes in such cute prints these days. Gone are the days when everything was pink and blue and covered in ducks or teddy bears. Today's baby gear features stylish prints that appeal to mom.

That's why it's totally understandable how a mama could mistake a car seat cover for a cute midi skirt. It happened to Lori Farrell, and when she shared her mishap on Facebook she went viral before she was even home from work. Fellow moms can totally see the humor in Farrell's mishap, and thankfully, so can she.

As for how a car seat cover could be mistaken for a skirt—it's pretty simple, Farrell tells Motherly.

"A friend of mine had given me a huge lot of baby stuff, from clothes to baby carriers to a rocker and blankets and when I pulled it out I was not sure what it was," she explains. "I debated it but washed it anyway then decided because of the way it pulled on the side it must be a maternity skirt."

Farrell still wasn't 100% sure if she was right by the time she headed out the door to work, but she rocked the ambiguous attire anyway.

"When I got to work I googled the brand and realized not only do they not sell clothing but it was a car seat cover."

The brand, Itzy Ritzy, finds the whole thing pretty funny too, sharing Farell's viral moment to its official Instagram.

It may be a car seat cover, but that print looks really good on this mama.

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Daycare for infants is expensive across the country, and California has one of the worst states for parents seeking care for a baby. Putting an infant in daycare in California costs $2,914 more than in-state tuition for four years of college, according to the Economic Policy Institute.

Paying north of $1,000 for daycare each month is an incredible burden, especially on single-parent families. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines affordable childcare as costing no more than 10% of a family's income—by that definition, less than 29% of families in California can afford infant care. Some single parents spend half their income on day care. It is an incredible burden on working parents.

But that burden may soon get lighter. CBS Sacramento reports California may put between $25 and $35 million into child care programs to make day care more affordable for parents with kids under 3 years old.

Assembly Bill 452, introduced this week, could see $10 million dollars funneled into Early Head Start (which currently gets no money from the state but does get federal funding) and tens of millions more would be spent on childcare for kids under three.

The bill seeks to rectify a broken childcare system. Right now, only about 14% of eligible infants and toddlers are enrolled in subsidized programs in California, and in 2017, only 7% of eligible children younger than three years of age accessed Early Head Start.

An influx of between $25 to $35 million dollars could see more spaces open up for kids under three, as Bill 452, if passed, would see the creation of "grants to develop childcare facilities that serve children from birth to three years of age."

This piece of proposed legislation comes weeks after California's governor announced an ambitious plan for paid parental leave, and as another bill, AB 123, seeks to strengthen the state's pre-kindergarten program.

Right now, it is difficult for some working parents to make a life in California, but by investing in families, the state's lawmakers could change that and change California's future for the better.

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When a mama gets married, in most cases she wants her children to be part of her big day. Photographers are used to hearing bride-to-be moms request lots of pictures of their big day, but when wedding photographer Laura Schaefer of Fire and Gold Photography heard her client Dalton Mort planned to wear her 2-year-old daughter Ellora instead of a veil, she was thrilled.

A fellow mama who understands the benefits of baby-wearing, Schaefer was keen to capture the photos Mort requested. "When I asked Dalton about what some of her 'must get' shots would be for her wedding, she specifically asked for ones of her wearing Ellie, kneeling and praying in the church before the tabernacle," Schaefer tells Motherly.

She got those shots and so many more, and now Mort's toddler-wearing wedding day pics are going viral.

"Dalton wore Ellie down the aisle and nursed her to sleep during the readings," Schaefer wrote on her blog, explaining that Ellie then slept through the whole wedding mass.

"As a fellow mother of an active toddler, this is a HUGE win! Dalton told me after that she was SO grateful that Ellie slept the whole time because she was able to focus and really pray through the Mass," Schaefer explains.

Dalton was able to concentrate on her wedding day because she made her baby girl a part of it (and that obviously tired Ellie right out).

Ellie was part of the commitment and family Dalton if forging with her husband, Jimmy Joe. "There is no better behaved toddler than a sleeping toddler, and she was still involved, even though I ended up unwrapping her to nurse her. I held her in my arms while my husband and I said our vows. It was really special for us," Dalton told POPSUGAR.

This is a wedding trend we are totally here for!

Congrats to Dalton and Jimmy Joe (and to Ellie)! 🎉

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The internet is freaking out about how Peppa Pig is changing the way toddlers speak, but parents don't need to be too worried.

As Romper first reported, plenty of American parents have noticed that preschoolers are picking up a bit of a British accent thanks to Peppa. Romper's Janet Manley calls it "the Peppa effect," noting that her daughter started calling her "Mummy" after an in-flight Peppa marathon.

Plenty of other parents report sharing Manley's experience, but the British accent is not likely to stick, experts say.

Toronto-based speech and language pathologist Melissa James says this isn't a new thing—kids have always been testing out the accents they hear on TV and in the real world, long before Peppa oinked her way into our Netflix queues.

"Kids have this amazing ability to pick up language," James told Global News. "Their brains are ripe for the learning of language and it's a special window of opportunity that adults don't possess."

Global News reports that back in the day there were concerns about Dora The Explorer potentially teaching kids Spanish words before the kids had learned the English counterparts, and over in the U.K., parents have noticed British babies picking up American accents from TV, too.

But it's not a bad thing, James explains. When an American adult hears "Mummy" their brain translates it to "Mommy," but little kids don't yet make as concrete a connection. "When a child, two, three or four, is watching a show with a British accent and hears [words] for the first time, they are mapping out the speech and sound for that word in the British way."

So if your baby is oinking at you, calling you "Mummy" or testing out a new pronunciation of "toh-mah-toe," know that this is totally natural, and they're not going to end up with a life-long British pig accent.

As Dr, Susannah Levi, associate professor of communicative sciences and disorders at New York University, tells The Guardian, "it's really unlikely that they'd be acquiring an entire second dialect from just watching a TV show."

It sure is cute though.

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