Natural remedies always stand to protect you from various ailments. Essential oil is prominent for its soothing and calming activity, it helps to eliminate allergens off the body.
But, in rare cases proteins in these oils can lead to essential oil allergy. Depending on your skin type and dosage, elements in this natural ingredient can irritate your skin.
According to experts, an allergic reaction is triggered when foreign substances come in contact with your skin or ingested into body. Immune system detects these harmless elements as a threat and produces antibodies and histamines, which results in allergic symptoms.
Almost all allergens are proteins or polypeptides, which are large molecules made of hundreds of amino acids. Through distillation process these large molecules are removed, because of which most people can topically use them. People who’re allergic to black pepper will not experience any reaction when they use black pepper essential oil, as the irritating molecules are removed through distillation.
Though it seems that essential oil can’t trigger allergy; instead it can help to get rid of allergic symptoms, fact is a bit complicated.
How Essential Oil Allergy is Triggered?
- Phenols are compounds residing in essential oil that may trigger allergic reaction. Clove oil, fennel, basil, cypress and clary sage are examples of essential oils that contain these compounds.
- Haptens housed in essential oils when combine with proteins on skin produce antibodies and result in allergic reaction. Oxidized essential oils are more prone to trigger contact dermatitis.
- Don’t think that essential oil last forever; talk to experts to know life-period of specified essential oil. You can check how to store essential oil here.
Symptoms of essential oil allergy include irritation, contact dermatitis and photosensitivity.
- Within seconds after applying essential oil irritation erupts. Though you may experience red rashes and itchy skin, it’s not non-allergic. Blend essential oil with carrier oil before applying on the skin to avoid irritation. It’s always recommended to patch test before applying it over face.
- Contact dermatitis occurs when your skin repeated exposed to allergens in essential oil. Rash and hives are mild symptoms of the allergy. In rare cases serious conditions like difficulty in breathing or wheezing can be seen.
- When elements in essential oil, skin and UV photons interact they trigger photosensitivity, which results in blisters and dark skin. Experts say that symptoms of the reaction occur after 36-72 hours of exposure to UV light. Furanocoumarins is the chemical component that can notable cause this reaction.
Prevent Essential Oil Allergy
If you experience any of the above mentioned symptoms consult doctor for diagnosis. Apart from that you must stay away from allergen.
- Dilute essential oil before applying it on the skin.
- Stop using the oil if you see skin rash or blisters.
- Don’t use cosmetic creams along with essential oil.
- Apply essential oil before going to bed, to avoid photosensitivity.
- Essential oil is renowned for its nutritional and healing benefits. But, in rare cases it can trigger allergy. So, I recommend to patch test before massaging it on the skin.