A Systematic Review on the Anxiolytic Effect of Aromatherapy during the First Stage of Labor.

J Caring Sci. 2019 Mar 1;8(1):51-60. doi: 10.15171/jcs.2019.008. eCollection 2019 Mar.

Author information: Ghiasi A1, Bagheri L1,2, Haseli A1.Student Research Committee, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Shahroud University of Medical Sciences, Shahroud, Iran. Department of Midwifery, School of Nursing and Midwifery, Islamic Azad University, Larestan Branch, Larestan, Iran.

Introduction: Anxiety is the most common psychological response of women to labor. The aim of the present systematic review was to evaluate and summarize the available clinical evidence on the anxiolytic effects of aromatherapy during the first stage of labor. 

Results: A total of 14 published papers and 2 unpublished papers were retrieved which met the inclusion criteria. The studies were conducted in Iran, Egypt, Korea, and Italy. Essential oils had been used were lavender in 5 articles, rose, clary sage, geranium and frankincense in 3 articles, chamomile, bitter orange, sweet orange and peppermint in 2 articles, mandarin orange, jasmine and clove in 1 article. A majority of the studies suggested a positive effect of aromatherapy in reducing women's anxiety during the first stage of labor. 

Conclusion: It is recommended that aromatherapy could be applied as a complementary therapy for reducing anxiety during the first stage of labor, but methodologically rigorous studies should be conducted in this area.

PMID: 30915314 PMCID: PMC6428160 DOI: 10.15171/jcs.2019.008