Saturday, March 6, 2010

NAHA E-News Going Green March Article

NAHA Safety Chair Report; Safe use of Essential Oils updates

As we continue to update the NAHA website there are still many areas that are "works in progress". If you have not visited the NAHA website lately, please know that it is always changing. If you receive the NAHA e-news and the press releases, but if you have not visited the website in a while, or you are a new member please check out these web-links below for starters. If you have suggestions for additions to these pages, feel free to contact NAHA.

Aromatherapy Myths and Misconceptions: this area answers such questions as: Can essential oils cross the blood brain barrier?

What is sensitization? First of all that term does not refer to those with "sensitive skin", sensitive "temperaments", or sensitive people in general- the answer is the scoop on what this term means and why you need to understand it when working with essential oils. great spot to visit is the Aromatherapy Safety page:

Here are several articles, starting with the updated list of threatened aromatic species used in the aromatherapy and cosmetic industries.

And my personal favorite: The Truth about Using Undiluted Essential Oils on the Skin. This article, although a few years old is still quite valid. It was the basis for our online form, The Essential Oil Reaction Report Form (see link below) which is used to collect information on unsafe use and negative reactions to essential oils.

Check out the article: Excerpt: In the last twenty years, many more people have had accidents, been 'burnt', developed rashes, become allergic, and become sensitized to our beloved tools. Why is this? Get the full answer in the complete article: Aromatherapy Undiluted- Safety and Ethics or skip to the last few pages, including the summary.

NAHA is receiving a growing number of questions and reports about complications due to treatment using unsafe and out of scope practices, such as the use of sensitizing and irritating essential oils undiluted on the skin. Spa and salon owners are often unaware of the liability issues in allowing this practice in their establishments. Click here to read more or for a copy of the Essential Oil Reaction Report Form:

The NAHA Safety Committee is currently compiling all the data submitted for a future report on unsafe use of essential oils that will be posted to the NAHA website. If you have information to share please contact Sylla at or use the online form to report any helpful information.

We will also be updating the website to include a link to the Cropwatch Report on the issue of the use of the term 'Therapeutic Grade' in regard to essential oils. You can view the report via this link

Finally check out the Friend's of Aromatherapy web page: and go to the Emergency Relief Massage International link to see what ERMI is doing and perhaps how you can help out in your state with Green Cross workers returning from Haiti. The United Aromatherapy Effort is also standing by to supply teams going in as well as the continued Military Program serving troops in Afghanistan. Latest news; Sylla Sheppard Hanger, on behalf of the UAE, received a USA flag flown in their honor over Camp Phoenix, Kabal Afghanistan by the Commanding Brigadier General in gratitude for this service.

We also suggest that in order to stay informed about what can be a current and future threat to our profession, that you visit these web-links to read the posts on the The Colorado Safe Personal Products Act. Robert Tisserand's Blog: . And visit this link to Cindy Jones Ph.D. Sagescript Blog at and Kayla Fioravanti Essential U Blog:

Sylla Sheppard-Hanger is the Founder/Director of the Atlantic Institute of Aromatherapy in Tampa, Florida. She brings twenty years of experience and personal research into the practice of Aromatherapy and the power of essential oils. Her fascination with this subject has led her to study with the most knowledgeable people in the field of aromatic and medicinal plants, essential oil research, herbology. In 1993, she completed the Medicinal and Aromatic Plants Program, Purdue University, Indiana, and continued to complete the International Training in Essential Oils: Advanced Studies - Parts 1 & 2 (1996-7).

She was a founding member of the American Aromatherapy Association (1988) and served two terms on the Board of Directors. Sylla is an active participant in the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA), as Chair of the Safety Committee. She actively participates in setting up national standards in education for aromatherapy.

To learn more about Sylla visit her websites at "> and email: