Castor Oil Packs to Boost Fertility 

Castor Oil Packs

Castor Oil Packs to Boost Fertility 

Castor oil is a plant-based oil that has been used to promote health for hundreds of years. It comes from the seeds of the ricinus communis plant, which is native to tropical areas of Asia and Africa. To support fertility, we often recommend doing something known as “castor oil packs” to flush toxins out of the pelvic region, improve blood circulation to the reproductive organs, and reduce inflammation. Read on to learn how this unique treatment might help your fertility.  

Why do we recommend castor oil packs? 

Castor oil is anti-inflammatory and promotes lymph circulation, which together promote detoxification of all the tissues of the abdomen and helps alleviate pelvic stagnation. In Traditional East Asian Medicine terms: Castor oil moves Blood, Qi, and Body Fluids, all of which are necessary for optimal fertility and healthy menstrual periods.

Some conditions that might mean you have pelvic stagnation are: endometriosis, fibroids, ovarian cysts, blocked fallopian tubes, menstrual cramps, clots in your menstrual blood, and mucus in your menstrual blood. Doing consistent castor oil packs can help reduce the effects of pelvic stagnation and improve your chances of conceiving a healthy baby. 

Are there people who shouldn’t use castor oil packs?

People who are pregnant or breastfeeding shouldn’t use castor oil packs. Also, people with heavy periods or with an IUD should check with their provider first. Because castor oil promotes blood movement, it could cause heavier bleeding during your period.

How do you do castor oil packs?

Here are the items you will need:

  • Cold-pressed castor oil (available at local natural food stores in the supplement section)
  • Organic Flannel to cover your abdomen or a hand towel (note: castor oil will stain)
  • Plastic wrap to cover the towel (optional if you don’t mind potential staining)
  • Heating pad or hot water bottle
  • Optional: a large towel to lay on to catch at castor oil drips
  • Optional: clothes you don’t mind staining

Find a comfortable place to rest lying down or reclining for 30-60 minutes. Put down your large towel and change into your stain-friendly clothes or old pajamas. Have your heating pad or hot water bottle handy.

Apply a generous layer of castor oil to the low abdomen, from your pubic bone to your belly button. Put your flannel or hand towel on top, cover with plastic wrap if you like, and place your heating pad or hot water bottle on top. Then rest. You can listen to relaxing music, do a mindfulness practice, or just take a nourishing break. When your time is up, wipe off any unabsorbed oil with a towel or washcloth. 

We usually recommend that people do castor oil packs in the evening, when they’re winding down for bed. If you’re a morning person and would enjoy 30-60 minutes of down time first thing in the morning, go for it! Use the time for other self-care activities like journaling, reading, self-massage or meditation.

How often can I do castor oil packs? 

If you know you have pelvic congestion like endometriosis, fibroids, or ovarian cysts, you can do castor oil packs daily after your period. Otherwise, you can do castor oil packs every two to three days. Some people prefer to do ‘batches’ of castor oil packs, so they will do three days in a row, then take the rest of the week off. If you’re actively trying to conceive, stop doing castor oil packs just before ovulation. Only resume if you learn you’re not pregnant.

Do I really have to lay down for an hour? 

An alternative is to apply the castor oil to your lower abdomen, wrap a cloth around your belly, put on a pair of old pajamas on, place a hot water bottle on your belly, and go to bed. There’s a good chance that some castor oil will get onto your sheets, so be prepared for stained sheets and stained pajamas.

Do I need to wash the castor oil towels and clothes separately?

Yes, because you don’t want the castor oil to wash off onto your other clothing. Wash in hot water.

What else can I use castor oil packs for?

  • Menstrual cramps – the castor oil helps blood and lymph circulation, so metabolic waste products are removed more quickly. 
  • Cleansing the liver – castor oil can be applied to the upper abdomen to help decongest the liver, which helps the body detox and can improve hormone imbalances. 
  • Breaking up scar tissue – castor oil can help dissolve adhesions from surgery or endometriosis or other trauma. Adhesions can pull on tissues and cause pain or impact ovulation and fertilization.
  • Muscle pain – If you’ve strained a muscle, you can use the same process to apply the castor oil and heat to the painful area. Do this one a day for 7 days.

Castor oil packs can be a great addition to a fertility-boosting treatment plan, and can give you space to relax. Contact us to learn more about other home care treatments that can support your fertility. 

Established patients can schedule online, patients who haven’t seen us at Kwan Yin Healing Center call (503) 701-8766, or email us to schedule your appointment.

About Lisa Tongel

We are practitioners of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine specializing in fertility, IVF support, pregnancy care, reproductive health, and pelvic pain.