Essential oils are incredibly potent and very powerful for the body. Because of their potency, it’s easy to overdo it if you’re not careful. Kids and babies are much smaller than adults and therefore you need to use caution when you use essential oils on and around them. Additionally, unless you are under the care of a doctor, licensed aromatherapist, or another qualified medical practitioner, the use of essential oils internally (through the mouth) is not recommended for children.
With that said, there are many ways to use essential oils to help kids sleep, relax, wake up, manage cold symptoms, and more. Because they are derived from plants, they are gentle on to the body as compared to other products on the market. Here are the best essential oils for kids and babies.
Lavender essential oil is one of the best all-around oils to use on children. It blends well with all oils and has no known cautions. Evidence shows that this oil can boost your mood, improve quality of sleep, and decrease cortisol levels for both moms and babies.
We keep this one stocked in our essential oils cabinet at all times. It’s antibacterial and antiviral and good for many different conditions. We like to use it for insect bites, but you can also use it on eczema, psoriasis, dandruff, and contact dermatitis.
Want to reduce stress? Try lemon essential oil in a diffuser or a roller bottle. This oil is known for its mood-boosting properties. Additionally, it’s antibacterial and antiviral, so it provides support to the body when your child is sick. We make a roller bottle with lemon, lavender, melaleuca to use on our kids when they get colds.
Thyme essential oil should be used heavily diluted on children and only for certain issues. For respiratory issues, one drop can either be put in a diffuser or in a couple of TBSP of carrier oil and rubbed on the chest to help with coughing. It has antiviral components that help support the body in fighting off sickness.
Another great oil to use for coughs, Copaiba Balsam is derived from the resin or gum of a tree. It is a mild expectorant, anti-inflammatory, and antiviral. One drop in a few TBSP of carrier oil is enough for topical use and one drop in a diffuser works for inhalation.
You may think of bible times when you hear this oil, as it was one of the gifts that the wise men brought to Jesus. It is a powerful, yet gentle essential oil that has so many uses. For kids, it helps reduce inflammation in joints, reduces inflammation in the lungs during sickness, and even helps skin conditions such as eczema.
Cypress essential oil has many great uses, but among the best ones for kids is for bedwetting. Just a drop of cypress in around 5 drops of carrier oil can be rubbed on the lower abdomen before bed.
Constipation is very common in kids and while there are many natural ways to relieve it, one of them is with essential oils. Grapefruit essential oil is especially helpful to relieve constipation in kids and can be used diluted in a carrier oil. Rub it on the lower abdomen and lower back to relieve hard poops.
Kids get headaches too and if you’ve already ruled out dehydration, German Chamomile is an effective option. Mix it with lavender, basil, and a carrier oil, and apply it to the back of the neck, the temples, and the forehead. You’ll need 5 drops of each essential oil in 20 drops of carrier oil, and then just dab a little on your finger to rub on your child’s head. If you think this is too strong, add more carrier oil to dilute it even more.
Kids and babies get a lot of different upper respiratory infections including RSV. You can use essential oils alongside typical medical treatments to support their system as they heal. Myrtle is one of the best oils for RSV and can be used in a topical solution with a carrier oil on the chest. It’s helpful because it eases coughing, helps balance respiratory function, and even supports restful sleep.
Want to wake your kids up in the morning? Orange essential oil is an invigorating oil that reduces anxious feelings, stimulates, and uplifts the mood. Sweet orange can be diluted with a carrier oil in a roller bottle and put on the wrists and behind the ears.
As you can see, there are many uses for essential oils and when used sparingly, can provide many benefits. It’s also important to remember that oils should be kept out of the reach of children to avoid ingestion.
The content for this article was derived from the book Evidence-Based Essential Oil Therapy by Dr. Scott A. Johnson.
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