7 Safe Options and Their Uses
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Health fads come and go, but essential oils have been used reliably and extensively in medicine for thousands of years.
Aromatherapy, or essential oil therapy, can be defined as the medicinal use of naturally extracted plant aromas to promote physical and emotional well-being.
Aromatic plant extracts have many uses, from treating burns and soothing skin, to alleviating stress and relaxing the mind.
On babies older than 3 months, some essential oils can be used to help encourage sleep, calm anxiety, and even relieve symptoms of colic. Before applying essential oils to babies, it’s important to understand proper dilution ratios and application methods.
Because essential oils are widely available today, check product labels to make sure you’re using pure, authentic, unadulterated essential oils.
Essential oils that are premixed with alcohol can be irritating. You should also avoid synthetic fragrances, which are completely different from essential oils, don’t carry health benefits, and can be irritating to the skin.
Each essential oil is different. While other essential oils may be safe for use on infants and babies, these essential oils have been deemed generally safe when used properly and in moderation.
Unless otherwise specified, follow the dilution ratios and applications explained below.
Never apply essential oils directly to the skin, always mix them with a carrier oil. Babies should never drink or ingest essential oils. It’s never safe for babies to take essential oils orally.
- Essential oils should not be used on babies younger than 3 months old.
- Aromatherapy can encourage sleep, calm anxiety, and relieve symptoms of colic.
- Essential oils are very potent and must be diluted with carrier oil or cream.
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German chamomile and Roman chamomile are gentle essential oils that can be beneficial for babies who have trouble sleeping.
Chamomile has natural soothing effects and is traditionally used to treat insomnia in babies and adults.
Chamomile, along with lavender, can relieve symptoms of colic. Chamomile has also been shown to help anxiety and depression, and can uplift a fussy baby’s spirits.
Distilled lemon can help lift energy and mood, and is great for a post-nap wakeup call.
Distilled lemon is preferable to expressed lemon for babies. Expressed lemon is a potential photosensitizer, whereas distilled lemon should not cause skin irritation.
Dill is a calming, antispasmodic oil that can help soothe indigestion.
To use, dilute dill in a ratio of 1 drop per teaspoon of carrier oil, blend thoroughly, and massage the mixture onto a baby’s skin.
Eucalyptus is a natural expectorant that can help unclog respiratory congestion. This makes Eucalyptus a favorite during the cold winter months.
Note: Eucalpytus radiata is a different species than the commonly found Eucalyptus globulus. Children and infants should use Eucalpytus radiata. While Eucalyptus globulus is safe for adults, it should not be used on children under the age of 2.
Contact your pediatrician before using eucalyptus to ease respiratory symptoms.
Lavender has many calming and sedative effects. A lavender oil massage can help to relax a fussy baby and encourage sleep.
Lavender can also be used on insect bites and to reduce itchiness. A recent studyTrusted Source shows lavender to be effective in alleviating the symptoms of colic.
Mandarin has calming effects similar to lavender, making it a great nighttime alternative for babies who are irritated by the scent of lavender.
The sweet scent of mandarin is favorable to other orange varieties because it’s not phototoxic. This means that even when diluted and applied directly to the skin, it shouldn’t cause skin irritation.
Tea tree is a natural antimicrobial, antifungal, and disinfectant. Adding a few drops of tea tree oil to an unscented oil can help with diaper rash and fungal infections.
Tea tree is a stronger oil that can be harsh on the skin, so it should be avoided on babies younger than 6 months old and carefully patch-tested on older infants.
Essential oils are extremely potent and must be diluted with a carrier oil or cream when used on the skin.
Dilution is especially important for infants and young children. For babies older than 3 months, the National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA) recommends a safe dilution ratio of .5 to 1 percent, compared to a 2.5 to 10 percent dilution for adults.
Because babies have more sensitive skin than adults, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians notes that essential oils should not be used at all on infants under 3 months old.
Even when diluted, essential oils can cause skin irritation and sun sensitivity. It’s recommended that a patch test (also sometimes called a “spot test”) be performed on the skin, with each new oil introduced.
Perform a patch test
- Apply a small (no larger than a dime) amount of diluted essential oil to a baby’s leg or arm.
- Wait for 24 hours to see if there is a reaction.
- If a reaction occurs, discontinue use (a reaction would likely cause redness, inflammation, or be painful to the touch).
- If no reaction occurs, it’s likely safe to move forward with applying the essential oil.
According to the NAHA, “some essential oils should simply be avoided [on babies], e.g. birch or wintergreen, which are both rich in methyl salicylate and peppermint.”
Essential oils should never be used internally by children or infants, and should be kept out of infants’ baths to avoid accidental ingestion.
The following topical treatments are safe and effective when proper dilution ratios are followed.
Blend with a carrier
Vegetable oil, coconut oil, and sweet almond oil are commonly used base oils that mix well with essential oils. They also bring their own moisturizing qualities and help to nourish the skin.
Peanut oil is commonly mixed into base oils so be sure to check the ingredients list of your base oil for any potential allergens.
To blend, dilute an essential oil at a ratio of 0.5 percent essential oil to base oil. Shake or mix vigorously to blend. Once the oils are thoroughly blended, perform a patch test on your baby’s leg or arm to insure the formula is nonirritating.
Spritz the diluted essential oil around your baby’s room to create a calming scent before naps or bedtime. Avoid spritzing pillows so as to make sure your baby doesn’t accidentally ingest the oils.
Essential oils are an effective, natural alternative to artificial room fresheners. While adults can use candle diffusers, water-based vaporizers make for a safer, flame-free way to spread a scent throughout any room of your house.
When trying out a new essential oil around your baby, test a small amount of each new oil in a vaporizer for an hour to insure that no irritation occurs.
Because some essential oils shouldn’t be used with certain medications and medical conditions, always check with your doctor before applying therapeutic oils to your baby.
If you’re pregnant, talk to your doctor before using any essential oils on yourself or your baby.
Essential Oils for Children’s Sleep — Mālama Momma
Essential OilsPediatric Sleep
Written By Julia Riddle
Sleep is everything.
Whether you have an infant, toddler, elementary aged kiddo or teenager, you care about sleep in your household. Infants need up to 16 hours of sleep a day, toddlers need 11 — 14 hours of sleep, preschoolers need 10 — 13 hours, school-aged need 9 — 11, and teenagers need a minimum of 8 years a day.
When children don’t get the sleep they need, their physical, mental, and emotional development can be hindered. Our bodies heal better when we get enough sleep, our emotions and hormones are more balanced when we get the sleep we need, and everyone is just HAPPIER when they get good sleep.
As an infant sleep coach, one of my secret sleep aids is essential oils.
Essential oils are known for their calming and soothing benefits.
Oils like lavender or frankincense can help your children sleep by creating a relaxing response in their body. Once they associate the aroma with sleep, their brain will have a positive sleep association with essential oils. #WINNING
Our family has been using oils for over 5 years. We love using them in our diffusers, rolled onto our feet and dripped into our baths. We diffuse Serenity (the restful blend) or petitgrain essential oil in our daughter’s room every night. We also apply frankincense, Balance or On Guard (the protective, immune-boosting blend) on their feet and spines before bed. If you haven’t jumped on the oil train yet, now is the time. I can help you get started.
Ways to Use Essentials Oils to Promote Better Sleep:
Add 2 drops of calming essential oils to their bath to relax muscles.
Roll sleep-inducing oils like lavender and frankincense onto their feet and/or bedding to calm their mind. Rollerballs make application of the oils easy.
Diffuse essential oils in the bedroom before sleep time. Diffusers release the aroma into the room for a relaxing environment. Add 4 -6 drops of essential oils into the diffuser right before sleep time.
Top Oils for Sleep:
If you want to read more on essential oils and sleep, here is an eBook with more information. This book is packed with recipes and the best oils to use for sleep. You’ll love it!
If you need to purchase these oils, I recommend using doTERRA oils. You can purchase them through me. Book a consult call to chat more or for help in selecting which oils to start with in your home.
Hope you all get lots of great sleep tonight.
Essential oils for baby’s health and happiness
Children are sensitive and impressionable natures, their sense of smell is especially delicate, and they are very susceptible to various smells. Therefore, the use of fragrances in the children’s room is a good opportunity to help the baby grow up healthy and joyful, mobilize internal resources and harmonize his personality.
For general prevention, a mixture of essential oils of pine, thyme, peppermint and rosemary is suitable — these oils absorb almost all microbial colonies in the room.
If a child has a cold or flu, the following mixtures of essential oils will become a powerful helper of traditional medicine:
• 2 drops of chamomile + 1 drop of tangerine + 1 drop of tea tree oil;
• 2 drops of eucalyptus essential oil + 1 drop of tea tree oil + 1 drop of thyme oil.
If the baby is overly excitable, whiny, wakes up screaming at night, then he needs the aromas of anise, rose, incense, white sandalwood, ylang-ylang, orange or Roman chamomile. These smells have a calming effect, which is often very effective for children’s whims.
Basil, geranium, orange or cinnamon are suitable for getting rid of a small person from their own inferiority complexes. Jasmine creates a sense of confidence and optimism, enhances self-esteem and a sense of well-being.
To relieve overexcitation and overstrain of the nervous system in overly active children, a mixture of aromas of rose, incense and sandalwood is suitable. If the child is aggressive or irritable, use the scents of lavender, vanilla, oregano. They are good at calming and taming in anger.
Creative processes are well stimulated by the smell of Japanese cherries. Jasmine will facilitate creative searches and help the birth of original ideas.
Before going to bed, it is important to aromatize the room using soothing essential oils for children. It is best to use lavender essential oil for children for these purposes.
You need to mix:
• 3 drops of lavender essential oil
• 2 drops of chamomile essential oil
The mixture is added to the aroma lamp or diffuser in the children’s room for 7-8 minutes (if the child is very small — for 3 minutes).
Before use, read the contraindications and consult a pediatrician! Observe the dosage and the possibility of using essential oils depending on the age of the child!
With care for you and your baby, Gunna!
Aromatherapy for children
Aromatherapy for children
Aromatherapy is the ancient science and art of using herbal essential oils in medicine and aesthetics.
Knowledge of the use of aromatic oils allows you to control your body: mood, well-being, as well as influence the feelings, reflexes and even thoughts of people. Scheme of the effect of aromatic substances on organs — see figure.
Aromatherapy for children can be done from any age. When choosing oils, it is necessary to take into account the age of the child, the properties of the oils. The average recommended dose of oil for children is half that for adults. From the age of 12, the usual doses (adults) are used.
The first 2 sessions should preferably be done in a separate room and not longer than 10 minutes.
Mix 1 drop of aroma oil with ¼ teaspoon of olive (vegetable) oil and apply to the skin behind the ear. If after 12 hours there is no irritation (hyperemia, burning) — the oil is suitable for baths, massage, compress.
On a napkin (handkerchief) apply 1-2 drops of the same diluted aroma oil and inhale periodically 3-4 times a day at a distance of 10-15 cm — 1-2 days. If there is no reaction (lacrimation, sneezing, runny nose) can be used for inhalation and inside.
Peppermint is generally avoided for children under 1 year of age.
For children from 2 weeks to 2 months, essential oils of lavender and rose are recommended.
Children from 2 months to 1 year old can use scents of bergamot, sandalwood, ylang-ylang.
Lemon, pine, tea tree, mint oils are available for ages 3 to 5.
Geranium, eucalyptus, rosemary oils are used for children over 5 years of age.
Chamomile, geranium, eucalyptus, rosemary, thyme, sage are used from the age of 6.
For children over 12 years of age, cloves are administered.
Recommended oils for children
For disinfection purposes: lavender, tea tree, lemon, cypress, rosemary, peppermint, eucalyptus, juniper.
For colds, it is better to use essential oils of lavender, eucalyptus, tea tree, rosemary.
To improve sleep — lavender
To relieve headaches — geranium.
Melissa, rose will support in case of stress.
Chamomile, jasmine, rose, lemon balm help to improve mood.
Fascinating associations caused by the smells of plants
Stimulating and tonic
Clove, bay leaf, black pepper
Iris, coffee, currant
Bright, sweet with balsamic undertones
Warm, dryish, light, thick
Peppermint, jasmine, cypress
Cool, soft, moist
Cool, moist, gentle, soft
Influence of plant odors on some body functions,
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Rosemary, citrus, geranium
Unpleasant odors from rotting plants
Cardiovascular system (pulse rate, blood pressure)
Hawthorn, bison, lilac, poplar, pine and spruce (summer), camphor laurel
Oak, birch, vanilla, oregano, thyme, pine and spruce (in winter), lemon, lemon balm, valerian
Respiratory system (vital capacity, bronchial patency)
Birch, linden, thyme, heather, oregano, lemon, eucalyptus
Poplar, lilac, valerian, cudweed
Gas exchange in the lungs
The use of quality essential oils is safe and effective in many pathological conditions and diseases and for prevention purposes.