Using Essential Oils Safely with Babies & Children
There is a lot of evidence that essential oils, derived from plants are very useful and beneficial to humans. But people ask what about babies? They are a lot more sensitive and smaller.
Using essential oils around babies and children correctly can provide some great support and benefits. They can provide great assistance with sleep and controlling airborne environmental threats. However, it is important to note that essential oil use with babies younger than 3 months should be avoided.
When essential oils are used on babies and children it is important to use sparingly and to dilute with a carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil or jojoba oil. Not only does this reduce the concentration on the babies skin, but it also helps the oil glide over the delicate baby skin less abrasively.
The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA)in the US, recommends a safe dilution ratio of .5 to 1 percent for essential oils used on children.
The following oils are recommended as the best to use around babies and children. It is not advisable to experiment with other oils around children
*NOTE that it is wise to do a little patch test first and to wait a day. It is possible for anyone to be allergic to a specific plant and that includes babies and children.
*If the baby or child is on other medication it is advised to talk to a doctor first, before using therapeutic oils on them.
There is some evidence that lavender can reduce pain and colic in babies.
There is some evidence that chamomile can be a useful sleep aid for babies.
Eucalyptus (not to be used on children younger than 2)
Eucalyptus is great for promoting feelings of clear breathing and supporting the respiratory system. It can also help control dust mites in a room. Use it in the laundry to sanitise children’s clothing or in a diffuser to help clear the lungs.
Mandarin has calming effects that are similar to Lavender and even though it is a citrus, it is phototoxic, meaning that even when diluted and applied directly to the skin, it is usually safe for the child. Can also be diffused nearby to help with colic.
Tea Tree Oil (not to be used on children younger than 6 months)
Tea Tree is a natural antimicrobial, antifungal, and disinfectant. When used in a carrier oil it can assist in easing conditions such as nappy rash and fungal infections.
How to expose your baby to essential oils safely:
*Check the labels first, to make sure that you are using, pure unadulterated essential oils, such as doTERRA. There are so many varieties available on the market today, mistakenly using an inferior brand, or a fragrant oil instead of a pure essential oil, could potentially be harmful for the baby. Also avoid blends that are mixed with alcohol.
*Do the patch test first, eliminate any possible allergies before a wider area of skin is exposed to the essential oil.
*Baby Massage – put a drop in some carrier oil and give the baby a massage. Warm the mixture in your hands and apply it to the legs, chest and back, in small, light circular movements. This is advised for a general massage. For specific conditions in specific areas (such as cradle cap on the baby’s head for example), obviously, you apply directly to that area. Please search for more detailed information when you want to apply an oil blend directly as a remedy for a specific ailment.
*Bath time – Put a drop in your baby’s warm bath. The steam diffuses the oil naturally and it comes into contact with the baby’s skin.
*Diffuser – Vaporise a small amount of essential oil in a diffuser nearby. Do not have the diffuser too close to the baby.
PLEASE NOTE that this blog post is intended as a guideline only. Please do further research before using essential oils on your children and seek medical advice if you are unsure.