By Jessica Cobb, Certified Aromatherapist
Essential oils aren’t just a trend! It may seem like essential oils are the “trendy new hotness” right now, but essential oils have actually been used by humans for thousands of years to heal, calm and enhance lives.
Before you read anything else: Rest easy knowing that using your essential oils for kids is not inventing the wheel. You’re actually using tried-and-true methods that moms have been using throughout history. Plus, we’re here to help you along the way.
What’s the Big Deal, Anyway?
Kids are not tiny adults!
One single drop of essential oil is equal to 15-40 cups of medicinal tea or up to 10 teaspoons of tincture. Woah! it’s no wonder we love essential oils so much.
But think about it. Would you give a child 40 cups of tea or 10 teaspoons of tincture? No way! Which is why you need to treat essential oils a little differently when using them for kids. Plus, some essential oils can only be used on children over a certain age, and some oils that just plain can’t be used for kids at all.
Don’t stress! We’ve got your back with all the info you need to safely use essential oils for kids.
What Essential Oils Are Great for Kids?
There are so many essential oils that you can diffuse or apply topically (when properly diluted) on your child’s skin that are 100% safe, beneficial to their health, and affordable. Here is just a short list of our favorite essential oils:
- Blue Tansy
- Cedarwood Atlas
- Copaiba Oleoresin
- Helichrysum Italicum
- Tea Tree
Essential Oils to AVOID Using Around Kids
So, it’s true that some essential oils aren’t safe for use with children. Peppermint, for example, has a high amount of menthol and can cause breathing problems with young kids. Also, some chemotypes of Eucalyptus and Rosemary have high amounts of 1,8-cineole, an essential oil constituent that isn’t safe for small children.
Don’t put your oils away just yet! You can still safely use essential oils for your kids in the home. Just make sure your oils and synergies are kid-friendly and educate yourself on the best essential oil practices.
Here’s a long–but not complete–list of which essential oils are NOT safe to use on children:
Oils to Avoid with All Children
- Birch (Sweet)
- Chaste Tree
Oils to Avoid with Children Under 10
- Black Seed
- Clove Bud, Clove Leaf, Clove Stem
- Ginger Lily
- Honey Myrtle
- Lemon Leaf
- Lemon Myrtle
- Massoia Bark
- May Chang
- Sweet Verbena
- Peru Balsam
- Sage (Wild Mountain)
- Verbena (Lemon)
- Ylang Ylang Complete
How to Use “Not Safe for Kids” Oils Around Kids
You’re probably wondering if you can use essential oils that are NOT safe for your children to benefit yourself when you’re around your children all the time.
The answer is–you totally can! A personal inhaler lets you use whichever essential oils you need, without worrying about affecting your little ones.
Just make sure to use your personal inhaler away from your babies or small children and leave enough time for the scent to dissipate before bringing your child back into the room.
Remember, essential oils for kids are an amazing way to naturally enhance your child’s life, care for their body and nurture their mind. All it takes is a little education, some quality oils and a loving parent to reap all the benefits essential oils have to offer!