One of my “mom friends” introduced me to essential oils and swore by their abilities. I wasn’t a believer until my pediatrician sent me home with a diaper rash cream made from essential oils she had right in her office. It worked like magic and I began to research the properties of different oils and oil blends and how to use essential oils safely with children.
Ever since, we have diffused and rolled on our favorite blends for a variety of ailments. Here are a few ways we use essential oils safely with children. (Please be wary, there is plenty of controversy on the safety of essential oils with children. This book may provide some research based information.)
If you’re curious about cloth diapering, check out this article about beginner facts every mom should know.
Lavender is well known for its calming and relaxation properties. When my daughter was little we often diffused lavender during her naps to help her transition from awake to rest time. I also used lavender oil on my pillow and in the diffuser on those restless nights during pregnancy. Lavender is safe to diffuse (from birth) and to use diluted in a carrier oil on babies 6 months and older.
Lavender is also known for its antibacterial properties. For this reason, we used it when traveling with our daughter. Add several drops to a spray bottle with filtered water and spray on baby’s clothes to ward of airplane germs.
My favorite use for lavender is in a DIY diaper wipe solution. Mix 2 cups of hot water, two tablespoons coconut oil and three drops of lavender in a mason jar. Shake the mason jar vigorously and pour over cloth wipes or a stack of Bounty paper towels.How To Use Essential Oils Safely With Children Click To Tweet
Frankincense is my catch all for any skin irritations like bug bites, rashes, blisters, etc. Frankincense is safe to use topically on children 6 months and older. We like to put several drops into a roller with some olive oil and apply it as needed. (My husband loves the woody scent so much that he kicked his traditional cologne for a bottle of frankincense that he uses every morning!)
Ylang ylang is a staple oil in our household. It’s floral fragrance makes it a perfect calming agent. Use equal parts lavender and ylang ylang for the perfect naptime blend.
One of ylang ylang’s aroma therapeutic properties is to lift your mood and combat anxiety. It has since been used as a natural antidepressant/ anti-anxiety. I recommend diffusing ylang ylang to help combat postpartum depression or just for creating a relaxing home environment on a stressful day. Or, add a few drops to a roller with castle oil. This roll-on will be perfect for baby (6mo+) at naptime and for you when you feel anxious/ depressed. (Tip: add lime EO to your diffuser with ylang ylang for double the antidepressant properties!)
Spearmint is similar to peppermint but is safer for children. Our favorite use of spearmint was to help with stuffy noses during colds. We diffused it and made chest rubs with spearmint, lavender and coconut oil. It helped to clear our sinuses and get us breathing through our noses again! (Tip: if your baby has a stuffy nose put a drop of it on your hands and rub them together to spread out the scent. Let your little one smell your hand and it will help relieve that stuffy nose.)
Tea tree oil is my go to antibacterial/ antifungal. I diffuse tea tree oil during flu season and when my kiddos start school. You can also add tea tree oil to vinegar and you’ve got an instant natural household cleaning solution free of harmful chemicals. After the age of 6 months, if our child had a yeast rash, we added a small amount of tea tree oil to olive oil before we grabbed the steroid cream. (Note: you never want to use essential oils to prevent rashes, only to treat them.)
We have found essential oils to be helpful aids to many of our daily needs. We use them daily and recommend their use to other families. Just be sure you use essential oils safely with children and make your own informed decisions before you treat your children.
Here are a few resources for you to refer to if you have a question about an oil not listed here.