Essential oils are more than just a passing fad. They’re a legitimate way to heal your body and improve your health, and they’ve been used for literally thousands of years. Moms throughout history have used essential oils as a way to sooth pains and help their kids feel better.
However, not all oils are safe for use with children. Some have specific qualities that might be too strong for kids to ingest or breathe in the home. That’s why it’s important to always research oils before using a new one in your personal collection. While most essential oils are safe for adults, kids are more sensitive. Here are the essential oils that are safe for your kids.
What’s the Difference Between Kids and Adults?
First, let’s address why you can’t use the same dosage and quality of oils on your kids that you use for yourself. As much as we like to think that kids are just tiny adults, that’s not really true! To begin with, essential oils are highly concentrated. One drop is the same as over 15 cups of medicinal tea. That means they pack a lot of healing power, but that might be too intense for smaller kids.
You wouldn’t give your kids 15 cups of tea, most likely, so you can’t expect them to accept the same dosage of essential oils. It’s also important to note that some oils aren’t safe at all for kids under a certain age, so it’s best to avoid those altogether. However, with the right knowledge, it’s perfectly safe and effective to use the right essential oils with your little ones.
Oils to Avoid Using On and Near Kids
It’s true that not all oils are safe for kids. The most important ones to stay away from are birch and chaste tree. These are simply too strong for children under 10, so keep them out of your home if possible. Other oils to avoid, though less serious, are:
- Black seed
- Lemon leaf
- Wild Mountain Sage
How to Use Oils with Children
Now that you know what oils to avoid, let’s talk about how to use oils at all around children. As we said before, these oils are super strong. They can’t be used in their pure form on or around children. Here are some safety tips for using oils with children:
- Babies to 6 Months Old – Don’t use essential oils on or around children 6 months old and younger. This is because their skin is thinner and their immune systems are not well developed.
- 6 Months to 2 Years – It’s possible to use diluted oils on kids of this age as long as it’s topical and only for acute cases like a bug bite.
- Over 2 – Use a low-dilution (under 1%) of essential oils. You can also choose herbs and hydrosols as a safer option.
- Over 6 – After age 6, kids have a more developed immune system so they’re less likely to have any adverse reactions to oils. Still, use a low dilution for topical applications.
Safe Essential Oils to Use with Kids
As long as you follow the outline above, you’re safe to proceed using oils with kids. The good news is there is a long list of essential oils that are safe for use by children. Oils can be used to treat common kids health problems like fever, diaper rash, constipation, and even cuts and scrapes. Here are popular choices you should keep in your home:
Cypress Oil is a respiratory booster. It’s used to treat ailments like a whooping cough and bronchial problems. The best way to use cypress oil around kids is to dilute the oil in a diffuser in the home.
Lavender Oil is another popular choice that’s easy to keep at home. It’s naturally soothing and calming, and it’s a great way to encourage kids to fall asleep naturally. It also helps with skin irritants like cuts and scrapes since it’s naturally anti-bacterial. Lavender really is a do-all oil.
Apricot Kernel Oil is made from the seeds of apricots, and it’s extremely helpful for a number of reasons. The long list of apricot kernel oil uses includes moisturizing for dry skin and even cooking. This oil is known for helping boost heart health and overall body wellness.
Making the Most of Oils
Oils are a great way to naturally treat your kid’s ailments. While they’re not a substitute for medical treatment, they make a great addition to any first aid kit. Just make sure you’re aware of what not to do when it comes to treating kids with essential oils.
Remember, less is really more when it comes to using oils on or near kids. Make sure they only have positive, healthy reactions to your favorite oils before getting to work.