Baby and Essential Oils. Increasingly, many people who are fed up with the modern medical system, or even those who are just looking for more alternatives to improve their lives and take their own health into their own hands, have turned to natural and holistic medicinal sources such as essential oils uses.
And while this is great news for adults who want to get the most out of their life and begin experimenting with essential oils to improve their quality of life, it’s not as good news for young children and babies.
See, babies older than 3 months old can greatly benefit from essential oils and aromatherapy (more on that below), but it is important to remember that babies also have far less developed immune systems than adults.
In general babies less then 3 months old are not nearly as strong or as resilient enough at this stage of there new life as they continue to grow and they continue to get older.
Their skin is not mature enough and therefore it is more sensitive and permeable to that of an older baby. Also unlike adults, newborns cannot deal with an adverse reaction if one may happen.
As this is just a general guideline for your Baby and Essential Oils. Great care and research should be taken to get the maximum dermal and safe use for each individual oil before use.
It's also important to remember to never introduce your baby to more than one essential oil at a time. Allergies and reactions to essential oils are no fun and will usually show their self within about 15 to 30 minutes after exposure.
So it is important to understand what will – and what will not – work for your Baby and Essential Oils.
Here are just a few tips to consider regarding the use of essential oils for babies:
Which essential oils are safe and acceptable for babies, anyway?
There are a variety of essential oils that can be used with babies and those infants in your life, but most namely, Chamomile (Roman and German), as well as Dill, Lavender, and Mandarin.
These are deemed safe for babies as long as they're used in moderation, never directly applied to the skin, and used properly following the labels application and dilution ratios.
Also, although adults may safely ingest some essential oils. Babies, on the other hand, should never orally drink or ingest any essential oil.
- Chamomile (Matricaria chamomilla or Chamaemelum Nobile) Both Roman and German essential oils are considered gentle that can be of benefit for babies that are having troubles sleeping.
Chamomile has a natural soothing effect that can be used to treat insomnia in babies. Mixed with lavender, it can also relieve symptoms of colic.
For fussy babies, chamomile has also been shown to shown to help with depression and anxiety and can help lift their spirits.
- Dill (Anethum sowa) As a massage on your babies skin, dill works as an antispasmodic calming oil which helps soothe indigestion.
- Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) A massage with lavender oil can help relax a fussy baby while encouraging sleep. Lavender has sedative and several calming effects. It can also be used on itchiness as well as for insect bites.
- Mandarin (Citrus reticulata) Similar to lavender mandarin with its calming effects can be used as an alternative to lavender if for some reason the scent is irritating to your baby.
Mandarin with its sweet aroma is not phototoxic and is favorable over other varieties of oranges.
These are the most ideal essential oils when it comes to protecting and promoting the health of your baby over three months old.
For babies between three months and six months of age, parents can use the above listed essential oils, as well as Neroli which is similar to Mandarin and has been proven to be safe and beneficial to babies, without causing problems.
- Neroli (Citrus x Aurantium var.amara) Known for its sedative and calming effects neroli is a great addition to the evening massage or bath.
It has a sweet citrusy aroma and comes from the orange flower.
And, finally, for babies from six months of age to roughly eighteen months of age, parents can add everything above to their essential oil plate, as well as starting to include Calendula, Grapefruit, and Tea Tree.
- Calendula (C. officinalis) Delicate skin is one thing babies come with. With this babies are prone to aggravated skin and inflammatory conditions such as atopic dermatitis, cradle cap, minor grazes and cuts, and nappy rash.
All of which have been shown to benefit from the use of calendula.
- Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi) An uplifting and cheery mood comes from the bright and clean scent. Grapefruit should never be used before going outdoors since it is phototoxic which can lead to skin damage.
- Tea Tree (Melaleuca alternifolia) As a disinfectant, antifungal, and antimicrobial. Tea tree oil can be used for fungal infections and diaper rash.
Tea tree should never be used on a baby younger than 6 months old since it is harsh to the skin. It should be patch tested before use.
Above all, it is critical to remember that essential oils are importantly beneficial for both you and your baby, but you need to be careful about how you use them and when you begin to employ them.
Not only must you use only those that are acceptable for your baby (as discussed above), but you must remember to see to it that your essential oil choices are 100% PURE essential oils, and not perfume oils or synthetic fragrances.
Synthetic fragrances and perfume oils have other compounds or chemicals and are completely different from essential oils and have none of the health benefits.
And lastly, use only pure authentic essential oils that are not premixed with alcohol which can have an irritating effect.
Using 100% pure oils for your baby will ensure that they do not have any adverse reactions to the oils.
This will help see that they are getting the most out of their new experiences with essential oils and introduction to the wonderful world of aromatherapy.
Start slowly, be conservative, and be smart about picking out essential oils which are pure and worthwhile.
Seek out professional help if you are ever in doubt about the use or effect of an essential oil.
Do this knowing that when you pick wisely, you can truly get a great deal out of essential oils, and your baby can truly improve their health and quality of life overall as they grow up, get bigger, and build a stronger immune system through age.