Using essential oils safely with children
Pure essential oils although natural can still be dangerous and toxic if not used correctly. This cannot be more true when it comes to our children.
When it comes to using essential oils for our children it is so important to take some things into consideration;-
What essential oil are you using? Some oils are NOT recommended for children under certain ages? Please do your research before applying essential oils to your child. Although natural and pure they can still cause health problems, reactions and more if used incorrectly.
How are you using the essential oil? Are you diffusing it, using it topically, what product are you making? Remember some essential oils are phototoxic so they may be used in wash off products but should be avoided with lotions etc. Also depending on the oil it may be safe to use aromatically but not recommended topically for a child of certain age.
Dilution? How old is your child and how diluted should your essential oil be? dilution varies depending on the age of the child, sensitivity and more.
What is it for? So many people often tell me they are using a certain oil they have researched, looked up or have been advised to help aid a problem however often these oils are recommended to aid adults with the same problem not children!! For example to help aid constipation in an adult you might apply topically diluted peppermint to the stomach and feet, in a child you should avoid peppermint . Rosemary or Orange are safer choices diluted topically for children.
Should you talk with your doctor? Essential oils are wonderful things however they should not be used to treat ailments you should always seek medical advice.
Peppermint & Eucalyptus are two of the most popular oils used during cold season but did you know that they can be dangerous for use in children??
The 1,8-cineole Eucalyptus ( Eucalyptus radiata & Eucalyptus globulas) and the Menthol in peppermint may slow breathing and cause neurological problems for some children but according to Robert Tisserand there are safe and effective levels of use.
If you’re wondering about other types of eucalyptus oil, E. citriodora is safe for young kids, although it is less likely to be therapeutic, and the safety of E. dives is uncertain.
You can read about if Lavender & Tea Tree cause early puberty here
SAFE USE OF ESSENTIAL OILS
Essential oils should never been given internally!!
Essential oil application on nose, mouth and near eyes is NOT recommended
Children under 6 months old - Following the below dilution recommendation with only the recommended oils would I use essential oils in products made such as bottom balm, etc. These would be applied at bare minimum. Children this age need minimum exposure, if any at all to most products including soaps, bath washes, lotions, etc.
Safe oils to use aromatically and topically with dilution
Aromatically & Topically safe with heavy dilution
Oils to avoid all together