There is little research on how essential oils may affect babies, but there is some evidence for the benefits of essential oils. The American Association of Naturopathic Physicians doesn’t recommend using essential oils on babies who are younger than three months.
You can use some essential oils on babies older than three months to help encourage sleep, calm anxiety, and even symptoms of colic.
Baby massage can encourage development, improve weight gain in pre-term infants, and decrease irritability and sleep disturbances. The essential oils help the parent’s hand glide more smoothly on the skin while massaging. But the incorrect use of essential oils on babies and children may cause harmful health effects. So it’s essential for the parents to have a good understanding of essentials oils for babies.
The lavender essential oil can help to treat pain in babies. It also has calming and sedative effects. It can help a fussy baby to relax and encourage sleep. The Lavender can also be used on insect bites and reduce itchiness. The lavender essential oil can be effective in reducing the symptoms of colic.
Chamomile essential oils can be beneficial for babies who have trouble sleeping. It is traditionally used to cure insomnia in babies as it has natural soothing effects. Chamomile combined with Lavender essential oil can relieve symptoms of colic. It also helps anxiety and depression, and it also uplifts a fussy baby’s spirit.
Parents like to choose essential sunflower oil for a carrier oil. A large amount of linoleic acid makes it an excellent choice for babies with sensitive skin.
The sensitive skin of babies may develop eczema. Sunflower essential oil improves skin hydration.
This natural expectorant helps to unclog respiratory congestion. Eucalyptus essential oil is a favourite oil during cold winter months. It’s one of the best baby cold essential oils. Consult with your pediatrician before applying eucalyptus essential oil to ease respiratory symptoms.
How To Use?
There are several ways to use essential oils for babies, including:
A baby massage
A baby massage routine depends according to the baby’s preferences; these steps are a good starting point:
- Rub a small amount of the warm diluted oil between your hands.
- Starting on their legs, gently rub the oil into the baby’s skin. Not much but just enough pressure to massage the skin gently.
- While massaging the baby’s belly and chest, you should spread your hands towards the sides of the baby. You can use your fingers to make small circles.
In bath water
Put a few drops of Lavender or Chamomile essential oil in the water. It helps to soothe and calm the baby. It also helps the baby sleep if bedtime follows soon after.
In a diffuser during bedtime
There are some diffusers which release the aroma of the essential oils into the air. Some diffusers also have soothing coloured lights; it helps the baby sleep.
Follow the instructions on the diffuser and try to keep the room well-ventilated. You shouldn’t use any essential oils which can be harmful to your baby, such as those listed below:
Are they safe to use?
You should not use any essential oils on your baby if he or she is younger than three months. Never apply undiluted essential oils on the skin of babies and infants. I recommend diluting the oil with an effective essential oil such as sunflower oil, grapeseed oil, and coconut oil. According to The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy, you should dilute the essential oil to just 0.5% to 2.5%. The skin of babies is very sensitive. You should avoid using these skin irritants essential oils on babies:
- Cinnamon bark
- Clove Bud
- Lemon verbena
Studies have also found that using olive oil as a carrier oil can damage the skin.
These common essential oils should be avoided during pregnancy and while breastfeeding:
- Parsley Seed
Keep essential oils away from a baby’s airways. There’s no problem in applying diluted oils to the children’s feet as long as they don’t put their feet in mouth. Dilute the oils in a diffuser correctly before using; it reduces the risk of adverse respiratory reactions. Don’t use aroma diffusers if your baby has asthma or is at a chance of suffering from asthma because of a family history of the condition.
Essential oils such as Lavender and Chamomile oil have been shown to have some impact on the babies. Essential oils are safe with the babies, you have to take certain precautions. You should not allow your baby to ingest essential oils. Because some oils are toxic and irritating to a baby’s skin. So, research the oil first, or speak to a doctor if you’re in doubt. I hope these tips will help you to choose the right essential oil for your baby.