Essential Oils for Fighting Colds and Flu in Children

Essential Oils for Fighting Colds and Flu in Children

There comes a time of the year that people feel thick-headed, sore throat and blocked noses. The scariest thing in the world as a parent, I believe, is when you hear a cough from a child. I go in panic mode immediately. Or, “mommy, I don’t feel so good”. Then all the hair on my neck stands on end. Most people run to the doctor or pharmacy for all kinds of medicines without even giving essential oil a second thought.
The most commonly used essential oils used for colds and flu is:
Tea Tree
Rose Otto
Citrus Oils

1. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is an anti-fungal and anti-bacterial essential oil. You can use it for cuts, scraps, burns, bug bites, and as a bug repellent.

2. Lavender Oil
Lavender oil has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties. Use it to sooth and calm as well as for first aid, sunburn, and to boost immunity.

3. Chamomile Oil
Chamomile oil is a digestive aid and is good for babies with colic or constipation. It, like lavender, is known for its calming properties. It’s also an anti-inflammatory and is good for ear infections.

4. Peppermint Oil
Peppermint oil is also a digestive aid and can be used to help with colic. It’s known to help cool fevers and act as a decongestant with colds.

5. Eucalyptus Oil
Eucalyptus oil is most well-known for its use as a decongestant for respiratory disorders. It also works to cool fevers and has anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.

6. Rose Otto Oil
Rose Otto oil is known for its ability to treat hay fever and asthma.

8. Frankincense
Frankincense is good for infections because of its anti-bacterial properties and is often used with respiratory congestion.


1. Diffuse essential oils in a pot of boiling water or with a warm steam humidifier.

2. Make your own chest rub using 1/4 cup coconut oil with 10 drops of eucalyptus. Remember to never use any essential oils directly on baby without proper dilution with carrier oil, and be sure to choose only those that are known to be safe for children.

3. Drop a few drops of lavender or peppermint into running bath water.

4. Add a few drops of chamomile to baby oil and massage child gently.

5. Earache Oil: Add 6 drops of Sandalwood essential oil and 6 drops of Chamomile oil to one ounce of jojoba oil. Place 2-3 drops in painful ear 2-3 times a day as needed.

Fever and Congestion

To help children relieve congestion, use eucalyptus oil in a humidifier or add a few drops to the child’s bath. Lavender can ease breathing problems when phlegm is trapped within the sinuses and lungs. Apply a few drops of lavender oil on the back, neck, or chest for relief.
The fever your baby has may be the cause of discomfort, but it’s actually beneficial – a positive sign that her immune system is working. When children have fever, make sure to keep the room cool, either no clothing (except for diapers) or very light clothing on, especially at night, since we tend to run higher temperatures toward the evening. Massage the child with 2 drops of lavender oil in 50ml of baby oil.

How to Use Essential Oils

Essential oils are fairly simple to use. First of all essential oils are concentrated and should NEVER be used undiluted on your skin, especially not your children’s skin.
So really all you need are two things:
 An essential oil that serve the purpose
 A carrier oil of your choice

Carrier oil is basically what you will dilute your essential oil in. You can use any oil that is suitable for your child’s skins and absorbs well.

Here are a few recipes that may help you comfort your child:
Colds and Flu Steam inhalation:
Steam inhalation helps to open up congested airways
You will need: 5 Drops Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Hot water

Place the Eucalyptus Essential Oil in the bowl with the hot water. Bend forward, placing your face over the bowl, put towel over your head and breathe steam in through the nose, breath out through the mouth. Repeat a few times three times per day.
Head Clearing Room Spray:

Use this blend spray in a sickroom and bathroom
You will need: 3 Drops Eucalyptus Oil
1 Drop Lavender Essential Oil
250ml Bottled or filtered water
250ml Spray Bottle

Add all the oils in the water and shake well before spray

Colds and Flu Rub for children:
You will need: 2 Drops Eucalyptus Oil
4 Drop Lavender Essential Oil
30 ml Grapeseed Oil

Add all the oils together in the glass bottle and shake well. Massage over the chest and back at bed time and in the morning

Stuffy Nose Steam:
You will need: 10 Drops Eucalyptus Essential Oil Bowl

Fill the Bowl with boiling hot water. Add the essential Oils and stir with spatula. Cover head with towel and breathe in slowly. Repeat.
Colds and Flu Shoulder blade Rub:
Shoulder blade massage is helpful for aches and pains due to colds and flu
You will need: 5 Drops Frankincense Essential Oil
50ml Petroleum Jelly
Small glass Jar

Place the petroleum jelly into the glass jar. Add the essential oil and mix well. Rub your back before bedtime and in the morning.

So, before spending too much money, time and effort on doctors and pharmacies, try healing the natural way. But please take note, if your child’s condition worsen, go see your doctor.

NEVER apply the potent undiluted oil directly to the skin. Choose 100% pure essential oils. ALWAYS keep essential oils out of reach of children. Use only eucalyptus Radiata for children under 6, or substitute lemon or oregano essential oils in its place.

My name is Karin Bullock. I live in Mossel Bay on the West Coast of South Africa. I am 50 years Old. I am qualified as a Stress Therapist in 2006 after studying for 2 years. I help my clients to help themselves during stressful situations through aromatherapy using only Essential Oils. I am a free-lance writer for the Adventures of Scuba Jack.


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