8 Aromatherapy Guidelines and Dilutions for Children
If you are using aromatherapy on children, there are some guidelines and safety precautions when using oils on little ones. Always use caution and keep oils away from children. Children are much smaller than adults and their tolerant level will vary from weight to weight. Using essential oils however, is very beneficial for many ailments and common problems children come across.
- Do not use any oil undiluted on a child, except for Lavender oil on small burns or bruises.
- Dilute essential oils in a base oil before adding them to a bath for a child; they tend to enjoy splashing around in the bath more than adults and could get the oils in their eyes otherwise. Reduce dosage too, to a maximum of 4 drops per bath. For young infants, perhaps simply make a tea, of Lavender flowers for example, and add that to the bath.
- In massage, use lower dilutions of essential oils; a maximum of 1 per cent for ages 12-16; 1/2 per cent for ages 8-12; and 1/4 per cent for ages 4-8. Under 4-year-olds will need just a drop or two in 100 ml (4 fl oz/1/2 cup) of base oil.
- Never leave a young child alone with bottles of essential oils, and always supervise their use.
- Use steam inhalations only briefly, and not at all if breathing is affected. Sometimes it is better to put a drop or two into a wash-basin of steaming water and sit with the young child next to it, rather than bending over a bowl.
- A good way to help fight infections, suitable for all ages is to use a few drops in a spray bottle, typically 600 ml (1 pt/2 1/2 cups capacity, fill with water, shake and spray the room at regular intervals. Use oils such as Lavender, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree.
- Probably the two most suitable essential oils for use in childhood ailments are Chamomile and Lavender. They are both soothing, relaxing and anti-inflammatory, and help to calm children as well as fight infection.
- Use for Chickenpox. 2drops of Lavender oil in 5 ml (1 tsp) of water can be dabbed on the emerging spots to soothe the irritation and health em at a much faster rate.