Saturday, January 8, 2011

My last post

I have decided to stop posting on this blog due to lack of time. I am in the process of moving some of these posts over to Jo's Health Corner. You can still read about aromatherapy for children on Jo's Health Corner under my theme, Natural Childhood, once a week. I would appreciate if you would like to follow Jo's Health Corner instead. Thanks for your understanding.

I will keep blogging on Jo's Health Corner, Naturally Sports & Wellness,
Please visit my other blogs:


Saturday, November 27, 2010

Quick and Easy Essential Oil Glycerine Soaps

It is not necessary to make glycerine soaps with infused herbs all the time. Essential oils are more potent than herbs, and they provide powerful healing properties and pleasant aromas. Below are a couple of recipes that are quick and easy to make as gifts during the holiday season. Older children can also help making them for relatives.

Lavender-Peppermint Soap
4 ounces clear solid glycerine (usually about 3 cubes)
15 drops lavender
5 drops peppermint
soap molds.

Melt glycerine in the microwave (about 40 seconds) or in a double boiler. I prefer to use a double boiler. Pour hot glycerine into the soap molds. Allow it to cool slightly before adding the essential oils.

Citrus Soap
Follow the recipe above, but substitute these essential oils for lavender and peppermint.
6 drops lemon
10 drops bergamot
10 drops grapefruit
4 drops mandarin

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Essential Oils and Babies - Two to Twelve Months

There is no need to use aromatherapy treatments "just in case" on a small baby. Use essential oils sparingly and only when a problem develops. Worwood recommends one massage oil blend that can be used daily or regularly but other than that  I would go easy on applying oils unless it is needed.

Oils suitable for this age are Roman and German Chamomile, yarrow, lavender, mandarin, eucalyptus, coriander, neroli. From six month of age calendula, grapefruit, aniseed, and tea tree can added.

Here is a massage formula that according to Worwood can be used for eczema, cradle cap, inflammation, cradle cap, and as a general strengthener and immune booster. It is also a calming formula, and it can be massaged on the whole body except for eyes and genitals.

Baby's Massage Oil Formula 
Geranium 1 drop
Lavender 1 drop
Roman Chamomile 1 drop
Dilute in 2 tablespoon sweet almond oil.

Here are some other situations when essential oils can come in handy.

 Rub the baby's tummy gently with the massage oil. Massage the middle portion of the back in gentle, circular movements. If the colic is severe, a massage oil can be made of 1 drop dill essential oil diluted in 1 tablespoon sweet almond oil. Use it the same way as the massage oil. 

Massage is very soothing for baby and mother, since touch does wonders for any anxiety condition. You can massage your baby a couple of times a week or when needed. Massaging the feet is very powerful.

Blend 1
Roman Chamomile 3 drops
Lavender 4 drops
Dilute in 2 tablespoons of sweet almond oil.

Blend 2
Roman Chamomile 4 drops
Geranium 3 drops
Dilute in 2 tablespoons of sweet almond.

Sickness and vomiting
If a baby is constantly being sick it is suggested to look for allergies, especially cow's milk. If there are no allergies involved you can put one drop on of peppermint on a cotton-wool ball and place it in the baby's crib. Make sure it is by the foot end and not by the head. Peppermint is calming to the stomach and makes the digestion easier according to Worwood.
When vomiting is so done with such a force that the food lands several feet away a doctor should be consulted. 

Sleeping (or should I say refusing to sleep?)
If your baby has a hard time sleeping put a bowl of hot water under the bed. Make sure the bowl is not right under the head. Do this every other night only. Add 1 drop of Roman Chamomile and one drop of Geranium. Make sure you keep the door almost closed to keep the aroma in the room.

I think we all have had our share of crying babies that were in pain due to teething. Roman and German Chamomile, lavender and yarrow are suitable teething oils. Some people use clove essential oil. I like clove essential oil myself, but be aware that it is a strong oil and may cause irritation itself. Therefore, I avoid it in small babies.

Add one drop of chamomile to an egg cup full of cold water and stir well. Dip a cotton - wool ball in the mixture. Rub very gently around the baby's gums. Keep the mixture in the fridge. Aloe vera can be used instead of water.

5 drops of lavender can be mixed with one tablespoon of vegetable oil. Mix well and use 2 drops of the mixture and massage around the baby's neck area and exterior jaw.

Colds and coughs
Naturally you have to use your judgment and make sure that you go to the doctor if the baby shows sign of  a serious illness. A baby under three weeks old with a cough should be checked by a doctor. A baby that is feverish, not eating, and crying a lot should be checked by a doctor as well. 

The most simple but yet effective solution to  colds is to put a small bowl of hot water under the bed. Add 3 drops of eucalyptus.

You can also mix 10 drops each of lavender, eucalyptus, and tea tree. Add 3 drops of this blend to a diffuser and let it run all night as well as the following day. Add 2 drops of the oil blend on a piece of cotton and put it under the pillow.
Worwood suggests that the same blend can be used as an massage blend. Mix 3 drops of the blend with 2 teaspoons of vegetable oil. Massage the baby's chest and back. Don't use this blend more than a week.

Worwood recommends the following formula for severe cough, whopping cough, severe bronchitis, or other respiratory complaints.

Eucalyptus 3 drops
Hyssop 1 drop
Thyme 1 drop

This formula can be added to a bowl of hot water that is placed under the bed away from the head during the night. It can also be used in a diffuser. se this blend for three nights, take a break for two nights, and if needed use it again. Dilute the essential oils in some water before using  them in a diffuser for babies.

Please read my safety page and dilution chart. Remember that this is for educational purposes and it is not meant to diagnose. Seek professional help when needed.

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Sunday, September 5, 2010

Essential Oils and Babies - Newborns

It is a good idea to purchase and make the special blends before the baby is born so that you are prepared. Valerie Ann Worwood only recommends Roman and German Chamomile, lavender, yarrow and dill for the first two months unless other oils are suggested for specific conditions. 

Don't apply any essential oils on the baby the first 24 hours, and after that it should be a good reason for it. The most effective way in using essential oils is to allow the molecules to evaporate in the baby's room. This can be done in a couple of ways:

Put a bowl of steaming water on the floor in a spot away from the baby's head. Add no more than 1 drop of essential to a pint of water.

Add 1 drop of essential oil to two teaspoon water and mix well. Add some of this water to the cupped area of the diffuser bowl. 


For digestive problems like constipation, indigestion, colic, diarrhea, and regurgitation Worwood recommends to diffuse dill essential oils in one of the methods above.

If the baby is not sleeping well Worwood recommends to use Roman Chamomile in the baby's room.

For purifying the air in baby's room Worwood recommeds lavender for its antibiotic, disinfectant, antiseptic and slightly antiviral properties.

Baby's first clean
An ideal oil for the baby's skin would be:
Almond oil 2 tbls
Evening Primrose 5 drops (or Borage oil)
Jojoba oil 3 drops
Wheatgerm oil 10 drops
A non aromatic blend.

Wrinkled skin
As mentioned, it should be a good reason to apply essential oils on a newborn after the first 24 hours. A good reason would be wrinkled skin.

Some baby's have dry and wrinkled skin and is common in overdue or induced babies.

Worwood used a two table spoon blend of 80% of hazelnut oil, 10% wheatgerm oil and 10% virgin olive oil for her own daughter's red flaky skin on her ankles and wrists. She made the following essential oil blend:

German Chamomile 8 drops
Lavender 1 drop

And she added 3 drops to her 2 table spoon skin oil above. The German chamomile as a blue color due to its azulane content. 
The rest of the drops can be used one drop at a time in the baby's bath. Mix it with a carrier oil first.

Diaper rash
Diaper rash is a very common problem that is very painful for the baby. You can make two different combinations according to Worwood:

German Chamomile and Lavender
Yarrow and Lavender
Mix equal parts of the oils.

Add one drop of any of the combinations to a bowl with 1 pint of warm water already added. Swish around to mix. Use cotton wool dipped in the solution to wash the baby's bottom. 

A solution of apple cider vinegar( 1to 4 ratio) and water can also be used to wash the diaper area. It neutralizes the urine and ammonia and balance the pH as well. It also discourages yeast which is a common cause of the rash.

Cradle cap 
Olive oil is often recommended by Worwood thinks that almond oil is better since it is not as heavy.

Cradle cap remedy
Eucalypus lemon 1 drop
Geranium 1 drop

Dilute in 2 tbls almond oil and mix well. Massage the scalp carefully with the fingertips avoiding the fontanelle. Don't use lavender since it makes the skin grow too quickly. 

Dilution Chart Safety 
Is Aromatherapy Safe in Pregnancy? 

This is mot meant to replace the advice of a physician. It is for educational purposes only and not meant to diagnose.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Fungal Infections and Essential Oils

It is almost summer and it is not uncommon for children to pick up an infection at various places. The swimming pools and the gym are breeding grounds for infectious fungi. The children can also get ringworm from pets, contaminated soil, or person to person contact. The better the immune system is the less chance it is to get an infection.  I always build health first to make sure the little bodies can handle various challenges.

Ringworm is not a worm, it is a superficial fungal infection of the skin. It has a special ring formation that grows outward from the center and develop a red ring appearance on the skin. It is most common on the scalp but it can also appear on the body. It is contagious and can be spread from person to person. They can be stubborn to treat, and patience and consistence are required.

Some essential oils that show anti-fungal properties are tea tree, chamomile, geranium, lavender, myrrh, patchouli, and sandalwood.
One of the most powerful anti-microbial essential oil is tea tree/melaleuca.  
 Valerie Ann Worwood recommends to apply 1 drop tea tree neat on the affected area three times a day until it is clear. It normally takes 10 days, and after that, mix 30 drops tea tree with 2 tablespoons of massage oil. Rub this blend over the area daily. 

Valerie Gennari Cooksley suggests the following blend. The blend is a 10% dilution, as Cooksley thinks a concentrated blend is needed since fungal infections can be very resistant.

Ringworm Treatment Oil
vegetable oil 2 tbls.
tea tree 25 drops
lavender 15 drops
geranium 5 drops
peppermint 5 drops
Vitamin E 400 IU

Add the essential oils and the vitamin E to an empty dark glass bottle, add the vegetable oil. Shake the bottle to mix well. Use a Q tip to apply to the area. Cover the patch.

Soaking in the ocean or taking a sea salt bath have been useful for many skin conditions.

Anti-fungal bath
1-2 cups of sea salt
lavender 4 drops
geranium 1 drop
tea tree 1 drop

Fill the bath wit water. Add the essential oils to the sea salt and mix. Add to the bath water and stir well. 

Athletes foot
It doesn't take much for small little feet to get athlete's foot. Walking barefoot in places like swimming pools where someone infected has been can be enough.

Worwood's suggestions for athlete's foot are tea tree, lavender, and tagetes.
She suggests a foot bath daily. Add 5 drops of tea tree to a cup of salt and put in a large bowl of water. Let the child soak the feet for at least five minutes daily.
Worwood also suggests to make a foot powder by adding 10 drops of tea tree to a cup of dry green clay. Mix it really well, and powder the feet everyday.
A massage oil can also be made of 30 drops of tagetes to 2 tbls. of vegetable oil. Massage the feet before bed.

When dealing with fungal infections it is important to avoid food that feed yeast, change towels frequently, use only cotton socks, and drying the skin well. Consider adding immune boosting nutrients, and repopulate the friendly flora with Probiotics. 

Don't forget to check the safety and dilution chart to make sure the oils are suitable for your child.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Antiseptic Vinegar

This is  the time of the year when I frequently bring out my essential oils. I like to make an antiseptic vinegar to keep around the house for washing minor wounds. If the immune system is good a minor wound is normally not a problem, and the chances for infection is very small.

When I use the essential oils  the wounds normally heal faster, and the scarring is minimized.  Many of the oils also have pain relieving properties, and they are  calming and soothing. So, while not always necessary, they aid in the healing process. 

Antiseptic Vinegar
1/2 cup distilled water
1/2 cup raw apple cider vinegar
1 tsp. honey
lavender 6 drops
geranium 1 drop 
1 8-ounce glass bottle

Mix the essential oils with the honey. Combine the aromatic honey with the water and the vinegar. Stir well and add to the bottle. Shake well to mix. When you need to use it, soak a cotton ball in with the blend, and clean the wound.

Other oils useful in a first aid kit are: bergamot, eucalyptus, lemon, rosemary and frankincense.
Remember,  to avoid sun exposure for 12 hours if using essential oils like bergamot and lemon.

Don't forget to check the safety and dilution chart to make sure the oils are suitable for your child.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Beach Time! - What You Need for the Beach and the Sun

Our family  went down to Corpus Christi yesterday to see our oldest son run in the regional final of Track and Field. We decided to leave early so that we could spend some time on the beach before the meet started. I decided to make body spray real quick to be prepared for minor things that might happen. I wanted a spray that would cover everything from a sunburn to an insect bite.

I choose Lavender, Peppermint, Geranium and Tea tree.  A blend of lavender and peppermint, or lavender and tea tree, would have done fine also. Lavender calms the skin, and it is also beneficial for healing burns and cleansing wounds and cuts. Peppermint is cooling, soothes pain, anti-infectious and supports digestion.
Tea tree was added for its antiseptic properties as well as for potential insect bites. Geranium has inflammatory properties, is hemostatic (stops bleeding) and revitalizes skin tissues. It is also an insect repellent.

Super Duper Beach Spray
Lavender  4 drops
Peppermint  3 drops
Tea tree  3 drops
Geranium 2 drops
2 oz. distilled water
1 teaspoon of aloe vera gel

I mix the essential oils with the aloe vera before I add it to the water in the spray bottle.  Aloe Vera is anti-inflammatory, and will provide some soothing to a skin after sin exposure.

If the skin is very sore after a day in the sun you might want to pour a cooling bath and add some essential oils as well. Suitable carriers are honey, milk, aloe vera, honey and cream. Mix the essential oils with the carrier, and add to the bath water once its filled. The adult dose is 8-10 drops of essential oils to a full bath. I add half the amount to my 9 and 10 year old, dilute it even more for smaller children. 

Super Duper After Sun Healing Spray
Distilled water 1/2 cup
Witch hazel 1/4 cup
Aloe vera 1/4 cup
Lavender  8 drops
R. Chamomile 2 drops
Geranium  1 drop
Honey 1 tsp.
Mix water, witch hazel and aloe vera. Combine honey and essential oils and mix well. Add the essential oil mixture to the water. Make sure you use at least an 8 oz. spray bottle. Use several times during the day.

Other useful things to have at home in case the skin gets sunburned.
Extra virgin olive oil - has traditionally been used to treat and heal burns for centuries. The cold pressed oil is high in vitamins and minerals.

Calendula - is a staple in our house. I make infused oils and I always keep an bottle in the fridge. It can be used as a stand alone, or added to other blends, or essential oils can be added for extra healing. It is powerful on its own. I also use it as an ingredient when I make ointments

Wheat germ oil - Is high in antioxidants and is useful for burns and damaged skin.

Honey - Is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory and can be used as a healing agent for dressings. Essential oils increase its effect, lavender and chamomile are especially useful.

Peppermint tea - Is cooling and a good choice when it is hot and someone needs to cooled down.

Spray bottles - Make a simple spray of Lavender  and use as a cooling and soothing spray.

We joke in our family and say that we eat our sunscreen. We hydrate, eat extra antioxidants, especially beta carotene, omega essential fatty acids (not cod liver), and plenty or raw fruit and vegetables to protect our skin as well.