Is Diffusing Essential Oils Safe For Kids? What An Expert Says

Essential oils are generally safe to distribute around children of all ages, integrative pediatric mental health expert, Roseann Capanna-Hodge, Ed.D., LPC tells mbg.

She adds, “Essential oils have medicinal properties, so they can be incredibly helpful in calming children’s nerves.” Research has also shown that they have the potential to soothe the skin of young people as well. Nevertheless, as with using any fabric around children, she adds, you need to be careful.

First of all, make sure to keep your EO bottles out of the reach of your kids so they don’t accidentally get into them. Oils are powerful and can be dangerous if inhaled or applied directly to the skin.

“Certain essential oils such as cinnamon and thyme can irritate mucous membranes when diffused,” adds Capanna-Hodge. To protect this important barrier, you may want to keep more pungent, spicy-smelling oils in your bedroom rather than the common areas.

If you notice your child starting to cough or sniff as soon as you turn on the diffuser, that’s a sign that they might be reacting to the oils. Switch off your machine and place it in another room or smell the oil from the bottle for a personalized EO experience.

To be extra safe, the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians has said it is best not to spread oils around children under the age of three months.

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