Using Essential Oils to Help Prevent Colds
The benefits of aromatherapy for the immune system are well-documented, and we're sharing the blends to keep you and your family safe through cold season here.
As we approach the colder months, we all begin to think about cold season. The sniffles, the sneezes, the days off of work or school. Colds can even affect vacations and holidays.
On average, adults get 2-3 colds every year. Kids get even more. And with an average of 7-10 days for recovery time, you can bet that a cold will be a nuisance for you and your family sometime in the next year.
There is certainly proven (if generic) advice out there on how to prevent colds: wash your hands frequently, avoid touching your face and stay away from sick people. But since most people are contagious up to a day before they begin to show symptoms, even these recommendations can only help so much.
At this point, you're probably wondering if there isn't more that you can do to help keep your family well. As the saying goes, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
The good news is there are a number of essential oils that can help support and boost your immune system. And there are even more aromatherapy treatments that can help reduce stress and promote healthy sleep, so your body can do more to keep you well.
How do Essential Oils Help Your Immune System?
Essential oils have been used for thousands of years. From insect repellent to relaxation, there are hundreds of ways these botanicals can help us.
But how, exactly, do they help prevent illness?
Essential oils help in two ways. First, they help in prevention by keeping the causes of illness from getting into your system. The second way is they help is by making your immune system operate more efficiently.
The oils work in a number of ways to directly prevent illness. Many essential oils used in aromatherapy have antiviral, antiseptic and antibacterial properties, helping to kill off the germs that cause illness to begin with.
They also help your body to help itself. Not only can they help to improve circulation, but some (like lemon) can boost the production of white blood cells.
How do I Use Essential Oils for My Family?
There are a number of ways in which you can apply and use essential oils for yourself and your family.
One of the most common ways of using essential oils is through inhalation, thus aromatherapy. The quickest and easiest way to inhale oils is to put a few drops on a tissue and place it near your nose and mouth, being sure to not actually touch your face with the tissue.
Another method is to use a diffuser. There are a number of different kinds of diffusers available on the market, and these can be placed in various parts of your home or office. Concentrate on the essential features of the diffuser to be sure that you are getting a cost effective and useful piece of aromatherapy equipment.
While diffusers are great if you sit in one place all day. But many of us move around a lot, especially kids as they go about their school day. This is where diffuser jewelry can be useful. By using a necklace or bracelet, you are able to take your aromatherapy with you, wherever you go throughout your day. And with a range of attractive options, it's easy to incorporate the jewelry into your everyday attire.
There are different kinds of diffusers used for jewelry, including terra cotta pieces that absorb the oils into the clay, and locket type jewelry that hold a small felt piece that the oils are placed on. While the terra cotta options may be cost effective and even fun to make, they can be difficult if you want to change the oils that you are using.
If you plan on using different aromatherapy oils at different times, consider a piece that allows you to switch out the felt pad to avoid mixing oils not intended to work together.
Massage is, of course, a great method for relaxation. But adding essential oils to your massage can boost it from stress relieving to a healing and preventive experience.
Using a carrier oil, essential oils are mixed in to be applied to the skin. This allows you to inhale the essential oils as they are applied and throughout the day. In addition, your skin absorbs the oils, allowing them to also work from the inside out.
Bathing is a great time to introduce essential oils, especially for children. Because the oils can be absorbed through the skin with a bath (like massage) they can be effective internally as well as externally. The steam and hot water from the bath can also promote inhalation of the essential oils.
What Essential Oils Are Good For Colds?
The following is a list of essential oils that can help prevent colds, illness, boost your immune system and help you feel better when you do get sick. Remember, not all oils play nicely together! If you want to use more than one oil, either consult and carefully follow an existing recipe or purchase a blend that contains the oils you're looking for.
Our Recommendation: Immune Strength (view here)
Bergamot: used to fight viruses, like the flu; it is also an anti-inflammatory
Cedarwood: used in small amounts, it can help to treat congestion and is an antiseptic and astringent
Clove: used as an antiseptic and pain reliever, it also works as an antihistamine and can help clear congested lungs
Eucalyptus: can help in treating the flu, fever and sore throat, and clear mucous from the lungs
Lavender: while typically associated with aiding sleep, lavender is also known to help with sinus infections and is an antiseptic and stimulant for the circulatory system
Lemon: long included in even commercial cold remedies, lemon helps to treat sore throats, infections, and coughs, and is an antiviral and antiseptic
Patchouli: this oil can be used as an anti-fungal and antiseptic, while also reducing inflammation
Peppermint: commonly used as an aid in digestion, but also kills viruses, reduces fevers and relieves pain
Sandalwood: Used to reduce inflammation and treat infections, it is also an antifungal and acts as an antiseptic for lungs and the urinary tract
Tea Tree Oil: this is a go-to oil for immune system support and treatment. Not only does it stimulate the immune system, but it also works to fight bacteria, fungi and viruses
Thyme: another heavy hitter oil, thyme helps with coughs, works as an antiseptic, helps remove congestion, stimulates the immune system, has both antibacterial and antifungal properties, and can even assist with parasitic infections
With the variety of application methods, getting your family to participate in an aromatherapy routine that will promote their health is easier than ever. And thanks to the immune boosting essential oils listed here, your family can experience greater health through the worst of the cold season.
Visit our Amazon store to find essential oil jewelry you can use to take your favorite essential oils with you anywhere.
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