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Essential oils for fighting off bugs and germs

I read recently that a mum will get ill an average of 324 times during her child’s first 18 years and that most of these viruses and bugs would be passed to them by their offspring – lovely!

If you’re a parent this probably won’t come as much of a surprise. It certainly didn’t to me. My eldest child started school last September and, since then, it feels like we’ve had one bug after another working its way around the family.

Unfortunately, aside from the basic steps such as balanced diet, exercise, sleep and good hygiene, there’s not a huge amount we can do to stop our little ones catching bugs. But, is there anything we can do to protect ourselves or at least limit the effects if we do succumb?

Well as an aromatherapist, I usually turn to my essential oil collection when illness hits. Here are a few of my tried and tested blends for keeping the bugs at bay!

Cough and cold blend

We’re all familiar with the feeling of a stuffy nose, scratchy throat and general unpleasantness of a cold. This is my go-to blend whenever I start to notice these familiar symptoms. Whilst I wouldn’t call it a cure, it’s great for clearing the airways and the anti-viral qualities of the oils definitely can’t hurt!

Add the following oils to a large bowl of steaming water. Lean over, covering your head with a towel and spend a few minutes breathing in the vapours. This can be repeated once a day as necessary.

  • Two drops eucalyptus globulus
  • One drop bergamot
  • One drop tea tree

Sinusitis blend

A sinus infection can be miserable, not to mention downright painful. The below oil blend can help to open up the sinuses, clear mucus and fight off any germs and nasties.

Add the following oils to a large bowl of steaming water. Lean over, covering your head with a towel and spend a few minutes breathing in the vapours. This can be repeated once a day as necessary.

  • Two drops peppermint
  • One drop eucalyptus globulus
  • One drop basil

Nausea and sickness blend

I always forget how unpleasant a sickness bug can be until one comes along. If you’re suffering from nausea or sickness, the chances are you won’t want to be messing around with blending oils or anything too fiddly, so I suggest keeping it simple and just inhaling a couple of drops of essential oil from a tissue.

Add two drops of one of the following essential oils to a tissue and inhale as needed. Alternatively, add a few drops to an oil burner or vapouriser and inhale the aroma that way.

  • Roman chamomile
  • Lavender
  • Peppermint

Immune-boosting blend

As with many things in life, prevention is better than cure when it comes to illness. So, why not try this blend of immune-boosting oils to try and avoid catching any nasties in the first place.

Add the following oils to an oil burner or vapouriser to gently scent the room. If possible use on a daily basis, especially when bugs are about.

  • Two drops lemon or orange
  • Two drops grapefruit
  • Two drops eucalyptus globulus

Note: As with all use of essential oils, there are some safety precautions to follow. Essential oils are extremely strong and should never be applied neat to the skin or taken internally unless advised by a fully qualified professional. If you have sensitive skin it's a good idea to perform a patch test with your chosen oils, making sure they're properly diluted in a base oil. If there's no reaction after 24 hours, then you can safely use the oils.

If you are pregnant or have underlying health issues it's always a good idea to seek the advice of a qualified aromatherapist to find out which oils are suitable or even speak to a health professional for advice. Extra precautions should be used when treating the elderly or the very young. Once again, it's best to get advice on the most suitable oils to choose.

Therapy Directory is not responsible for the articles published by members. The views expressed are those of the member who wrote the article.

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