Everyone knows that a new baby means a lot less sleep! Maybe you’ve been there yourself: completely exhausted, but your little one is wide awake and fussy. Even when your baby finally falls asleep, you may be too agitated or uncomfortable to fall asleep yourself! Essential oils and soothing sounds can help you create a relaxing, calm environment more comfortable for baby— and you.

Can essential oils help your baby sleep?

Setting the stage for sleep is vital when it comes to increasing your amount of quality shut eye. Finding quality essential oils for babies can help you safely create the perfect mood for you and baby to unwind and enjoy a good night’s sleep. If a racing mind or fussy baby have you tossing and turning, try using an essential oil diffuser to change the mood of your space. With the right aromatherapy oils you can create a sleep oasis where you allow tensions from the day to melt away. Studies have shown lavender oil inhalation to be beneficial for relaxation, and it’s one of the most gentle essential oils for babies. Other essential oils safe for babies such as sweet orange, bergamot, mandarin and geranium also have soothing properties that can help create a peaceful mood for bedtime. However, when considering diffusing aromatherapy oils around kids and babies you should make sure you have a good understanding about essential oil safety. Pure therapeutic grade essential oils are powerful all-natural botanical extracts and should always be used thoughtfully. Extra care should be taken when using essential oils for baby’s comfort. The most important thing to know the safe essential oils for babies and which should be avoided with your little ones.

What Essential Oils are Safe for Newborns?

We don’t recommend using essential oils for babies younger than 3 months old. For premature babies, it’s best to wait until at least 3 months after their due date to begin using aromatherapy oils around them. After 3 months, you may begin using essential oils around babies by dispersing the diluted oils with an essential oil diffuser. You should never give essential oils to babies orally (at any age) without permission from your doctor. The easiest ways to safely diffuse aromatherapy oils with your baby, is to choose from special blends of essential oils for babies and from a reputable seller that uses quality all-natural ingredients to ensure you are practicing aromatherapy safely. With a little research, it’s possible to find gentle essential oils for babies that do everything from making their little noses happy to promoting peaceful sleep.

Essential Oils for Babies: General Safety

It is not safe for babies to orally consume ANY essential oils. If your baby has ingested essential oils you should phone 911 immediately, do not induce vomiting. Essential oils should not be used or diffused around babies or kids with asthma and/or other respiratory conditions. Essential oils should NEVER be applied directly to skin— they should always be properly diluted with a carrier oil or other natural ingredients like aloe vera gel. Topical application of essential oils for babies is not recommended before 8 months Talk to your doctor before applying essential oils topically (via massage oil, etc.) to your baby. Peppermint oil is the most dangerous essential oil for babies and children and should ALWAYS be avoided.

Safe Essential Oils for Babies

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Essential Oils to Avoid

In an interview with Today’s Parent, pediatrician Dina Kulik, cautions against peppermint, rosemary, and wintergreen essential oils for babies and kids. These specific oils contain compounds that can cause breathing problems for young respiratory systems. The National Association for Holistic Aromatherapy (NAHA) classifies some essential oils as “dermal irritants,” meaning that they should not be applied to sensitive, damaged, or inflamed skin. Because babies have such sensitive skin, some popular aromatherapy oils including cinnamon, birch and lemongrass should never be used with babies topically or with an essential oil diffuser.

Peppermint Oil Advisory

Peppermint oil is the most dangerous essential oil for babies and children. According to the NAHA peppermint oil can lead to sudden apnoea and glottal constriction as well as “apnea, laryngeal and bronchial spasms, acute respiratory distress with cyanosis and respiratory arrest.” For these reasons we strongly recommend you do NOT use peppermint oil on children under 12 years old.

How to Properly Diffuse Essential Oils for Babies

Start off by diffusing 1-2 drops of oil into diffuser to test your baby’s sensitivity. If any signs of irritation occur, stop use and talk to your doctor. You may gradually work up to 5-7 drops. The diffuser should ALWAYS be placed out of reach of babies/children. Never place an essential oil diffuser directly next to a baby’s crib or too near their face. Use in well-ventilated rooms. Regularly clean your essential oil diffuser to avoid mold, keep your aromas pure and keep your diffuser in good working order.