Essential Oils Safety Series- Babies and Children

I see a great amount of misinformation floating around the web on oil use and children so I want to lay out some basic safety tips for you.  If you are new to oils I cannot stress enough the importance of research.  To be sure you are getting the most accurate information research should be based on information provided by reputable aromatherapy websites or from licensed aromatherapists and doctors (in other words people who have studied the use of essential oils, NOT someone who sells them and has been using them for a month).

Basic safety rules for using Oils with Children

1. Babies and children should NEVER ingest oils.  
Dr. Erika Krumbeck, ND licensed physician with a Doctorate of Naturopathic Medicine says “Essential oils are the distilled volatile aromatic constituents of the plant that are highly concentrated.  Remember that one drop of essential oil is equivalent to 15-40 cups of medicinal tea, or up to 10 teaspoons of tincture.  Would you ever give a child 40 cups of tea or 10 teaspoons of tincture?  My goodness, I hope not.” (Krumbeck, E. 2014, September 8, When to Not use Essential Oils retrieved from
If your child accidentally ingests some essential oils, DO NOT INDUCE VOMITING. Call your general practitioner unless signs of poisoning are present, then you should immediately bring your child and the bottle that was consumed, to the nearest emergency room. (Anthis, C.  2014, August 14. Safe Essential Oils use with Babies and Children retrieved from

2.  Oils used with babies and children should ALWAYS be diluted. 
Using oils Neat (without a carrier) could possibly cause permanent sensitization. Marge Clark says in her book Essential Oils and Aromatics: A Step-by-Step Guide for Use in Massage and Aromatherapy “One of my mentors reminds me ‘sensitization is forever.’ And I know she is right. Years ago I read the books saying that lavender oils could be used neat (undiluted). I very unwisely used undiluted lavender on broken skin, and consequently set up a sensitivity reaction. Today, almost two decades later if I come in contact with lavender in any form I will immediately start a new round of contact dermatitis that can take months to heal” (Clark, M., Essential Oils and Aromatics, Sandy, UT; Silverleaf press, 2008, 32.)

And remember Babies and Children can’t always express when something hurts them so PLEASE, ALWAYS DILUTE OILS with children and babies!  Also don’t forget to do a patch test on babies and children to make sure your dilution ratio doesn’t cause skin irritations and I always like to test the oils on myself before applying on my child, and recommend to others to do the same, just to be safe.  For a dilution chart click the below link: EO Dilution Chart

3. Introduce oils slowly, One at a time. . .
Just like you introduce new foods to babies one at a time to make sure their little bodies can process them without an adverse reaction, you should introduce essential oils one at a time to make sure their little bodies can process them without an adverse reaction.

4. Always keep oils away from eyes and mucus membranes (nose and mouth).
Just don’t do it.  If essential oils get in eyes flush immediately with milk and then water.  (You can also use milk or a carrier oil to flush essential oils off your hands if you end up with excess essential oil on your hands.)

5. Use extreme Caution when using oils on children with asthma
“Most essential oils will inflame a sensitive respiratory tract. I have heard from some of my naturopathic colleagues who have seen frightening cases of children completely unable to breathe because of essential oil-induced asthma attacks,” says Dr. Erika Krumbeck, ND (Krumbeck, E. 2014, September 8, When to Not use Essential Oils retrieved from

Below is a list of age recommendations of some essential oils  for babies and children by two different experts.  This is by no means a complete list of oils and in some cases the two experts disagree on which age oil use is appropriate.  This list is a guideline and if you have questions about a specific oil, you should do some research or consult a qualified aromatherapist for more details. When in doubt don’t use an oil on yourself or your child until you find out more.  And ALWAYS DILUTE!

Age Recommendations from Two Different Experts
Expert Expert Essential Oil Name Latin Name
No. 1 No. 2
6-8+ Years 6+ months Bergamot (Citus bergamia)
2+ Years Basil, Lemon (Ociumum x citriodorum)
2+ Years Basil, Sweet  (Ocimum basilicum)
2+ Years Benzoin (Styrax benzoin, Styrax paralleloneurus)
2+ Years Black Pepper (Piper nigrum)
7-12+ months 6+ Years Cardamon (Elettaria cardamomum)
6+ months Carrot Seed (Daucus Carota)
2+ Years Cassia (Cinnamomum cassia)
6+ months Cedarwood, Atlas/Virginia (cedus atlanticia, cedrus deodora, Juniperus virginiana)
6+ months Cinnamon Bark (Cinnamomum zeylanicum)
6+ months Cinnaman Leaf (Cinnamon zeylanicum)
6+ months Citronella (Cymbopogon nardus)
2+ Years Clary Sage (Salvia sclarea)
2+ Years Clove Bud/Clove Leaf (Syzygium aromaticum, Eugenia aromatica, Eugenia caryophyllata)
2+ Years Copaiba Basalm (Copaifera officinalis)
2-5+ years 6+ months Coriander (coriandrum sativum)
9-11+ Years 6+ months Cypress (cupressus sempervirens)
Newborn and Up 3+ months Dill (anthum graveolens)
9-11+ Years Elemi (Canarium luzonicum)
Newborn and Up 10+ Years Eucalyptus (Eucalyptus radiata)
6+ months Fir Needle (Abies sibirica)
9-11+ Years 2+ Years Frankincense (Boswellia carterii)
2+ Years Garlic  (Allium sativum)
2-6+ months 6+ months Geranium (Pelagorium graveolens)
Newborn and Up 3+ months German chamomile (Matricaria rectutita)
2-5+ years 2+ Years Ginger (Zingiber officinale)
2-5+ years 6+ months Grapefruit (Citrus paradisi)
2-5+ years 6+ months Helichrysum (helichrysum angustifolium)
6-8+ Years Ho-wood (Cinnamomum camphora, Laurus camphora)
2+ Years Hyssop (Hyssopus officinalis)
2+ Years Juniper Berry (Juniperus communis)
Newborn and Up 3+ months Lavender (Lavandula Agustifolia)
2-5+ years 6+ months Lemon (Citrus limonum)
6-8+ Years Lemon Eucalyptus (eucalyptus citriodora)
2+ Years Lemongrass (Andropogon citratus, Andropogon flexuosus, Cymbopogon citratus, Cymbopogon flexuosus
2+ Years Lime (Cirtus x aurantifolia)
Newborn and Up 6+ months Mandarin (Citris reticulata)
Manuka (Leptospermum Scoparium)
6-8+ Years Marjoram (Origanum majorana)
9-11+ Years 2+ Years Melissa (Melissa officinalis)
6-8+ Years 2+ Years Myrrh (Commiphora myrrha)
6-8+ Years Myrtle (Myrtus communis)
2-6+ months 6+ months Neroli (citrus aurantium)
7-12+ months 6+ Years Niaouli (melalecua viridiflora)
2+ Years Oregano (Origanum onites, Origanum smyrnaeum, Origanum vulgare, Origanum compactum,
2+ Years Oregano Origanum hirtum, Thymbra capitata, Thymus capitatus, Coridothymus capitatus, Satureeja capitata)
2-5+ years Ormenis flower
Moroccan Chamomile
(ormenis mixta)
2+ Years Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin)
7-12+ months 6+ months Palma Rosa (cymbopogon martinii)
7-12+ months 6+ months Petitgrain (Citrius aurantium)
6-8+ Years 6+ months Pine (Pinus sylvestris)
2-5+ years 6+ months Ravensara (Ravensara Aromatica)
Newborn and Up 3+ months Roman Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis)
6+ months Rosalina (Melaleuca ericfolia)
2-6+ months 6+ months Rose otto (Rosa Damascena)
6+ months Sandalwood (Santalum Spicatum)
2+ Years Spearmint (Mentha cardiaca, Mentha spicata)
6-8+ Years Spikenard (Nardostachys jatamansi)
6+ months Spruce (Picea abies, Picea Glauca, Picea mariana, Picea rubens)
6-8+ Years 6+ months Sweet Orange (Citrus sinensis)
2+ Years Sweet Marjoram (Marjorana hortensis)
7-12+ months 6+ months Tangerine (Citrus reticulata)
2-6+ months 6+ months Tea tree (Melalecua Alternifolia)
2-5+ years 2+ Years Thyme linalool (Thymus vulgaris, type linalol)
2+ Years Tumeric (Curcuma longa)
2+ Years Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
2+ Years Verbena (Lemon) (Aloysia triphylla, Aloysia citriodora, Lippa citrodora, Lippa triphylla)
2+ Years Vetiver  (Vetiveria zizanioides)
2-5+ years 3+ months Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
9-11+ Years Ylang, ylang (Cananga odorata)

Sources and Recommended Reading:(The above lists are from Aromatherapy for the Healthy Child: More Than 300 Natural, Nontoxic, and Fragrant Essential Oil Blends by Valerie Ann Worwood , from Safe Essential Oil Use with Babies and Children by Christina Anthis and  Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals-, 2e by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young  PLEASE NOTE THIS LIST DOES NOT COVER ALL ESSENTIAL OILS IF YOU ARE UNSURE IF IT IS SAFE TO USE AN ESSENTIAL OIL ON YOUR CHILD OR BABY CONSULT A CERTIFIED OR REGISTERED AROMATHERAPIST OR JUST DONT USE IT)

Safe Essential Oil Use with Babies and Children by Christina Anthis

When Not to use Essential Oils by Dr. Erika Krumbeck, ND

Essential Oils and Aromatics: A Step-by-Step Guide for Use in Massage and Aromatherapy by Marge Clark

Aromatherapy for the Healthy Child: More Than 300 Natural, Nontoxic, and Fragrant Essential Oil Blends by Valerie Ann Worwood

Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals-, 2e by Robert Tisserand and Rodney Young

If you’re interested in purchasing Essential Oils click below: Organic Essential Oils

I am NOT a doctor or medical professional. If you are seeking medical advice please do so from a qualified professional. Products and               Information on this site are not intended to diagnose, prevent or cure any disease or ailment.

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Months have passed
but the swirl of activities
Time ticks slowly
at a frenetic pace
as the “to do” list,
having morphed
into a unrecognizable force
that has taken on a life of it’s own,
transforms and grows
at an alarming pace.
All I can do is breathe
on one day
at a time
one task at a time
and remind myself
it will all get done. . .

-LRFB 6/24/15


Not Keeping up with the Joneses- Cash Flowing the Unexpected. . . again

I feel like we’ve been taking little money hits left and right lately.  The latest blow came last week when I had to drop my car off to get the A/C repaired.  I live in Texas, it’s summer and I have a toddler, so this was a bullet I was going to have to bite in order to have peaceful and cool summer car rides.  (If it was just me I’d probably sweat it out a week or two, but I have a toddler and there is no way I’m driving around with him in a car in Texas in summer with no A/C.)

I had been putting a little money aside in my budget so we can redo the floors in our house. . . ALL of my floor money PLUS some of our emergency fund was drained from the bank account in order to fix the car A/C.  My heart broke a little as the money disappeared. . .

When I told my husband the A/C in my car was going out he didn’t hesitate when he told me, you need to have that fixed, he wasn’t too upset that the floor money was now car repair money.  His view was that we HAD THE CASH ON HAND to combat this unexpected expense.  Even though the money was originally slated for something else, we were able to use it for a need instead of a want.  The new floors will come with time, they will just have to be postponed until we rebuild our emergency fund, (which is already happening a week later) and are able to set money aside in the “For New Floors Envelope”  And it feels like even though we experienced this little road bump we are still getting encouragement to keep on track with our budget and money plans as a few unexpected cash making opportunities presented themselves during the great A/C debacle.

It never ceases to amaze me how if you work hard (and pray a little or sometimes a lot) that your bumps in the road will be followed by a little bit of smoothness.  It seems like since we’ve started taking control of our finances instead of letting our finances control us better things happen where money is concerned.  (Like when you need money, money makes itself available to you or if you have to use the money you have more comes to replace what was spent.)

To learn more about Building a Budget go to and then head over to to learn about the baby steps and how to take control of your finances.