Every Tuesday evening, I hustle my oldest daughter into the gym so she can practice her cartwheels and backbends and I can have an hour of adult conversation with the other moms who are pretending to be watching every tuck and roll of their future Olympian gymnast.
My baby girl, a 16 month-old firecracker, joins me in the circle of gossip. She has been recently diagnosed with a severe case of eczema, her little face and arms dotted with scaly, itchy red spots. The conversation quickly turns to how to remedy her unsightly problem and restore her smooth baby complexion.
The debate begins. We draw our battle lines, divided over the use of traditional over-the-counter medicines or the alternative therapy of essential oils. Here are seven reasons why I choose essential oils for my children over OTC medicines:
1. My child wont suffer while waiting an suggested dosages
With almost all over the counter medicine that has to be ingested, such as Tums or Tylenol, there are specific time limits (every 4 to 6 hours) and dosing amounts (do not exceed 4 doses) that can be taken in a 24 hour period.
When your child has a high fever or a persistent cough, waiting those 6 hours can be torture. Essentials oils can be used on an as needed basis, so your children don’t have to suffer while waiting on their next dose.
2. I can avoid scary or life-threatening allergies
In a recent article posted by Health Day New, studies show that over 60% of allergy related deaths occurred because of severe reactions to medications.
In the book, ‘The Chemistry of Essential Oils Made Simple’, Dr. David Stewart explains the science behind essentials oils and maintains that as long as the essential oil you are using is 100% pure therapeutic grade, it will not cause an allergic reaction in your children. However, you should always consult a pediatrician before giving essential oils to your children.
3. Multipurpose and multi-use saves me money
Unlike OTC medicines that are only effective for treating one specific symptom or problem, essential oils are very versatile. If your child has a headache, you can use lavender to eliminate the pain of the headache and then use it at night to promote restful sleep. They are also useful in reducing the amount of harsh chemicals your children are exposed to on a regular basis.
The oils can be used in many common household products such as cleaners, lotions, baby wipes, shampoos, soaps and deodorant.
4. Less side effects when used properly
According to the FDA, children under 2 years of age should not be exposed to any cough or cold medicines. So when your little one catches his or her sibling’s cold, you are left with a cranky baby and no solution. Certified 100% pure essential oils are gentle enough for use on babies and small children.
Essential oils are not excluded from side effects, but when used properly, in the right amount and with the right carrier oils, the side effects are greatly reduced. It is important to keep in mind that there are certain oils that should not be used on children, so do your research on the oils you intend to use.