Using aromatherapy to enhance the atmosphere around a baby is fine but if you plan on applying oils for a baby massage, I recommend that you only apply it to babies who are 6 months or older.
Also, some children have particularly sensitive skin. But if you do things right, there are a lot of health benefits of aromatherapy for babies.
One way to reap the help benefits of aromatherapy for babies is to use essential oils during baby massage. Not only does aromatherapy massage help the parent bond with the child but the babies who are massaged regularly are generally healthier, can sleep better, have less anxiety and are calmer. As mentioned before, some essential oils carry some risks but roman chamomile, rose, neroli, mandarin and lavender essential oils are recognized as safe.
Baby Balm - This is a wonderful product to have around the home. A soothing and gentle balm for dry and sensitive skin, and oh-so helpful during the onset of diaper rashes and chapped skin.
As for the massage itself, you don't need an elaborate guide. Babies tend to be expressive and express what strokes they like and dislike. Start with a gentle stroke and little pressure and watch for the reactions. Baby massages also tend to be short, so when they start to get fussy or bored, it's time to stop.
Mixing essential oils with other ingredients also help with certain conditions. Massage and aromatherapy can help prevent stretch marks for pregnant women and also helps keep babies' skin supple. There are also recipes using essential oils that can help treat diaper rash and hives. There are also recipes that can be used as a bug repellent or a disinfectant spray. These recipes usually include lavender, neroli, chamomile, orange and eucalyptus among others.
But perhaps the most useful aromatherapy product, especially for babies, is chamomile. This essential oil has long been recognized to have many soothing properties. Using chamomile, the health benefits of aromatherapy for babies include being able to calm an agitated baby, soothes irritability, helps get babies to sleep, relieves stomach upsets and soothes babies when teething.
Relieving coughs or other chest conditions are also among the health benefits of aromatherapy for babies. Two particular essential oils used for these purposes include myrtle and lavender. Performing chest massages with myrtle is slightly sedative. Including myrtle and lavender during a bath is gently soothing. And using either of the two oils to enhance the atmosphere also aids breathing.
If you plan to use aromatherapy for your baby's health, be informed of what's safe to use. Remember that baby's skin, as well as their senses, are more sensitive than an adult's. You may want to invest in high quality oils to ensure the purity of ingredients. Also, prevent from massaging your baby when they are already over stimulated. This is usually when they have just finished socializing or playing. Give them a chance to calm down first before giving them a massage.
Herbal baby oil
Mix 12 drops lavender, 4 drops chamomile with 4 ounce carrier oils. Calendula oil is very good for baby. Combine together
Fragrant Baby Powder
Put 1/2 pound corn starch in plastic zip lock bag and put 25 drops lavender oil into it. Tight closely the bag and toss back and forth so the essential oils distribute evenly. Let it still for 4 days.
Baby Tummy Oil
combine 3 drops melissa essential oils, 2 drops chamomile essential oils, 2 drops dill essential oils with 2 ounce of carrier oil. Combine together. You can use this blend to rub your baby's tummy every hour as needed. If you don't have melisa essential oils, you can replace it with lavender essential oils.
K. Keville, Pocket Guide to Aromatherapy, (Crossing Press, 1996)
K Keville & M Green, Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art, (Crossing Press, 2008)
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