A strong immune system is our insurance for good health, and it is important to tend to it all year long. In the fall, a strong immune system response will help to prevent or minimize the symptoms of the colds and flu that are so prevalent this time of year.
Dr. Kurt Schnaubelt, author of Medical Aromatherapy, believes that supporting the immune system is one of what essential oils do best. Jane Buckle, author of Clinical Aromatherapy, stated: “It has become evident that essential oils, both through topical application and inhalation, can positively impact the immune system by improving mood, increasing brain activity, and enhancing other biological functions important to health and healing.”
When using essential oils for the immune system, it is believed to be better to 1) use in 1% dilution 2) rotate the essential oils (using different ones for the same situation during the course of treatment).
Many essential oils support the immune system; some of our favorites are Eucalyptus Smithii (especially good for children), Bay Laurel, Lavender Spike, Ravensara, and Tea Tree.
The recommended methods of using essential oils for immune support are:
#1 BEST – Massage: Massage is believed to strengthen the immune system. (Combines with touch.)
Full-body: (12 drops in 2 ounces of carrier)
Neck and shoulder: (12 drops in 1 ounce of carrier)
Feet: (10-25 drops in 1 ounce of carrier.) Massage feet and cover with cotton socks before bed.
#2 GOOD – Bath: (hydrotherapy)
Add 8 drops of essential oil after you have immersed yourself in the tub. (It is recommended to use a carrier with the essential oil to disperse it in the bath. This can be 1 teaspoon of carrier oil, a tablespoon of vodka or vinegar, or a tablespoon of lotion.)
#3 OK – Inhalation: 1-3 drops on a tissue. Inhale the aroma through nose. Pause and inhale again.
E3- General Guidelines for Methods of Using Essential Oils
The methods and number of drops described below are general guidelines for using essential oils for adults. Individual sensitivities, the desired results, and the characteristics of the essential oil(s) used must all be considered. Adjust methods and proportions accordingly.
Add to Products: Essential oils can be added to pre-made, fragrance-free products to enhance their performance. Add 4-8 drops to 2 ounces of facial moisturizer; 15-30 drops to 8 ounces of lotion; 10-20 drops to 8 ounces of shampoo; 15-30 drops to 8 ounces of conditioner.
After Shower: After showering, while your skin is still wet, put 1-3 drops of essential oil in the palm of one of your hands and rub your hands together. Quickly and evenly spread the essential oil over your legs, arms, and torso. Avoid sensitive-skin areas. Wait for 30 seconds, breathing in the aroma, and then pat your skin dry.
Anointing Oil: Anointing oils are used for subtle aromatherapy and subtle energy work. Mix 1 drop of essential oil in 1 teaspoon of jojoba or olive oil
Bath: Mix 4-8 drops of essential oil in 1 teaspoon of carrier oil, such as fractionated coconut oil. (You can also add the essential oil to 1/2 cup of whole milk or heavy cream.) Set aside. If you have muscle aches, add Epsom or Dead sea salts. Fill the tub with warm water and immerse yourself. Add the essential oil mixture and swirl the water around you. Massage your skin and breathe in the aroma. Remain in the tub for 10-15 minutes.
Bath, Foot: Mix 1-3 drops of essential oil in 1/2 teaspoon of carrier oil, preferably fractionated coconut oil. Set aside. Fill a tub (deep enough to cover your feet and ankles) with warm water. Add the essential oil mixture, stir well, and immerse your feet for 10-15 minutes. Breathe in the aroma and massage your feet.
Body Lotion: Add 6-30 drops of essential oil in 1 ounce of fragrance-free, natural moisturizing lotion. Apply to your skin, especially after a shower or bath.
Body Oil: Mix 6-30 drops of essential oil in 1 ounce of carrier, such as fractionated coconut oil or sweet almond oil. Apply to your skin, especially after a shower or bath.
Chest Rub: Mix 5-15 drops of essential oil in 1 tablespoon of carrier oil or fragrance-free, natural lotion, apply to upper chest and upper back.
Compress: Fill a basin with water. (Warm water relaxes and increases circulation.
Cool water invigorates and relieves inflammation.) Add 3-5 drops of essential oil and briskly stir. Lay in a washcloth, wring, and apply to the area in need. Dip, wring, and apply 3 more times. Leave the last compress in place for 3 minutes.
Compress, Facial: Fill the sink with warm water. Add 1-3 drops of essential oil in the water and agitate the water to mix well. Lay in a clean washcloth, wring, and apply to face, with eyes closed, holding in place for 5-10 seconds. Repeat dipping, wringing, and applying—3 times. Pat dry.
Diffusion: Follow diffuser manufacturer’s instructions to fill the air with therapeutic aroma
Facial Oil: Mix 2-5 drops of essential oil in 1 ounce of carrier such as jojoba, olive oil, or rose hip seed oil.
Inhalation: Put 1-3 drops of essential oil on a tissue and inhale the aroma through your nose. Pause and inhale again. (Avoid touching your nose with the tissue.)
Inhalation, Hot Water: Add 1-2 drops of essential oil in a small bowl of hot water.
Keeping your eyes tightly closed, lean over the bowl and breathe in deeply yet gently and exhale. Continue for 30 seconds. Inhale through your nose for respiratory or sinus conditions and through your mouth for throat issues or coughs. Repeat as desired.
Massage: Mix 6-30 drops of essential oil in 1 ounce of carrier oil or fragrance-free, natural lotion.
Perfume: Mix 10-20 drops of essential oil in 1 tablespoon of jojoba. Apply to pulse points, such as inner wrists, behind knees, or backs of ankles.
Room Mist: Mix 30-60 drops of essential oil in 4 ounces of water in a mister bottle. Shake well before each use and avoid getting it into the eyes.
Skin Mist: Mix 10-40 drops of essential oil in 4 ounces of water in a mister bottle. Shake well before each use and avoid getting it into the eyes.
Scalp Oil: Mix 12-24 drops of essential oil in 2 ounces of fractionated coconut oil or jojoba, or a blend of both. Store in a glass bottle with a cap. Use about 1 teaspoon to massage into scalp at night. Shampoo in the morning.
Spot Application: Mix 1-4 drops of essential oil in 1 teaspoon of carrier oil or aloe vera and apply to the spot in need.