When to NOT use essential oils (Essential oils can cause seizures in kids)

When to NOT use essential oils (Essential oils can cause seizures in kids)


1/3/2015. Update from Dr. Erika: DON’T THROW OUT YOUR ESSENTIAL OILS!  I’ve been getting a lot of comments from folks who read this article and are terrified to use essential oils now.  Please, read the article carefully – topical or diffused essential oils can be very safe and effective in kids when used correctly!  Remember to adjust dose to your child’s weight – if 1-2 drops is effective for an adult, then 1/2, 1/5, or 1/10 of a drop may be effective (and safe) for your child.  

When to NOT use essential oils

Are you an essential oil user?  Chances are the answer is yes!

Recently there has been a huge rise in the use of essential oils from some popular MLM companies like Young Living and Doterra. BUT – with every new craze comes some good news and bad news…

The good news:

love the fact that so many families have thrown out their Glade Plug-in air fresheners, or other synthetic spray air fresheners.  Synthetic air fresheners are notoriously horrible products, in my opinion.  The Environmental Working Group ( rated 150 products with a grade D for safety, and 78 products with a grade F.  (Only 11 got a grade A, and one of those was baking soda!) They even have a warning on their website saying “Avoid air fresheners: they can cause allergies and only cover up bad odors.”  I really, really, really, really, really don’t like synthetic air fresheners.  They are known to have phthalates and other substances which interfere with our hormones and are known to cause cancer.  Using a vaporizer for essential oils is a much better way to diffuse fragrance and naturally reduce odor-causing bacteria.

The second piece of good news: I love it when patients have essential oils on hand.  I do actually use essential oils a lot in my practice, usually topically or in steam inhalations.  Lavender, tea tree, and thyme are my favorite three to have on hand.  These are what I usually recommend families to keep in their herbal first aid kit. (Frankincense would be next.)

Okay, on to the bad news.

As a physician, I am very concerned about the rise in inappropriate use of essential oils.

Did you know that essential oils can cause seizures in children?

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.

There have been several documented cases of seizures in children (and a few in adults) who have taken essential oils inappropriately.  (You can check out case reports herehere, here, and here).

The bottom line is: essential oils can be neurotoxic to children.  I never recommend internal use of essential oils in kids.  Even in adults I save internal use of essential oils for serious infections or other conditions that are unresponsive to normal doses of herbs (in tincture or tea form).  Topical or vaporized essential oils can be safe and very effective in children when used correctly!

So here are some guidelines for using essential oils in kids:

1) Always use a carrier oil when applying essential oils to the skin.  A “carrier oil” is a type of base oil, to slightly dilute the essential oil and protect the skin against direct contact with the essential oil.  Essential oils should never be applied “neat” (undiluted) to the skin. I cannot tell you the number of times I have seen allergic contact dermatitis (big ugly skin rash) with undiluted oils! Mix 1-2 drops of essential oil in 1-3 teaspoons of a carrier oil like olive oil, coconut oil, almond oil, avocado oil, or other mild, gentle, skin-friendly oil.  Mix essential oils with carrier oils immediately before applying them.  This prevents rancidity.

2) Keep oils away from airways (nose and mouth).  One thing I really like about DoTerra’s recommendations is that they usually tell parents to apply essential oils to the feet of children and babies.  This is a great idea, because it provides space between the airways and the source of the essential oil.  Just make sure your baby doesn’t then put his feet in his mouth! Also make sure the essential oils are mixed with a carrier oil first.

3) Do not use vaporizers in a house where a child or adult lives with a respiratory disease.  I have seen a number of asthma patients who were constantly having their airways aggravated from aerosolized essential oils.  Use extreme caution when using essential oils in kids 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.

4) Do not use essential oils in teething recipes. No, no no.  This is not safe!  Stick with chamomile or lemon-balm tea popsicles. (Super yummy and babies love them!)  Clove oil can be used topically (cloves infused in olive oil, not clove essential oil), but use with caution, because if a baby swallows clove oil or any numbing agent it has the potential to numb the gag reflex, and babies can end up aspirating their own saliva.

5) Do not give children essential oils internally.  I highly recommend limiting internal use of essential oils to use under physician supervision only, for kids OR for adults.  Once again, I have heard from colleagues who have seen everything from ulcers, to chronic gastroenteritis, to asthma, flaring of skin lesions (eczema, acne, psoriasis, you name it), migraines, chronic heartburn, and many more, from taking internal essential oils.  Again – remember that one drop of essential oil is equivalent to 15-40 cups of medicinal tea, or up to 10 teaspoons of tincture.  Products that have mixtures of essential oils and herbs tend to be safer. The exception to this rule: essential oils that are used for flavoring only tend to be safe (e.g., orange essential oil to flavor ice cream) – in this case the total amount of essential oil is very, very low.

6) Never ever take essential oils internally if you are pregnant.  I recommend using extreme caution with topical essential oils and vaporized essential oils.  Remember, essential oils very easily end up in the blood stream from topical or vaporized (and inhaled) use.  (Topical by fat absorption through the skin, vaporized by diffusion in the alveoli of the lung.)  Essential oils do cross the placenta and a fetus is extremely susceptible to the neurotoxic components.  Most of the time this ends up being a non-issue though – pregnancy makes women so sensitive to smells that I know very few women who would use too much essential oil – our bodies do a great job of telling us when to stop!

At this point I am sure I will get hundreds of hate e-mails from avid essential oil users telling me how great they are and how much they helped their own personal health.  I am in no way denying the fabulous benefits of essential oils!  And they can be used internally – with caution!! But for every great success story of how much essential oils have helped, I get to see the other story, of how essential oils have worsened.   So please, coming from Dr. Erika here, please use essential oils wisely, and save yourself a trip to my office – or worse, the Emergency Department.

Another note from Dr. Erika: Regarding the comments section – I’m trying, but I just can’t get to every comment anymore.  If you are asking a specific treatment question (like “What EO can I use for _______ symptom) – I cannot answer those, you will need to ask your physician for guidance. Remember that symptoms are just symptoms of a bigger problem!  If you need to find a naturopathic physician near you who has experience with essential oils, I recommend checking out the Pediatric Association of Naturopathic Physicians, or the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians

Erika Krumbeck, ND, FABNP
Erika Krumbeck

Dr. Erika Krumbeck is the proud founder and editor of, the leading internet source for trustworthy natural health information for children and naturopathic pediatric providers. She is also the owner of Montana Whole Health, a primary care naturopathic practice in Missoula, MT. She is one of few doctors with the FABNP designation, meaning she is a board-certified pediatric naturopathic physician. Dr. Krumbeck has specialized training in treating chronic conditions in children using safe, gentle and effective natural remedies. She helps bridge the gap between conventional medicine and complementary/alternative medicine by using both new research and traditional naturopathic therapies to guide treatment.


  • Avatar
    Deanna Nichols
    December 25, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    1. A pediatrician or naturopath are not an essential oil experts by profession. Being a doctor does not qualify you as an EO expert.

    2. Look at the items cited. They do not support the fear mongering intent of the article. These are not scientific studies, just a couple random incident reports that offer no proof essential oils were responsible for the seizures. One was an adult with epilepsy already. They could have had a seizure due to anything. By that logic I ate an omelette for breakfast and stubbed my toe. The omelette was the only thing different I ate. Therefore omelettes cause toe injuries.

    3. Overdosing on ANY medicine is bad. Don’t do it. That is not unique to essential oils. Keep them out of reach of children who think consuming an entire bottle is OK. This is also why I don’t sell oils to people or buy them off a shelf. I educate people and empower them to use them properly. That is what companies like doTERRA are about

    4. Clearly this doctor has no clue about the science of essential oils. She calls it a new craze. The truth is they have been a part of natural medicine in our modern society for about 30 years and before that for thousands. And there is a lot of research proving their efficacy. You can find it yourself at

    5. Using other brands of EO’s can certainly be unsafe. That is why most are labeled as not safe for internal use even when they come from a food like oranges that should obviously be edible. The majority of oils on the market contain unlabeled fillers and carrier oils, are created synthetically in a lab, and chemical solvents are used in the distillation process. I would never use these on any human. That is why I use doTERRA.

    6. I have used eucalyptus on my infant son ONE DROP at a time as young as 2 weeks old. He is perfectly healthy. There are no doTERRA oils I would not use on him. Safely. As per the education provided for us.

    7. I know the CEO of doTERRA. His daughter has seizures and uses doTERRA oils in lieu of medication to keep them under control. She was a toddler when they began this.

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      December 31, 2014 at 3:59 pm

      Deanna, You seemed to have missed the point of the article and this professional’s experience with EOs.

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        Mari B, ND
        January 1, 2015 at 1:23 pm

        I agree, Helen. I must applaud Dr. K for scratching the surface of the uses and misuses of EOs. We have a lot of well meaning folks “prescribing” oils for symptoms; running to EO books to find a treatment. As a natural healer, we must “First do no harm.” If you believe these oils are therapeutic and effective, why COULDN’T they also harm a body? Why do you think there are classes availabe for EO education/certification? Use of EOs in Europe vary in how they are administered. The issue I struggle with in EO users is the inability for them to see they are reactive to symptomology, and not open to the thought that the cause might need to be treated. Ignoring the whole body can cause the issues to be translocated, due to compensatory needs. Yes, this is a “craze” for some. People are “signing up” to distribute oils with no fear of harming. Many who don’t stop to consider the amount of knowledge they lack. Someone needs to scare the masses!

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      January 9, 2015 at 6:13 pm

      I appreciate your comments Deanna. After reading everybody’s two cents I found your comment to at least address some of the absurdity of the way this article is written. It is more of an opinion piece written by the doctor because the references are misused. My college professors would have given this paper low marks for using fear mongering as a way to convince people. I see the docs point but she could have written her opinion in a kinder more constructive way.

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    Erica Nicodemus Hunt
    December 25, 2014 at 7:15 pm

    When you say vaporizer are you referring to a diffuser as well?

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        December 30, 2014 at 11:50 pm

        I just read your article on “when to not use eo.” It was an eye opener for me. My 10 year old grandson has severe seasonal allergies. Injections and OTC meds are of no help. He is always congested. I bought (doTerra) eos but am afraid of using them improperly. I was applying lemon, peppermint and lavendar to his hands and having him inhale to clear his nose. Of course, the relief was temporary. what oils should I use and can they be diffused in my Scentsy burner?

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          Nicole Thompson
          January 2, 2015 at 4:30 am

          LLP is a good start for allergies. I personally hate Lavender, but I think everybody’s body chemistry reacts differently. I’ve found peppermint alone is my preference. Peppermint is a “spicy” oil, and should be diluted for any age. I use fractionated coconut oil. Also, no, you should not use a Scentsy burner, the heat may alter or destroy certain constituents of the oils and the therapeutic benefit may not be as beneficial as using cold-air diffusion.

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          Karen Kaplan
          September 6, 2015 at 4:25 am

          You should NEVER use eo’s in your Scentsy warmer. It is a fire hazard!

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    December 25, 2014 at 3:42 am

    Thank you for such a wonderfully BALANCED article! Personally I have seen good results with the use of Fragonia ™ oil in a teenager with severe asthma, but as you have said above, every case is different and any respiratory conditions need to be approached with caution. Some thoughts re asthma…. BUT the above article is referring to adults or older children..not babies and/or toddlers!.

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    Diary of a Rangers Wife
    December 24, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Do you think it is safe to use lavendar or peppermint topically during pregnancy? I like to try peppermint oil for headaches before resorting to tylenol as I feel it would be safer .

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    December 24, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    Wonderful article. Each person’s chemistry responds differently. I appreciate the perspective given on the strength of the oils, it does explain why they are incredible. It is a shame people get so defensive and fail to see advice given which is meant to be helpful, useful and individual considered.

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    December 24, 2014 at 3:33 pm

    Thank you for your article. I just had a severe reaction after putting lavender oil on a burn. My husband had great success with lavender on a burn he received, but after putting straight lavender on mine, I had a week of an intense rash and itching. I also put lavender on a mouth sore and it “burned” my lower lip after dripping in my mouth. It has been swollen and painful for days after using lavender. We were given some essential oils without proper instructions, and have been using lavender generously without diluting it first! I was still not for sure that these reactions were a result of the lavender, but after reading your article I’m sure they were. I’m not throwing out the oils, but it’s good to know that they need to be used carefully and with more moderation. My son also has asthma, so this is another good warning. I’m so thankful I stumbled upon your site!

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      December 29, 2014 at 5:43 pm

      Maggie, I don’t know what brand you have been using, but that DOES make a difference. Many companies dilute their oils with synthetic fillers, removing their natural benefits and altering their purity. There was recently a big scare with people ordering Young Living and doTerra off Amazon because they were cheaper than going through a distributor; they ended up with skin burns and rashes and found that they were not true EO’s by either company. It is not hard to order sealed caps and pop them onto any bottle with a label. You have to be really careful when purchasing essential oils and make sure you first do the research on the brands and where they are coming from. Essential Oils are not regulated, so you must be proactive and do the research yourself. I will not mention the brand that I use because I don’t want this to seem like a sales pitch, but honestly, I will never use another brand because I have seen, smelled, and FELT the difference between the cheap brands I was using in the past vs. the brand I use now. You really do get what you pay for, and you need to make sure the oils you’re using are 100% pure and organic.

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        CL Hendricks
        January 3, 2015 at 1:58 pm

        First not ONE company has the corner on purity and quality. Some corner the market on price, but not on quality. Having said that, anyone can develop sensitization at any time from any oil, even lavender. Sadly, once sensitization occurs the chances of being able to use that oil again without a reaction goes down to about 0%. To avoid any chance of sensitization ALWAYS dilute the oils FIRST. That doesn’t mean rubbing a little carrier oil on the skin and then rubbing in a drop of essential oil. 1st: that’s still too strong; and 2nd: you’re still putting undiluted eo on the fingers that are doing the rubbing.

        Here’s the solution to inadvertently using essential oils in the wrong way: Don’t take application advice from anyone who is selling a single brand of essential oils and telling you that their essential oils are the only pure essential oils in the world. That’s nothing but marketing, and 99 times out of 100 that person has absolutely no training in safe essential oil use. They are only trained in how to sell essential oils.

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      CL Hendricks
      January 3, 2015 at 2:05 pm

      Maggie, it sounds like you’ve developed sensitization and may not ever be able to use even the weakest dilutions of lavender essential oil. Now, if the oil you used was Lavandula angustifolia you might be able to use Lavendula officinalis, or Lavandin or Spike Lavander. However, if you do try any of those, make sure you really dilute it and do a patch test (not on the lip or anywhere that’s reacted in the past) first. SIDE NOTE: Sensitization can occur at any time with any oil if that oil is used neat. It doesn’t matter where you get your essential oils, they should never be used neat or ingested UNLESS under the guidance of a licensed medical professional or a certified aromatherapist.

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    December 24, 2014 at 3:06 pm

    Thank you for sharing this information. A lot of my friends use EO and swear by them, but I haven’t had good results. We’ve had headaches from diffusing thieves, and my son had eye irritation from diffusing purification. I’m glad that you gave some good information on how strong these oils really are. We are just not all the same, and we need to use caution when it comes to applying medicinal products.

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      January 3, 2015 at 3:11 pm

      THe headaches u are experiencing are do to unpure oils!! I had the same experience w that brand!! They claim to be so pure but I had a terrible reaction to them. I have switched to another brand and have not experienced any headaches or any other reaction.

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        February 11, 2015 at 4:20 am

        KC, I went to a biochemist at a detox clinic. She tested a certain oil from one of these major companies and found it to be impure–had petroleum or something in it.

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    December 24, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    What about scentsy Wickless candles. Is that okay??

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    December 24, 2014 at 6:07 am

    We ONLY use Ameo clinical grade essential oils, I would never feel comfortable ingesting any of the other brands. That being said, we have experienced many amazing health results taking several oils in capsule form. I also know people that stop asthma attacks with peppermint oil. Very interesting article though, and definitely some things to be considered in the way of taking caution when using oils with children. Dr. Erika, you need to know about Ameo oils if you don’t already.

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    December 24, 2014 at 3:12 am

    I think key here is if someone in your home is compromised in anyway, eos, as with many things, should be used under the care of a qualified practitioner. As noted, what works for one doesn’t for another. I have seen likewise results for children with parent says “this was a lifesaver,” while another says,”that had my kid bouncing off the walls.”

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    Robert Tisserand
    December 23, 2014 at 3:40 am

    You cite 4 case reports. (1) Salvia officinalis oil contains about 50% of thujone, which is a known convulsant. No real surprises there. (2) The fennel oil cake case was poorly reported – this was clearly a case of the essential oil interacting with anti-seizure medication – fennel oil is not a convulsant. (3) Nothing can be learned from the Bozorg report, and we don’t even know for sure that this was caused by essential oils. (4) Burkhard et al go out of their way to implicate essential oils, and this report should never have been published in a peer-reviewed journal. Some of it is correct, and some of it is not. Eucalyptus oil and fennel oil are not convulsants, neither are cineole and anethole. Very few essential oils pose any convulsant risk, even to young children.

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    December 23, 2014 at 1:58 am

    I’ll never expect a physician of any type to suggest something that would dig into their pharmaceutical pay offs. That is a multi-billion dollar industry.
    I think most people are intelligent enough to read about EO’s before using them.
    REALLY, no defensive reply necessary.

    • Avatar
      January 2, 2015 at 3:46 am

      Right, because ALL doctors are money-hungry, greedy idiots carrying out the conspiracy that says doctors ONLY become doctors to screw people out of their money…..until someone gets injured or horribly sick…..then suddenly they’re genius lifesavers. She only stated about a zillion times she SUPPORTS the use of EOs as long as they’re utilized safely. And for the record, I just started experimenting with EOs in my home and not everything available is as easy to understand as an article like this. I DID research and I still have questions.

    • Avatar
      January 3, 2015 at 3:45 am

      Where is all of this money you speak of??? I’ve been in practice for 12 years and have yet to see this so-called “pharmaceutical pay off” Crap, I still have student loans from undergrad and med school that I’m paying for

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      January 4, 2015 at 6:42 am

      Carolina, I thinI the very fact that she does recommend EO while it cuts into pharmaceutical profit shows how much she believes in them. Also, she has every right to respond.

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    December 22, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    Hi! Thank you for this article! Very helpful! I do have a question. What are your guidelines for diffusing especially with a 2 month old? Are there oils that aren’t safe to diffuse? I just like to use them with colds, congestion, Etc? Also are there oils you don’t recommend putting on them even if diluted?

      • Avatar
        December 23, 2014 at 3:34 pm

        Oh really! I have a 2 and 4 year old and diffuse oils around house when they are sick! Is it ok to diffuse around her? Is there any that are completely unsafe? And your advise is not to even dilute oils and put on her feet? I have done that :/

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    December 22, 2014 at 3:18 am

    I have learned that EO’s are not the one-all-cure-all because-just like diet-we are each unique like snowflakes so what works for some may not work for others. My 6 year old daughter has a terrible time with lavender…it is a huge hormone disruptor and literally wreaks havoc on her system…yet that oil is GRAS! I’m so thankful to see this well thought out article bc I am very concerned with the “trend” of everyone using oils for every little thing…it could be doing serious liver damage.

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        January 2, 2015 at 5:15 pm

        So what about foods with essential oils in them? We have a local vegan ice cream companies that uses essential oils in many of its flavors (only a few drops per batch, she tells me). I was worried about the safety of using EOs for flavoring in food, should I keep this away from my children?

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        Raven M
        January 14, 2015 at 4:56 am

        Ok, I’ve gotta say this now after reading all the above posts. In anything, moderation and caution are key. Too much of ANYTHING is no good! People react differently to a variety of treatments … including doctor prescribed medicines that do more to COVER the symptoms rather than get to the bottom and cure the cause! Dr, I would have to say you should have proofed your article a little better and used more “I caution” rather than such blanket statements. Half of the people responding here don’t understand, and the other half will defend their use of oils because THEY WORK for their families. And, some will work better than others. My 8yo stepson just went through pneumonia, and has mild asthma. We have used oils topically (and, yes, some of the ‘stronger’ ones) and he has rebounded much more quickly than with just doctor prescriptions (which are wreaking havoc with his immune system). That said, it might be a different story with another child. Truth is, SOMETIMES you just don’t know. (I had a 37yo friend who had a major stroke… but hey, doctors say that’s too young to do all the tests an older person may do. AND, essential oils have assisted his recovery tremendously.

        REMEMBER ONE IMPORTANT THING: If you wouldn’t ingest the oil, you don’t want to put it on your body because it’s just going to go into the bloodstream. And ANYONE with infants should DOUBLECHECK anything they give their baby.

        If you want to know the plethora of uses for e/o’s and HOW (and how not) to use them, I would recommend the proper essential oils desk reference by Life Science Publishing. I have the 3rd edition, and they now have a 6th edition. It is my HEALTH BIBLE when it comes to many issues. That said, I am also not fanatical enough to believe that everything can be take care of ‘naturally’. There are some conditions that require medication. But, you can still supplement with natural remedies to assist in recuperation time, or cutting back on drugs.

        I don’t like getting involved in controversy, as everyone is entitled to their opinion. But, I am PASSIONATE about certain subjects, and e/o’s are one of them … the RIGHT essential oil (which is another subject in itself…)

        Best to all you.

    • Avatar
      January 13, 2015 at 6:12 am

      Sylla, I just got finished reading the articles that you posted here. I am looking for even more “like-minded” articles and links to share with friends who are in danger of overuse and are becoming increasingly unhealthy as they chug down their daily dose of oils. Could you recommend any others?

      • Avatar
        January 13, 2015 at 7:16 pm

        Lol “chug their oils”…. Not really funny but so true of many of the conversations I hear lately. I am very concerned that the oil peddlers are going to harm or sensitize our kids. Oils are powerful and should be used with education and respect. I agree more sources of caution are very welcome.

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    December 20, 2014 at 5:19 pm

    “Never use essential oils in kids with asthma.” Does this mean diffused or topically? I have 2 kids (6 and 4) with reactive airways.

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    Jennifer Messer
    December 13, 2014 at 12:37 pm

    I really wish this article had a share button. I am with Simply Aroma Essential oils a new MLB company. And we want to make sure everyone uses them appropriately. Thank you so much for writing this and I would love to hear more from you specifically. Will you email me please [email protected]

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    December 12, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    Good morning Dr. Erica! We are an essential oil using family, as well as western medicine. My youngest daughter has spina bifida, hydrocephalus, Arnold Chiari, neurogenic bowel and bladder, scoliosis…to name a few! Ayla is 4, and was recently diagnosed with a seizure disorder..mainly thought to come from trauma to her brain after 13+ surgeries. We use oils very safely in our home, don’t ingest, and love to treat naturally when can. That being said, I am currently terrified that I will unknowingly use an oil that will trigger a seizure. I have been trying to research on my own, and while some of the information is conflicting it has helped some. Are there specific oils that you would absolutely put on the DO NOT USE list, whether it be for Ayla or even in the house at all? Thanks so much!

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    December 3, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    what do you know about treating seizures with the use of frank essential oil

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    November 9, 2014 at 4:55 am

    Could You elaborate a bit as to why you recommend not use essential oils for teething?

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    Phoenix Frost-Ulfhamr
    September 16, 2014 at 7:06 pm

    Thank you so much for this, it was very informative!! What EO do you recommend for thrush? And how to you suggest wiping EO off the nipple before feeding?

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    Kara Azevedo
    September 15, 2014 at 10:57 pm

    Thank you! I don’t generally take them internally; I just diffuse and/or apply topically. I was hoping I wouldn’t have to avoid them altogether. I appreciate your response!

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    Kara Azevedo
    September 15, 2014 at 1:26 am

    You mention pregnancy, but what are your thoughts about EO use while breastfeeding? Thank you for the informative post!

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    September 14, 2014 at 2:07 pm

    Makes a lot of sense. Im glad I know about the dangers now, though. I would hate to make a suggestion to someone else or a mistake with my own child that leads to a seizure!

    Thank you.

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      December 20, 2014 at 9:20 am

      Appears that you are simply trying to scare people about somethign that is very effective. Where did you get this info? Did you research it directly? Have you considered that there could be something which works and is NOT harmful in anyway? It’s all about the money. Look at how much money is being taken away from doctors. I dont use them regular nor am I a distributor. Just saying….

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          January 11, 2015 at 8:03 pm

          Dr. Erica,
          I love this article. I’m a mom of a child with a sensory disorder and one with asthma. I also have a science background. I also use oils from an MLM company. I also used to be in Sales. Why do I mention all of this? Because perspective and filter are very important. People don’t like an MLM… really? Do you realize that the sales rep from Merck or Pfizer get paid on every prescription that a doctor in their territory writes? Everything is an MLM but people don’t like it when “money” is the focus. doTERRA and Young Living are great companies that source great essential oils. Not everyone who uses or shares essential oils is looking to make a great deal of cash. I share it because I believe in the efficacy of the oils- because of my science background. Erica- you are spot on that we need to educate ourselves as parents. These oils are VERY potent and need to be respected as such. Dose does matter and all of my training has taught me that 1) carrier oils are my friend and should be used 2) 1 or 2 drops is all I will ever need of anything topically or internally. The less the better but it can be used more frequently if needed. This is NOT a “hey if 1 works, 3 is better” mindset! If you as a parent are using essential oils, I feel it’s imperative that you take a training class (just like many of us did with CPR before baby #1 was born) because this is medicine not just playing around in the kitchen or first aid cabinet. Thank you so much for the post. It’s my first time reading something of yours but I will be following you!

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            L T
            August 5, 2015 at 8:24 pm

            Thank You for this Article. and this reply! I Hate when people Hate on MLM companies. Just because they have some reps that become a bit too overenthusiastic about the use of the oils They are soo big and because of that they have a huge spotlight on them! That being said if there was somthing alduterated or bad about their oils themselves you should easily find it online. Even with the best team of supressors they can’t get to everything. With money comes capitol which equals a means to produce their own or have in place things that cost allot of money to be absolutely certin that the product they produce is the best it can possibly be so they won’t be at risk of being slandered for it being adulterated or contaminated etc.
            The information on proper dilution is very helpful and when it comes to asthma i am finally getting some answers as to why some people i have met have had major problems with ANY oils!
            THANK YOU soo much for ths information.
            There is another company that is not an mlm that i consistantly hear good things about. I haven’t personally tested their product and have yet to see third party indpendent testing like i have with both MLMs so i will keep using and sharing the mlm i have found to be very reputable. The sharing and information i can gather to lead people away from big pharma is somthing i am passionate about. The deaths recorded from expected side effects of approved proper use of perscription drugs would Shock people into flushing everything their doctors have given them!
            Articles like this that are informative as to the why an essential oil can be bad in certin circumstances are the things that need to be more prolific online. I have spend many hours searching for an article like this. I will be bookmarking it for sure! I will also take the information so i may help others not make the same mistakes.

            Could you reccomend a website that can help people navigate the safe use of essential oils as many of us don’t have the means consult a ND and most MD’s are as hopelessly lost or brain washed as the rest of us!

            Thank You soo much for your help!

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            Niki Dollar McMillan
            November 5, 2015 at 7:28 pm

            Jessi – any tips for kids with sensory disorders and asthma? I am in the same situation. Plus food allergies and seasonal allergies. I am just getting into this and so afraid I will do something that will cause a reaction.

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        judith gorsky
        December 30, 2014 at 11:07 pm

        As a parent with an epileptic child, who uses oils…a lot…I suggest you do a little bit of research! There are several oils that are historically known to cause seizures, Eucalyptus is one, of the top of my head…I use lots of oils with my son, but I tend to stay away from those that may even maybe remotely possibly cause seizures. It just makes sense…

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          August 3, 2015 at 6:23 pm

          Hi Judith, My daughter is 2 and epileptic. Could you suggest which oils you use since I am just starting with oils and don’t want to make anything worse. She has been seizure free since she had surgery over a year ago. Thank you!

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    September 12, 2014 at 3:28 am

    It is interesting to me to learn that kids with asthma have had problems with inhaling essential oils. My oldest was a 27 week preemie who has had lung issues and asthma most of his life, and EO use (including deep breathing a few inches from oil bottles) has changed his life for the better so much. I have always kept them a few inches away from my his nose.

    I wonder why it works wonders for some and is so dangerous for others.

    I will certainly make sure I stay aware and cautious. Thanks.

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        December 29, 2014 at 6:05 pm

        What about peppermint?? My son is 16 months old and I diffuse peppermint in his room when he is very congested. He is too young to be diagnosed with asthma, but they call it reactive air way. I’ve been told to not ever put peppermint on his actual body, and I haven’t.

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            January 3, 2015 at 8:16 pm

            Peppermint is not safe to use under the age of 6, due to the 1,8 cineole content. Rosemary either. Eucalyptus not under 10.

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            January 8, 2015 at 4:10 pm

            What is the problem with peppermint? I’d like to use a lavender, lemon, peppermint mixture diffused into my daughter’s room at night, but I’m worried that the peppermint has been flagged as not okay for children – she’s 4.

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            January 21, 2015 at 5:24 pm

            Bethany – What Robert Tisserand says about 1,8 cineole oils is to not use them near the face of children. He does not say do not use them at all, although, unfortunately, that is what others have turned his words into.

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        December 30, 2014 at 6:08 am

        I’m afraid I haven’t been diluting my oils enough when I apply them to my children. I have been applying them to their feet and chest about 2 times daily the past week because of congestion and lots of sickness going around. They haven’t had any side effects so far. Should I worry about any long term side effects? How long will the oils stay in their system?

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        January 3, 2015 at 12:46 am

        “I apologize for making sweeping generalizations ” – no doctor should do that.

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          October 8, 2015 at 3:36 pm

          Yes they should when they are raising a concern over the safety of something that is unregulated and untested! Too many people are going hog wild over these oils and they haven’t been tested for safety! What helps 10 people, might kill 1 person so “SWEEP AWAY” good doctor and thank you for bringing your concerns to light!

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            October 16, 2015 at 2:37 pm

            I totally agree Pat. The article is to inform us that we all need to be careful with these oils, and just because something is natural, it doesn’t mean that natural oils couldn’t potentially cause harm for some. It’s just like food, even though some foods are used as “alternate types of medicine” this doesn’t mean that a perfectly safe food for one person might not cause harm for the next person. We are all unique. Thanks Dr. Krubeck. Both my children have allergies and my son has allergy induced asthma. His asthma only really flares during high pollen seasons, but I’ve been learning that scents and air fresheners bother him also. So, we’ve been trying some essential oils like lavendar in an oil diffuser, just as a relaxing scent for in the house, but I tell him to let me know if it makes his nose worse. My dd’s histamine reactions go more to her gut but she has some environmental and sinus issues also.

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      December 23, 2014 at 2:18 am

      I was going to say the same thing as Megan. Using EO with my oldest, who has asthma, has kept flare-ups at bay such that we were able to reduce greatly his medications. He asks for frankincense, melaleuca, and Breathe (doTERRA) to open his lungs. That said, I really appreciate this article. I am constantly trying to learn more about essential oils as we use them for our family, but I worry that others aren’t doing much to educate themselves, especially from a safety standpoint.

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        December 30, 2014 at 2:36 pm

        I am a fan of oils but NOT of MLM companies. I feel that they are exploiting as much as they are educating. With 3 of us with asthma in the house and one who is immune deficient I have always looked for natural ways to help the health of our family. In my research I found that the nebulizer diffusers are superior to the vaporizer ones because it breaks the oil particulate into a size that is more effective to the body and less likely to cause a lung reaction due to particulate size. At this time all I use oils for is fragrance but I do make selectons with the health benefits in mind. BTW, I now use my Scentcy warmers for oils.

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          January 2, 2015 at 6:39 pm

          ok, you don’t like MLM companies but you use Scentsy warmers??? hello, Scentsy is an MLM company!!!!
          heating your oils is making them lose their therapeutic components. if all you are looking for is smell, then using your warmer and cheap oils is fine. if you are looking to be more natural and have true healing properties in your oil, you need to stick with the company that does it the best (which also happens to be an MLM) and use in a proper diffuser.

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            February 3, 2015 at 4:22 am

            Actually that is a myth, the heat does not negate the therapeutic effects of the oils. Think about the heating process they go through for distillation, much higher than anything a lightbulb could produce. Using these warmers is an effective way to diffuse the oils into the air, just do t use the scentsy wax that comes with them! That stuff is toxic!

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          Robin G
          June 22, 2015 at 6:58 am

          Cathy, do you realize that ANY TYPE of synthetic smell can be traumatizing to the respiratory system? It’s like inhaling poison. Scentcy and anything even remotely similar can be triggering your families asthma. And there is a WIDE range of essential oils that the FDA allows (of which most brands are made of mostly synthetic ingredients, by the way. Look for CPTG instead).
          Also our immune system’s health is linked to our gut health. Research how to get the gut healthy which most likely will help support respiratory health.

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            July 20, 2015 at 3:50 pm

            Anna you are completely wrong! Heating the oils adulterates all therapeutic properties. This is why the #1 EO company in the world steam distilled or cold presses to process their oils. Please do your research on the quality of oils before making an ignorant statement like: (heat does not negate the therapeutic effects of the oils)

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          Karen Kaplan
          September 6, 2015 at 4:06 am

          Using your Scentsy warmer with essential oils has a great risk of fire!

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      January 10, 2015 at 1:33 am

      Can eo be used to help children with autism?

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      sharon knappett
      November 1, 2015 at 4:34 pm

      Hi I would like to know if its safe for me to use essential oils whilst I am nursing my little girl. I have just started making my own skincare. I would like to add some e.o such as lavender, rose, chamomile, frankincense, patchouli, sandalwood, neroli, sweet orange, bergamot and geranium.

      I have moved away from commercial skincare because of all the chemicals but would hate to cause problems, seizures etc in my little girl, it would kind of defeat the object.


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        December 2, 2015 at 3:56 pm

        I’d make your face lotion with just lavender and maybe frankincense with coconut oil until you’re done nursing and leave off with the other oils until then. just to be on the safe side. That sounds like a terrific skin lotion otherwise! Good for you!!

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