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Aromatherapy for Coughs and Colds

by Wendy Mackay MIAAMA


Winter is a prime season for coughs, colds and flu. The drier atmosphere in our homes and workplaces and the contrast between this and the colder (and often wetter!) weather outside, can make us all more susceptible to catching a “bug”. However aromatherapy and essential oils can help – both with helping to prevent you catching a cold as well as helping with the symptoms and getting you feeling better sooner.Aromatherapy for Coughs and Colds

Prevention is always better than cure. Help stop the spread of germs by using the antiseptic powers of essential oils around the home.

If you do catch a cold a cold, essential oils can also help to soothe the symptoms and help you to feel better.

Of course all these suggestions must go hand in hand with the usual healthy living guidelines – make sure you drink plenty of water, eat lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, and make sure you and your family get enough exercise and sleep. It all helps!

(Safety note - all recipes given are for adult doses. For children under 12 years, use no more than half the amounts stated. For babies under 2 years, use no more than a quarter of the dose. It is now recommended to avoid using eucalyptus or peppermint essential oil on children under 10 years old as the cineole and menthol content respectively in these oils can cause breathing difficulties in some cases. (Robert Tisserand Essential Oil Safety 2nd Edition) Always contact a professional aromatherapist if you are unsure of correct treatment or if you have other health concerns that may affect or contraindicate aromatherapy treament. Always see your health professional if symptoms persist for more than a few days, or if symptoms worsen.)

Top 5 Essential Oils for Colds

Eucalyptus - Long favoured as a cold remedy. Helps clear congestion and improving breathing.

Tea tree - Highly antibacterial, and good for infections generally.

Lavender - Antiseptic and healing, soothing and relaxing, aids rest and recovery

Rosemary -Clearing for the head, helps relieve aches and pains

Pine - Antiseptic and expectorant - clearing and stimulating


(This information is meant as general advice.  Please consult your health practitioner or a qualified aromatherapist for advice on your specific situation.)

Wendy Mackay is a qualified Aromatherapist and a member of the International Aromatherapy and Aromatic Medicine Association (IAAMA). Wendy along with her husband David is the Founder and Director of Essence of Wellbeing. Essence of Wellbeing is dedicated to the best in Aromatherapy and Pure Natural Skin Care and is located in Mornington on the beautiful Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, Australia.

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