I had heard about essential oils at various events several times over the last few years, figured it was some new age fad, and kept walking. The only medication I took on a regular basis was an over-the-counter allergy pill. I told myself there was a lot worse I could be doing and didn't give it a second thought...Until I had a baby. All of a sudden it mattered what I was putting in Finn's body.
It didn't hit me how much it mattered until I gave him his first dose of infant Tylenol. He promptly transformed from a slightly uncomfortable infant with a low-grade fever into a restless, hyper-active, inconsolable wreck. I felt horrible and refrained from giving him any medicine again until we went for his three month checkup and he had an ear infection. He had hardly shown any signs, but he was prescribed bubble-gum flavored Amoxicillin.
We picked up the prescription at the pharmacy and gave him his first dose that evening. The first couple of days we attributed his unhappy demeanor to the ear infection, but we were relieved when the antibiotics ran out because he returned to his usual happy self. We figured there must have been sugar in the Amoxicillin that was causing the hyper-active behavior. A few weeks later it hit me that Finn had displayed the same behavior while on Amoxicillin as he had on Tylenol, so I started doing some research. The only common ingredient I could find between the two medications was red dye #40. Turns out, the most common side effects of this dye are hyper-activity and restlessness.
We had used a couple oils prior to this for Finn's acid reflux. After his bath each night we would put a drop of Peppermint mixed with his lotion on the bottom of his feet to soothe his stomach. It's hard to say what works for babies since they can't exactly tell you what they're feeling, but we noticed he slept better on the nights we would use Peppermint, so we kept using it. However, after the red dye #40 realization, we got serious about oils and I bought the Young Living starter kit which came with ten everyday oils (Peace & Calming, Frankincense, Purification, Peppermint, Lavender, Panaway, Thieves, Lemon, Valor and Joy) plus an amazing diffuser.
We have started to slowly replace the items in our medicine cabinet with essential oils and have seen a ton of improvement in our overall health. Here are a few examples:
Snoring: Zac applies three drops of Valor to the bottom of his feet before bed. He sleeps more soundly and peacefully, which is wonderful for both of us!
Seasonal Allergies: Since the end of May I have been using a combination of Lemon, Lavender and Peppermint for my seasonal allergies. I am allergic to basically all trees and grass and this combination has worked better for me than any prescription or over-the-counter medication, and I've tried a lot of them (Allegra, Claritin, Benadryl, etc.). I put three drops of each oil in a capsule once every other day.
Teething/Cranky Baby: Finn was having a particularly rough time tonight after being off his schedule for a few days. He was just generally unhappy about anything and everything. I gave him his bath a bit early in hopes it would calm him down. He got out of the tub and continued the tantrum he had started before he got in. He has been teething for the past couple of weeks and I read that Thieves can help with the discomfort, so I decided to give it a try. I put one drop of Peace & Calming and one drop of Thieves in my hand with his lotion and massaged it on the bottom of his feet. I put him in his stroller and we went on a 20 minute walk. By the time we got home Finn was a different baby. He played contently for a half hour and then laid down on the floor with his stuffed animal letting me know he was ready for bed. He slept peacefully for a full twelve and a half hours. A few months ago I would have given him a dose of dye-free Tylenol and called it a night, but I have seen such a difference when I use oils versus giving him medicine! It not only treats the issue (teething) but also improves his overall mood and demeanor.
I did a lot of research prior to purchasing my first bottle of essential oils. Young Living's distillery process, company values, and quality standards led me to purchase their oils. There is a big difference between quality essential oils and the $5 bottles you will find at your local grocery store. Not all oils are safe for consumption, use on children, or topical application. PLEASE do your research before choosing which company you will purchase from; oils are extremely potent and need to be used with care and caution. The biggest reason we've decided to use oils in our home is because many of the medications we used to take (like my allergy meds) would treat the symptoms, but caused side effects like drowsiness and loss of appetite, which then needed to be treated with other medication...a vicious cycle! When I use oils for my allergies, they are working with my body to treat only what needs to be treated and nothing else. Plus, God made plants, so why not use them to their fullest potential! If we can get an oil from a plant, there must be a purpose for it. There are entire websites dedicated to outlining the many places in the Bible where oils are referenced, it's pretty amazing, I won't go into detail but If you want more information please feel free to email me or if you want to know how to get Young Living Essential Oils for your home, click here.
"In the beginning when God created the heavens and the earth." Genesis 1:1