When cold and flu season strikes, your immune system goes from fighting the occasional battle to being embroiled in an all-out war that can last all winter long, depending on where you live and how many germs you’re exposed to.
Essential oils are a great natural remedy for colds and flus (among many other things), and how you use them is up to you. The Chalkboard runs down how to properly inhale and diffuse essential oils, and the importance of using a carrier oil when inhaling. Many oils can be applied to the bottom of your feet, or added to body wash, lotions or moisturizers.
If your immune system needs a boost (or your liver needs a detox), turn to thyme oil, one of the original ingredients in Listerine! This oil also has antiseptic properties, and can be used to stimulate circulation in those with sports injuries, pains and strains.
This antiseptic and antibacterial oil is often found in cough drops and ointments (if you’ve ever used VapoRub, you’ve smelled it). Eucalyptus essential oil stimulates the immune system and combats inflammation in the lungs. Use it to make your own steam inhalation remedy, great for healing sinus infections.
Like its cousin orange oil, lime oil has tons of uses. It’s antiseptic, antibacterial and antiviral, meaning it will help your immune system fight off germs left and right. It can also be added to natural household cleaners, and is great at removing sticker residue and gum from surfaces.
Hyssop helps with respiratory infections (like bronchitis) and supports the lungs. If you get chronic bronchitis or just have a pesky cough that won’t go away, try this one out. It’s also said to help with water retention and bruises.
When earaches or swelling in your lymph nodes has you feeling icky, rub a little lemon oil (with carrier oil) around your ears and/or lymph nodes to allow them to drain. Lemon oil also helps energize, making it perfect for a DIY air freshener.
Known for its toothache-remedying powers, clove oil is also anti-inflammatory, analgesic and anti-bacterial. It’s often mixed with cinnamon, clove, eucalyptus, lemon and rosemary in a blend called Thieves Oil. Or mix with vanilla and use it in this DIY body oil.
If nausea is what’s getting you down (that darn flu!), opt for ginger essential oil, which can also soothe flu-related aches and pains.
What oils do you use for colds and flu?37