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Which essential oils can I use without risk for my baby ?
Choosing an essential oil for an infant is very delicate, on the one hand because of infantile enzymatic immaturity and on the other hand because the use of EO is accompanied by many precautions; indeed, poorly controlled handling can prove to be harmful or even dangerous.
Several factors play a role in the harmfulness of an EO such as the content of toxic molecules, the way of applying the EO, the dosage or the duration of application. It is therefore advisable to test an EO before any use, by applying a drop in the crease of the elbow to visualize a possible allergic reaction (redness, tingling, etc.). In addition, pure EO should never be applied to mucous membranes (nose, eyes, etc.). This type of application requires an appropriate systematic dilution of the EO
The dilution rate of an essential oil appropriate for an infant over 3 months is between 0.5 and 1% in a fatty substance (a vegetable oil for example), and this, whatever the type of pathology to be treated.
The cutaneous route remains the best route for an infant ; used properly, it remains the safest route of administration for your baby.
The essential oils that can be used in an infant from the age of 3 months (i.e. between 4.3 kg and 6.9 kg) are :
- Essential oils with a Monoterpenol chemotype (monoterpene alcohol) such as rosewood essential oil, except oils containing menthol and methyl eugenol
- Essential oils with chemotype Esters such as the essential oil of Petitgrain of bigarade (caution at the risk of interactions with anticoagulants)
- Essential oils with a Monoterpene chemotype (monoterpene hydrocarbon) such as Neroli essential oil (caution at the risk of interactions with cortisone)
WARNING ! It is strictly forbidden to use essential oils with the following chemotype on infants :
- ALCOHOL sesquiterpene (Sesquiterpénols) such as essential oil Niaouli
- OXIDES such as for example the essential oil of globular Eucalyptus
- SESQUITERPENIC HYDROCARBONS (Sesquiterpenes) such as for example the essential oil of Absynthe
- PHENOLS (Phenic acids) such as for example the essential oil of Oregano
- AROMATIC ALDEHYDES such as Ceylon Cinnamon essential oil
- TERPENIC ALDEHYDES such as for example Ceylon Lemongrass essential oil
- ETHERS (phenol methyl ethers) such as for example the essential oil of green anise
- KETONES such as for example the essential oil of Lavender stoechade
- LACTONS such as Chinese Mugwort essential oil
- COUMARINES such as Parsley essential oil
- PHTHALIDES such as the essential oil of Lovage
Certain essential oils can be toxic and dangerous without controlling their precautions for use. In case of doubt, it is then recommended to go to hydrolatherapy (floral waters) for infants.
A hydrosol is not as powerful as an essential oil , however being constituted by water (floral water), it retains water-soluble odorous molecules and remains slightly scented, having certain therapeutic properties; such as orange blossom water used to regulate children's sleep.