According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ASD (autism spectrum disorder) is present in 1 out of every 59 children. The CDC also notes ASD is four times more common in boys than girls.
If you are a parent of a child with special needs, I just want to say – you are a superhero! You exhibit a tenacity, courage, and strength that not every parent displays. Much respect to you.
I also want to let you know, you are not alone. I know it can feel like that at times. Not only are you facing the normal stressors of everyday life, you are also dealing with the challenges and struggles your child is facing. But I am here to come alongside you on this journey. Please feel free to reach out to me anytime to chat. Ok so let’s get into some resources.
Children with special needs tend to find themselves having trouble focusing, processing their feelings, transitioning in different environments, sleeping, and more. As a parent, if you are being totally honest, you may find yourself facing feelings of frustration, uncertainty, sadness, resentment, or guilt.
Let’s explore how essential oils can support both you and your child, as you walk this challenging, yet rewarding, road.
I can not stress this enough. If you want products that work, then quality matters. When you shop with Young Living you are getting quality products backed by a ‘Seed to Seal’ guarantee that you won’t find anywhere else. You can expectthat Young Living will provide you with only the BEST!
- plant material that is grown on corporately-owned farms or carefully vetted partner farms (that you CAN visit!)
- sustainable farming and sourcing practices, providing the purest oil
- great care taken to preserve and protect natural resources
- hand-weeded fields and ZERO use of pesticides
- oils that retain all their natural constituents and therapeutic properties
- use of food-grade distillers with state-of-the-art design and distillation methods
- low pressure and low temperature distillation, without the use of solvents or synthetic chemicals
- rigorous testing on each batch by internal labs and third-party facilities
- oils that are carefully reviewed through every step of production in order to meet or exceed industry safety and purity standards (beyond organic!)
And the best part… if these products do not meet their high standards they are rejected and will not be bottled or packaged as a Young Living product. Now that’s amazing!!
The three main ways to use essential oils are aromatically, topically, and internally.
As always, when using essential oils on adults or children, you never want to put them directly into the eyes or ears. You also want to be aware of any blends that may contain citrus oils as these are photosensitive and should be avoided if being exposed to direct sunlight.
You may have to get creative with how you will get the oils into your child’s system, especially if they are sensitive to smells, but it can be done!
- Infuse sensory materials with essential oils, i.e. rice, DIY play dough, bubbles.
- Add ‘diffusers’ to the room where your child is working or playing – use cotton balls, corks, felt pads, anything that absorbs oil and place around the room.
- Diffuse while your child is NOT in the room, the effects will still linger but the scent won’t be as strong when they enter.
- Spray your child’s sheets with a calming blend about an hour BEFORE they go to bed.
- Add oils to everyday-use products like shampoos and lotions.
- Add Vitality oils to your child’s smoothies, drinks, or food. Be sure to avoid plastic containers when adding oils to food and drinks.
**As you begin to use essential oils on and around your child, it is best to start with just one oil at a time so you can appropriately determine the effects. Then build from there.
Though this is not an all-inclusive list, these are some of the most commonly-used essential oils for children with special needs and the benefits they provide.
Vetiver – promotes calm and relaxation; can help with sensory-processing issues
*Lavender – can help calm, relax, and balance emotions rooted in anger & frustration
Cedarwood – can help promote peaceful and restorative sleep
*Frankincense – can help with focus and can reduce negative emotions or reactions
*Peppermint – soothing and can calm restlessness
Bergamot – increases feelings of wellbeing, relaxing for the mind and body
Rosemary – can help to improve cognition and concentration
*Valor – promotes courage and self-esteem
*Peace & Calming – can help to calm nervous tension and promote relaxation
Skin sensitivities are fairly common among children. However, these sensitivities may be magnified for those with special needs. Young Living has many gentle oils and products that are safe for even the most sensitive of skin types. If at any time an oil is too “hot” or “cool”, just apply more carrier or discontinue use all-together. The feet are a good place to test out new oils. If your child does not react well to that specific oil, choose another and come back to that one at a later date.
When choosing a carrier oil, consider any food sensitivities or allergies your child may have. Many carrier oils are fruit or nut-based, which could cause a reaction if your child has a sensitivity to that specific food group. Many people often mistakenly assume the adverse reactions are from the essential oils themselves and completely overlook the carrier. If you are unsure, apply the carrier oil separately to test for any reaction.
Try these essential oils – they are great for supporting healthy-looking skin!
Lavender – great for all skin types and the perfect addition to lotions and creams.
Gentle Baby – helps to rejuvenate the skin; great for soothing and calming.
Tea Tree – a very gentle oil that supports your skin’s natural healing process.
Rose Ointment is another Young Living product that is deeply nourishing and perfect for dry, irritated skin. Rose essential oil improves skin texture, while Tea Tree works to soothe rough, irritated skin.
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Did you know that soaps, shampoos, even laundry soaps and fabric softeners can irritate your skin?
Download the ‘Think Dirty’ app and scan your personal care products. Report back here in the comments with your findings!
There are SO many areas of needs we can chat about, but I will leave you with this one last big need that I hear parents request support for ALL the time.
There are many reasons a child may struggle with a lack of focus or concentration, some of which could include the following:
- Separation anxiety
- Fear of what others may think
- Stress or trauma
- Learning disorder
If your child has already been diagnosed with a special need, these issues can be even more difficult to address. Let’s talk about a few Young Living options that can help with concentration!
Brain Power seems to be the first go-to for many parents in helping their children with better focus and concentration. It contains powerful oils such as Sacred Sandalwood, Cedarwood, Frankincense, Melissa, Blue Cypress, Lavender, and Helichrysum, which are very high in sesquiterpenes. Google the benefits of sesquiterpenes… you can thank me later! 😉 Diffuse or apply topically to the back of neck, brainstem, temples, or under the nose as needed.
There are plenty of other oils and supplements you can use to support your child’s focus and concentration. Dilute and apply these oils below to the back of their neck, top of their head, and their big toes. Allow your child to inhale these oils from the bottle or out of the diffuser. Remember that consistency is key with the use of essential oils and supplements. For many people it takes 3-4 months to really see the difference.
- Mindwise – an incredible supplement that gives the brain essential fatty acids to support normal brain function. (I love the individual packet option!)
- MightyZyme – an all-natural, vegetarian supplement designed to help children combat the negative effects of enzyme depletion, which is a precursor to body dysfunction that could impede growth and brain development.
- Vetiver – an essential oil with a distinct earthy and grounding scent, which can help your child stay calm during tense times.
- Cedarwood – an essential oil high in sesquiterpenes, which makes your brain happy.
- GeneYus – an essential oil blend with similar sesquiterpenes levels as Brain Power, which can help your child focus and concentrate on the task at hand! Plus it comes pre-diulted so it’s ready for use! Note: If your child has a nut allergy, you should NOT use this blend.
- Clarity – an essential oil blend specifically designed to provide greater mental concentration and alertness.
- Peppermint – an essential oil with an energizing aroma that boosts alertness. (Extra dilution suggested to decrease cooling sensation when applied topically.)
Here are a few other non-oily tips for increasing focus and concentration in children:
- Prepare an environment free from distractions
- Establish a schedule or a routine
- Allow time for frequent breaks or a power nap
- Break large tasks or goals up into smaller ones
- Add more protein into their diet, which has the ability to raise concentration levels
As you embark into the world of essential oils, please keep in mind, all children are different. You may need to try a few different oils to find the one that works best for your child. All of these oils can be diffused or applied topically. As we talked about previously, dilute as needed. Allow your child to choose an oil, ask them what scents they prefer, and how they feel after using it. Sometimes they know better than we do!
I hope you found this information helpful. If you are new to essential oils and looking to get started, I would love to support you and add you to my private Facebook group. This is a safe place where parents can ask questions, find amazing love, patience and support as you look into more natural ways to support your families needs. I am here fo you. The best way to get started is with a Premium Starter Kit and you can get that HERE.
It matters who you get your kit from. I want you to be educated and supported. Once you purchase your kit, message me. I will send you out a reference guide and special gift that will help you along your journey. This is just the beginning.