Fighting a nasty cold? Here comes a super easy and natural DIY kid-friendly cold relief bath salt recipe to the rescue. Yes, you can naturally relief cold symptoms with a simple but powerful home remedy that is great for kids and adults.
A Natural Cold Relief Bath Salt Recipe For Families
If you’ve searched for DIY cold relief bath salts, I’m betting you noticed that they don’t really sound all that kid-friendly. Eucalyptus, tea tree, rosemary, and peppermint combine to make a powerful decongestant bath, but wow, are they strong! Even the best cold care bath salts won’t do a thing if you can’t get your child into the tub with them.
Rather than rely on salts designed for adults, why not make your own kid-friendly cold relief bath salt recipe? It’s easy, inexpensive and good for the entire family! Check out the tutorial, then read on for tips on how to safely use essential oils with children.
You might also be interested in checking out my Detox Bath post. Magnesium is a wonderful mineral that boosts the immune system and helps fight colds FAST. You can use them in combination with essential oils, like in this recipe, and also relief multiple cold symptoms. Learn more about Epsom salt health benefits HERE.
Why a bath salt recipe? Why not use medicine?
If you’re thinking, “I don’t need to make a cold relief bath salt recipe! I can just use over-the-counter cold medicine!” think again! Most cold medicines are not recommended for kids under age 12, and not even marketed towards kids under age 6 anymore.
Bottom line, they rarely work in children and they just plain aren’t safe. Fever reducers are a different story, but even those should be used sparingly and only after consulting a doctor. Check out my Acetaminophen Overuse Can Harm Your Children post for more information.
DIY Kid-Friendly Cold Relief Bath Salt Recipe
Remember that when it comes to relieving simple cold symptoms in children (i.e, not life-threatening or severe), natural and safe home remedies are really your best option. Note the word “safe.” That means “doctor-approved,” as in “talk to your pediatrician first” because this is not meant to be taken as medical advice.
What You Need:
- 1 cup Epsom Salts *
- Peppermint Essential Oil*
- Tea Tree Essential Oil
- Lavender Essential Oil
- Blue Food or Soap Colorant (*optional)
- Zip-Lock Bag
- Some sort of container (mason jars are fine, or you can get cute tube-style containers)
*For children less than 60 pounds you can split this recipe in half and save the other part in your container of choice at room temperature.
- Scoop the Epsom salts into a stainless-steel or glass mixing bowl. If you don’t have either, just use a large Zip-lock bag for the whole process.
- Add in your coloring. Start with two drops and mix it well. If you’re having a hard time mixing it in the bowl, transfer it to the bag now and shake it up. If it’s not colorful enough for you, go ahead and add another drop or two.
- Add all three essential oils one drop at a time. Start with a drop of each and mix it up really well. Give it a sniff. If you don’t feel like you have enough scent, then add another drop, starting with the mildest essential oil first. What does that mean? Let me explain. Peppermint and tea tree are both strong oils. There’s a good chance you’ll only need one or two drops of each to achieve the desired effect. Lavender is a bit mellower, so you may end up adding three to four drops. If you overdo it with the tea tree or peppermint, extra lavender helps balance it out.
- Once you have your desired color and scent, just pour it into your mason jar or tube! If you’re using a tube, use a funnel. Don’t have one? No problem! Just make one out of a clean sheet of paper.
Taking The Cold Relief Bath:
The tea tree and peppermint oils are the real stars when it comes to relieving cold symptoms. The lavender is important, though, because it helps keep the scent from getting too overwhelming for kids. Plus, it’s great for promoting relaxation. Rest is vital to helping kids recover from a cold.
Make sure you place the salts in the bathtub and stir them well with your hands. You should wait 15-20 minutes for the bath to be effective. Use warm to hot water (depending on what your kids tolerate), and try to distract them with toys or read a book. Finally rinse well and towel dry. You can also make them drink a glass of water afterwards because this bath can make them very thirsty.
Watch My DIY Cold Relief Bath Salt Recipe
Kid-Friendly Essential Oils & How to Use Them
As mentioned above, not all essential oils are safe for kids. These are very powerful plant extracts, and even a tiny amount of the wrong oils can cause serious side effects in children! Now let’s talk about some kid-safe oils, then tips on how to use them.
While there are quite a few essential oils that are generally considered safe for kids, some of them are kind of overpowering and wouldn’t really appeal to children.
Below are oils that are both kid-safe and kid-friendly. It’s not an exhaustive list, but a good place to start.
- Clary Sage
- Chamomile (both German and Roman)
- Juniper Berry
- Peppermint (ages 6 and up)
- Roman Chamomile
- Sweet Marjoram
- Sweet Orange
- Tea Tree
Even the kid-safe essential oils above can be dangerous when used incorrectly. Follow these tips to prevent unwanted side effects. Check out also my Safe Essential Oils For Children post for more information and how to use essential oils with little ones.
1. Talk to their doctor first
When it comes to any home remedy, including something as seemingly simple as essential oils, it’s always best to keep your child’s pediatrician in the loop. Never take anything you read online as medical advice. This is especially important if your child has asthma or other medical conditions.
2. Do not let kids ingest essential oils
Please, please, please do not let your children drink essential oils. Even if you frequently add a drop of peppermint or lemon essential oil to your own water, it’s just not safe for kids. Think about it this way: one drop is enough for you, and you’re at least twice the size of your child.
3. Never apply directly to their skin
Although there are a couple of essential oils that you can apply “neat” to your own skin (meaning undiluted), kids have far more sensitive skin than adults. Even the mildest oils, like lavender, should be heavily diluted in a carrier oil, like almond oil.
4. Don’t let kids inhale oils
It’s not a good idea to let kids of any age inhale oils right from the vial, but it can be particularly dangerous for babies and toddlers. Inhaled oils can irritate or even damage the lining of your child’s nose, throat, and even their lungs.
5. Don’t overdo it
A little goes a very long way when it comes to essential oils. Anyone who has ever gotten a little heavy-handed while making their own bath products knows this from experience! Just one drop too many can completely ruin what should have been a great relaxing experience. With kids, overdoing it has the potential to do more than make for an overpowering bath. Go with the least amount of oil needed to achieve the effect you want, adding one drop at a time.
Used correctly, essential oils are wonderful and make for great home remedies for children’s cold and flu symptoms. Just make sure you follow the basic safety tips.
This information should not replace professional advice by a qualified medical or herbal practitioner.
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