20 Oct Best Essential Oils for the Cold and Flu Season
The best essential oils to prepare you for those tough, germ-filled late fall and early winter months tend to have a decongestant or a disinfectant effect, and sometimes both: they can help prevent the onset of a cold by purifying the air in your home and thereby killing potential infections before they happen, and they can help relieve their symptoms if you do eventually become sick.
Eucalyptus is perhaps the most obvious choice for this list, and it has long been used in popular balms to relieve sinus and chest congestions. Once diffused, though, it can also purify the air, as it also acts as a disinfectant. This versatile oil can also be used to relieve muscular tensions and aches! For a particularly strong effect, use peppermint eucalyptus essential oil, as its menthol content can also help relieve pains associated to dry coughs.
Peppermint’s effects are similar to eucalyptus, as it is particularly effective for relieving congestion, though it can also relieve nausea, headaches and even itches. It has the added bonus that its scent is generally considered to be more pleasant than eucalyptus. While peppermint does have antimicrobial properties – which is why it’s often found in gum to get rid of bad breath – it is not as powerful a disinfectant as eucalyptus essential oil; however, these two scents do complement each other well, so you could always consider using them in tandem with each other.
Camphor essential oil is the queen of pain relief: as an ingredient, it is ubiquitous in analgesic balms, but it can also relieve pains associated to dry coughs and help clear congestion. Of the oils on this list, it provides the most powerful, effective relief, but its main drawback is that it essential does smell like medicine: if you want to diffuse it, you may find that you will want to use other essential oils to balance out its scent. Camphor oil is also especially useful for its ability to soothe inflammation.
One of the lesser known essential oils on this list, black spruce essential oil still deserves a place of honour among cold relieving oils, as it has disinfectant, decongestant, analgesic and expectorant qualities! It also has a particularly pleasant scent compared to camphor, and diffusing this oil may remind you of walking through a forest.