Spring is coming our way with warmer weather, blossoming flowers, and pollen! As excited as you may be to welcome spring, seasonal allergies can be a considerable part of the season for many. Around 40 million Americans suffer from seasonal allergies with a range of symptoms such as runny nose, congestion, watery eyes, and sneezing.
Allergies are caused by the body detecting pollen or other triggers and defending itself from the allergen by releasing histamine, a chemical which causes irritating symptoms such as watery eyes, itchiness, and redness. Remedies include daily medications or avoiding the outdoors, but a more natural approach is to try out essential oils. Get on top of spring allergies with essential oils that can keep annoying symptoms at bay.
Peppermint oil is a great remedy for allergies. Inhaling diffused peppermint oil helps to open up the sinuses, relieving painful pressure and congestion. It also provides relief to scratchy throats and acts as an expectorant, breaking up phlegm. Research has shown peppermint oil can work to exhibit antispasmodic activity, which helps you to cough less. This makes it a great treatment option before sleep!
Use peppermint oil in a diffuser. Five drops of peppermint oil added to a diffuser can give you great relief from allergy symptoms. Peppermint oil can also be taken internally to reduce inflammation. Add 1 to 2 drops to your favorite tea. You can apply peppermint oil topically but it can be irritating to the skin, particularly to people with sensitive skin. Dilute the peppermint oil with coconut oil and test in a small area before applying it to the chest, back, temples, and feet.
Eucalyptus oil opens up the lungs and sinuses, helping to improve circulation and reduce allergic symptoms. Eucalyptus oil produces a cold sensation in the nose that helps improve air flow. Eucalyptus oil has a powerful ingredient, known as citronellal, which has anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. It also is known to work as an expectorant, helping to break up the phlegm that can trap harmful microorganisms that may lead to infections like bronchitis or pneumonia.
Use eucalyptus oil in a diffuser or apply it topically to the chest area for treating respiratory issues. For severe symptoms, you can also pour a cup of boiling water into a bowl and add a few drops of eucalyptus oil. Place a towel over your head, lean over the bowl, and inhale deep breaths for up to ten minutes.
3. Basil Oil
Basil may certainly be familiar as a cooking spice, but it also comes in powerful essential oil form. Basil reduces the inflammatory response of allergens, helping your body react appropriately to a threat rather than the overreactive immune response that causes allergic symptoms. Basil oil can also help detoxify the body, fighting harmful bacteria and viruses that can be especially opportunistic when the body is overcome with allergies.
Take one drop of basil oil internally to fight inflammation and regulate the immune system. Add a drop of basil oil to soup or other dishes. Dilute 2-3 drops of basil oil with coconut oil and apply topically to the chest and temples.
4. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a powerful antiseptic agent, exhibiting antimicrobial properties. Tea tree oil can fight off a wide range of bacteria, fungi, and yeast. It has anti-inflammatory properties and can be used as a household cleaner to eliminate allergens from the home.
Use tea tree oil topically, applying 2-3 drops to a cotton ball and gently applying to any rashes or hives on the skin. You can also use tea tree oil with water as a household cleaner.