Essential oils are liquids that contain concentrated amounts of different compounds that are found in plants. Most commonly used for aromatherapy, where the scent of the oil is inhaled to promote healing and relaxation, when combined with carrier oil (the only way to safely ingest and only in small amounts) or applied externally to pressure points, essential oils may provide some medicinal benefits. This is due to the antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties of the compounds of many plants. Essential oils for bronchitis are plentiful, and which one is ideal for each illness will depend on how progressed it is, and which symptoms are the most pronounced and severe.
Sometimes, bronchitis is caused by bacteria. In these cases, it may be necessary to use antibiotics for treatment. However, in even more cases, viruses are to blame, and this means that symptom management until the illness runs its course is often the only method of treatment available. Over the counter medications can serve some purpose in this regard but so can natural remedies for bronchitis. In addition to lifestyle changes like getting more rest and increasing fluid intake, using herbs and essential oils for bronchitis may provide some symptom relief or in some cases, even shorten the duration of the illness.
Choosing the right essential oil and the best one for relief depends on symptoms. For instance, if coughing up mucus seems to be the most prevalent symptom, adding one or two drops of fennel oil to hot tea can help provide some symptom relief. Because of the excess mucus produced with bronchitis due to inflammation of the bronchi, excessive coughing, mucus production and even coughing up blood can occur with the condition. A soothing tea with a bit of fennel oil may help reduce the pain and discomfort felt in the throat as a result of the infection.
Using essential oils for bronchitis may include even preventing the condition in the first place or, shortening its longevity. When the earliest symptoms present, including a sensation or tickle in the throat, one drop of tea tree oil may be able to use its natural antiviral properties to stave off the infection. Placing one single drop on the back of the tongue and holding it in the mouth, where it has an opportunity to mix with the saliva in the mouth for about two minutes, may fight off the infection before it even begins.
However, likely the single best choice among essential oils for bronchitis is oregano oil. It has been used in medicine for hundreds of years for respiratory conditions and can be beneficial for numerous bronchitis symptoms. For instance, it may be effective against the chest congestion that leads to excessive mucus production (as well as the severe form of this which includes bloody phlegm). Additionally, when applied externally to the chest and back, it may help to loosen up and break up the congestion in the chest and provide some relief from bronchitis symptoms. For internal use, oil of oregano should be used with carrier oil, with two drops of oregano being mixed with the oil of choosing. Oregano oil is also available in capsules from health food stores or whole food stores, which may make taking it easier and safer. When oregano oil is used externally, a warm compress may be used alongside to further benefits.
Other essential oils for bronchitis include rosemary, eucalyptus, frankincense, lemon, peppermint, lavender, birch and myrtle. Some of them can be combined with oil of oregano to take advantage of some of the different benefits of the oils. Using essential oils for bronchitis treatment is a natural and alternative way to relieve some of the symptoms of the illness while it runs its course. However, there are some important things to remember when electing this type of bronchitis treatment. Essential oils are not necessarily safe or appropriate to treat bronchitis in children and should be used by adults only. Additionally, while essential oils are considered popular home remedies for bronchitis, they may not be safe for people taking certain medications or those with certain health conditions. Further, while essential oils may provide temporary symptom relief, they should not be used for chronic bronchitis treatment without the consent of a health care provider.
Nature provides a bounty of healing in the form of essential oils for bronchitis with plant products boasting antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal properties combined with anti-inflammatory agents. This makes them often well suited to keep the harsh symptoms of bronchitis at bay. However, their safe use and a consultation with a health care provider before use to ensure safety are essential to taking advantage of these natural wonders without negative effects.