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4 Essential Oils That Make Dealing With a Cold Easier

Is there anything worse than being stuck at home with a persistent cold? Whether you’re fighting off a serious flu or just taking a day off with an annoying cold, essential oils can play a role in the  process of strengthening your immune system and getting your body back to normal.

Essential oils have been widely used for centuries to treat cold symptoms, ranging from blocked sinuses to headaches. Below, we’ve profiled four essential oils that you can use to make dealing with any cold -- from a chest cough to a serious flu -- an easier process.

Peppermint Oil

Peppermint oil is one of the most effective essential oils for dealing with the physical symptoms of a cold. The positive effects of peppermint oil extend from the sinuses to the stomach, making it a good “do-all” essential oil if you’re stuck at home with a nasty cold or seasonal flu.

One of the biggest benefits of peppermint oil is its ability to clear blocked sinuses, reducing the effects of a stuffy or running nose. Diffusing peppermint oil is a great way to create a fresh and menthol-scented environment that stimulates your nasal passages and helps clear out phlegm.

Peppermint oil is also highly effective at treating headaches, including stress headaches caused due to flu and seasonal illnesses. Medical study data also shows that peppermint is an effective treatment for everything from heartburn to nausea, bloating and stomach cramps.

We’re also big fans of peppermint oil for its ability to help treat the symptoms of bronchitis due to its positive, cleansing effects on your body’s airways.

If you feel under the weather and need an essential oil that will help clear your sinuses, reduce the effects of nausea and stomach cramps, lighten your headache and help you relax, add two or three drops of peppermint oil to your essential oil diffuser.

Tea Tree Oil

If you’re at home with the flu and need to relax, tea tree essential oil can be an extremely helpful de-stressing tool. This Melaleuca alternifolia-based oil has been used for centuries to treat colds and infections, and it’s just as useful today as it was centuries ago.

There are two ways to use tea tree oil to relieve the symptoms of a cold. The easiest is to add a few drops to your oil diffuser in the morning, helping you fight back against bacteria throughout the day.

The second is to run yourself a warm bath and add three to six drops of tea tree oil into the bath water while it’s running. The calming tea tree aroma and soft, warm water will help you relax and better prepare for the day, no matter how heavy your symptoms might be.

Lavender Oil

One of the most important parts of recovering from a cold is creating a safe, bacteria-free home environment. Because of its natural antibacterial properties, lavender oil can be used as a quick, convenient and natural sanitiser for your bedroom, bathroom and kitchen.

If you’re recovering from a cold, spraying a mix of lavender oil and water around your home is a great way to prevent your illness from reoccurring. Mix 15-20 drops of lavender oil with a cup of water, then spray the formula onto bacteria-heavy surfaces like sinks and door handles.

Lavender oil is also great for clearing and freshening your home’s air, creating an environment that facilitates fast and successful recovery. Place two to three drops of lavender oil in your oil diffuser and let the scent spread throughout your home for 20-30 minutes for the full effects.

When you’re feeling sick, it’s easy to forget that recovery is just as important as dealing with the symptoms. While lavender oil won’t clear your sinuses quite as well as peppermint oil, it’s one of the best oils for creating a healthy, bacteria-free environment that speeds up your recovery.

Thyme Oil

Because thyme is a resilient, evergreen herb, it’s been used throughout history as an antiseptic and antibiotic medicine. Prior to modern medicine, thyme was used to medicate bandages in a variety of Mediterranean civilisations, from ancient Egypt to the Roman Empire.

Even today, thyme is an important ingredient in everyday hygiene products like Listerine. If you have respiratory issues caused by the flu or a common cold, thyme oil can play a major role in easing your symptoms and helping you recover.

To help reduce pain from a sore throat, add two or three drops of thyme oil to your diffuser and let the scent spread throughout your home. For an extra energising effect, try adding a drop or two of lemon oil to create a more refreshing scent.

Thyme oil can also be used as a relaxing bath oil. Add three to five drops to your bath water as it runs to mix the oil into the water and create a refreshing aroma that eases your throat, mouth, nose and other passages that become irritated when you have a cold.

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