VIDEO: Eucalyptus and Child Safety – Pharmacist Lindsey Elmore

Summary of Lindsey Elmore video

Eucalyptus oil gets a really bad rap because people say, “OMG, it’s dangerous!”

But there are really simple things you can do to keep yourself safe…primarily DON’T OVERUSE.

Young Living currently offers…

Occasionally Young Living has offered…

There are many more eucalyptus species.

The biggest concern with eucalyptus oil is seizure. It’s important to understand that different eucalyptus species have different levels of seizure risk.

The risk of seizure is more specifically dealing with the levels of a compound called1,8-cineole, also known as eucalyptol. Eucalyptol occurs at different levels across the various species of eucalyptus…

  • Eucalyptus Polybractea = almost 100%
  • Eucalyptus Globulus = roughly 84%
  • Eucalyptus Radiata = roughly 65%
  • Eucalyptus Blue = 40% to 80% depending on time of year
  • Eucalyptus Dives = almost 0%

Note that when people have seizure affiliated with eucalyptus oil it is with extreme amounts of ingestion. You may find a Eucalyptus Radiata (lower level of 1,8-cineole) in Thieves Vitality which is meant for internal use, but there is not a Vitality version of straight eucalyptus.

Some experts suggest that about 2% of children will experience seizures after a very extensive eucalyptus exposure. Someone reviewed 192 cases of accidental ingestion. Four of those children suffered seizures. BUT HERE’S THE THING…

  • One 8-month-old baby died after ingestion of 30-ml of eucalyptus. THAT’S TWO 15-ML BOTTLES. How did that mom get that much oil in the baby, especially since the flavor is not all that good!!!
  • An 11-month-old boy suffered a seizure after having about 15-ml of eucalyptus spilled on his face, but then recovered without any medical intervention.
  • A 12-month-old girl had a seizure lasting about one minute after being given five prolonged baths in an undisclosed blend of eucalyptus, thyme, and pine.
  • A 4-year-old girl with no history of seizures experiences one after using an 11% solution in an over-the-counter lice medicine. So we don’t even know what else was in the medicine or how the combo reacted.

It is obvious from these extreme cases that eucalyptus is actually very safe oil. The question of safety always comes back to the dose. But if you’re still concerned about using eucalyptus around your child, consider using a species with lower levels of 1,8-cineole. Or, as we do with peppermint and most of our essential oils, just avoid the whole face.

Some 1,8-cineole science…

In animal models, 1,8-cineole has been shown to change potassium to calcium levels in the brain. Most authors agree that this change in calcium to potassium levels may be responsible for the soothing effect of eucalyptus’ aroma. However, we only get into the realm of seizures after ingestion or even inhalation of REALLY high amounts of eucalyptus.

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