September is here and kids are back in school! Hurrah! Time to pack up the swimsuits and bust out the turtlenecks. Temps and leaves will drop, you’ll switch from iced to warm beverages, and soon enough, it'll be time to go trick or treating (as evidenced by all the stores selling Halloween candy six weeks in advance).
While it can be fun to gear up for fall, it can also be stressful. Switching gears from a laid back summertime vibe to productive weeks full of routine is not easy for many of us. “Back to school” means a huge transition for anyone in a household with children, and transition means change. Some people embrace change and ease right into a new season, but others have difficulty. Wake up times are often altered, and therefore sleep habits have to adjust during a change of seasons. Luckily, lavender is here to help.
Calming scents that help people relax are not exclusively meant for adults. While we often don’t think of aromatherapy as a kid thing, little ones and teens can benefit from lavender’s awesome offerings! Kids need to relax too, so sending calming vibes your kids’ way is a win-win.
Establishing daily routines often prove calming, and kids with anxiety especially benefit from routine. Routines and schedules can help children regulate their emotions because they will know what to expect each day (Chorpita & Barlow, 1998). The calming properties of lavender are well known. When you combine routine with the “chill-out” properties of lavender, the results are surprisingly, well, calming.
According to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), “Used thoughtfully and carefully, aromatherapy can help children, as well as adults, feel calmer and sleep better….Four aromatherapy oils have been determined to be both safe and effective for use with children over age 5: lavender, peppermint, orange and ginger.” CHOP advises potentially starting with lavender since kids tend to like the scent and “is generally effective in calming an anxious child. For more information, read the entire article entitled “How Aromatherapy Can Help Children.”
How To Work Lavender Into Your Child’s Routine
Bedtime is the perfect time to settle into a routine. We recommend using our organic Lavender Mist. Spray into the air in the bedroom, or spritz some on your child’s pillowcase or sheet. Our mist is 100% pure lavender hydrosol—the flower water produced during the distillation process. Hydrosol has the same elemental properties of essential oil but with a lower concentration that is gentler on the skin. Incorporate this practice after a bath and/or before a bedtime book to establish a reliable bedtime routine. Kids will enjoy both the scent and the expectation.
Make it fun. Use lavender essential oil with a diffuser. There are many styles of diffusers on the market nowadays, and having your son or daughter choose the diffuser for their bedroom is part of the fun. As the CHOP article states, “Giving your child control of the therapy is also part of its effectiveness.”
Don’t leave the laundry out of the routine! You can also use the lavender essential oil on dryer balls for an inexpensive, non-toxic, earth-friendly practice. Wool dryer balls are best since they allow for easy absorption of the oil. Drop anywhere between 4-10 drops of oil to leave clothes, towels and sheets smelling great! Kids will be able to carry that feeling of calmness throughout their day!
We would love to hear YOUR ideas for incorporating lavender into kids’ lives and routines. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram @appalachianbotanicalco
MEET THE AUTHOR / TINA TUMINELLA is a writer from Pittsburgh, PA who thinks of herself as an eater, talker, music-lover, mommy, francophile, and obsessive recycler. She bakes sweet things regularly, rides bikes and hikes with her family, and is a sucker for a pun. Her favorite product: Organic Lavender Cream