Croup is a respiratory viral infection that usually attacks babies and young children. It causes the upper airways of a baby to swell and become narrow. Thus, your baby has difficulty in breathing. [1]

You can identify a croup in your baby by a harsh, rasping cough that sounds like a dog bark or high-pitched seal.

Croup is highly contagious and needs to be treated as soon as possible. You can also use some essential oils for a croup cough to soothe your baby’s symptoms.

Note that, these natural remedies aren’t meant to replace your conventional treatment. You must consult with a doctor before you use them on your baby.

Read on to learn about some effective essential oils that may help with the symptoms.

Some Essential Oils for Croup Relief

1. Lavender Oil

lavender essential oil for croup

Lavender essential oil originates from the flowers of Lavandula angustifolia. People usually use this oil to induce sleep and relieve anxiety and stress.

Lavender oil can soothe a wide array of respiratory diseases. This essential oil can treat cold, cough, flu, sinus congestion, bronchitis, tonsillitis, etc.

The stimulating nature of lavender oil can relieve congestion associated with any respiratory condition. As this oil can soothe a cough and cold, it can also relieve breathing problem in children due to croup. [3]

How to use lavender oil for croup:

  • Dilute 5-6 drops of lavender essential oil with a carrier oil.
  • Rub the mix onto your child’s back, chest or the soles of the feet.
  • Also, you can use this oil in a diffuser to ensure proper sleep for your kid.

Read More: 11 Health Benefits of Lavender Oil That You Should Know

2. Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is rich in antimicrobial properties. It can fight against the microbes that cause fever. [4]

The antibacterial and antiseptic components of tea tree oil can soothe coughs, colds, congestion, bronchitis, and croup symptoms.

Learn how you may use tea tree oil for croup:

  • Rub some diluted tea tree oil onto your baby’s chest.
  • You can also pour a few drops of tea tree oil in a diffuser. Your child can inhale the aroma and feel comfortable.

Read More: Tea Tree Oil for Head Lice: 5 Effective Ways to Try

3. Eucalyptus Oil

Eucalyptus Oil for CroupEucalyptus oil originates from the leaves of Eucalyptus globulus.

For generation, this essential oil has been treating various respiratory issues such as cold, bronchitis, cough, and croup.

The oil can act as expectorants. Therefore, it can remove mucus and phlegm from the sinus and respiratory tracts. [5]

Here’s how you may use eucalyptus oil for croup relief:

  • Add some eucalyptus oil in a bowl of hot water and help your kid to take the steam.

Note: It’s highly recommended not to use eucalyptus oil in children two years old or less.

4. Marjoram Oil

Marjoram essential oil comes from Marjoram plant’s leaves. The oil has a calming and relaxing effect that helps your child to sleep.

The antiviral, antibacterial, and antifungal properties of marjoram oil can ease croup symptoms and promote better sleep. [6]

This essential oil is a natural expectorant. It is particularly helpful for chronic coughing.

Try these marjoram oil recipes for croup:

  • Spray the oil using a spray bottle in your child’s room.
  • Rub a few drops of diluted marjoram oil onto your kid’s chest, throat, or foot.

5. Sandalwood Oil

Sandalwood Oil for Croup
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Sandalwood oil is an important ingredient in Ayurveda. This essential oil is quite famous for its incredible aroma. It originates from the evergreen sandalwood tree.

Sandalwood essential oil is a natural expectorant. Hence, it can treat cold, flu, cough, croup, and many more. [7]

Simple ways to use sandalwood oil for croup:

  • Dilute a few drops of sandalwood oil with a carrier oil and rub it on your child’s chest, foot, and back.
  • Add some of the sandalwood essential oil to a diffuser. Let the aroma calm and soothe your child.

6. Frankincense Oil

Frankincense essential oil originates from the resin of Boswellia trees. The oil is quite famous due to its numerous therapeutic properties.

Frankincense oil is rich in antiseptic, anti-inflammatory, astringent, and expectorant properties. Thus it can cure so many respiratory illnesses including croup in children. [8]

How to use frankincense oil for croup relief:

  • Pour a few drops of frankincense oil in a diffuser and let your child inhale it.
  • Add 5-6 drops of frankincense oil to your child’s bath water.

Read More: 12 Health Benefits of Frankincense Oil + How to Use It

7. Thyme Oil

Thyme Essential Oil for Croup

Thyme oil is quite popular as a respiratory agent. It can treat bronchitis, cough, common cold, croup, etc. [9]

Thyme oil contains anti-inflammatory and expectorant components. Therefore, it can clear up mucus and phlegm. This essential oil can also ease inflammation and help your kid breathe.

Learn how to use thyme oil for croup:

  • Pour a few drops of thyme essential oil in hot water for steam therapy.
  • Dilute the oil and massage your kid’s chest with it.

8. Rosemary Oil

Rosemary oil comes from the rosemary plant. It has so many therapeutic components that can treat cold, flu, sore throat, etc.

The aroma of rosemary oil helps you get relief from respiratory allergy, as well as a cough. Because of its potent antiseptic properties, this essential oil can also soothe respiratory infections. [10]

Here’s how you may use rosemary oil for croup:

  • Take 5-6 drops of rosemary oil and dilute it with a carrier oil. Rub this oil onto your kid’s chest.
  • Pour this essential oil into a diffuser and allow your kid to inhale the aroma to get rid of congestion.

Read More: 13 Health Benefits and Uses of Rosemary Oil (Backed by Evidence)

Causes and Symptoms of Croup

Croup is quite common in fall and the early winter. It happens mostly in the babies aged between 3 months to 5 years.

The main reason behind croup is an infection. There are two types of infections that trigger croup, viral and spasmodic. [2]

Any virus that attacks the voice box and windpipe can cause viral croup. A virus named parainfluenza can cause the infection.

Spasmodic croup attacks suddenly and makes your child wake up gasping in the air. It usually attacks the child in the middle of the night.

No matter what is the reason behind the croup attack, your child will have difficulty in breathing.

The common symptoms of croup include:

  • Fever with a stuffy or a runny nose.
  • Cough that sounds like a bark.
  • Harsh voice.
  • Red eyes.
  • Rashes.
  • Swollen lymph nodes.

Safety Practices While Using Essential Oils for Croup in Children

You must take some extra precautions while using essential oils on your child. Not every essential oil is safe for your kid’s skin and health. So, the following safety measures must be followed for the sake of your child:

  • Don’t forget to follow the instruction written on the label of the essential oil. Make sure it’s safe for your baby.
  • Some essential oils are very powerful and can burn or irritate baby’s skin. Hence, you must dilute them before using.
  • If your kid’s skin is sensitive, avoid topical application of any essential oil.
  • Consult with a pediatrician first to make sure your child is old enough for essential oils.
  • Make sure your kid’s don’t consume the essential oils.
  • Conduct a patch test on your child’s skin to see if the oil suits them or not.

When Should You Take Your Kid to The Doctor?

Croup is a contagious disease and can be severe if not treated fast. While essential oils may soothe some symptoms, they can’t completely kill the virus.

Seek immediate medical attention if you see the following symptoms:

  • Severe breathing problems.
  • If your kid faints.
  • Face and lips become bluish while coughing.
  • Breathing is way too faster than usual.
  • Serious chest pain.
  • Your child can’t bend the neck forward.
  • Your kid is less than one year old.

Bottom Line

A croup cough is quite dangerous as it mostly occurs in young children. It usually happens in fall but can appear some other time as well.

It’s because the virus responsible for common cold can also cause croup.

Croup is contagious and can spread through coughing and sneezing. So, you need to treat it as soon as possible to save the other members of your family.

Natural solutions such as essential oils are quite effective in reducing the symptoms of croup. But, you must use them after discussing with a doctor.

Seek immediate medical attention if you don’t want to compromise with your child’s health.

Read Next: 20 Essential Oils for Cough, Sore Throat, and Congestion

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