Can Essential Oils help with Autism and ADHD?


Essential Oils and Autism and ADHD


There are potential benefits for the use of Essential Oils for children with Autism or ADHD. The right oil or combination of oils can be a supportive, less invasive supplemental therapeutic strategy for some children.

Certain oils can bring about a calming mood or help a child focus.

First of all, what is an essential oil?

 An essential oil is the natural fragrant essence extracted from different parts of a plant, flower, leaf, bark, root, fruit peel and berries. The oil is the most potent and concentrated of plant extracts. A single essential oil contains hundreds of chemical components, each one having unique properties of its own. Essential oils have been used for centuries throughout the world for everything from skincare to treatment for serious health conditions.

 How does an Essential Oil work?

 The therapeutic benefit of Essential Oils lies in the power of the sense of smell. Scent by way of the offactory nerve can trigger emotions and memories. The potency of a particular scent can trigger emotional or physical responses such as becoming more relaxed, being better able to focus on a task or feeling more energised.

 What are the best Essential Oils for Autism or ADHD?


 Vetiver Oil is said to have a calming effect. Vetiver and other oils that promot calm and relaxation maybe able to help with the sensory-processing issues that many with ASD experience. In 2001 a study conducted by Dr Terry Friedman revealed that Vetiver Essential Oil benefits children with ADHD. The oil’s relaxing and calming properties are said to help children combat symptoms of ADHD and ADD such as difficulty in concentrating, being easily distracted and impatience.


 Cedarwood is believed to improve the oxygenation of brain cells. It is also said to have calming effects. It’s scent promotes the release of serotonin, which is then converted into melatonin in the brain. This can help children enjoy peaceful and restorative sleep.


 Lavender has been used for hundreds of years to reduce anxiety. One study found that lavender essential oil can affect our emotions. It has a calming effect on children on the autism spectrum and can help improve sleep quality and reduce anxiety and emotional stress.


 In the same study, researchers also used orange essential oil. It too could reduce anxiety and create a calm feeling in people experiencing stress. It may also help children with autism by helping them better manage communicational or relational barriers. If you do decide to use Orange essential oil topically don’t go out into the sun without applying sunscreen first. Citrus oil can make your skin sensitive to the sun.


Peppermint oil has a soothing effect. It is a perfect choice for children with Autism, ADHD and ADD because it gives a cooling sensation and has a calming effect on the body. It is also know to help improve mental focus.


Frankincense may be able to help children on the autism spectrum focus better. Frankincense oil may also help reduce negative emotions or negative reactions to some social situations that are common in those with ASD.


 Bergamot essential oil is known as a mood enhancer and considered a great essential oil for Autism. It helps create a feeling of joy, freshness and energy by helping improve the circulation of blood to different parts of the body. And at the same time bergamot oil is considered a relaxant as it has a calming effect and can reduce feelings of stress and anxiety.

 Ylang Ylang

 Children with Autism often experience stress and anxiety, especially in social situations, Ylang Ylang  can help alleviate this. Ylang Ylang Essential Oil promotes calm and reduces anxiety.


  • It’s imperative to note essential oils are not a cure for autism.
  • Not to be used undiluted if applying topically.
  • Bergamot and Orange oils are photosensitizing so they will sometimes cause a rash when exposed to the sun. Apply sunscreen first.
  • Do not take internally. 




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