When allergy season comes around, about 50 million Americans prepare themselves for a miserable few months. Common allergy symptoms like a runny nose, swelling of the eyelids and a sore throat can make a person feel like they’re sick for weeks at a time. Some people experience allergy symptoms that are so severe, they believe that they have the flu (source).
During allergy season, countless people turn to antihistamine drugs. These drugs treat allergy symptoms by preventing the body from responding to common allergens like mold, pollen and grass. Many of these medications can be purchased as over-the-counter drugs at the local drugstore. The problem is that many of these medications come with side effects like extreme drowsiness and dizziness. Even worse, these drugs can be dangerous for those who have high blood pressure, heart disease or are pregnant (source).
The good news is that essential oils have been proven to fight allergy symptoms effectively without any of the side effects that occur as a result of taking popular allergy medications. These oils are naturally derived from plants and are packed with healing properties that can both treat your symptoms and eliminate allergies altogether.
What Causes Allergies?
Allergy symptoms are caused by an immune system dysfunction. While the exact cause is still relatively unknown, studies show that those who suffer from allergies possess immune systems that wrongly believe that common allergens are actually infections that intend to harm the body. As a response, the immune system sends white blood cells throughout the body to stop these allergens from entering. This sudden increase in white blood cells throughout the body causes inflammation that results in swelling and pain around the airways (source).
The reality is that common allergens like pollen are completely harmless. Unfortunately, the immune system can’t tell the difference between legitimate threats like viruses and allergens that won’t actually cause the body any harm.
Essential Oils that Treat Allergies
In this article, you’ll discover which essential oils can best tackle those annoying allergy symptoms. Plus, you’ll learn that some essential oils possess the unique ability to heal the immune system, allowing it to stop perceiving these common allergens as a threat to your health.
Lavender Essential Oil
With its enormous variety of health benefits, it’s no surprise that lavender essential oil can tackle allergies when that season comes around. One study tested lavender oil’s ability to prevent an allergic reaction from turning into a potentially-deadly asthma attack. When a person is suffering from an asthma attack, the bronchial tubes become inflamed. As a result, they swell up, making it difficult to breathe. The study found that lavender oil’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties can quickly reduce inflammation along the airways when inhaled (source).
Another study found that lavender essential oil inhibits allergic reactions in mice. According to the study, lavender oil acts as an antihistamine, blocking the body’s response to allergens instantly (source).
Lavender essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties have been proven to relieve common allergy symptoms like a stuffy nose, sore throat and sinus tension. When inhaled, lavender oil permeates the inflamed tissue, reducing swelling and pain quickly (source).
Another benefit of lavender essential oil is its high level of antioxidants. These antioxidants help improve the immune system’s health by protecting the cells of the body from damage. As a result, the immune system is less taxed and can put its energy into healing itself. In fact, one study found a direct link between the antioxidants in lavender essential oil and improved health of the immune system (source).
Lavender also acts as a sedative, promoting deep and restorative sleep. For many allergy sufferers, quality sleep is unattainable because deep breathing is a challenge and the throat is incredibly itchy. Just inhaling lavender essential oil can put you to sleep in no time (source).
Peppermint Essential Oil
Peppermint essential oil’s ability to combat allergy symptoms comes from menthol, its leading chemical compound. Menthol is a potent anti-inflammatory agent that can also clear the airways of excess phlegm and mucus. The oil is considered an expectorant, meaning that it will thin mucus instantly when inhaled. For this reason, menthol is often a leading ingredient in topical decongestant products (source).
Additionally, peppermint oil has been proven to increase lung capacity when inhaled through the nose. Anyone who suffers from severe allergy symptoms knows how difficult it can be to take deep breaths when the respiratory tract is swollen with inflammation (source).
Because of the oil’s powerful anti-inflammatory properties, it can soothe pain and irritation quickly when applied topically to the skin. For many allergy sufferers, sinus headaches are an everyday part of life. By massaging peppermint oil into the skin of the face, you’ll find quick relief from that terrible pain. That’s because menthol opens up pores, allowing it to quickly permeate the inflamed muscular tissue.
Frankincense Essential Oil
With its powerful anti-inflammatory properties, frankincense essential oil can quickly reduce inflammation along the airways, relieving you of the pain and discomfort of allergy symptoms. Plus, the oil is capable of decongesting the airways, giving you the ability to take easy, deep breaths once again.
Frankincense oil’s anti-inflammatory properties are so powerful that inhaling the oil can stop an asthma attack. The oil quickly reduces the swelling of the bronchial tubes, allowing you to breathe naturally (source).
Interestingly, frankincense essential oil’s chemical makeup is very similar to that of steroid medications. One study found that these two substances share many chemical compounds. Steroids are often used to treat severe allergy symptoms. Frankincense essential oil can therefore treat severe allergic reactions without the side effects of common steroid drugs (source).
Because the oil acts as a steroid, it can also improve the function of the immune system while reducing inflammation that can tax the immune system over time. When the immune system is functioning properly, it will ignore allergens as they enter the body.
Frankincense oil can also promote sleep when inhaled. Allergy sufferers often lose sleep because of the intense discomfort that allergy symptoms cause (source).
Lastly, frankincense essential oil has been shown to quickly reduce inflammation of tissue when inhaled. In other words, a few whiffs of this oil can stop that runny nose and sore throat (source).
Tea Tree Essential Oil
Tea tree oil possesses a unique ability to soothe irritation on contact. For this reason, it is often suggested that someone who is suffering from a sore throat gargles with the oil diluted in water. While the oil soothes irritation, it will also fight inflammation of the throat, reducing its swelling so that the sufferer may breathe more deeply. Additionally, the oil is a powerful decongestant that can break up mucus and phlegm as soon as it is inhaled (source).
Also, the oil’s powerful anti-inflammatory powers can treat sinus headaches when it is massaged into the skin. The oil will break through the layers of the skin and absorb into the tissue that is inflamed (source).
Lemon Essential Oil
When it comes to keeping the immune system healthy, few things are as beneficial as vitamin C. Many people try to increase their vitamin C intake by drinking loads of store-bought orange juice. The problem is that these juices contain high levels of sugar. Consuming excessive sugar can actually increase inflammation throughout the body, causing the immune system more harm.
Lemon essential oil delivers high levels of vitamin C to the body without the sugar. The oil is loaded with citric acids that the body needs in order for the immune system to function properly. Just a few drops each day will improve the health of your immune system tremendously, giving it the ability to stand up to allergens (source).
Lemon essential oil has also been proven to treat pain caused by inflammation. In one study, rats who were experiencing immense pain found fast relief when given lemon essential oil. The oil’s anti-inflammatory properties can reduce the symptoms associated with allergies such as a sore throat, stuffy nose and sinus headache (source).
Clove Essential Oil
For thousands of years, clove essential oil has been used to numb pain. Eugenol, the leading chemical compound found in clove oil, has been proven to work just as well as popular topical anesthetics that are used by dentists. By gargling with clove essential oil, you can relieve the pain of a sore throat as the numbing and cooling abilities of the oil absorb into the inflamed and irritated tissue. This numbing effect can also stop a cough as it eliminates the sensation of itchiness (source).
Clove essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties are legendary. In one study, arthritic rats experienced significant pain relief when exposed to the oil. Because common allergy symptoms are caused by inflammation, inhaling the oil can make you feel better in no time (source).
Clove oil also acts as a decongestant, thinning the mucus that clogs the airways (source). Plus, the oil has the unique ability to treat a cough by coating the throat tissue in a protective film that soothes it while keeping it safe from irritation (source).
Eucalyptus Essential Oil
Eucalyptus essential oil is yet another oil that simultaneously improves the function of the immune system while treating the specific symptoms of allergies. Studies have proven eucalyptus oil’s powerful pain-relieving abilities. Loaded with anti-inflammatory chemical compounds, the oil can reduce inflammation on contact, alleviating allergy symptoms almost instantly (source).
The oil also acts as an expectorant, decongesting the airways when inhaled. Like peppermint oil, eucalyptus oil is often found in decongestant products because of its ability to break up mucus quickly (source).
One study found that eucalyptus essential oil’s anti-inflammatory properties can actually treat inflammation throughout the body when inhaled, allowing the immune system to function properly (source).
Essential Oils Remedy For Allergies Infographic
Now that you’re aware of just how effectively essential oils can treat allergy symptoms, you can rest easy when springtime comes around. These oils are all packed with healing properties that ensure maximum relief from crippling allergy symptoms.
Do you like to take a natural approach to dealing with seasonal allergies? Share your secrets with us in the comments section below!