Note from Ann: Dr. Julie does it again with proving that essential oils have special powers. She does an amazing job explaining how using essential oils for back to school stress can be easy peasy if you prepare and conquer. We know that parenting is hard, but it’s even harder when the school year starts and the new season brings unfamiliar stresses to the kids and family dynamics. Be sure to save this post full of healthy essential oil tips to help your family stress less, focus more, sleep sound, and stay healthy. Cheers to a successful School Year! We got this! 🙂
Across the nation, everyone is gearing up for back to school. I see parents making comments ranging from, “Woohoo! Can’t wait!” all the way to “Boohoo! What will I do?” Transitions are hard. They are hard on the kids and hard on the mamas. But there are ways that can make it easier for everyone AND to make it last the entire school year.
What are the issues faced with back to school?
I asked my Mom, friends, and followers and came up with a few topics. Do you have more you would add?
- It is our first day of kindergarten, how do I help my child adjust? And more importantly, how do I survive?
- My teenager stayed up every night and slept all day, how do I get his sleep schedule back on track?
- My child is always nervous during school particularly around tests, how can I help her adjust?
- We bring home every germ and bug that hits the school, how do I boost our energy and immune systems?
Using Essential Oils for Back to School Stress (with my favorite tips):
1. For the first day of kindergarten
(and this might apply to final days of senior year too! Similar parent emotions, right?) Psychologically speaking, the best thing you can do with new situations is to prepare and remove the mystery. Here’s how:
- Our imagination is always worse than the reality, so don’t leave anything to the imagination!
- There is an important reason for Back to School night, so don’t miss it if your school offers one! The reason is to take the mystery out of the classroom, what will happen during the day, and who will be there.
- Walk your child through their day so they know what to expect. If your teacher does not offer a Back to School night, consider contacting your teacher and see if you can stop by while the teacher is setting up and walk through the day.
- Another way to ease into a transition is to take comforting objects to help get through it. Here is a place essential oils can add extra support.
Our brains don’t always process words as comfort – “It will be okay. I’ll pick you up at the end of the day. You’ll have fun.”
- Ever ignore the hype when someone told you it would all be okay? Yeah, our brains don’t listen to that. But, the brain understands smells and smells can create comfort. Think the smells of home, the comfort of fresh baked cookies, and the smell right after a rain.
- Using essential oils at home and transitioning them to the school will help bring the comforts of home in a small drop.
- My favorite choices:
– Lavender (add a few drops to diffuse or add to the bath water for less stress and more focus)
– Wild Orange (add a few drops to diffuse to help uplift the mood and freshen the air)
– Balance (add a few drops to diffuse or to your wrist to help stay calm and collected)
Oh, for the senior moms, maybe
– Serenity (add a few drops to diffuse or inhale to help relieve stress and unwind)
– Peace (add a few drops to diffuse or inhale to help alleviate feelings of anxiety and stress)
– Console (add a few drops to diffuse or apply to clothing when you are feeling down or need to feel feelings of positivity)
New to oils? Be sure to check out Dr. Julie’s essential oil safety tips, too!
2. For much-needed Sleep, sweet sleep!
Sleep is one of the primary areas that bring people to essential oils. My mom had a theory when we were growing up that there was no need to start a transition period back into early mornings after a summer of late nights. I was the teenager that would stay up all night and then sleep until the clock turned back over into single digits. My mom figured that first week would be hard, but you’ll get back through it. My goal for my teenager is to get him into a good sleep cycle with periods of deep sleep and periods of REM sleep. These 2.5 hour cycles are what create true rest and refresh our brains. So, how do you do that?
- Yes, regular bedtimes and wake times are important.
- Cool rooms, white noise… all those key points.
- But I never slept well until finding essential oils.
- And the ability to personalize them for the personalities of my kids has been phenomenal.
After all, the sleep patterns of my 14 year old, attention challenged, teenage boy are very different than the sleep needs of my 8 year old, sensory sensitive, difficult temperament daughter.
- I have a short PDF on oils for sleep but my top favorites include:
– Lavender (start simple and add a few drops to your pillows, bedding or bottoms of feet for a restful night’s sleep)
– Serenity (apply a few drops to diffuse into the air in the evening to promote a good night’s rest)
– Cedarwood (great for boys and we add a few drops to diffuse into the air to create a grounding calming effect)
– Vetiver (add for attention and focus and we use it as a massage oil to promote calmness and circulation)
– Ylang Ylang (sensory issues and we massage it into the shoulders, back, or bottom of the feet to promote peace)
3. For my Nervous Nelly:
Schools are not developmentally appropriate for children. There, I said it. This might not be globally true but in general,
We have CREATED anxiety in our children because we are not matching our classroom programs to the stages of brain development.
Knowing this does not change the reality that kids have to manage in their classroom, deal with lack of play and recess, and get through standardized testing, but it does help us as parents prepare them better by helping them (and yourselves as Parents) with the following:
- There is no need to accept your child’s anxiety, worries or nervousness as “the way it is.” You can help them through and much of it is similar to the recommendations for the first day
- Knowing what to expect, talking through the “worst that could happen”
- Setting goals for making it through each challenge will help your child develop those coping skills and improve self-esteem overall
You cannot always rescue them from every challenge they face.
- It is important to not take those learning opportunities away from them, but you can send in comfort and support to ease the way.
- My favorite oils for nervous-nellies include:
– Wild orange (apply a few drops topically to temples, behind ears and on back of neck to decrease the feelings of nervous fatigue)
– Lavender (massage a few drops onto back, feet, and hands to reduce that nervous angst)
– Lemon (apply a few drops to diffuse into the air to create an uplifiting and safe environment)
– Bergamot (diffuse a few drops into the air to relieve negative feelings)
A small drop in the hand or on a diffuser necklace or bracelet can bring an immediate sense of calmness and control. And best of all, they all smell great so no one is going to think it is weird!
4. For healthy immune systems,
Don’t share your drink! Ugh…. Germs! Isn’t this one of the biggest things we mamas fight? Don’t put your mouth on that! Get your hands out of your mouth! Don’t share his drink! It is a losing battle. But you can be preemptive and go on the offensive here too by:
Don’t wait for the germs to come home to start fighting the symptoms. Be preventative right away.
- Good vitamin supplements including omega oils, and immune boosting essential oils.
- Our school diffuses in the office (where all sick kids go)
- They wipe down water fountains, door handles, and phones with an essential oil spray.
No need to fear the germs, you got this!
Those are a few of my beginning tips for handling back to school and adding essential oils into your routines. If you have other questions, feel free to add them to the comments and we can continue the suggestions and problem-solving!