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The 6 Essential Oils Every Parent Needs To Know About

By Maria Cook

You've probably heard of essential oils, and you probably know that many of them smell good. But few parents realize just how useful they can be on a day to day basis. These natural oils, extracted from different sorts of plants, retain many of the properties of the amazing plants they come from. Just as veggies, fruits and other healthy foods have many benefits for our bodies and minds, so do essential oils.

Essential oils can be useful no matter your age, though it's always best to monitor their usage when it comes to children. Here are six of the most useful essential oils for parents and families.

1. Tea tree oil

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Extracted from the tea tree (also known as the Melaleuca tree--not be be confused with the tea plant from which beverages are made) tea tree oil is one of the most popular essential oils. You can find it in everything from soaps to shampoos to vapor rubs to lotions. It stands to reason, since the oil is known to have anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. 

Like aloe, it is safe for use on children, and can be rubbed onto cuts, burns, and rashes to soothe skin. If your child has a cold, some tea tree oil-infused vapor rub can help gently relieve congestion. A small amount can also be added to bath water and breathed in, to sooth inflamed nasal passages.