Top 8 Recommended Essential Oils For Respiratory Health + Tips on Using Essential Oils

Essential oils are one of the best options for restoring respiratory health. Essential oils can quickly and effectively reduce swelling in the respiratory tract, help expel phlegm, and improve breathing. Their effect can be felt almost instantaneously and there are little to no adverse side effects when using essential oils for respiratory health. There is quite a large variety of essential oils available for an even wider variety of ailments. Most essential oils are available at low price points, making them a great, inexpensive choice for addressing ailments. A little oil, just a few drops goes a long way, so even the pricer oils are still a great, natural, cost-effective option.

1. Lemon Essential Oil

Lemon oil is an effective essential oil when it comes to congestion and coughs. The oil is derived from the skin of lemons. It is useful for treating sore throats in association to its antioxidant, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties. Scientific research and evidence has shown that lemon oil is able to inhibit bacteria growth and improve the immune system. In the Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, a study was published in 2001, which stated that antibacterial actions of essential lemon oil was effective against allergy and cold symptoms.

2. Frankincense Essential Oil

Frankincense essential oil is regarded as a highly powerful oil. Years ago, frankincense was at a stage valued higher than gold. Today, this oil is a fantastic anti-inflammatory when it comes to clearing nasal passages and lungs along with the regulation of breathing patterns. More specifically, it can assist in expelling phlegm out of the lungs. When treating a cold or a cough, use 2 to 3 drops of the oils in a diffuser.

3. Peppermint Essential Oil

Studies have suggested that antispasmodic activities in peppermint essential oil can help relieve coughing. This oil is better known when it comes to its antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, expectorant and antimicrobial properties. Peppermint is commonly used to treat respiratory infections, sinus infections, colds, sore throats and coughs. In the Journal of Ethnopharmacology a study which was published in 2010 has suggested antispasmodic activities in essential peppermint oil assists in relieving coughs. Menthol present in this oil is believed to soothe and calm sore throats, while relieving a cough in the way of thinning mucus.

4. Tea Tree Essential Oil

This essential oil contains antiviral, antiseptic and antimicrobial properties. Tea tree is a fantastic oil when it comes to bronchial congestion. This oil has been discovered to exhibit exceptional protective activities against fungi, yeast, and bacteria, which can be found in a study which has was released in 2000 from a German research team. Microbes are what cause inflammation that can deplete the person’s immune system, which often results in congestion and coughs and susceptibility to other infections. Tea tree essential oils contain antiviral, antiseptic and antimicrobial properties that fight off these microbes. This essential oil is effective for bronchial congestion, coughs and sore throats. For relief, apply 15 drops of a good quality tea-tree oil to the sinuses and neck for an effective cough remedy.

5. Eucalyptus Essential Oil

Eucalyptus oil is proven to be a useful aid for treating upper-respiratory infections and congestion. This high-quality oil also loosens mucus and lowers respiratory inflammation inside the lungs. Eucalyptus is  found in a variety of over-the-counter products when it comes to congestion, cough and cold relief. This is an essential oil associated with many health benefits when it comes to its effective abilities in improving respiratory circulation, stimulating the immune-system, and providing antioxidant protection. The active ingredient in this oil is known as cineole. With many long-term studies it has been indicated that essential eucalyptus oils are useful for treating upper-respiratory infections and congestion.

6. Thyme Essential Oil

Research suggests that thyme essential oil can assist in supporting the respiratory and immune systems. This is a preferred essential oil when it comes to congestion and coughs in association to its antimicrobial, antioxidant and antibacterial properties. It is these effects which assist in supporting the respiratory and immune systems. In 2011, there was a study which was published in the Medicinal Chemistry journal, where researchers studied the response of thyme oil to 120 different bacteria strains which were isolated from people suffering from respiratory infections. Results showed that this oil displayed strong activities against each of these bacteria strains. This means thyme essential oil is ideal for congestion, coughs and sore throats caused from colds and flu and other related illnesses.

7. Juniper Berry Essential Oil

This essential oil features over 87 active ingredients that includes antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial and antioxidant agents. Juniper Berry essential oil has a sweet and woodsy smell, which is found in various aromatherapy blends, fragrance sprays, and even household-cleaning products. This is an essential oil that is typically used for treating respiratory infections as well as sore throats. Research has gone onto show that this important essential oil has over 87 active ingredients which include antimicrobial, antibacterial, antioxidant and antifungal agents. In 2003 a study appeared in the Phytotherapy Research journal which discovered that antimicrobial activities associated with juniper oil was due to the combination of the compounds known as alpha-pinene, p-Cymene and beta-pinene.

8. Clove Essential Oil

Clove essential oil displays antimicrobial activities against various multi-resistant bacteria. This essential oil is commonly used for relieving sore throats, boosting the immune-system, which has to do with its stimulating, antiviral, antifungal, anti-inflammatory, antimicrobial and antiseptic properties. In the journal Phytotherapy Research a study was published in 2007 discovered that essential clove oil displays activities against several multi-resistant bacteria. When you feel a sore throat coming on or you are starting to cough, placing 1 drop of clove oilon your tongue is an effective remedy for these common issues.

Tips On Using Essential Oils For Congestion, Colds and Cough

1. Aromatherapy: Adding Essential Oils To Diffusers

Aromatherapy is an age old yet effective practice to relieve coughs. Add drops of your chosen essential oil into the diffuser. Diffusers are one of the best ways to use the above mentioned essential oils when it comes to coughs and congestion we described earlier on. A diffuser of high-quality is a worthwhile investment.

These diffusers work on breaking the essential oil down into very small molecules that spread through the air. This process will improve air quality in the room that you use it in. In this way diffusers work well for treating flu, sinus infections, congestion and colds.

2. A Hot And Healing Bath Soak

One of the other effective ways to use essential oils for colds, congestion and coughing is to add the oil into hot water in a bath. Relaxing and soaking in hot water with your favorite essential oil can work wonders when fighting a cold or flu. Below is a recipe you may want to try:


– 6 Drops of Tea Tree Oil

– 2 Drops of Thyme Oil


Add both the essential oils into hot or warm water in your bath. Make sure you do not use more than the recommended dose of thyme oil as it can result in irritation. You can also add some lavender or eucalyptus epsom salt to relax your muscles and joints. Relax and enjoy a healing bath.

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