Asthma and essential oils diffuser? - Asthma Community ...

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Asthma and essential oils diffuser?

-cat-woman- profile image
12 Replies

My sister bought me one of these diffusers (think that’s what it’s called) you put essential oil’s in. I wanted to check it was save to use with asthma but I’m finding conflicting advice on the net. Does anyone know anything about this? I’m not sure whether I should go ahead and use it or politely explain I shouldn’t and return it.

12 Replies
teddyd profile image

I got one as a gift. I cant use it as it seriously affects my breathing if I put oil in itI just put water in it as it looks pretty when lit

I also cant use scented candles .

I am sure others will share their experiences.

Nimrod2 profile image

Hi I use one regularly and have no problems. I use very good essential oils by doTerra. They have one blend called Air that I find very helpful for my breathing. Also use lavender which helps me to relax. But that is just my experience.

skippy11 profile image

I use them regularly for eucalyptus oils and an oil called natures truth breathe easy (smells like vicks) when I’m feeling a bit tight chested/unwell and it opens the airways up but everyone is different when it comes to essential oils

Melanie1989 profile image

This is one of those things that will be individual for everyone. I personally am triggered by lavender, eucalyptus etc. Vicks and olbas oil are the worst things for me, but for others are lifesavers!

I would just proceed with caution, use a small amount of oil to see how you go, as in terms of discovering triggers it is very much trial and error!

Roseyinthegarden profile image

I only use 1 or 2 drops of Tisserand organic essential oils, as non-organic oils have set of my asthma in the past. I also don’t get on with the ready blended oils like doTerra, which I know many people love, so it can definitely be trial & error to find an oil that suits you.

Test any new oil near a window, so you can easily open the window, if you don’t get on with it & have someone around who is willing to remove & clean the diffuser if sets off your asthma.

peege profile image

I'm afraid its a try it and see situation or perhaps go to the shop where it came from to have a sniff & see what happens.I was just given a diffuser from The White Company (simple one reeds sitting in the liquid). Its lavender and camomile, I think its fairly good quality & was quite expensive. Anyway, I had my doubts but it seems fine. I already had a small lavender one in the kitchen for cooking smells (I eat a lot of fish). That ones by Heaven Scent in Bath and it seems fine too. I'm surprised because I can't normally tolerate scented candles or products from Lush, even have to cross the road to pass a Lush shop.

Lysistrata profile image

Very much agree that it can be individual. Like Melanie1989 I react to lavender and eucalyptus (didn't know others had problems with eucalyptus but makes sense!), also others including rose, violet, hibiscus. For me the better quality they are, the worse it is as it's more of the problem substance (I will also react to the natural plants).

However, I can have citrus or vanilla with no problems. I have friends with severe asthma who are fine with most oils including lavender, so it really is very individual. I would think about how you react to common scents elsewhere - not necessarily in things like air fresheners as those are not usually the real deal. I've found that I can often tolerate extract of mango, lavender etc without a problem so I assume they remove what triggers me when they make it. However it does mean that if you for example have Radox lavender shower gel and are fine with it it doesn't mean lavender oil will be ok.

As a general reminder to anyone reading, obviously you have to think about the whole household with something like this because it's so individual - is anyone in the house asthmatic or do they have migraines (which can also be scent triggered)? (Obviously I don't know if this applies to you -cat woman- as you were just asking for your own asthma but as a general point).

Ts777 profile image

I love mine.

Some oils I naturally avoid, nothing will persuade me to go in the same room as rose or lavender. But others I love. I like the tree, herb and generally non flower ones. Although I love chamomile so the rules don’t always apply.

It really is a try and see thing. When I try a new oil, I just do one or two drops and be ready to quickly switch it off and clean it.

I’ve found the benefits to weigh out the hassle of finding out what is ok for me.

However, we are all different, my reaction hasn’t been too severe. I might be lucky?

stones93 profile image

Everyone is different but they are a complete no-no for me.... with asthma

Agree it’s different for each individual.

I avoid flowery scents; I can’t even drink fruit tea - hibiscus tea made my mouth and lips swell up.

Cleaning products also irritate my asthma.

-cat-woman- profile image

Thank you all for your varied comments. I guess it really is different for everyone. I was only diagnosed with asthma 18 months ago and has rapidly gotten more severe in this time so am eager to try anything that might help. I guess I’ll get experimenting then! Thanks.

Lysistrata profile image

Just as an add on to my previous comment, I didn't realise you were asking if it might help your asthma - I thought you just wanted to know if it was ok to have one for nice scents!

There's really not any good evidence currently for essential oils helping with asthma. Some like eucalyptus, if they don't trigger you, might help with stuff like a bunged up nose which doesn't help asthma - helping you breathe more freely through your nose is generally good, and can stop bad breathing habits developing which can make asthma worse. Or if stress triggers you then something relaxing can help. (But lavender isn't going to help sleep much if the reason you can't sleep is because your asthma control is bad!)

As with any natural remedy, it's possible some of them have properties that may help with asthma. But until that's tested in proper clinical trials with humans, I wouldn't look to them for help with your actual asthma.

If you're struggling with asthma management you may find the AUK nurses helpful - usually 0300 222 5800 M-F 9-5 or WhatsApp - 07378 606728. Obviously this week they're back tomorrow (Tuesday).

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