The Best Essential Oils to Relieve Bronchitis

The Best Essential Oils to Relieve Bronchitis
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Bronchitis is a lung disease that involves the inflammation of the mucous membrane in your bronchial tubes. This inflammation causes them to swell until there is no longer space for air to flow freely through them. Essential oils can be useful for treating bronchitis.


The Symptoms of Bronchitis

According to Mayo clinic the symptoms of bronchitis include:

  • Cough (which is the primary symptom)
  • Production of mucus (sputum), which can be clear, white, yellowish-gray or green in color — rarely, it may be streaked with blood
  • Fatigue
  • Shortness of breath
  • Slight fever and uncontrollable shivering
  • Chest discomfort

Although a single episode of bronchitis usually isn’t cause for concern, it can lead to pneumonia in some people. Repeated bouts of bronchitis may indicate that you’re developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). If you think that you suffer from bronchitis, you need to see your doctor.

Causes of Bronchitis

For essential oils to relieve bronchitis, they must attack both the symptoms and causes of this disease. Episodes of acute bronchitis are normally caused by either viruses or bacteria. Viral infections are the more common of the two. Cigarette smoke, factory or household chemicals, and exposure to extreme or constant dirt can also cause it.

If you struggle with bronchitis for more than three months a year, your lungs may be physically damaged, in which case essential oils will be useful mostly to treat the symptoms only. In this case, it is important that you visit a doctor, as chronic bronchitis can go on to cause heart disease. The same is true if you have chest pain or severe difficulty in breathing.

Essential Oils for Bronchitis

Cinnamon bark oil, Lemongrass oil, and thyme oil

Researchers who tested 14 essential oils against the two bacteria most commonly responsible for bronchitis found that these three oils were the best killers of both the Haemophilus influenza and the Streptococcus pneumoniae bacteria.1

Thyme oil is so strong that it can inhibit other viruses that are drug resistant.2

While you cannot test whether these bacteria are responsible for your bronchitis at home, if it continues for more than two weeks, it is most probably bacterial. If a doctor has confirmed that you suffer from bacterial bronchitis, these are the best oils to use.

These essential oils have many other health benefits:

Tea tree oil

One massive study that tested 45 oils against a variety of bacteria, fungi, and viruses found tea tree and cinnamon bark oils to be by far the most effective against bacteria.

Tea tree, lemongrass, Roman chamomile, rosewood, and spearmint were the most effective against the largest numbers of viruses and bacteria.3

Another research team then tested the antiviral effects of tea tree oil against the flu virus, that is also responsible for bronchitis, discovered that it could inhibit the virus to a significant degree.4 It is also a strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant that can relieve the inflammation and prevent your bronchial cells from being unnecessarily damaged.5

Teat tree oil has many other extraordinary uses and it also one of best home remedies for sinus infection.


Eucalyptus and rosemary oils

One study concluded that eucalyptus and rosemary could reduce inflammation in diseases like bronchitis because of an ingredient called 1,8-cineole (which is considered useful for the treatment of bronchitis, sinusitis and rheumatism).6 Eucalyptus is also an analgesic (reduce pain) and anti-inflammatory, which makes it particularly useful against bronchial infections like bronchitis.7

Eucalyptus is also one of the best essential oils for cold and sore throat and it can also help you to relieve asthma.

Clove oil

This workhorse does not only have antibacterial properties, it is also an antiviral agent with analgesic effects.8 It is, thus, perfect for bronchitis with painful coughing.

Houttuynia cordata oil

Houttuynia cordata is an important medicinal plant widely distributed in East Asia. It is a flowering and perennial herb native to China, Japan, Korea and Southeast Asia and it is traditionally used as a medicinal herb.

If you are lucky enough to be in China, where this oil is easily obtainable, it is effective against the flu virus that causes bronchitis. It is also a strong anti-inflammatory to keep the inflammation in your inflamed bronchial tubes in check.9

Lavender oil

A strong anti-inflammatory and analgesic, researchers recommend it for painful infectious diseases, of which bronchitis is one.10

Lavender oil has many other uses and it is one of the best essential oils for skincare as well as for treating hemorrhoids.

Greek sage oil (Salvia fruticosa)

Greek sage grows everywhere in Italy, Greece, Israel, and around the Mediterranean. It has antibacterial and anti-viral effects.11

Ginger, helichrysum, hyssop, jasmine, marjoram, and myrrh

These oils are commonly recommended to expel phlegm and relieve congestion. If your bronchitis coincides with a wet rather than a dry cough, these are the oils you want to use.


How to Use Essential Oils for Bronchitis

Steam Inhalation

If you or the kids occasionally suffer from acute bronchitis, the best approach is to ensure beforehand that you are not sensitive to the oils you want to inhale.

If you have an allergic response to any of the oils, exclude it from your bronchitis treatment, as allergies can easily trigger your immune system to release inflammatory chemicals. This inflammation on top of the bronchitis-related inflammation can damage your lungs and cut your breathing off completely.

There are several ways to inhale essential oil steam:

  1. Put three drops of tea tree and three drops of eucalyptus oil in a large pot with water. Heat it on the stove until it almost boils. Remove it, and inhale the steam directly for the antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory effects. You can inhale it through a face cloth if it burns your face. You can also use the same steam inhalation for treating sinus infection.
  1. Mix five drops of clove and five drops of thyme oil with a tablespoon of carrier oil of your choice and add into your bathwater. Sit in the bath for 30 minutes while inhaling the steam constantly.

Chest and Back Rubs

There are few things better than a warm chest rub before bed to control the phlegm, coughing, and even pain during the night.

  1. Blend 4 drops of lavender, 4 drops of jasmine, and two teaspoons of carrier oil. Rub it into both your chest and back before you go to bed. The lavender is a sedative too and will help you sleep well.
  2. If you want the virus attacked, your cough reduced, and the inflammation relieved with a powerful, warm oil, blend two drops each of tea tree, eucalyptus, lavender, and ginger, and one tablespoon of carrier oil (such as sweet almond, jojoba, avocado oil). Rub it into both your chest and back before you go to bed.

A Chest Compress

If you prefer not to rub oils on your skin, you can make a warm chest compress. Fill a bucket with about five liters of hot water.  Mix one tablespoon of carrier oil with two drops each of tea tree, eucalyptus, lavender, ginger and add to the bucket.

Dip a large towel or two small ones in the water and, after drying out the towels a bit, wrap them around your chest and back. Warm the towels every time they cool down. If you don’t mind getting wet, you can spend most of your evening like this. You can also uses these honey wraps to reduce phlegm and cough.

Food-Grade Oils

Food grade oils are particularly useful for bronchitis because there is a virus or bacterium inside your body that you need to kill. Lemongrass and spearmint can both inhibit viruses and bacteria and they are both palatable. Choose one of these and add only one drop to a cup of tea or glass of water.

Blends for Your Diffuser

  1. Equal amounts of tea tree, clove, and myrrh will address all aspects of your bronchitis if you diffuse it through your bedroom or office during the day.
  1. A night-time blend for your bedroom should contain lavender and marjoram, as these two oils are also sedatives to give you a good night’s rest.

You may also wish to test my other essential oil recipes for your diffuser.

If Natural Bronchitis Treatments Do Not Work

Essential oils can offer a lot of relief for bronchitis, and may even help it clear up completely. But if your symptoms are severe or failed to clear up, visit your doctor for proper diagnosis and medication to ensure the illness does not permanently damage your lungs.

If you are interested to learn more about essential oils you can find useful information in my e-book Magical Aromatherapy. This e-book will help you to discover the power of essential oils and the most effective ways to use them.

Read my other related posts:
1. 13 Powerful Antibiotics That Don’t Require a Prescription
2. This Plant Can Clear Your Sinus Infection and Bronchitis
3. The Best Foods to Cleanse your Lungs

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One Response to The Best Essential Oils to Relieve Bronchitis

  1. Maria says:

    I am Maria Whetzel, I was diagnosed of COPD in July 2014. I was on Albuterol Nebs and levalbuterol to ease the situation as i constantly go out of breath when talking or when walking, I was adviced for Lung Volume reduction surgery (LVRS) because my both upper lobes of the lungs were affected, i was making preparation for this surgery when a friend told me about a herbal doctor from South Africa doctor Ejiro who prepares herbal medicine to cure all kind of diseases including COPD, i contacted Dr Ejiro via his email and bought the herbal medicine I received the herbal medicine through courier service in 7 days, when i received this herbal medicine i used it as prescribed and was totally cured of COPD within 18-20 days of usage, contact Dr Ejiro via his email ejiroherbalcure(at)gmail(dot)com or call/whatsapp on +27617403481 (Write email in right format)

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