The Best Essential oils to use for Respiratory support

Images on the news and social media about so many patients on respirators that need support with breathing due to COVID19 can leave us gasping and thinking twice about our own respiratory system. Right of the bat I can tell you that essential oils is not a treatment or a cure for COVID19. There has not been any scientific research done on using essential oils during this pandemic. That being said you can however use essential oils for respiratory support.


Covid19- rescue

Let’s have a look at the best ones to use to help you with your breathing. I realize that this is quite an extensive list and I do get the question of where to begin and how do I know which ones to choose a lot. You do not need all the oils that I am discussing here. I would probably recommend having Eucalyptus, Peppermint and Lavender in your cupboard for starters.

My personal recommendation would always be to use organic essential oil especially for steam inhalation. I have some affiliate links below if you want to order any oil. It just means that I might get a small commission for that with no extra cost to you.


Lemon essential oil


Lemon essential oil contains D-limonene which is a monoterpenol. Lemon oil is great to clear nasal passages and to get rid of phlegm which makes it easier to breath. Acts as a natural immune support and can also help with the movement of our lymphatic system. Lemon oil can reduce a fever and is used to bring relief for throat infections.

Diffuse lemon oil to use it as an air purifier. I need to point out that diffusing lemon oil will not kill any viruses though. Lemon oil is a natural anti-depressant so smelling the lovely citrus fragrance can lift your spirits. Lemon oil has powerful anti-microbial properties that is why Lemon oil can be use as a surface cleaner instead of nasty chemicals.


Basil essential oil

Ocimum basilicum is fit for a king's house due to the fact that it is considered a royal remedy. Basil essential oil is a fantastic oil to use for respiratory issues such as bronchitis, whooping cough, chest infections and respiratory infections because of its expectorant as well as antispasmodic properties.

Basil oil is has antimicrobial properties so diffuse Basil throughout the home to fight the common cold and to prevent the spreading of the common cold to other family members.

Basil oil is both stimulating and a tonic so great to clear your head. I know I certainly need help with clearing my head being cooped up inside 24/7.

Basil oil is high in linalool which make this a great oil to diffuse or do a steam inhalation just before bedtime.

Avoid using basil essential oil during pregnancy




Eucalyptus oil

Eucalyptus oil has anti spasmodic properties which make it very good for coughs and clearing the lungs of phlegm. It works as an expectorant to get rid of harmful microorganisms. It has decongestant properties so fantastic to open up the airways. A powerful oil with antibacterial and antiseptic properties but do remember just because it is a fantastic oil doesn't mean you need lots of it. A couple of drops in a bowl of boiling water is sufficient to do a steam inhalation. In fact if you add too much it will irritate the airways.

Eucalyptus can dilate the blood vessels to allow more oxygen to reach the lungs. One of the chemical properties of Eucalyptus oil is 1.8- cineole which has an anti-inflammatory effects on the airways.

It can be used as a febrifuge, which means you can fight a fever with it because Eucalyptus oil has a cooling effect on the skin. Now, a note of warning here. Aromatherapy is a complementary therapy and should not be used instead of professional medical treatment.



Peppermint Essential oil

The main chemical constituent is Menthol which makes it a very therapeutic oil.

Peppermint oil is a decongestant and expectorant which means it can open the sinuses and the airways. Peppermint can also help ease a sore throat. The antimicrobial properties make this an effective surface cleaner to use at home instead of chemically laden cleaners. Peppermint oil has antispasmodic properties which help with breathing easier than well. It can be used to aid in relieving fevers than well.


Ginger Essential oil

The chemical constituent pinene is the reason for the anti-inflammatory, antiseptic, and expectorant properties of ginger oil.

Ginger oil also is a bronchodilator and can reduce mucous. The anti-inflammotory properties that can alleviate allergy symptoms.


Thyme Essential oil- Thymus Vulgaris

Thyme oil will support the draining of the lymphatic system and is an excellent pulmonary disinfectant which is great for respiratory infections. The Thymol in Thyme oil gives it its anti inflammatory proprties. Thyme oil has been proven to be very effective to get rid of a cough.


Oregano Essential oil

Oregano oil is often referred to as nature's antibiotic. It is because it contains antibacterial and anti fungal properties because of the chemical constituents Carvacrol and Thymol. It helps to support the respiratory system against infections and viruses and is a cough treatment. It can loosen up the mucous and phlegm due to its anti-inflammatory properties.

Very strong word of warning of Oregano oil - it always has be diluted. Never use Oregano oil undiluted on your skin it will burn your skin. Well, don't use any essential oil undiluted on your skin really.


Warning: Do not use Oregano oil when pregnant



Now I do not recommend taking any essential oil internally and I have seen that Oregano oil is one of those that a lot of bloggers and MLM people advocate to use. Oregano oil is a very powerful oil so  you have to be taken care when you use it. It is considered a hot oil. Now there are Oregano supplements and oils and tinctures available but those are not essential oils. You can check out some of those supplements here:


Lavender Essential oil

So the trusted Lavender is also another great essential oil to use for respiratory relief especially if you struggle with hayfever. It is a decongestant and have antispasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties. Lavender oil is also very good to use when a lot of catarrh is present.


Rosemary Essential oil

This is absolutely my go to oil for when I need a pick me up and have to focus. Well, for respiratory health it is a great oil because of its antispasmodic properties so very useful for asthma and bronchitis. It also has antiseptic qualities which makes it very therapeutic for colds, coughs and influenza.


Black Pepper Essential oil

Not a lot of people have Black Pepper essential oil in their collection but it is another one of my favorites. This warming oil has antiseptic and antispasmodic properties and is good to use for coughs with pain in the chest. It is a good choice of oil to support your body if you have a cold or influenza. It can also be effective when you struggle with headaches and mild intermittent fevers.

Once again, do not use essential oils as a replacement for medical treatment. See your medical practitioner if you need to.



Hyssop Essential oil - hyssopus officinalis

Hyssop Essential oil is one of the aromatic herbs that are mentioned in the Bible. This special oil is an excellent tonic for the cardiovascular system and the nervous system. It is also a very beneficial oil for the respiratory system though. It thins mucous, it is a great expectorant and get rid of tough phlegm and it relieves bronchial spasms and eases a tight chest. It gets rid of catarrh and can be helpful as a cough remedy. Hyssop oil is great to support the body with whooping cough, asthma, bronchitis and influenza.

Warning: Do not use during pregnancy. Hyssop oil also can present a level of toxicity because of the pino-camphone. This is a ketone and high levels of ketones can cause convulsions for epilepsy sufferers.


Tea tree Essential oil

Last but not the least. Tea tree oil is an allrounder to be used for all three categories of infectious diseases - bacteria, fungi and viruses. Tea tree can assist the body in fighting a cold and influenza. Steam inhalations are very helpful to get rid of catarrh and open the sinuses.


How can I use these oils?

1. Topically

Dilute the oils with a carrier oi such as Almond oil, or Grapeseed oil .

For 25 ml of carrier oil I would use 3 drops of an essential oil.

Mix it in a glass bottle

Apply to the bottom of the feet, the chest and abdomen and/ or back.


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2. Diffuse them in a diffuser

Put a couple of drops in a diffuser and diffuse for an hour or two at a time.

Warning: diffusing essential oils can contribute to poor air quality. Indoor air quality can be affected by things such as body odours, VOC's found in cleaning products and other household items such as new carpets. Molds and fragrances from deodorants and perfumes and air fresheners can also contribute to poor indoor air quality especially if we spend 24 hours of everyday inside. So be very careful not to overdo your diffusing of essential oils. Run your diffuser for an hour or two and then turn it off and run it again a few hours later for an hour or two. Don't run it the entire day and make sure you invest in a good quality diffuser.


3. Steam inhalations

This is a very effective method to use essential oils when it comes to respiratory issues. Breathing in the tiny water droplets it can actually go deeper into your lungs and get rid of the phlegm and mucous and open up the airways.

It is a very simple method:

Pour boiling water in a bowl, add a couple of drops of essential oil of choice. I would not add more than three drops in total in the water. Put the bowl in the basin of your vanity so that it is safe and secure and you don't risk burning yourself. Throw a towel over your head and breath in the vapor for at least 2 minutes.

4. Castor Oil packs

Using a Castor oil pack is another great and effective way to apply essential oils topically. Essential oils can be mixed in with the Castor oil to reap the benefits of using a Castor oil pack.




Remedy recipes


Lemon essential oil

Lavender essential oil

Peppermint essential oil

Mix together and rub it under your feet


Eucalyptus essential oil

Peppermint essential oil

Thyme essential oil

Ginger essential oil

Dilute 3 drops of each oil in 25 ml carrier oil and store in a glass container. Rub some of this mixture on your chest and neck to open the airways.

Warning - please follow your medical practitioner's advice when it comes to your asthma plan and what to do in case of and asthma attack. This remedy is just for supportive measures. DO not replace your medical treatment with essential oils.


Eucalyptus essential oil

Peppermint essential oil

Thyme essential oil

Lemon essential oil

1/4 cup almond oil or grape seed oil

1/4 cup coconut oil

1/4 cup grated beeswax

Place the almond/grapeseed oil, the coconut oil and the beeswax in a glass container in a pan with water to melt it down.

Remove from the heat when it is melted and let it cool down for a bit.

Add 5 drops of each of the essential oils to the oil mixture and stir it in,

Let it cool down completely

Rub the mixture on the chest and sinus areas - cheekbones and forehead a few times a day.



Drink plenty of liquids


Drinking plenty of liquids is a great way assist the body to get rid of phlegm and thins the mucous. I can recommend a few that will help to support the respiratory system. Please check out some wonderful and beneficial teas here.


Hyssop tea

Yarrow tea

Astragalus Root tea

Echinacea root tea

Immunity boost tea






Take care of you so that you can take care of those you love


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