Eucalyptus is a general name for up to 750 different species of the genus Eucalyptus. Approximately 500 of those species produce Essential Oils.
The 3 following species are some of the main essential oil producing species.
Eucalyptus globulus also called Blue Gum eucalyptus
Eucalytpus smithii known as gully gum
Eucalyptus radiata known as narrow leaf peppermint gum
If you are interested in knowing the chemical compositions of these oils, there are many reputable books that list the components in each species.
Eucalyptus Essential Oil is a wonderful addition to any home remedy health kit especially at this time of year.
If you are suffering from a lingering cough, bronchitis, sinusitus, or are in the midst of a full blown cold or are in the presence of someone who is experiencing these symptoms, you may want to add the use of Eucalyptus Essential oil to your arsenal of home remedies .
There are a number of different ways that you can utilize this oil.
One of the simplest is to add a few drops to your pillow before you sleep. (The pure essential oil has no fat content so will not stain your sheets or pillow case). This will help you breath and help clear out your nasal passages.
You may also add a few drops of oil (2-3% dilution) to a quarter size amount of carrier base oil (could be coconut, olive, or almond, etc) in your palm and rub onto your chest, your back, your lymph nodes just under your jaw line and on your sacrum.
Another effective way to utilize the oil as a home remedy is in a oil diffuser which will effectively keep the oil diffused in the air of your room or home.
When you are having a difficult time breathing and you have a sense that your cold is moving to your chest or lungs, then a great treatment is to add a few drops of Eucalyptus to a bowl of steaming hot water and drape a towel over your head and inhale the oil and the steam. (Best to keep your eyes closed). Also best to use filtered water so that you are not inhaling chlorine. You will most likely feel the healing benefits of the inhaled Eucalyptus take effect almost immediately.
You may need to blow your nose some more and you may develop a bit of a productive cough.
Remember that Essential Oils are very concentrated plant material. They can be powerful medicine so they need to be treated with the respect they deserve. This is what also can make them very effective when you are in need of something with a little more pow to the punch when you are suffering from a lingering cough or you sense your cold is taking a turn for the worse.
As per usual you need to use due diligence when working with Essential Oils. Eucalyptus oil can be toxic when ingested.
About the Author
Jane Lightbody Thomas is the Owner of Healing Connections, and uses essential oils in her home and encourages her clients to play with the use of them in their own self care program. Read more about her here.