This post was originally written by my friend, Tara Rayburn. (She is a distributor for Young Living oils. I am partial to these essential oils nowadays for their quality and affordability, but if you're interested in YL, contact Tara here.) In this post she helps us understand the basics and beyond.
Remember when doctors used to make house calls carrying a “little black bag?” Yeah, honestly, I don’t even have a memory of that either. I did hear about those days from my parents and grandparents, as well as in old movies.
Whether or not you have a family, or just came from one, chances are from time to time you need supplies for life’s little emergencies.
Since the dawn of time, Mom’s have had to think on the fly when someone is sick, wounded or otherwise in a bad way. I’m not a doctor, nutritionist or healthcare practitioner, nor do I want to be. However, over the years I’ve collected a series of great items to have on hand for a variety of issues. I used to call it my Essential First Aid Kit, but really it’s more of a portable Mom’s Medicine Cabinet.
Now I like to call it my Healthy Response Kit
I teach a class called “Cactus Zach’s Medicine Rack” in honor of my son who just seems to have interesting things happen to him, which causes me to get pretty creative with ways to help. This along with many other experiences I’ve had gave birth to this information that I’m going to share with you.
Here is a guide to creating your own little black bag — a Family First Aid Kit!
There are some basics, some guidelines and some shortlists for specific situations. My intention is to not to diagnose or replace a doctor’s care, but to empower and inspire those of you who are healthy ripples in your community. These are firsthand accounts that I have experienced. See the end of the post for resources to check out on your own. People need to be proactive in their own health and not just rely or blame doctors or medicine. We are all in this together and can help each other be a part of building real health in our world.
Family First Aid Kit Supply Basics
- Make up bag/box. These are nice because they come in a variety of sizes, have padding and a lot of compartments. You can get them fairly inexpensively at a larger store like Target.
- 1 container of chicken broth.
- Epsom salt — can get at any store. (1 lb boxes fit nicely in the bag or you can buy it in bulk and put some in a smaller container.)
- Castor oil
- Hot water bottle
- Neti pot for nasal cleansing
- Sea salt for neti pot and for gargling
- Small spray bottle (glass preferred)
- Insect Shield Blend Essential Oil for sterilization or Colloidal Silver (I like these since they don’t sting)
- Tiny empty glass essential oil bottles
- Bandages or gauze
- Cotton swabs and cotton balls
- little pocket knife with tweezers and scissor attachments
Family First Aid Kit Essential Oil Basics
Therapeutic Grade or Food Grade only. Know your source and educate yourself on the basics. Do not use aroma grade oils or oils with synthetic additives.
Ways to Use Essential Oils:
Topical Application, Inhalation, Internally (with a carrier oil) and in Cleaning
Essential Oil Terms Used:
- Single Oil: One essential oil
- Oil Blends: Combinations of essential oils. Sometimes mixed with carrier oils.
- Carrier Oil: Not an essential oil but a massage oil or mild oil like olive oil or coconut oil used to dilute or seal in an essential oil. Favorite Carrier Oils: Castor, Olive, Coconut, Almond, Kukui, Apricot (remember – these are NOT essential oils)
- NEAT: Can be applied without a carrier oil
- GRAS: Generally regarded as safe
The essential oils:
- Insect Shield: Non-Stinging Antiseptic, Insect Bites/Stings, Sinus Relief
- Lavender: Burns, Stress Relieving, Sleep aid, Antibacterial
- Germ Fighter: Highly Anti-microbial, My “Flu-Shot in a Bottle”, Mold killing
- Frankincense: Allergy Support, Skin Support, Spiritual Strength, Health Support
- Lemon: Digestive Support/Liver Cleansing, Mood Lifting, Antiseptic
- Let It Go: Stress Relieving, Calming. Great also for kids and animals
- Self Esteem: Stress Relieving, Courage Building, My Chiropractor in a Bottle
- Digest Aid: Major Digestive Supporting, Food poisoning/Traveler’s Tummy
- Peppermint: Digestive Supporting, Food poisoning/Traveler’s Tummy, Motion Sickness, Mental Alertness
Special Really Nice Extras:
- Hand Held Massager with Heat and attachments.
- Colloidal Silver
- Gelatin Capsules
- Brush for dry brushing. This stimulates the lymphatic system and promotes the body’s own healing/cleansing.
- Herbal Tea without caffeine. Especially one with mild cleansing support like Milk Thistle and Nettles. There are also tinctures and homeopathy available for specific symptoms. Best to work with an MD also trained in natural remedies or an ND.
- Raw Local Honey
General Approach and All Purpose Steps:
When someone is very symptomatic there is usually an element of physical or emotional overload and/or toxic build up and the body’s attempt to release it happening. This can be caused by many things, and can be alleviated by many things that have cleansing effects on the body. The idea is to lesson the body burden, to help it detox and to reduce stress. Instead of thinking in terms of “stopping symptoms” try thinking how can we help the body rid itself of the things dragging it down.
Becoming a student of products and practices that support the following systems can be one of the most powerful things you can do for yourself and your family:
- Digestive System Support: You are what you Eat, Absorb, Assimilate and Excrete!
- Circulatory System/Lymphatic System: Help the body help itself through creating healthy circulation and elimination of wastes.
- Stress Management: Remember, emotions can be just as much a factor in health as physical or environmental issues. Your calmness and relaxed attitude can be wonderfully contagious not just to the person in distress, but to their family as well. (Check out Kelly's post: Lowering stress by realigning your priorities.)
Special Items for Specific Symptoms
Respiratory Complaints (lungs):
- Castor Oil or other carrier oil (massage oil)
- Cool Mist Diffuser
- Hot Water Bottle
- Essential Oils for Lung Support – Eucalyptus (if tolerated)and Respir-Aid. ***If child is under 3 years old put oils on feet or diffuse, NOT on chest.
- Steam Shower with Massage and Patty Back (cupping hands and gentle yet firm cupping/patting on the back)
- Practice layering: Essential oil, then massage oil then hot water bottle on top to drive oils in.
- Neti pot
- Distilled Water (The best choice to use with a neti pot. Do NOT rinse your nasal passages with polluted tap water. Click here to read about two neti pot deaths due to tap water.)
- Castor Oil for nasal swabbing
- Cotton swabs for nasal swabbing (Organic swabs are best for mucous membrane areas).
- Cool mist diffuser for essential oils (eucalyptus and peppermint are both good for sinus problems)
- Germ Fighter Essential Oil Blend. Add a 2 drops to 2 ounces of water and drink all at once for quick relief. Or add a couple of drops to your favorite tea (made with honey to further soothe your throat), or add several drops to your drinking bottle and sip throughout the day.
- Sea Salt. Mix 1 teaspoon salt to 8 ounces of warm water and gargle several times a day to reduce swelling.
- Non-sugar laden lozenges — here are some organic cough drops (Or make your own hot tottie with warm water, honey, lemon juice, and if you're up to it, do like the old days: they added a splash of whiskey)
- Hot Water Bottle
- Castor Oil
- Digest-Aid or Peppermint Essential Oil
- Mix together a small amount of castor oil with a few drops of Digest-Aid or Peppermint and rub over abdominal area, then place the hot water bottle carefully over the area to help drive the oils in.
- Castor Oil, or other favorite massage oil.
- Kukui Oil from Hawaii is great for eczema.
- Epsom Salt Bath Soak—Mix together epsom salt (1 lb), Baking Soda (1 lb) and 5-10 drops of lavender or eucalyptus essential oil
- Rub castor oil over body after. You can add essential oil to that mix, too. Just a head's up: castor oil is very, very thick. Put on an old pair of sweats or PJs to keep from getting oil on everything around you).
Emotion/Stress Related Complaints:
- Foot Massager or massage by hand. This is the #1 approach I’ve used in many situations, especially when you don’t know what else to do.
- Lavender, Let It Go, or Citrus Burst
- Peppermint or Pain Aid topically
- Peppermint and Copaiba Oil Capsule (3 drops of each–always use carrier oil when taking essential oils internally)
Menstruation Related Complaints:
- Clary Sage across the abdomen, layered with castor oil or other massage oil and then hot water bottle over top.
- Rest with feet up.
Spiritual Strength and Protection:
- Frankincense, diffused, topically or however you can.
- Powerful Prayer especially with 2 or more people. 🙂
- Essential Oils Pocket Reference or Essential Oils Desk Reference.
- The Nourishing Broth book, or see this “How to Video”.
- Any essential oils books by David Stewart
- The Complete Book of Essential Oils and Aromatherapy: Over 600 Natural, Non-Toxic and Fragrant Recipes to Create Health – Beauty – a Safe Home Environment
- Essential Gluten-Free Recipes by Tara Rayburn and Mary Vars
- Suffering from eczema? I've heard this book, The Eczema Diet, is really good.
- Nutrition 101: Choose Life by Debra Reybern, ND
- Weston A. Price Foundation
- If you are new to essential oils and don't know where to start, this kit is a great way to dive into essential oils, and it has many of the oils suggested in the post. It's an excellent value, too!
- Have you seen this new printable with more ways to help yourself be well? Top 25 ways to boost your health with apple cider vinegar!