How to Use Essential Oils for ADHD-A Safe Alternative

In today’s world ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) seems very common.  Many parents are reluctant to use the prescription drugs typically given to children to help control behaviors.  Luckily there are alternatives.  If you’re interested in other ways to help your child you may be wondering how to use Essential Oils for ADHD.


According to the Centers for Disease Control approximately 11% of children ages 7-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD.  According to the same report only about 4% of adults have ADHD but that may be due to low diagnosis.  In a country of with about 49.6 million children in that age bracket it accounts for about 5.4 million children!  That’s a lot of children being prescribed drugs such as Ritalin and Adderall, and lot of money going in the pockets of big pharma, and a lot of potentially unnecessary side effects


Novartis, the manufacturers of Ritalin, list the side effect of the drug as: (get ready, it’s a long list!)

  • anxiety
  • agitation
  • nervousness
  • insomnia
  • loss of appetite
  • stomach pain
  • weight loss
  • dizziness
  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • heart palipatations
  • headaches
  • vision problems
  • increased blood pressure
  • skin rash
  • psychosis
  • numbness
  • tingling
  • increased heart rate
  • coldness in hands or feet

The list for Adderall is very similar with the addition of:

  • diarrhea
  • constipation and
  • hair loss!

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want any of those side effects and I certainly don’t want to inflict them on my child!


Fortunately there are safe, relatively inexpensive alternatives to prescription drugs.  When used consistently, essential oils can be effective to decrease the behaviors associated with ADHD.   When treating my own daughter I prepared a mixture of a 1/2  gallon distilled water and 5-10 drops each of Vetiver, Cedarwood, Cypress, Rosemary and Lavender.  I used this nightly in a diffuser in her room  .  After about 3 days of use she could notice a feeling of calm and focus at school, as well as feeling like she was more rested.  I wanted to make sure she was also able to achieve this feeling throughout the day if she happened to be in a situation where she was either bored or stressed so I made her a roller ball with the same essential oils.  I did replace the Lavender (which promotes sleep) with Orange (which promotes wakefulness).  I used fractionated coconut oil as a carrier in the roller ball instead of distilled water.  (Fractionated oil is processed to produce a very stable oil with long shelf life) She carries the roller ball in her pencil pouch and rubs it on her inner wrists and or neck pulse points whenever she feels the need.

Using this simple Essential Oil therapy I was able to help my daughter manage her ADHD symptoms and achieve higher success in school and make her feel more in control.  I’ve been thankful to save her the misery of the side effects of the prescription drugs and myself the cost!  Plus, it smells wonderful!!

Feel free to comment below and let me know what your experience with ADHD has been.









10 thoughts on “How to Use Essential Oils for ADHD-A Safe Alternative

  1. Wow! You’re one smart cookie! I would’ve honestly never thought about replacing lavender with orange to promote wakefulness! It seems like these essential oils are no joke! Amazing!

  2. This is great information ! I never thought to use essential oils for treating adhd, but I am sure it works ! Essential oils are so powerful and the blend that you present seems perfect for a good night of sleep ! I will present this alternative to my friend who tries to avoid prescription drugs… Do you have a suggestion of a diffuser and where to get empty roller balls ? Thanks for posting this information.

    1. Thanks Victoria! There are so many great uses for Essential Oils, I plan to share more regularly so please check back! I got my diffusers and roller balls from Amazon.

  3. I am always glad to see natural alternatives being used instead of pharmaceuticals. This is a great post to let us know what kind of options are out there. I would be really curious to see any evidence you have of these essential oils reducing ADHD symptoms. Maybe you can include this in a future post?

    1. Thanks Celeste! In my own daughter we saw her grades go from C’s and D’s in the 3rd quarter to A’s and B’s in the 4th. And this was really the only change we made. Not very scientific but it was a drastic enough change for me to believe in the power of EO’s.

  4. I am so impressed with this post. I cannot believe that using Essential Oils could help ADHD and even to improve a child’s grade. Now I am a believer.
    My grandson is having problems settling down and improving his grades. He has not been diagnosed with ADHD but I am going to take my chances with Essential Oils. I will do some research to find the right oils to buy.
    Thank you for this post.

    1. Thanks Luna, I’ll be posting reviews of various oils over time so please check back! Many people choose to add peppermint essential oil to blends related to attention, my daughter has a personal aversion to it, so I omitted it. I hope you find some relief for your grandson!

  5. I appreciate you sharing this info. My son has not been diagnosed but has some symptoms of ADHD. I will give your suggestions a try. Much better than chemicals. Thank you

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