ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is a complex neurological disorder that affects approximately 11% of children and 5% of adults It is described as a developmental impairment of the brain’s self-management system, or its executive functions.
It is characterized by challenges maintaining focus and concentration, as well as feeling a lack of agency over where, when, and how to direct and regulate both attention and emotion.
Concurrent symptoms can arise due to the impact of these challenges on our ability to manage the daily aspects of life. These may arise as (but are not limited to): depression, anxiety, stress, low self-esteem, frustration, irritability, aggression, emotional outbursts, and difficulty sustaining stability and connection in relationships and in social settings.
ADHD is widely considered to be a behavior disorder that is biological and possibly genetic, but it is not known exactly how or why it develops.
Why Essential Oils Are Good For ADHD
While essential oils are an incredible ally in managing symptoms, they are not a cure for ADHD. Many need prescription medication to be able to function in their lives.
Additionally, both medications and essential oils work best when used in conjunction with other types of support, such as therapy, and implementing organizational structures into your life.
Essential oils can be an amazing ally in offering support in softening the impact of symptoms of ADHD. This is sometimes all that is needed to gain greater access to internal and external resources that can help explore how to be with yourself and work with your unique brain functioning.
Best Essential Oils For ADHD
1. Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
We operate best in with low stress levels, and lavender is always a potent yet gentle choice to create an optimal environment for other essential oils to act effectively. If we are free from tension and worry, we are much more capable of integrating nourishment from our environment.
Specifically, lavender is great to calm anxiety, alleviate nervousness and irritability, lower stress levels, improve clarity of thinking, and help with ADHD-related sleeplessness.
When ADHD-related emotional sensitivity crops up, simply open the bottle and inhale. Feel deep breaths arrive, feel your mind quiet, your body relax, and your perspective open.
2. Peppermint (Mentha piperita)
Peppermint is great for precise mental focus and energy to be productive, which is hugely helpful for the ADHD brain. It’s also incredibly supportive to the emotional body. Peppermint helps us to digest what is happening in our lives and get in touch with our deepest feelings.
Diffuse 6 drops peppermint to 120 ml water. Do this while writing through an emotional process. This supports you to reach clarity about what you are feeling, and to access the capacity to release what isn’t serving you.
3. Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis)
Rosemary helps with memory, recall, and retention of information. With sense of smell so intertwined with memory, we have an opportunity to help ourselves excel by utilizing this connection.
Rosemary can help you to feel clear, energized, and connected. When you’re frustrated with mental exhaustion or feeling distracted, rosemary will be the kind yet firm friend who says “wake up and clear out! You got this!”
Wear rosemary in a lava stone necklace when there are times you need to concentrate for extended periods of time.
4. Vetiver (Vetiveria zizanioides)
Vetiver is a wonderfully earthy, grounding oil to use when ADHD hyperactivity and overactive mind has you feeling out of your body. A quick inhale of this musky oil will bring you back down into your feet, ridding the disconnectedness to get you out of your head and back in touch with reality.
Vetiver is a balm to the nervous system, at the same time that it stimulates the circulatory system. This combination results in a calm, clear energy that is easily directed towards a point of focus.
Invest in a personal inhaler , as it is worth having vetiver handy for those moments of overwhelm.
5. Roman Chamomile (Anthemis nobilis)
If your speeding mind is filled with angry, vindictive, or negative thoughts, Roman chamomile can help you to release them. When negative thoughts are cleared out, the rest of the mind, body, and spirit more easily comes back into harmony.
Roman chamomile also offers a soothing support in times of emotional distress. Smelling this oil calms the nervous system and helps minimize emotional outbursts associated with ADHD.
It also helps with more easeful release of stuck negative emotions. It’s a wonderfully gentle oil that is great for children suffering from symptoms of ADHD.
Combine 2 drops pf chamomile roman to 5 ml of your carrier of choice, and massage into the back of your neck when distress strikes.
6. Mandarin (Citrus reticulata)
Mandarin helps you shift from a negative outlook to a positive one, which is helpful for people who have been struggling with feelings of overwhelm or defeat in relation to the challenges posed by ADHD.
Depression can quickly set in when a pattern of negative thinking is present. Luckily, mandarin is a great way to lift your spirits and get you back in a mood that can support forward movement and hopefulness.
It’s a good oil for kids, and can especially help with instilling feelings of safety when the outside world feels overwhelming, as it often can for children with ADHD.
Dilute 2 drops mandarin to 10 mls carrier oil, and rub on your pulse points, but keep out of the sun as the oil can be phototoxic.
7. Ylang ylang (Cananga odorata)
Ylang ylang helps with boosting self-esteem by way of making it easier to see the world as a loving place. It helps relieve feelings of depression, and can have a mild euphoric effect.
It relaxes the mind, specifically supporting freedom from incessant, cycling thoughts that can cloud and dim our experience. It helps to bring awareness to and helps to release challenging emotions.
Ylang ylang lowers blood pressure and stress, thus reducing feelings of overwhelm, while also helping you get a good night’s sleep.
Diffuse 6 drops to 120ml water where you spend most of your time to keep thoughts calm and clear.
8. Lemon (Citrus limon)
Lemon is wonderful for mental clarity and focus, especially useful for doing detail-oriented tasks. At the same time, it helps you broaden your perspective and access the ability to see things from many different angles.
Lemon’s effect on the mind also helps you to become aware of negative and limiting thoughts and beliefs.
Inhaling lemon during meditation or while journaling will help you see the thoughts you want to shift, and to replace them with more positive ones. Place 4 drops in a cup of boiling water nearby.
9. Eucalyptus (Eucalytpus globulus)
The cooling effects of eucalyptus are also helpful to soothe challenging emotions, specifically agitation and anger. The fiery uprising that can accompany ADHD-related frustration and sensitivity can at times be overwhelming.
Keeping a bottle of eucalyptus on you to smell when a sudden burst of anger sweeps over you, will not only help you feel better, but support you to maintain healthy relationships as well.
Best Essential Oils Recipes & Blends For ADHD Recipes
Stress Reduction And Sleep Support Massage
- 1 drop each lavender
- 1 drop roman chamomile
- 1 drop ylang ylang
- 1 drop vetiver
- 3 tbsp. jojoba oil
Combine the oils. Use the mixture to gently massage your body, concentrating on areas where you feel the most stress and tension. Often times, stress, anxiety, and emotion related to ADHD can create tension in the shoulders, chest, throat, or back.
Massage is also a wonderful way to calm your nervous system and send yourself off into a deep sleep.
To adapt this massage for children, apply only to the soles of their feet and toes.
Calm Your Child Diffusion Blend
- 1 drop lavender
- 2 drops cedarwood
- 1 drop vetiver
- 85 ml water
Combine all in your diffuser to create a calming atmosphere for your overwhelmed or hyperactive child.
Reclaim The Mind Bath Blend
- 1 drop ylang ylang
- 1 drop vetiver
- 1 drop lemon
- 1 tablespoon vegetable glycerin or raw unfiltered honey
Combine and blend well, add to the bath water and breathe in the relaxing, mind restructuring aroma. This is a good morning bath blend so you can face the day with confidence and calm.
- Essential oils can help with a wide variety of ADHD symptoms. They can help improve focus, concentration, energy levels, sleep quality, mental clarity, cognitive functioning, and complementary practices like meditation.
- Essential oils can also reduce stress, anxiety, depression, negative thinking, overactive thinking, anger, frustration, agitation, overwhelm and emotional outbursts.
- Essential oils are a wonderful choice for children, gentle and able to address symptoms in a way that may be sufficient to keep children off stronger prescription medication.
- Essential oils are not a cure for ADHD. If you are experiencing debilitating symptoms, or are not noticing much improvement, it is recommended to see a medical professional to discuss treatment options.