How long should you diffuse essential oils? I have been asked a number of times. Frankly, this can be quite a controversial topic in the field of aromatherapy.
With so many different types of diffusers available, it can be hard to know how long you should use them once filled with water and essential oils. Some diffusers are even built to run all day.
Diffusing essential oils is a great way to enjoy their therapeutic benefits, like uplifting your mood!
Why Diffuse Essential Oils?
Many therapeutic benefits can be gained when diffused essential oils molecules are inhaled. Diffusing essential oils helps to purify the air, fighting off sickness and bacteria. It also creates an energizing or calming atmosphere, which can be helpful when you're working or trying to relax.
Diffusion is such a great way to use essential oils for:
- Scenting a room
- Cleaning the air with lemon
- Creating a space for relaxation and peace
- Boosting immunity with eucalyptus
- Promoting energy, focus and concentration
- Calming stress and anxious feelings
- Supporting the respiratory system
- Fighting chest congestion, sinus issues, colds and flu
- Calming upset stomach
Diffusion is also a great way to let multiple people (for example, your household members) benefit from the same essential oils.
How Long Should You Diffuse Essential Oils?
The main goal for diffusing is to fill a room with essential oil molecules so you can enjoy the benefits listed above but without overwhelming the area or your nose with scent.
Many trained aromatherapists suggest diffusing for 30 minutes at a time.
However, if you look around online, especially on social media, you’re going to find that there are people who advocate diffusing all day every day.
There are some definite problems with the thoughts of diffusing all day every day.
First, this much diffusion can increase your chances of having a sensitivity reaction to an essential oil. If you experience a sensitivity reaction, you may find that you are no longer able to use the oil you’ve become sensitive to at all.
Second, diffusing constantly is actually a waste of essential oils because they aren’t going to provide any additional benefit, and you’re going to become nose blind to the scent so you won’t even be enjoying the aroma any more.
Here is a quote from Robert Tisserand, founder of the Tisserand Institute:
“Intermittent diffusion is much more effective, as well as being safer, than continuous diffusion. Intermittent means 30-60 minutes on, then 30-60 minutes off. This is because our body, especially our nervous system, habituates after this length of time."
"With continuous diffusion, while benefits do not increase, there is evidence that the body becomes stressed in various ways. However, very low levels of diffusion – so the essential oil is barely noticeable – are fine anywhere, for any length of time.” ~ Robert Tisserand
Safety Precautions When Diffusing Essential Oils
When diffusing essential oils, it is important to take safety precautions to prevent any adverse reactions or harm from happening. Here are some tips for diffusing essential oils safely:
• Keep essential oil bottles out of reach of pets and children.
• Start slowly when introducing a new oil – see how you react to the scent before diffusing the oil. If using on skin, test the oil on a small patch of skin first before applying topically.
• Avoid direct contact with skin or eyes — if contact does occur, rinse the area with water immediately.
• Use an appropriate size diffuser – follow the manufacturer’s size recommendations to ensure the right amount of oil is being dispersed in the air.
• Make sure you diffuse in adequately ventilated areas; avoid keeping the diffuser in a closed space such as a bathroom or bedroom for too long.
• Consult your healthcare provider first before using any essential oils if you are pregnant, nursing, have chronic health conditions, etc.
By taking these basic safety precautions, you can ensure that you are enjoying and benefiting from your essential oil diffusing practice without any worries!
Frequently Asked Questions About Diffusing Essential Oils
Here are some FAQs on topics you should consider before you start diffusing, as well as tips for getting the most out of your diffuser.
Can You Diffuse Essential Oils Every Day?
Yes, essential oils can be diffused everyday. It is best to use intermittent diffusion, diffusing for 30 to 60 minutes and then off for 30 to 60 minutes.
I think it is important to take note of how you respond to diffusing essential oils. Are they effective for what you desire?
I personally like to diffuse for one hour at a time and I do this about 2-4 times per day, depending on what I have going on.
How Long Can You Leave a Diffuser on?
There is no one definitive answer to this question. The amount of time you should diffuse essential oils will depend on a number of factors, including the type of oil being diffused, the size of the room, and the strength of the diffuser. In general, it is advisable to diffuse essential oils for 30 to 60 minutes at a time.
How Long Do Essential Oils Last in a Diffuser?
The lifespan of essential oils in a diffuser will decrease because they are mixed with water. It is best to diffuse the essential oils and water in your diffuser within a few days. If it has been longer than a few days, it may be best to dump the remaining mixture out and start fresh.
How Many Drops of Essential Oil in Diffuser?
If you're new to essential oils, you may be wondering how many drops of oil you should use in your diffuser. It really depends on the size of your diffuser and the essential oils you're using. In general, I like to use 6 to 10 drops for a 100 to 200 ml diffuser. If you are using strong essential oils (like ylang ylang) or if you are diffusing around a child you may need less.