How Essential Oils Support Neurodivergent People

By Samantha McCracken
Updated: June 11, 2021

The essential oil support categories for neurodiversity

The first question most people have when they hear the idea of using essential oils in their neurodiverse home is “How are essential oils going to help me?”

This is a very broad question, as there are hundreds of essential oils and essential oil blends all with the potential to help people in different ways.

So every time I see an article titled ‘Essential Oils for Autism’ or  ‘Essential Oils for ADHD’ I inwardly cringe because, unfortunately, it’s just not that simple.

In the previous chapter we learnt about the benefits of essential oils and the seven ‘support categories’ I created to classify essential oils according to the support they offer.

I created these support categories to give you a better idea about what benefits you should expect when using essential oils in your neurodiverse home.

Out of these seven categories I believe there are four key essential oil support categories for neurodiversity based on several key supports neurodivergent people often seek.

They are:

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Essential oils that exhibit calming and grounding properties.

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Essential oils known to support a good night’s sleep.
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Essential oils that may reduce uneasy feelings, energise and uplift, or promote a positive outlook.
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Essential oils that invigorate your mind and restore your focus.

You will see these categories displayed throughout this website and its educational material to help you identify the essential oils and blends that will offer you the best support for your neurodiverse home.

Any essential oil or blends may belong to one or more category and there are even essential oils I like to call ‘super supports’ because they offer support from all four categories.

How do essential oils support the body?

An essential oil’s supportive benefits are the result of a number of factors including its chemical composition. By their chemical make-up, we can classify essential oils as having either calming or uplifting effects on the body.

Each essential oil group has specific constituent profiles known to elicit distinct emotional responses.

calming and reassuring
grounding and balancing
comforting and soothing
Alcohols & Keytones
energising and calming
uplifting and revitalising
Ethers & Esters
renewing and intriguing

Floral essential oils are composed primarily of monoterpene alcohols, which exhibit toning and calming properties.

Treeherb, and grass essential oils are rich in sesquiterpenes, esters, and oxides, which are grounding, soothing, and renewing.

Mint essential oils have high concentrations of ketones, which are energizing and uplifting.

Citrus oils are generally composed of limonene and beta-pinene, monoterpenes with strong uplifting characteristics.

Phenols, the primary chemical constituents of many spice essential oils, are recognized for their warming properties.

These properties and characteristics enable essential oils to offer excellent support with:

  • the calming and grounding of emotions
  • resting, relaxing and getting a good night’s sleep
  • maintaining a positive mood and attitude
  • restoring and maintaining focus.

Consider using essential oils in your neurodiverse home if your or your child’s challenges fall into any of these categories.

If you want to delve more into the nitty-gritty science of essential oils and their benefits, then consider reading The doTERRA Essential Oil Chemistry Handbook.

What's next?

Now that you know the four key support categories of essential oils for neurodiversity, let’s take a look which essential oils belong to which categories.

Click on the ‘Next Chapter’ link below to check out the essential oils I use and why.