10 Amazing Uses of Tea Tree Oil – Plus 10 Tea Tree Oil Recipes
Tea tree oil, also known as melaleuca oil or ti tree oil, is an essential oil with a fresh camphoraceous odor and a colour that ranges from pale yellow to nearly colourless and clear.
Tea tree oil uses are numerous: making homemade cleaning products, diffusing it in the air to kill mold, applying it topically to heal skin issues and using it to treat viral infections. It’s becoming an increasingly popular active ingredient in a variety of household and cosmetic products, including face wash, shampoos, massage oils, skin and nail creams and laundry detergents. Tea tree’s natural antiseptic and anti-inflammatory actions make it an essential oil that should truly be part of everyone’s natural medicine cabinet.
Why is tea tree oil so special?
Tea tree oil has been indicated to cure a wide variety of conditions in both ethnic medical practices and western, more traditional varieties. It’s very popular in naturopathic clinics and is one of the most popular essential oils used for medicinal benefit.
Tea tree oil has been known in the ethno-botanical community as a cure-all for centuries, and it’s lived up to its reputation. The tea tree grows in the tropics, where diseases and bacterial infections flourish. In many natural areas where a disease or illness has emerged as a result of natural development, a panacea or cure typically emerges alongside. Tea tree oil has proven itself as an effective antibiotic cure-all for tons of different diseases.
There are a number of active constituents that make up tea tree essential oil, the main ones being:
- Alpha-pinene, present in pine trees and cannabis, which contributes to the sharp fresh scent of these plants
- Beta-pinene, also present in the prior plants, is used as an insecticide and adhesive
- Sabinene, an anti-fungal antioxidant
- Myrcene is one of the compounds present in cannabis that’s responsible for so many of its various health benefits
- Alpha-phellandrene helps promote immune responses in healthy individuals
- Limonene is found in the peels of limes and lemons and helps with various things
- Cineole is a particularly potent chemical that comes up several times in this article
- Para-cymene which is what gives cumin some of its health benefits
- Terpinolene is one of the strongest antimicrobial agents present in tea tree oil
- Linalool is also present in cannabis and serves many different functions
These compounds work in harmony to prove the antifungal, antimicrobial, health-bolstering effects that tea tree oil is so well-known for.
1.Tea tree oil is a great antibacterial
This is one of the most well-reputed uses of tea tree oil. It fights all sorts of bacterial infections tea tree, and is particularly effective against tropical bacteria which can be tough for the human body to fight by itself.
Because of this, tea tree oil is found in almost all Australian households. It’s proven so effective aet fighting local illnesses in the hot and arid regions down under that most people carry some as a primary remedy to fight against infections.
While tea tree oil should not be consumed in its full concentration, it is possible to take orally in rare cases. It can, in lower concentrations, help to eliminate internal bacteria that can grow in the digestive system, affecting the colon, intestines or stomach.
Conclusion: Bacteria are notorious for causing a whole host of seemingly infinite problems (as well as being very useful for lots of things in the human body.) Bad bacteria can be a nuisance, and tea tree oil has proven effective at fighting countless types of dangerous bacteria.
2. Tea tree oil is good at fighting acne
Tea tree oil has journal emerged as one of the most popular acne-fighting medications these days, and has even shown to be as effective as benzoyl peroxide, an ingredient present in some of the strongest acne-fighting medications.
Tea tree oil can be used in a similar manner, by applying topically on acne-prone area, without risking some of the unpleasant side effects that are commonly associated with using benzoyl peroxide.
Use caution when using tea tree oil to fight acne. Excessive use can lead to dry skin which would cause your body to make an excess of its own oil, ultimately leading to more clogged pores and a worsening of the problem that you’re trying to fight in the first place.
Tea tree oil also makes the skin more sensitive to ultraviolet rays, so if you’re planning to use it to fight acne on areas of your body that are typically exposed, stay out of the sun or cover them up. Don’t use it on your face before going to the beach!
Conclusion: Tea tree oil si one of the safest and most appealing alternatives to pharmaceutical acne medication. It treats acne with a risk of less-severe side effects than those associated with traditional acne medication, and leaves your skin smelling fresh in a completely natural way..
3. Tea tree oil is great for your hair
Tea tree oil is shown to be very helpful for human hair. It’s effective at maintaining the health of your scalp, and, in turn, keeping the hair that emerges strong, healthy, and young-looking. It does this in a way that does no lasting damage, which is nice when compared to some more traditional, medicated pharmaceutical options.
Its benefits are similar to those of coconut oil: tea tree oil discourages the skin from flaking, which would naturally limit the amount of dandruff you experience. It can get rid of lice, and it will help keep your hair strong and shiny.
Tea tree oil’s even helpful in non-visible conditions.
- Some people are cursed with an itchy scalp, even though they don’t have dandruff. This is really annoying and the aggravated scratching of the scalp can lead to premature hair loss.
- Sometimes these itchy conditions are caused by fungi, bacteria or allergic reactions, and tea tree oil is a good contender for fighting all of these problems.
- It’ll prevent the onset of scalp eczema or other more visible conditions, as well.
Tea tree oil, particularly when mixed with peppermint oil, has proven its ability to fight off head lice. It’s not recommended to use tea tree oil to fight off lice or fleas on pets, though, because the skin of animals is often much more sensitive than that of a human.
- Tea tree oil has been studied and proven effective at killing lice, not only in their infantile stages, but in the adult stage as well. This means that you can kill off mature lice, preventing them from laying eggs, as well as kill any lice growing in eggs that may not have hatched yet.
- Another study shows that children treated with typical lice-removing shampoo were only successful in treating their lice about a quarter of the time, where nearly all of the kids who used tea tree oil succeeded.
Two compounds in the oil are known to eliminate lice:
- 1,8 cineole, which is a known insecticide.
- Terpineol, another powerful compound that can sometimes cause allergic reactions in people.
Conclusion: There’s a whole lot of different reasons you might want to start using tea tree oil in your hair. It’s easy enough to mix into a shampoo for thinning hair, and has been proven to fight scalp-related issues ranging from itchy, flaky dandruff to weak hair.
4. Tea tree oil can fight sore throats
As long as you’re careful not to swallow any, you can use tea tree oil to help cure your sore throat.
If you have a sore throat caused by bacteria or viruses, which are what cause the common flu and cold, you can likely eliminate a sore throat right at the source. The bacteria are causing your mucous membranes in your lungs and throat to become inflamed, which makes them sore.
If you garge a solution of tea tree oil and water, you’ll find immediate relief from the pain and possibly from the inflammation.
Another way to reap the benefits of tea tree oil for a sore throat is to put a few drops in a pot of water and bring it to a boil. Being careful, breathe in the steam. This allows the medicinal benefits of the tea tree oil to be fully absorbed into your body without actually being ingested.
Experienced users can drape a towel over the back of their head and around the side of the pots, allowing the steam to become trapped inside. This Makes it much easier to inhale. Do this for 5 to 10 minutes and you’ll feel a significant difference.
Conclusion: Tea tree oil is an underrated and underused method of fighting sore throats that are associated with colds and flus. If you mix the oil in some water and gargle it, or inhale the vapours, you can ease your symptoms. This is a great way to help get rid of sinus infections and stuffy noses.
5. Tea tree oil is great for oral health
As mentioned in the previous few paragraphs, tea tree oil can kill bacteria in your throat.
Logic would tell us that we can use tea tree oil to improve oral health in general, not just in our throat. It can be used in mouthwash and toothpaste to add an antibacterial, anti-inflammatory benefit.
Tea tree oil also slows the development of gums bleeding and slows tooth decay; the Tea Tree Group, an Australian group that extensively studies tea tree oil, has done many studies to prove what a wide range of bacteria tea tree oil can eliminate from the mouth.
If you don’t want to use one of the recipes listed later in the article to make your own mouthwash, you can simply add a drop of tea tree oil onto your toothbrush before brushing your teeth.
Again, be extra cautious – you don’t want to swallow any of the oil when you’re using the mouthwash or toothpaste.
Conclusion: Tea tree oil is a very underrated tool for fighting oral health issues. It can improve your breath by killing bacteria, and also helps to fight off degenerative oral diseases like gum decay.
6. Tea tree oil helps fight eczema
Eczema is an inflammatory disease of the skin that results in red, blotchy and sometimes itchy patches all over the skin.
Tea tree oil is shown to help relieve all sorts of skin inflammation, which means it’s a great cure for eczema as well as psoriasis. It also can reduce the symptoms of these skin conditions by reducing any related swelling or inflammation, either caused by the disease or caused by scratching resulting from discomfort.
To see the best benefits in fighting these two skin diseases, mix five drops of tea tree oil in with about a teaspoon of coconut oil. You can add five drops of lavender oil if you have it, but it will work well without it. Apply this to the affected areas and watch as your symptoms disappear.
Conclusion: People with eczema should consider tea tree oil treatments. It’s effective at eliminating symptoms related to the disease and can actually help curb the progress of the illness and help eliminate it.
7. Tea tree oil is good at fighting fungus
If you’re susceptible to fungal infections, which can include athlete’s foot, toenail fungi, and even ringworm (which, despite its name, isn’t actually a worm – it’s a fungus!)
Tea tree oil can be used in an undiluted form to fight stubborn infections – typically it’s mixed or diluted with other substances because the undiluted oil can lead to side effects, but certain types of fungal infections require a more direct assault.
Tea tree oil was studied in the Australasian Journal of Dermatology for its ability to fight ringworm. Turns out, that ability is great! Ringworm is a very contagious fungal infection that can be spread on contact between people, animals, and even things that infected people come into contact with.
Study subjects who used tea tree oil showed that their ringworm was cured after four weeks in 64% of cases. Not only does tea tree oil prevent the fungus from surviving but it also hinders its ability to spread. You can use it as a spray-on disinfectant to help eliminate the contagions present on any personal items you use.
For highly stubborn infections, consider mixing your tea tree oil with another antifungal such as oregano oil.
Conclusion: Tea tree oil is one of the best natural anti-fungal agents you can find. When used persistently, it can fight off some highly resistant fungal infections including athlete’s foot and ringworm.
8. Tea tree oil kills mold
Naturally, with mold being a type of fungus, one would assume that tea tree oil is an effective mold killer. Mold can be a devastating issue – when inhaled, it can leave spores in the lungs which can lead to deadly infections. Mold grows everywhere, too – in the house, in the car, in your clothes, in the garage. Dealing with it is very important for maintenance of good health.
Tea tree oil can be used for eliminating mold, which is an ever-increasing problem in western households. Tea tree oil can be added to a diffuser and diffused in different areas in your house that are prone to developing mold.
You can also directly spray tea tree oil, diluted with water in a spray-bottle, onto surfaces or linens, shower curtains, laundry machines, an air purifier for mold etc. to eliminate the chance of mold developing. Using tea tree oil in your laundry can help to eliminate any mold spores that may have taken up residence in your trousers.
Conclusion: Tea tree oil’s a fantastic fighter against mold, and can be easily prepared for use in many different situations. Tea tree oil can be sprayed on any surface mold might grow and effectively limit its growth.
9. Tea tree oil is great for dressing wounds
Tea tree oil, particularly when mixed with lavender essential oil, which offers a synergistic enhancement to the tea tree oil, can be used as a great wound dressing salve.
After washing any wounds first with water, you can apply a salve of tea tree and lavender oil on a bandage or a cloth. Tea tree oil’s even been shown to fight staph infections and other antibiotic resistant infections.
Studies have shown that tea tree oil is a powerful disinfectant, as well as being non-poisonous and gentle (though its consumption can lead to unpleasant side effects.) It’s been shown to be twelve times more potent in terms of healing infections than the standard antiseptic used during the time of the study, which was carbolic acid.
Conclusion: Tea tree oil might be able to replace the hydrogen peroxide in your medical kit! It’s been proven to be a powerful antiseptic and it can fight off infections from all sorts of different sources, so applying it to wounds before bandaging them makes a huge difference.
10. Tea tree oil can be used as an insecticide
Considering how effective tea tree oil is at killing fungi and bacteria, it’s no big surprise that it can also kill bugs and insects. Mosquitoes, fleas, and small flies cannot survive ingesting tea tree oil, making it a good mosquito killer, so spraying yourself with it makes an effective deterrent for these pests.
Tea tree oil is absorbed marginally through the skin, and in doing so can actually be effective at fighting internal parasites like tapeworms and roundworms. Ingesting tea tree oil should not be done except in the most medically supervised situations, since it’s toxic at its normal concentration.
One way to do this is to soak cotton balls in tea tree oil and hide them in strategic areas around your house. If you place them well enough, you’ll soon find that bugs won’t want to go anywhere near your house!
You can prevent the growth of fruit flies by sponging compost or garbage cans with tea tree oil.
Conclusion: You can save money on having to buy insect repellant by using tea tree oil, which is proven to be an effective insecticide. It staves off flies, bugs, and spiders, who can’t handle the compounds that constitute the oil.