The tea tree or the Australian tea tree is often misunderstood for the tea plant we all know and love to drink the brewed. However, this one is a bit different and comes with tons of benefits of tea tree oil, tea tree or the melaleuca tree got its name in the eighteenth century when the sailors brewed a tea-like beverage from the leaves of a tall shrub which smelled like nutmeg. The leaves of the tea tree have glands that secrete oil when subjected to higher temperatures.
It’s known for its medicinal properties and offers relief over various problems that all of us are going through. These problems include acne, cough and getting your hands on some cost-efficient anti-septic substitutes. Today, one can get a 100% undiluted tea tree oil and can also find its traces in different skincare and personal care products. The best part, it’s extremely affordable and there are tons of brands in the market today, selling their versions bundled with other natural products.
1. Anti-Bacterial – Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil has been used for centuries in Australia due to its healing abilities, especially ailments related to skin. Studies suggest that tea tree oil attacks the cell wall of microbes thus getting its anti-bacterial properties.
2. Acne – Tea Tree Oil for Skin
Out of all of the skin diseases, tea tree oil works as an elixir for acne. Where the common treatment used for acne “benzoyl peroxide” treats acne much faster, the tea tree oil shows minimum to no side effects on the user. In a study, it was shown that people who used 5% benzoyl peroxide solutions had side effects like itchiness and redness in the skin while the people who used tea tree oil didn’t get any of the side effects.
Tea tree oil is also known for its anti-fungal properties. It is used in the treatment of many fungal infections especially ringworms and infections in the genital area. Many use it in treating vaginal infections and other parts where the skin is much more delicate as its antifungal action is not very harsh on the skin and it also helps in retaining the moisture of the area.
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4. Cradle Cap and Dandruff in Infants
Cradle cap is a common condition in which white or yellow scales are formed on the scalp of the infants.
This can also happen due to excessive oil secretion and tea tree oil due to its volatility is useful in this condition. Another one of the benefits of tea tree oil is that it is super useful in treating dandruff in infants. However, do remember to do a swatch test on your baby’s skin before fully committing to this regime.
5. Head Lice – Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
Head lice are one of the most adaptive species on the earth and they are becoming more resistant to the treatment, therefore experts are looking onto essential oils for an alternative. So far tea tree oil is very effective in killing lice, eradicating 100% of lice within the first 30 minutes of application.
6. Oral Health
Gone are the days when you were asked that “does your toothpaste has salt in it?” A new study has shown that a gel containing tea tree oil may be beneficial for those suffering from chronic gingivitis an inflammatory gum condition. Other research showed that a type of bacteria that causes bad breath can also be treated with tea tree oil.
7. Contact Dermatitis
A type of eczema, caused when the skin comes in contact with any type of irritants or allergens. This is another one of the benefits of tea tree oil in which it is found much more effective than conventional treatment like zinc oxide etc when it comes to suppressing allergic contact of dermatitis.
Tea tree oil has excellent anti-inflammatory properties due to its high concentration of terpinene-4-ol. Studies have found that terpinene-4-ol works like magic in suppressing inflammatory activity in the infected area, hence it’s also great for treating wounds, scars and cuts.
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Word of Caution
1. Although there are numerous benefits of tea tree oil there is some caution which should be kept in mind while using it. Tea tree oil is found to be poisonous if swallowed (however it can be used as a gel in low concentrations to treat many oral problems) therefore it is advised not to swallow tea tree oil.
2. Tea Tree Oil should never be applied directly, do remember to dilute it with another lighter essential oil or even with moisturizer when you’re applying to fight acne.
These were some of the benefits of tea tree oil and how it treats problems in every department, from oral hygiene to skincare to hair care. So, the next time you’re planning to restock your essentials, do remember to pick up a bottle of this elixir and it will become an important part of your regime.