The benefits of tea tree oil as a topical healing agent are known around the world. This natural herbal remedy began with Australian Aboriginals who used the oil thousands of years ago to help heal skin conditions.
Studies have proven the oil effective for speeding the cure of wounds and skin conditions. In addition, research studies indicate it has the capability of soothing problems with acne, athlete’s foot, dandruff, vaginitis, earaches, boils, and insect bites.
The oil comes from the Melaleuca tree, which is found only in Australia. This tree is not related to the Camellia Sinensis bush from which the tea you drink, including black, green, wu-long or white, is exclusively derived. (It is important to note that the leaves do not make a drinkable tea and can be toxic when consumed and taken internally.)
The essential oil obtained just from the leaves of the plant. Terpenoids, a chemical substance from this natural topical remedy, has antiseptic and antifungal qualities. This component gives the product its antimicrobial qualities.
Benefits include hastening the healing process and reducing the chance of skin scarring, according to clinical trials. Most individuals tolerate it well. In addition, you can mix the oil with water for use as a gargle for colds, sore throats and mouth sores (but be sure not to swallow the mix). It may also be used as a douche for vaginitis.
Be careful when applying the oil around the eyes, nose, mouth or other tender areas, as it may cause a burning sensation. Some people are allergic to the oil, so look out for any skin reactions you experience, including the formation of a rash or consistent, irritating itching.
Always begin with a small amount of the topical for your first application to ensure you can tolerate using the product. As with any type of herbal treatment, it is important to check with your healthcare provider before using tea tree oil to ensure it is appropriate for your specific medical situation.
The oil is readily available for purchase at most natural health retailers and pharmacies. Soaps, creams, ointments, lotions and shampoos may also contain tea tree oil as an ingredient.