Tea tree oil, named because of its initial usage of making tea with the leaves of the tree, has a long and varied history of its usage and properties. The usage of tea tree has been known to have started by the Australian aboriginals who utilized the leaves for numerous uses and are known to have first extracted the oil from tea tree.
Melaleuca alternifolia is supposed to yield a lot of benefits in the form of essential oil. The leaves and twigs of tea tree is distilled in steam or water to extract this beneficial oil.
There are about 98 compounds present in tea tree out of which the main compound which has been found to yield maximum benefit is terpinen-4-ol which has been found to have antiseptic and anti-fungal properties.
Australian aboriginals have been known to use the tea tree leaves to treat wounds and skin infections. Modern research has shown the oil to benefit in healing warts, wounds, burns, boils, in the treatment of dandruff, abscess, herpes etc.
Tea tree oil has shown great results in the removal of acne, scars and other spots of the skin. It is an excellent product to treat skin infections and rashes.
Respiratory ailments such as bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis, cold and whooping cough have been found to have reduced after the usage of tea tree oil. It has also been known to boost immunity in the body and prevent fever, cold and cough.
Because of the anti-fungal property of the tea tree essential oil, it has been known to help in treatment of athletes foot and candida.
Also because of its anti-viral properties, tea tree oil helps combat infectious diseases like chicken pox, measles, flu etc.
A few drops of tea tree oil mixed with water also acts as an excellent cleaning agent.
Tea tree oil has also been known to keep fleas away, so adding a few drops near your pet’s living area will help keep them flea-free.
Like all good things even tea tree oil should be used in moderation and with safety. There are some side effects associated with tea tree oil so a little precaution and test is necessary before using the product.
Tea tree oil should be administered on young children LESS THAN 6 MONTHS OLD
Research has shown that tea tree oil might effects the hormonal levels of humans. Pregnant and nursing women are strictly restricted from the usage of this oil.
Some people might be allergic to the oil as well so a little patch test should be done before application on the skin.
Consumption of tea tree oil is not recommended at all because of the fear of causing gastrointestinal problems even in small doses. Like any medicines, consultation with an expert is prudent before using any alternative medicine.
By: Bhaswati Das
The post was first published on the author’s blog