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Tea tree oil quick review
Botanical description: a yellow or green-tinged essential oil with a fresh camphoraceous odour, extracted from the leaves of the tree Melaleuca alternifolia.
Active constituents: terpinen-4-ol, 1,8-cineole, gamma-terpinene, p-cymene and other turpenes.
Health benefits: used extensively as an anti-microbial, antiseptic, disinfectant, deodorizern antispasmodic, diaphoretic, expectorant, and stimulant.

Dosage: for minor skin wounds, insect bites and stings, and irritations, cleanse the wound and apply one or two drops of tea tree oil two or three times daily.
Side effects: skin rashes, temporary dryness, itching, redness, irritation, inflammation of the corners of the mouth, and eczema.
 
Tea Tree Oil by Natures Sunshine
Tea Tree Oil comes from the melaleuca tree, which is native to Australia and has long been used by the Aborigines. Legend has it the tree was first introduced to Europeans by Captain Cook, who made tea from the leaves while on a voyage to Australia. The oil is extracted from the tree's leaves through a special distillation process. Tea tree's beneficial properties make it a popular ingredient in shampoos, creams, skin cleansers and other external cosmetic applications. The compounds in tea tree oil benefit the skin and are non-irritating. The oil contains several important compounds, including terpines, cymones, pinines, terpinen-4-ol, sesquiterpenes and sesquiterpene alcohols. Tea tree oil is recommended for external use only in poultices and other skin-cleansing applications. Click here for more information.
 

Tea tree oil


Tea tree oil is a yellow or green-tinged essential oil with a fresh camphoraceous odour. It is extracted from the leaves of the tree Melaleuca alternifolia which is native to the northeast coast of New South Wales, Australia. The oil is claimed to have benefical cosmetic and medical properties (including antiseptic and antifungal action). The plant genus Melaleuca is part of the myrtle family Myrtaceae and presently contains about 170 species. Most are endemic to Australia but example occur in the wild as far afield as Indonesia, New Guinea, New Caledonia and even Malaysia. They are shrubs and trees growing (depending on species) to 2-30 m tall, with flaky, exfoliating bark. The leaves are evergreen, alternately arranged, ovate to lanceolate, 1-25 cm long and 0.5-7 cm broad, with an entire margin, dark green to grey-green in colour. The flowers are produced in dense clusters along the stems, each flower with fine small petals and a tight bundle of stamens; flower colour varies from white to pink, red, pale yellow or greenish. The fruit is a small capsule containing numerous minute seeds. Melaleuca alternifoli has a papery bark, pointed needle-like leaves, and heads of yellow or purplish flowers that when open, resemble a puffy, feathery mass.
 

Active constituents of tea tree oil


The main active components in tea tree oil are terpinen-4-ol, 1,8-cineole, gamma-terpinene, p-cymene and other turpenes. Terpinen-4-ol is a powerful germacide, fungicide, and significantly antiseptic but well tolerated by the skin. Terpinen-4-ol is responsible for most of the antimicrobial activity of tea tree oil. Cineole has expectorant and antiseptic properties. Australian standards regulate the amount of terpinen-4-ol should make up at least 30% and preferably 40–50% of the oil for it to be medically useful. Another compound, cineole, should make up less than 15% and preferably 2.5% of the oil.
 

Medicinal uses and health benefits of tea tree oil


Tea tree oil has antibacterial, antifungal, and healing properties. It is used extensively as an anti-microbial, antiseptic, disinfectant,
deodorizern antispasmodic, diaphoretic, expectorant, and stimulant. Tea tree oil may kill toenail fungus, fungal infections in the mouth and skin, athlete's foot, some bacterial infections, vaginal infections, and herpes infections. Tea tree oil has been shown to be effective in countering Trichophyton, the fungus that causes numerous topical infections, including athlete's foot and jock itch. tea tree oil is effective against Pityrosporum ovale, a fungus that can cause dandruff. Tea tree oil inhibits several common skin pathogens. Terpinen-4-ol and whole tea tree oil were found equally effective for activity against Staphylococcus aureus. Tea tree oil had a much slower onset of action but also had fewer adverse side effects, such as skin scaling, dryness, and irritation. It is also used to relieve mild burns, insect bites, sunburn, and other relatively minor skin conditions. Tea tree oil is used in a number of pet shampoos to kill ticks and fleas and is claimed to repel insects. It is also used to treat the itching of insect bites. Tea tree oil has pain-numbing properties and can be used topically for sprains, arthritis, bunions, bursitis, eczema, gout, carpal tunnel syndrome , and hemorrhoids. Massaging tea tree oil into the affected area may alleviate the discomfort of sore muscles or joint injuries. It also reduces hypertrophic scarring. Tea tree oil added to warm water and used as a mouthwash is a common remedy to help protect against periodontal disease and gingivitis. Tea tree oil, with its medicinal, fresh, woody, earthy fragrance, is a deep cleansing and stimulating oil with strong antibacterial properties. It also may be used in the treatment of candida, chicken pox, cold sores, colds, corns, cuts, flu, insect bites, itching, migraine, ringworm, sinusitis, sores, spots, urethritis, warts, and whooping cough.
 

Dosage and administration of tea tree oil


For minor skin wounds, insect bites and stings, and irritations, cleanse the wound and apply one or two drops of tea tree oil to the affected area two or three times daily. For athelete's foot, apply 10% tea tree oil cream two times per day after washing and drying the feet. A topically applied 5% solution appears to be effective in treating acne. For fungal infections of fingernails or toenails, apply 100% tea tree oil twice a day for 6 months.
 

Side effects, precautions, interactions


Tea tree oil is considered to be safe as a topical treatment. Skin rashes, temporary dryness, itching, redness, irritation, inflammation of the corners of the mouth, and eczema may occur in people with allergies to tea tree oil. Tea tree oil should not be taken by mouth due to possible toxicity. It should not be used in the ears because it may cause hearing loss.