Tea Tree Oil

Tea Tree Oil

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Akoma Tea Tree Oil

Melaleuca alternifolia

Steam distillation of the leaves and twigs

 The tea tree shrub is native to Australia and has been used by the Australian Aboriginals for thousands of years – by crushing the leaves and applying them to skin infections and wounds.  Recent studies have shown the extent of tea tree’s ability to combat infection as a powerful antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agent.  

Tea tree is used primarily for its infection-fighting ability.  The fact that tea tree has been shown to stimulate the immune system, by activating the production of lymphocytes when infection is present, means this oil is imbued with a highly synergistic action in countering microbes.  At a time when some conventional antibiotics are no longer effective, this makes tea tree and the antibacterial action of other essential oils particularly important. 

Tea tree essential oil is an important addition to preparations for fighting skin infection.  It can be combined in massage blends or decoctions or compresses.  For treating eczema, tea tree and lavender are a good combination to add to a blend: the lavender will calm the skin and the tea tree will combat any microbes (to which the skin is vulnerable when broken).  Add tea tree to poultices, ointments or compresses to treat acne, cuts, boils, wounds and burns to combat infection.

 The oil is can be used in the treatment of respiratory tract infections, including bronchitis and in the clearing of catarrh.  Steam inhalations are a good method of application to alleviate fight the viruses and bacteria associated with colds, flu and sinusitis.

The oil’s powerful antifungal properties mean it is excellent for eliminating conditions such as athlete’s foot.  Dab the oil neat onto the affected area until the infection has cleared.  The oil’s antiviral action is strong enough to treat verrucas.  Apply the oil neat to the verruca daily until the verruca has disappeared.  Likewise, for the treatment of cold sores, dab a drop of the oil neat to the affected area until the sore dries and the skin is healed. 

The oil can be added to preparations for genito-urinary infections, including candida, genital herpes and warts.  The oil can even be applied in pessaries for the treatment of thrush and cystitis. 

The oil has a pleasant, fresh camphorous odour and is a popular addition to soap, shower gels and other body-care products – including toothpaste and mouthwash, where the oil will have a healing action on ulcers and gum infections and freshen the breath. 

The most prominent natural chemicals in essential tea tree oil are: alochols  (alpha terpineol), monoterpenes and sesquiterpenes 

  • Antiseptic
  • Antiviral
  • Bactericidal
  • Fungicidal
  • Insecticide
  • Toning
  • Stimulant

Blends well with

Eucalyptus, lavender, lemon and most other antiseptic oils

Skin sensitisation is possible (but rare).  See general guidelines concerning dilution, pregnancy, blood pressure, use on babies and children