8 Tea Tree Oil Benefits And Side Effects

Tea Tree Oil is a common and popular ingredient in various household and cosmetic products, including shampoos, massage oils, lotions, detergents, etc. It is known for its potential bactericidal properties. Various bacteria, fungi, viruses, and mites have inhibitory effects.

Do you what are tea tree oil’s benefits and side effects?

Table of Contents

What is tea tree oil?

Tea Tree Oil is an essential oil distilled from the leaves and top branches of Melaleuca alternifolia (commonly known as the Australian tea tree). The color is light yellow.

This tree belongs to Myrtaceae, there are about 230 species, almost all Australian native tree species. Defined by the local aborigines as “the most versatile healer in nature”, it has been widely used in natural remedies for hundreds of years.

During the First World War, tea tree oil was used as the first line of first aid for the Australian Army, used to treat infections, burns, and mosquito bites.

A large number of empirical studies have also found that tea tree oil does have antibacterial, fungal, and viral effects (even microorganisms that are resistant to traditional medicines).

What are the benefits of tea tree oil?

1. Tea tree oil prevents plaque and periodontal diseases

Periodontal diseases are common in developed and developing countries, accounting for about 20% to 50% of the global population, and the high prevalence rate makes it a public health problem.

Some risk factors such as smoking, poor oral hygiene, diabetes, medication, age, genetics, and stress are all related to periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease by 19%, while in people 65 years and older, this relative risk can increase by up to 44%.

A double-blind, placebo-controlled prospective intervention study (6 weeks, 152 school-age children), participants were divided into 4 groups according to the mouthwash used, group 1 (aloe), group 2 (chlorhexidine), Group 3 (Tea tree oil), Group 4 (Placebo), and monitor the following variables (Dental Plaque Index, Gingival Index, and Salivary Streptococcus Count).

The results found that, except for the placebo, all variables in the remaining groups had a statistically significant decrease.

*Conclusion: Tea tree oil mouthwash can reduce dental plaque, gingivitis, and streptococcus mutans in the oral cavity, which may be helpful for oral hygiene.

2. Tea tree oil is beneficial to rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin disease that is common in adults and is more common on the visible skin parts such as the face. It is characterized by blushing, papules, pustules, and vasodilation. The main pathogenesis includes genetics, environmental factors, Helicobacter pylori, Demodex folliculorum.

In the United States alone, more than 16 million patients are affected by rosacea, with a worldwide incidence of up to 18%, especially among people with a predominantly “Celtic” origin, such as Ireland.

A double-blind randomized clinical trial (12-week, 47 patients with rosacea) pointed out that compared with placebo, the combination of tea tree oil and anti-parasitic drugs (permethrin 2.5%) topical gel helps reduce mites Density, and related clinical features such as papules, pustules, non-transitory erythema, burning, tingling, and dry appearance have also improved significantly.

*Conclusion: For patients with rosacea, the use of tea tree oil and antiparasitic drugs (permethrin 2.5%) can help improve clinical symptoms, but limited to a small number of samples, more research is still needed to corroborate.

3. Tea tree oil is beneficial for idiopathic hirsutism

Hirsutism is a common clinical symptom. It affects 5% to 10% of women of childbearing age. Due to changes in appearance, it is very painful for patients and has a significant negative impact on psychosocial development.

Polycystic ovary syndrome and idiopathic hirsutism are the two most common causes of hirsutism.

The pathogenesis of idiopathic hirsutism may be related to increased peripheral 5-alpha reductase activity, androgen receptor gene polymorphism, and increased sensitivity of hair follicles to androgens.

A prospective, open-label, placebo-controlled, randomized study (3 months involving 24 female patients with mild idiopathic hirsutism) indicated that topical application of sprays containing lavender and tea tree oil can help reduce hirsutism Total score and hair diameter.

*Conclusion: For female patients with idiopathic hirsutism, the topical application of tea tree oil-containing sprays may bring positive help, but limited by the small sample size, more research is still needed to further verify.

4. Tea tree oil is beneficial for onychomycosis

Onychomycosis, also known as onychomycosis, is the most common bacterial nail infection disease, a disease related to gender and age, more prevalent among men, and increases with age (older The incidence may exceed 40%).

Inducing factors include diabetes, peripheral arterial disease, immunosuppression, or immunosuppressive use caused by HIV.

Toenails are more susceptible than fingernails. In these cases, onychomycosis usually involves multiple nails, often with dry plantar ringworm.

A double-blind, multi-center, randomized controlled trial (a 6-month, 117 patients with distal onychomycosis) pointed out that topical application of 1% chlorpromazine solution and tea tree oil can help improve the appearance and symptoms of nails.

*Conclusion: Topical application of tea tree oil may help to improve onychomycosis, but limited to small sample size, more research is still needed to confirm its clinical benefit.

5. Tea tree oil is beneficial for acne, also known as acne

According to the Global Burden of Disease survey, the prevalence rate of Acne among adolescents between the ages of 12 and 25 is about 85%.

Even if it is very slight, the acne on these faces often brings great troubles, especially during the teenage years of beauty. When acne is severe, it may even affect mental health, social networking, self-confidence, and even job opportunities.

In routine treatment, antibiotics are one of the commonly used options, but the emergence of drug resistance often results in poor treatment results, so it is a big problem to find effective and highly tolerated therapies.

A double-blind controlled study found that (45-day, 60 patients with mild to moderate acne), topical 5% tea oil gel can help improve the total acne lesions counting and acne severity index, the improvement is about 3.55 and 5.75 times that of the placebo group (the underlying mechanism is related to the anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects of tea tree oil).

*Conclusion: The tea tree oil gel may help improve acne, but it is limited by the small sample size, and more research is still needed to further verify.

6. Tea tree oil is beneficial to athlete’s foot (also known as athlete’s foot, Hong Kong foot)

Tinea pedis, also known as Hong Kong feet, is a fungal infection that often occurs between the toes (about 70% of the population has suffered from this disease). The symptoms are mainly scaly rashes, which cause itching, tingling, and pain in the affected area. Burning sensation, due to the extremely high infectivity and recurrence rate, it is easy to infect other parts if not treated.

A double-blind controlled study found (for 4 weeks, 158 patients with athlete’s foot), topical tea tree oil blended solution (concentration 25% or 50%) can help improve the symptoms of athlete’s foot, in which the fungal cure rate of the tea tree oil group (Mycological cure) can reach 55% and 64% respectively, compared with 31% in the placebo group (but 4 patients in the treatment group withdrew due to dermatitis).

*Conclusion: Tea tree oil may help improve the athlete’s foot, but it is limited to a small number of samples and more research is still needed to further verify.

7. Tea tree oil improves dandruff (seborrheic dermatitis/main symptoms of Seborrheic Dermatitis)

The main feature of dandruff is that the scalp appears as white or creamy dry scales, accompanied by slight itching. Although it is not a serious disease, it often causes social anxiety (a misunderstanding that it is poor hygiene).

At present, the medical community believes that dandruff is seborrheic dermatitis limited to the scalp (less mild and non-inflammatory, mainly related to sebaceous gland secretion, Malassezia, and host immune function).

Compared with seborrheic dermatitis. Dandruff is more common, and the incidence rate gradually increases from adolescence, affecting about 50% of the adult population. The incidence rate of males is higher than that of females.

A controlled study found that (for 4 weeks, 126 patients with mild to moderate dandruff), the use of 5% tea tree oil shampoo helped reduce the overall scalp lesion score by 40%, compared to 11% of placebo, other self-assessed indicators such as itching and greasy also improved significantly.

*Conclusion: Tea tree oil shampoo may help improve dandruff, but it is limited to a small number of samples and more research is still needed to further verify.

8. Tea tree oil is beneficial for scabies

Scabies is mainly caused by scabies infections. Common scabies symptoms include strong itching and mound-like rash. The main route of transmission is caused by prolonged skin contact with the infected person.

Scabies is a very serious health problem for residents of the third world (developing countries), with an incidence rate ranging from 0.2% to 24%, affecting approximately 300 million people, of which the incidence of children is as high as 30% to 65%.

In addition to the strong and itchy sensation in the affected area, scabies often causes secondary infections, which are particularly likely to cause streptococcal glomerulonephritis (APSGN). For children, it increases the risk of kidney disease by 6 times in adulthood.

The unique antibacterial substance of tea tree oil combined with the wound healing effect helps to prevent scabies from further worsening to bacterial complications such as pyoderma and secondary sepsis. Its anti-inflammatory and anti-itch effects can also reduce the immune response caused by mite antigens.

Compared with anti-scabies drugs (such as topical promethazine/permethrin and oral ivermectin/ivermectin), many preclinical studies have found that tea tree oil has excellent anti-scabies properties.

However, as of now, there is no large-scale clinical evidence, so more research needs to be confirmed in one step.

What are the side effects of tea tree oil?

In most cases, the appropriate dosage and concentration of topical tea tree oil is very safe and has no side effects, but in some cases, allergic reactions such as itching, tingling, burning, dryness, and redness may occur under the premise of high concentration or sensitive skin. Severe may cause dizziness or even throat swelling.

Therefore, it is recommended to apply a small number of tests to the local skin before use in a large area, and wait 24 hours to confirm that no adverse reactions have occurred.

Safety Precautions

1. Do not take tea tree oil directly, it may cause serious adverse reactions such as rash, abnormal blood cells, diarrhea, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, drowsiness, hallucinations, and movement disorders.

2. You have been allergic to eucalyptus (eucalyptol), please be careful, some formulas may contain this ingredient.

3. Avoid the use of oxidized essential oil that has been opened for too long and may increase the chance of skin allergies (it is recommended to use it within 1 year of the purchase or opening).

4. The ingredients of tea tree oil are prone to deteriorate when exposed to air, moisture, light, and heat, and should be stored in a dark, dry, and cool place.

5. Undiluted essential oils should not be used directly, as it may cause skin irritation. If it is sensitive skin, it is best to mix with equal or more base oils (Carrier Oils) such as olive oil, coconut oil, or almond oil before use.

6. Avoid applying essential oils to the eyes, the inside of the nasal cavity, contact lenses, or sensitive parts of the skin.

7. The safety of infants, pregnant women, nursing mothers, liver and kidney dysfunction is unknown

8. Avoid using it on pets (cats and dogs or other animals, whether taken internally or externally), which may lead to poisoning. Related symptoms include muscle tremor, weakness, difficulty walking, hypothermia, and increased saliva.

9. There have been cases of underage boys who have developed gynecomastia after using products containing tea tree oil or lavender oil. Therefore, for safety, children before and after adolescence should not use it.

Where to buy tea tree oil recommended by most people?

In recent years, food safety problems in various countries have exploded, and it is not healthy but black-hearted products that everyone spends on. Therefore, European and American products with relatively strict quality control have become popular products.

And iHerb.com is a large-scale medical cosmetics e-commerce company in the United States. It has a high satisfaction rate of 97% in the evaluation of Google customers. It provides global home delivery so that you can buy it without risking buying fakes through purchasing high-quality health products.

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