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Tea Tree Oil; First Aid in a Bottle

Tea Tree Oil

I probably first ‘met’ melaleuca alternifolia in the late 1980’s but it was not until going to Australia in the early 90’s that I became good friends with this first aid of essential oils.  There it was in the supermarket in large bottles along the personal care isle beside other antiseptic products.  We are now on first name terms!

Tea Tree oil was first distilled in Australia in the 1920’s.  Used by the Australian Aborigines, carbon dating has shown trees have been growing in its native home of New South Wales for over 30, 000 years!

It is terrific that many essential oils have become household names, Lavender oil is probably a close second to Tea Tree.

Tea tree smells similar to other antiseptic products.  I often use the word medicinal to describe the aroma which seems appropriate as it has a very broad spectrum in terms of its properties.

According to the Australian Tea Tree Oil Industry Association (and many other reputable sources) pure, quality Tea Tree oil is:

  • Antiseptic
  • Anti-bacterial
  • Anti-fungal
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Anti-viral

Tea Tree oil is probably one of the most researched essential oils.

Tea Tree is a member of the bug busting family of essential oils, Myrtaceae.  Other members of this botanical family include Cajeput, Clove, Eucalyptus, Myrtle and Niaouli, all of which possess anti-infectious properties.


When to Choose Tea Tree Oil; What the Experts Say...

Spots, stings, bites, bumps, abrasions will all respond well to an application Tea Tree oil.  Diluted in a little warm water to clean minor wounds.  Dilute in Aloe Vera Gel (or carrier oil) to apply to spots and stings.  Neat applications of Tea Tree oil should be reserved for emergency first aid situations only.

Inhalations using Tea Tree oil can be a useful method of use when respiratory conditions present.

During the winter months with the usual suspects (colds and flu’s) doing the rounds, Tea Tree oil is a good choice to use in massage, the bath, foot bath or as a body oil application.

For repeated infections, incorporate Tea Tree oil on a daily basis to help support the immune system.  Ravensara oil can be a good choice to use in conjunction with Tea Tree at such times.

Using Tea Tree oil may help to shorten the length and severity of a dose.

It is often recommended to use for Athletes Foot, for further information please see:

Use in an aromatherapy vaporiser or burner to help inhibit airborne bacteria.

Tea Tree oil blends well with Lavender and Eucalyptus and other herbal essential oils including Rosemary, Sweet Marjoram and Thyme Lianlool.

Household Tips

Add a few drops of Tea Tree oil to

  • Liquid laundry detergent
  • Shoe insoles (especially trainers)
  • The mob bucket
  • Spray bottle to make an all-purpose cleaner (add vinegar & water)
  • Directly onto mattress (with Lavender oil) to deter unwanted inhabitants
  • The compost caddy

Quality is Extremely Important

Pure, quality essential oil of Tea Tree oil is paramount to efficacy and safety.  Choose Organic and Australian, preferably from its native home of New South Wales.   Store your essential oils out of direct sunlight and away from heat to help prevent them from degrading.   Avoid using old Tea Tree oil, where the dropper or lid may appear to be blistering.

Click this link to see Evergreens extensive range of essential oils

For further information about Tea Tree oil and quality; Robert Tisserand speaks with Tony Larkman, CEO of the Australian Tea Tree Industry Association

DISCALIMER ~ this information is not intended to replace the advice of a qualified medical practitioner.  If irritation occurs from using any essential oil, discontinue use.

Ellen Cox is a qualified  Professional Aromatherapist and a member of the International Federation of Professional Aromatherapists.  Since 1994 she has worked in the field of aromatherapy, healthcare and education.

Ellen’s blog, All Things Aromatic  explores aromatherapy recipes, research, tips and tricks.

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