Tea tree oil or melalecua oil is an essential oil with a camphor-like odor. It may be pale yellow or colorless. Tea tree has gained popularity in aromatherapy for its medicinal qualities and health benefits. It has been used by aboriginal people of Australia and has a long history of use in aromatherapy.
What is tea tree? - Its Latin name is Melalecua alternifolia and it is native to the northeast coast of New South Wales and Australia, although they are now propagated in California. The indigenous people of Australia use tea tree as traditional medicine by inhaling the oil from crushed leaves to treat cold and coughs. The active ingredients of tea tree oil are terpineol, cineol, pipene, terpinenes, and various alcohols. The common name, `tea tree’, was given by British explorers who used it to brew tea. However, this should not be confused with tea oil used in sweet seasoning and cooking.
What are the properties of tea tree oil? - Tea tree oil is essentially antifungal, antiseptic, anti-infectious, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, and bactericidal, along with a variety of qualities which make it an effective essential oil in aromatherapy. The properties include balsamic, cicatrisant, expectorant, immune- stimulant, and diaphoretic. It is considered to be as effective as benzoyl peroxide. It smells incredibly strong but can be combined with other essential oils to mask the odor. It is used chiefly for its medicinal properties.
What are the benefits of tea tree oil? - Tea tree oil is highly powerful against all three types of infectious organisms —bacteria, fungi, and viruses. It should be used only on the skin as it can be toxic to the liver if consumed. It can also be diluted to prevent sensitivity. It is a valuable immuno-stimulant. It can be used to treat glandular fever and for people who are slow to recover from illness.
You may use it to treat acne. You can mix 5% of tea tree oil with 95% aloe vera gel and apply for clear skin. You can use the same solution for rashes, bruises, burns, blisters, and to soothe bug bites. You may also try a tea tree oil bath. Add a few drops of tea tree oil to your bath and you will find relief from skin infections, fungal diseases like ringworm, athlete’s foot and candida albicans. It helps to strengthen the body’s ability to resist fungal infections. It can be used for shingles and chicken pox. Dab a single drop of tea tree oil on the affected area to reduce heat and pain.
You can use it to ward of cold and cough. It can be used in baths and in massages to build the strength prior to any operation or surgery. You may use inhalations in burners or vaporizers. You can mix it with protective creams for diaper rash.
Precautions. Tea tree oil should be used as per your skin type. If your skin is sensitive use it in diluted form.<