• Natters on Aromas

Natters on Aromas - Tea Tree

Updated: Feb 1, 2019

Picture courtesy of @alchemyofordinarythings

Tea Tree

This oil is a Top Note

Family: Myrtaceae

Melaleuca alternifolia

The oil is made from the distillation of the leaves and twigs. The plant is specifically grown for its essential oil. It is a pale yellow liquid with fresh antiseptic, camphorous odour. It is an oil that is in demand, so make sure if you buy it, you buy one from a good source, because this oil can be adulterated.

Rumour has it that the name came about from when Captain Cook first discovered Australia; he asked his crew to make him a cup of tea from the leaves. Although the tea didn’t taste good the name has stuck.

DoTerra is one of the leading brands out there and known for its high quality. There are others if you have a different price point. Most importantly check for quality

You will have noticed that some companies like DoTerra call their Tea Tree – Melaleuca.

I think this has to be the Queen of natural antiseptics. It is effective against all three infection organisms: bacterial, virus and fungi. It is one of the most powerful immune-stimulants.

Before I even started Aromatherapy, I always had this in my cupboard. It’s cleared up many a small wound infection. However, it is strong and can be a skin irritant for some people. It is also very important to note that Tea Tree should NEVER be consumed. In high amounts you would be talking about damage to the liver and kidneys.

You may have heard that some people make a ‘flu bath’ – add some drops to a plain bath oil and add to bath. The result has been a sharp rise in temperature and then a lot of sweating (or for us ladies – glowing) and a deep sleep. Its said you wake up feeling lots better ; you kind of sweat it out. Start with just 3 drops and increase only when you know you haven’t had a reaction. Apparently very blonde people are more susceptible to a reaction, and it can have a cumulative effect.

I have also recently learnt that Tea Tree is not good for our pets, so please don’t diffuse in the same room as them. You might think: oh, there are colds in my home, I will diffuse Tea Tree to clear the air and keep the bugs away. However, this will affect your dog/cat. It can cause depression, lethargy and weakness; even muscle tremors (in the pet, not you). Also vomiting and skin rashes, which are more rare. Some people might think to put it on the animals' skin if they have a wound – DON’T. It is very toxic to animals.

Australians/Aborigines have been using it for centuries to kill many of the disease causing organisms found there. It can cure some of the ugliest bacterial infections in the Tropics. It has been found to kill and keep away certain microbes (protozoa) which are responsible for causing tropical fevers, malaria etc.

Closer to home, we use it in our house for fungal toe nail. I put some Tea Tree in a carrier oil, and added 2 drops of On-guard (Do-Terra) into a small rollerball, and wow it cleared it up very nicely. Husband is very happy. Definitely proves its fungicidal properties. A study in a tropical medicine journal used a combination of 2% butenafine and 5% tea-tree in a cream and found it cleared 80% of patients. It really does have a cleansing and rejuvenating effect on nails and skin.

The importance of Tea Tree is said to be due to its high terpinene-4-ol content at around 40%. Research has shown that its primary active ingredients, terpene hydrocarbon, monoterpene and sesquiterpenes are responsible for its ability to reduce harmful bacteria.These volatile hydrocarbons are considered aromatic and capable of travelling through air, pores of the skin and mucus membranes.

A study in the British Medical Journal found that Tea Tree essential oil is “a powerful disinfectant and non-poisonous and gentle” to the body. In as early as 1923, Dr A R Penfold found that the oil was 12x more effective at healing infections than the conventional antiseptic of the time which, was carbonic acid. World War II soldiers in Australia had it in their first aid kits. I sometimes find it amazing how far back you can go in history to find the benefits of Essential Oils.

It has been known to help shorten the duration of chicken pox and shingles if you dab a neat drop onto the spots. Just try it on one spot first and make sure you can tolerate it.

It works as well with cold sores. These can pop up when you are feeling stressed or physically low. When you first get that prickly sensation, put a small spot of neat oil on the painful area and it should stop the cold sore erupting.

You will have seen in the shops a lot of Tea Tree products aimed at teenage, acne prone skin. If you dab a neat drop of the oil on one of those horrible, angry spots, it should help. It doesn’t even have to be teenagers; we can all have spots from time to time.

Again, Australians have done studies on this, comparing Tea Tree to benzoyl peroxide (over the counter medical cream for acne). Although Tea Tree was slower to work, it had fewer side effects.

A recipe for verrucas is one drop of lemon and one drop of Tea Tree.

Cystitis is something many of us can suffer from at one point in our life. Tea Tree is there to help us again. Put a few drops in a carrier oil and rub over the abdomen, and place a hot compress over the top. I put up on my Juniper Berry blog how to make one of those with an old sock. We all have odd socks lying around . In my house far too many.

You could also make a bath oil, using Tea Tree, Chamomile/Bergamot, 3 drops of each and soak in a nice bath. It will help get rid of the bacterial infection that is causing the cystitis. It not only helps reduce the symptoms, but actually enhances the action of intestinal flora which can keep down the bacteria which cause not only cystitis but thrush too.

With its ability to fight infection, it is great to use in steam inhalations. It helps relieve congestion, sore throats, chest infections and with clearing mucus; it will kill the bacteria that cause the mucus as well as the virus. A cold buster.

Think we all need a bottle in our house this winter. It is a great immune-stimulant; where there is a lack of immune response. Especially good for glandular fever, and if you keep getting repeat infections or suffer from a slowness to recover. Even when you feel better, keep using it, so it definitely gets rid of the underlying condition.

It is not an oil that you would quickly associate with emotional connections. In fact I have nothing to add from Gabriel Mojay this time.

However, Amanda says, and I see the connection, that with its disinfectant nature, Tea Tree clears negative energy. It particularly helps when releasing from codependent and parasitic relationships. It can help break the negative ties. Tea Tree encourages individuals to relinquish all forms of self-betrayal, including allowing others to take advantage of them. Assists individuals in purification practices.

It empowers and makes you feel safe.

It is also good for mental fatigue

Please remember when reading this, it is for fun and information. I am writing this as I study. If anything rings true for you and you would like to use Tea Tree oil, be careful, take advice from a professional. If you are pregnant, nursing, or under a doctor’s care, consult your physician. Avoid contact with eyes, inner ears, and sensitive areas.

None of the above is in place of medical advice. It’s just my knowledge journey with Tea Tree. I am not suggesting any diagnosis, treatment or cure


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