Home Medicinal Plants Tea tree oil against herpes, athlete’s foot & Co.

Tea tree oil against herpes, athlete’s foot & Co.

by Josephine Andrews
Published: Last Updated on 253 views

Indigenous Australians have used the healing powers of tea tree oil for centuries . Today, the essential oil is used for fungal and bacterial infections of the skin. Read more about tea tree oil and its use in traditional medicine!

What is tea tree oil?

Tea tree oil is extracted from the leaves of the Australian tea tree (Melaleuca alternifolia). It is up to seven meters high, evergreen and from the myrtle family (Myrtaceae). It prefers to grow in damp locations, along watercourses and swampy areas in subtropical regions. In addition, the tea tree is grown on large plantations in Australia and in other countries such as India for commercial purposes.

The botanist Dr. Joseph Banks, who accompanied James Cook on his first South Sea expedition in the 18th century, named it “tea tree”. The men observed how Australian natives (Aborigines) prepared an infusion from the leaves and used it medicinally. The healing properties of tea tree leaves have been researched more extensively over the centuries.

What is tea tree oil used for?

What is tea tree oil good for? The umbrella organization of national European societies for phytotherapy (ESCOP) has recognized a medicinal use of tea tree oil for these diseases:

  • Skin infections caused by bacteria or fungi – also boils, athlete’s foot and nail fungus
  • Infection with MRSA during hospital stays (MRSA = multi-resistant Staphylococcus aureus)
  • For infections in the intimate area such as vaginal fungus (Candida infection), also cervical inflammation (cervicitis)

Tea tree oil can also be used externally for the following ailments. Among other things, it helps against

  • Pimple
  • dry skin and eczema
  • itchy skin
  • mosquito bites
  • warts
  • Lippenherpes
  • Hair and scalp treatment, for example for dandruff or head lice
  • Treatment of mild inflammation of the oral mucosa
  • Inhalation for airway inflammation

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