Dr. Craig Reese, DC. PC.
3000 Center Green Dr., Suite 230
Boulder, CO 80301


Tea tree oil is an essential oil that comes from the Australian Melaleuca tree. This oil has incredible healing properties. It is anti-fungal, antibacterial, anti-viral and some say anti-parasitic. Tea tree oil is an essential component of any first aid kit. Here are a few of its many uses:

1. You can put it on bug bites, scratches, rashes, toenail fungus, cuts, etc.
2. Mix it 1/2 and 1/2 with olive oil for earaches, warts, cold sores and chronic skin problems. Mix a drop of tea tree oil with a dab of licorice root extract (Glycgel) for herpes or canker sores. Either of the above works for fungal infections of the skin or scalp.
3. Put 10 - 15 drops in a bottle of nasal saline rinse. Irrigating your sinuses 1-2 times each day for 2 - 3 days will help alleviate most sinus infections.
4. Gargle with a few drops in salt water to help soothe a sore throat.
5. Open a capsule of the herb Yellow Dock and put a few drops of tea tree oil in the powder to make a paste. Put the past on puncture wounds, animal bits or scratches and cover with a Band-Aid. This will help pull out any infection in the wound.
6. Painful tooth infections respond well to tea tree oil and clove oil on a Q-tip or cotton ball next to the tooth.
7. For gum infections make a past of tea tree oil and white oak bark (or pine bark) and put it on the infected area before going to bed.
8. Putting tea tree oil on a tampon and inserting it at bedtime can help vaginal infections. Twenty to thirty drops in a cup of distilled water makes for a powerful douche. Use it daily for 2 -4 days.
9. Tea tree oil or eucalyptus oil in boiling water can be inhaled for respiratory infections.

As you can see, tea tree oil is useful for all types of infection and should be used immediately. Once the infection is gone, it can irritate mucous membranes and ear canals. Stop using tea tree oil if any sores or irritation occurs. Also, any skin problem is usually caused by an internal infection that also needs to be treated while treating the external eruption. The bad news about tea tree oil is that it stinks! It comes from a tree resin that is related to the oil used to make turpentine. So it does have a faint smell of turpentine to it. Tea tree oil is also pretty expensive. I've paid as much as $20 an ounce for it in a health food store. On the other hand, if you find it real cheap, it is probably not pure tea tree oil. Since most of the time you will only need a few drops, we sell small bottles of tea tree oil for $3 each. This works out to be around $9 an ounce for a high quality tea tree oil. If you buy it at a store, be sure it is not cloudy at all. It may be rancid if it is cloudy or has anything floating in the oil.

Return to Info Letters page