A Review of Applications of Tea Tree Oil in Dermatology

Int J Dermatol. 2013 Jul;52(7):784-90. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-4632.2012.05654.x. Epub 2012 Sep 24.

Abstract

Tea tree oil (TTO) is an essential oil, steam-distilled from the Australian native plant, Melaleuca alternifolia. It has a minimum content of terpinen-4-ol and a maximum content of 1, 8-cineole. Terpinen-4-ol is a major TTO component which exhibits strong antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Tea tree oil exerts antioxidant activity and has been reported to have broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity against bacterial, viral, fungal, and protozoal infections affecting skin and mucosa. Several studies have suggested the uses of TTO for the treatment of acne vulgaris, seborrheic dermatitis, and chronic gingivitis. It also accelerates the wound healing process and exhibits anti-skin cancer activity. This review opens up new horizons for dermatologists in the use of this herbal agent.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local / adverse effects
  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local / chemistry
  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Skin Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Tea Tree Oil / adverse effects
  • Tea Tree Oil / chemistry
  • Tea Tree Oil / therapeutic use*

Substances

  • Anti-Infective Agents, Local
  • Tea Tree Oil