Background: Antibacterial treatments currently used for treatment cause several side effects, and bacterial resistance to the antibiotics is also increasing. Therefore, there is need to find better alternatives. Essential oils (EOs) have been used for treatment of various ailments since ancient times and have gained popularity over the years. Safety and efficacy of EOs have been proved by several clinical trials. This review gives an overview on the EOs, their uses, and adverse effects.
Materials and methods: A literature search was performed in the PubMed for clinical trial studies and review articles on EOs published up to February 2015. The search was performed during March 2015. The following keywords were used: "Lavender essential oil," "cinnamon oil," "clove oil," "eucalyptus oil," "peppermint oil," "lemon EOs," and "tea tree oil."
Results: Total 70 relevant articles were found in PubMed database. After screening of abstracts, 52 articles were selected to be included in the present review.
Conclusion: On the basis of the available information, it can be concluded that EOs have the potential to be developed as preventive or therapeutic agents for various oral diseases, but further clinical trials are required to establish their safety and efficacy.
Keywords: Alternative medicine; essential oils; oral pathogens.