Guide to Using Tea Tree Oil for Candida and Yeast Infections
Can you use tea tree oil on Candida and yeast infection and just how effective is it?
We’ll take a closer look at tea tree oil’s antimicrobial properties and the research behind using it to fight candida and yeast infections.
Tea tree oil has been used for centuries as a plant medicine and it’s only recently been recognized as a powerful anti-fungal treatment. The oils contain an anti-microbial called terpinen-4-ol that’s effective against certain types of bacteria and viruses.
A number of studies have shown that tea tree oil is effective against Candida and other yeast-like infections:
- A study from the University of Western Australia found tea tree oil is effective against Candida albicans.
- And researchers in Rome found tea tree oil prevents C. albicans from converting into yeast infection when the oil is applied topically so it can penetrate the skin.
- Last, but not least, a study from the University of Leipzig, Germany found that tea tree oil is effective against 32 types of Candida and 54 kinds of yeasts.
How to Use Tea Tree Oil on Candida Infections
While research shows tea tree oil is effective against Candida in the lab, there are unfortunately, few human studies looking at effective dosages and treatment methods.
The following list details possible uses of tea tree oil for Candida and other yeast-type infections.
This is usually treated with an antifungal, such as Lamisil or Tinactin. Side effects can include dry, cracked peeling skin. Using tea tree oil on athlete’s foot may help consumers avoid side effects and may be just as effective.
Vaginosis & Yeast Infections:
Make a solution of 1 part tea tree oil with 15 – 20 parts pure distilled water. Soak a tampon in the solution and wear each night until your symptoms subside. Make sure you use a diluted solution and do not use 100% tea tree oil internally.
Toe Nail Fungus:
This is one of the most common uses of tea tree oil. Here are more detailed instructions on using tea tree oil on toenail fungus. Toenail fungus can be stubborn so you may have to continue this treatment for a couple of months before you notice results.
One of the side effects of using inhaled corticosteroids is they may cause oral candidiasis or thrush. You can use tea tree oil for thrush by rinsing your mouth out with a solution of a few drops tea tree oil with warm water. Remember not to swallow the tea tree oil.
Fungal Skin Infections:
Try applying 100% pure tea tree oil to the affected area at least 2 – 3 times a day. Add a couple of drops of tea tree oil to a cotton ball and swab the affected area. If you find the scent of tea tree oil too powerful, you can try a diluted solution using distilled water or even mixing the tea tree oil with essential oils for a more pleasant scent.
You might be able to fight these infections from within by using coconut oil for thrush. Coconut oil actually contains a fatty acid called lauric acid, which is a potent antimicrobial that can kill certain virus, bacteria and fungi.
Research shows lauric acid was effective against 3 strains of C. albicans and this may help you reduce yeast levels in your body.
In vitro activity of tea tree oil against Candida albicans mycelial conversion and other pathogenic fungi. D’Auria FD, Laino L, Strippoli V, Tecca M, Salvatore G, Battinelli L, Mazzanti G. Institute of Microbiology, University La Sapienza, Rome, Italy. Journal of Chemotherapy. 2001 Aug;13(4):377-83
Antifungal effects of Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil and its components on Candida albicans, Candida glabrata and Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Hammer KA, Carson CF, Riley TV. Microbiology Discipline, School of Biomedical and Chemical Sciences, The University of Western Australia; Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 2004 June;53(6):1081-5
In-vitro activity of essential oils, in particular Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree) oil and tea tree oil products, against Candida spp. Journal of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy. 1998 Nov;42(5):591-5
Antifungal activity of the essential oil of Melaleuca alternifolia (tea tree oil) against pathogenic fungi in vitro. Department of Dermatology, University of Leipzig, Germany. Skin Pharmacology. 1996;9(6):388-94