Lice issues can be embarrassing due to the nature of their activity. The severe itch that results when these parasitic pests feed is what most people dread.
Does Tea Tree Oil Repel Body And Hair Lice?
You’ll want to find quick solutions to your lice issues when you discover you’re infested. Natural remedies or treatments seem to be popular with many people.
One of such is the use of peppermint oil. So, will this oil give you relief from lice?
Does it kill and repel lice? This is what we’ll be dwelling on.
If you’ve heard about its lice repellent effect but aren’t sure, this article will give you definite answers on all lice-related treatments using this essential oil.
What Lice Issues Do You Have?
There are different types of lice issues. These parasitic insects feed on human blood. The three main types include head lice, body lice, and pubic lice (also called crab lice).
As the name implies, these parasites target the different areas of the body they’re called after.
For instance, the head louse is most notorious for targeting the scalp, neck, and ear areas. It lays its eggs (nits) at the bottom part of hair shafts closest to the scalp. These eggs are firmly attached to the shaft.
They need the warmth of the scalp to hatch.
The body louse lives and lays its eggs in clothing.
Contrary to what you may think, this louse only attaches to the body to draw blood or to feed. The body louse is known to spread diseases such as epidemic typhus, louse-born relapsing fever, and trench fever.
Pubic louse on the other hand is mostly found around the pubic area. Also called crab louse, it attaches to pubic hair and draws blood from human skin.
This article takes a broad look at all of the above lice species relative to tea tree oil use as a lice repellent and killer.
About Tea Tree Oil
This essential oil is extracted from the leaves of the tea tree also known as the Melaleuca alternifolia tree.
The oil has been found to have many benefits including deodorant properties, used in hand sanitizers due to its antifungal and antibacterial properties.
What more? Tea tree oil contains insect repellent properties and can be used as an antiseptic. It serves to fight acne, can fight tooth decay, and is also applicable as an all-purpose cleaner.
These are just a few of the many benefits of tea tree oil.
Now, we’ll shift our focus back to the topic being discussed.
Tea Tree Oil And Lice: Killer Or Repellent?
If you’ve planned on using tea tree oil for lice treatments, the truth is, when used alone, it might not get you the results you seek. In other words, using tea tree oil alone has a limited effect on lice problems.
You’ll need to combine it with other natural solutions to get the most results.
There are two reasons why tea tree oil has a limited repellent effect on lice.
First off, lice have developed resistance to quite a lot of over-the-counter medications. This includes one of the most common active ingredients known as anticholinesterase contained in a lot of lice medications.
This active ingredient is contained in tea tree oil and has little to no repellent effect on lice. Secondly, lice are hardly affected because tea tree oil hardly suffocates them.
Quite a lot of pests are killed by suffocation.
With this being out of the question with tea tree oil, there’s little that can be done to kill lice.
What Combinations Make Tea Tree Oil More Potent Against Lice?
Due to the number of factors discussed above, there’s little to no benefit derived by using tea tree oil as a standalone treatment.
However, when combined with lavender oil and peppermint oil, the repellent effect tends to be more pronounced and comprehensive.
How much tea tree oil to add to shampoo for lice? Five drops per ounce of shampoo work as a preventive agent.
Tea Tree Oil and Lavender Treatments for Lice
Based on a study conducted in 2010, the effect of a blend of tea tree oil with lavender oil was used on 42 lice-infested persons. This treatment was applied at a weekly interval on these subjects.
After three applications, an overwhelming majority (about 41%) had no head lice.
This gives some level of confidence with tea tree oil use for lice issues. All you need to do to get rid of your lice problem is combine or have a blend of these oils for application on infested areas.
About 10 percent tea tree oil combined with 1% lavender oil in carrier oil should do the trick.
Tea Tree Oil and Peppermint Oil for Lice Control
Another potent lice-repellent mixture to try out is a combination of tea tree oil and peppermint. While there are strong claims that this treatment works, there’s no definite proof about its efficacy.
The good part is that there’s no harm in trying. You only need to try it out to see if gives any relief within a considerable period of time.
Lice Find Tea Tree Oil Scent Uncomfortable
Whenever tea tree oil is applied onto the scalp or other infested areas, lice find such highly uncomfortable. Though unpleasant, these insect parasites can linger on and can survive treatments.
In other words, tea tree oil-only treatments won’t be enough to dislodge these pests.
You May Want to Seek Medical Assistance
Most times, difficult and unbearable pest infestations like lice problems are better treated using trusted and reliable solutions. Here, you might want to seek immediate medical attention.
Seeing a doctor does a lot in addressing your pest issues.
Several prescriptions recommended by a doctor will go a long way in combating the problem. Note that the longer a lice problem lasts, the more likely it is to spread to others.
Plus, you want to get immediate relief from the severe itchiness lice problems are known for.
Other Essential Oils You May Want to Try Out
With tea-tree essential oil not measuring up, other essential oils can help resolve your lice issues.
Some of these can be used as standalone treatments while others are best combined with other oils. These essential oils include clove oil, lavender, eucalyptus, red thyme, cinnamon leaf oil, aniseed, and neem oils.
Tea tree oil will make lice uncomfortable but won’t do much as a standalone treatment for lice.
If you’ve read to this point, you should be knowledgeable about what works and what doesn’t.