Most people around the world would know what a cold sore is, as they are quite common. Cold sores often called fever blisters are fluid-filled blisters that usually appear on or around the mouth. Furthermore, Cold sores either appear in groups or if you are lucky, only a single sore appears. Also, when cold sore bursts, you often find the remaining fluid forming a hard crusty surface over the sore. The aforesaid points about cold sores are basically common knowledge about these annoying blisters. However, for better comprehension, let’s dive a bit deeper.
Anyone who has had cold sores knows what pain and burden they are. Furthermore, the estimated number of people to have experienced cold sores is said to be around 80% of the population. However, what the majority of people do not know is that these annoying blisters are not really caused by cold. Although these blisters are widely known as cold sores, they are not actually caused by cold. Rather, Cold sores are as a result of a viral infection. That is, they are caused by a virus from an infection with the Herpes Simplex Virus(HSV). Furthermore, factors such as sunlight, hormonal changes, stress and trauma to the skin, are known to blow up the virus. That is, said factors tend to heighten the pain and effect of the blisters, on the person suffering from it. Also, the first outbreak of a cold sore can last up to two weeks and often times reoccur. Consequently, most people suffer from these blisters, more than once a month.
To this, there are various commercial treatments available as cold sore remedies. However, most treatments don’t work and often tend to slightly improve the condition. Also, in severe cases, using said treatments regularly often causes side effects. As a result of the side effects and lack of effectiveness of the treatments, several people began to show interest in more natural remedies. The move for natural remedies has proved to be the best option so far, as it provides relief from cold sores, without any side effects. Furthermore, the natural remedies that have proved helpful over time, are in form of essential oils, with the Tea Tree oil coming out on top. The tea tree oil has proven to be the most useful natural remedy for cold sores, providing relief from the blisters without any side effects. However, due to its still modest popularity, the question ‘what is tea tree oil’ often arises. The answer to the aforesaid question shall be provided below.
What Is Tea Tree Oil?
The tea tree oil which is also known as the melaleuca oil is a volatile essential oil derived from the boiled leaves of the Australian tea tree(also known as Melaleuca alternifolia). The tea tree oil(to be further referred to as TTO) is best identified by it is pale yellow or almost clear colour, along with a refreshing scent. However, the TTO is best known for its ability to treat wounds along with its powerful antiseptic qualities, making one of the top antibacterial essential oils out there. Furthermore, TTO also has more healing abilities, as the chemicals found in the TTO are known to eliminate fungus and bacteria as well as provide reduction to certain allergic reactions. Historical, the tea tree oil was highly valued by primitive Australians for its said numerous qualities and is said to have been in use for over seven decades, nearing a span of 100 years.
Fast forward to the present, the TTO has been and is being used in numerous medical research for its ability to kill various strains of bacteria and much more. Furthermore, the TTO is said to house over 100 components, but its most active components include, Terpene hydrocarbons, sesquiterpenes and monoterpenes. These are the major components that give the tea tree, its antiviral, antibacterial and antifungal abilities. Also, it is important to point out that, the volatile hydrocarbons contained in the TTO are considered aromatic. Hence, they are capable of traveling through air and the pores of the skin. Furthermore, the aforesaid points lead to the reason why tea tree oil are commonly used aromatically and topically to kill bacteria, fight infections and provide skin relief.
Furthermore, due to its components, tea tree oil is becoming an increasingly popular core ingredient in a variety of cosmetic and household products. Hence, it has become an active ingredient in many topic formulations which are used in treating infections. Also, as stated earlier, it is found in a variety of cosmetic and household products such as shampoo, cleaning products, laundry detergent, massage oil, skin creams and much more. In addition, it is marketed and sold as an antiseptic and anti-inflammatory agent in various parts of the world. Consequently, by virtue of its aforementioned numerous qualities, the tea tree oil is one of the most beneficial essential oils that possess various qualities.
Tea Tree Oil As a Remedy For Cold Sores
The ability of the TTO to alleviate effects of cold sores is basically the core crux of this article, so let’s get into it. TTO as a remedy to fever blisters is said to be of the highest quality, a reason for this being that, various experiments and research has lead to this conclusion. First off, by virtue of various research and experiments carried out by agencies of the Australian government, TTO was found to be a probable useful alternative for cold sores. As, it was found to be able to counteract the bacteria, acceptable to patients and it did not have the capacity to prompt resistance to systematic antiviral agents. In addition, further research showed that TTO exhibited broad-spectrum antimicrobial activity in vitro, especially against the herpes simplex virus. As earlier stated, the causal factor for cold sores is the herpes simplex virus, hence, with the TTO displaying such antiviral capabilities against the hsv, the usage of TTO against cold sores was deemed necessary. Over time, experience has proved the validity of the research that was carried out, as the TTO has served as a major relief against cold sores and all the while without any side effects.
Steps For Using Tea Tree Oil For Cold Sores
Step I: A newfound saying has come to be this, ‘to be clean is to be healthy’. In anything health related, cleanliness is always a must and is especially essential when you are applying any form of medication to an affected area. This same habit should be adhered to in this scenario, that is, before applying the tea tree oil, make sure you are clean. Therefore, wash your hands with disinfectant liquid or soap, along with water. All these should be done before applying the tea tree oil.
Step II: For properly applying tea tree oil on an affected area, cotton swabs are seen to be the best option to take. Therefore, take a cotton swab and dispense a few drops of the TTO on it and apply directly to the affected area. In addition, if your blisters are in a larger area, you should use more cotton swabs and apply the oil on the entire affected part. Also, it is pertinent to make sure not to rub the cotton swab against the blisters, rather you should dab the cotton swab gently on the blister. Also, make sure the cotton swab stay a little while on the blisters, so as to let the skin absorb the oil.
Step III: This is basically for those with large blisters. If your sores are larger than the usual, you should apply the oil minimally, that is, little by little. Also, due to sores regularly causing irritations, you should be wary of the tea tree oil causing burning sensations. Hence, it is recommended to check for this with the first day of the oil. If you do sense a burning sensation, it is advised you reduce the amount of the tea tree oil used or stop altogether for a while.
Step IV: The obvious next step to take is again based on hygiene, after applying the TTO, you should wash your hands with disinfectant liquid or soap. However, it is necessary to discard the cotton swab used before this, and also make sure it does not fall into the hands of children.
Step V: This step is simply repeating the above steps three to four times daily. However, the number of times to carry this process a day largely depends on the severity of the sores or blisters.
Other Benefits of Tea Tree Oil
- Treats Acne and other Skin Ailments: Via tea tree oil’s amazing antibacterial and anti-inflammatory components, it has the ability to act as a natural remedy against skin ailments like acne, eczema, psoriasis, etc. In regards to acne, research has shown that the tea tree oil can relatively control acne by clearing clogged sebaceous glands. Furthermore, the tea tree oil is capable of drying out blackheads, whiteheads, pimples and other such blemishes. Also, the TTO can sufficiently disinfect skin pores. Furthermore, TTO has displayed amazing results against warts and is viewed as the most preferred treatment in that area. This is due to the fact that standard wart treatments are painful, in that it utilizes acids and sometimes not effective, as warts often tend to re-appear. However, in contrast to the standard treatments, TTO provides a non-painful and effective remedy to warts.
- An All-Purpose Cleaning Agent: As earlier stated, the tea tree oil has increasingly become a core active agent in various household products. One of such types of products are cleaning products. The TTO has been deduced to serve as an amazing cleaning and disinfectant agent for the household. Also, you can basically fashion your own homemade version of it. As, a drop of the tea tree oil in a cup of water and placed in a spray bottle, displays amazing cleaning results for your bathrooms, kitchens and general household. TTO is seen to work best on surfaces such as ceramic, stone and porcelain. Furthermore, the TTO can act as an abrasive cleaner for the purpose of removing tough stains. For this purpose, it is advised to mix a few drops of TTO with salt or baking soda, in order to create a gentle abrasive cleaner.
- Curbs Dry Scalp and Dandruff: Studies have shown that the tea tree oil has amazing qualities against symptoms of dermatitis, which involves dry scalp and dandruff. Therefore, this fact has to lead to the imbibing of TTO into hair products as shampoo and various oils for hair. Also, it is advisable to massage in the oil directly into your hair during or after washing. Furthermore, it also takes care of head lice, destroying their eggs and killing off the lice.
- Improves Bad Breath: This may sound a bit silly, but it is a proven fact that tea tree oil can aid in treating halitosis. Bad breath stems from bacteria that is found in the mouth, majorly in the back of the tongue, tonsils and throat. To this, we already know that TTO possesses amazing antibacterial properties that can kill the bacteria. Hence, it is clear that TTO can act as a natural remedy for halitosis. However, it is pertinent to note that, TTO should only be used to gaggle and not swallowed. Also, it should be combined with an ounce of water before use.
- Natural Pest Control: Added to the various qualities of the tea tree oil is this particular feature it possesses. By virtue of the strong smell of TTO, it can act as a natural repellent to various insects. So to use this feature to its fullest, it is advised to take a cotton ball soaked in TTO and place it in various parts of the household.
Conclusively, from all mentioned above, it is not so hard to state that, the use of tea tree oil should be vehemently encouraged. If not for any of is amazing features, but for its components and how they aid to ease a lot of problems humans endure.