From acne to fungal infections: How to beat monsoon problems

  • Deekshita Baruah, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Aug 11, 2015 23:07 IST
Tea tree oil can help keep bacterial infection in control. (Shutterstock photo)

We all have fond monsoon memories that never fade. But, most of us also have recollections of those not-so-good hyperactive zits and acnes from those days.

Trust us, monsoons can be downright brutal with heap load of skin and health problems. How do you deal with it and will being proactive really help? The answers might be infinite, but we have the perfect solution for you -- tea tree oil. And, before you dismiss it as just another jargon-filled advice piece do read what the experts have to say!

Preeti Seth, nutritionist and cosmetologist, owner Pachouli Spa & Wellness Centre, Delhi says, "Many of us have not even heard of tea tree oil. Known for its anti-microbial properties, it can be used as an antiseptic in case of cuts, wounds and abrasion and also used as a calming agent for ring worm and itching."

Now, that we have your attention you must read on to know what good tea tree oil can do to you.

*Keep acne away
Tea tree oil is known to have astringent properties which help fight mild skin infections. While it cannot treat the underlying cause of acne, it can be used to reduce the intensity of breakouts by keeping the bacterial infection in control.

Dr Latika Arya, consultant dermatologist, cosmetic and laser physician, LA Skin & Aesthetic Clinic, Delhi says, "The most beneficial component of tea tree oil is its high terpene content, a type of volatile oil that has been shown to destroy bacteria."

"Put 3-4 drops of tea tree oil in half a cup of water to dilute the concentrated effect and apply on the affected area to cure acne," says Dr Rohit Batra, dermatologist, Sir Gangaram Hospital, Delhi.

*Treat fungal infections
Dr Chytra V Anand, CEO and consultant cosmetic dermatologist, Kosmoderma Cinics, Bengaluru says, "For its natural anti-fungal properties, tea tree oil is used in home remedies to treat Athlete's foot (tineapedis) and yeast infections. Just add a few drops of tea tree oil to a regular cream and use it to get rid of the infection."

Tea tree oil can be used as a calming agent for ring worm and itching. (Shutterstock)

It can also be used to treat infected dead toe nail (onychomycosis). Simply, apply the dabbed cotton with tea tree oil on the toe twice a day and let it dry. You will definitely see results.

The best part about tea tree oil is that it is also helpful to treat vaginal infections, recurrent herpes labialis, toothaches, infections of the mouth and nose, sore throat, and particular ear infections like otitis media and otitis externa.

*Say hello to healthy hair
Dr Rashmi Shetty, aesthetic physician, Ra Skin & Aesthetics; Author, Age Erase, Mumbai says, "Tea tree oil is useful in fighting scalp infections. Some people who have dandruff find regular tea tree oil massages helpful."

For severe dandruff, we have the perfect remedy for you. Just add 30 drops of tea tree oil per ounce of shampoo and apply it twice a week for three weeks.

It can also be used as an anti-lice treatment for children.

"Prepare a 2:1 mixture of your favorite base oil, such as almond or jojoba, and water. Combine this into a spray bottle with 2 oz of tea
tree oil," says Dr Batra.

*Things you need to know about tea tree oil
*Tea tree oil should never be directly applied to the skin. While it is safe for most people, sometimes it can cause irritant dermatitis (skin irritation, itching, and redness). Always dab a little on your forearm for few days to rule out allergy and then used as required.

*It is very good for skin hydration and also very beneficial for preventing hair fall.

*Besides skin, tea tree oil has other health properties, which can help alleviate fever, headache and pain. It can also help relieve sore throat, cough, chest congestion and sinus.

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