How much tea tree oil for toenail fungus


How-to, Does It Work, and Is It Safe

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Tea tree oil is an essential oil with many therapeutic benefits. Among its healing benefits, tea tree oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties and may be an effective treatment for nail fungus.

Nail fungus can be challenging to treat because it may not resolve right away. If you use tea tree oil consistently, you should see results over time. Just keep in mind that the results won’t be immediate.

Read on to learn more about treating nail fungus with tea tree oil.

Results from scientific studies supporting the use of tea tree oil to treat nail fungus are mixed. Some of the research points to tea tree oil’s potential as an antifungal, but more studies are needed.

According to a 2013 study, tea tree oil was effective in reducing growth of the fungus Trichophyton rubrum in nail infections. T. rubrum is a fungus that can cause infections such as athlete’s foot and nail fungus. Improvements were seen after 14 days.

This study used an in vitro model, which is sometimes called a test-tube experiment. In in vitro studies, the experiment is done in a test tube instead of on an animal or human. Larger human studies are needed to expand on these findings.

Combining tea tree oil with standard medicated creams is also an option. A small 1999 study found that participants were able to successfully manage toenail fungus by using a cream that contained butenafine hydrochloride and tea tree oil.

After 16 weeks of treatment, 80 percent of participants who used this cream cured their toenail fungus with no relapses. No one in the placebo group cured their nail fungus. Further studies are needed to determine which of these ingredients is most useful in treating nail fungus.

Results of a 1994 study found pure tea tree oil was equally as effective as the antifungal clotrimazole (Desenex) in treating fungal toenail infections. Clotrimazole is available both over the counter (OTC) and by prescription.

After six months of twice-daily treatment, results of both groups were similar. While both groups had positive results, recurrence was common. Further studies are needed to determine how to treat nail fungus with no recurrence.

It’s generally safe to use tea tree oil topically, but no more than 3 drops directly to the skin.

If you have sensitive skin you may experience dryness, itching, stinging, redness or burning. It’s always best to do a skin test prior to use by testing with one drop of tea tree oil.

  • For every 1 to 2 drops of tea tree oil, add 12 drops of a carrier oil.
  • Apply a dime-sized amount of the diluted oil to your forearm.
  • If you don’t experience any irritation within 24 hours, it should be safe to apply elsewhere.

Never take tea tree oil internally. Avoid using tea tree oil on children without consulting a doctor.

Tea tree essential oils can be diluted in a carrier oil, such as sweet almond oil or coconut oil.

It’s possible for tea tree oil to cause an allergic reaction. It can cause skin irritation such as redness, itchiness, and inflammation in some people.

Talk to your doctor before using tea tree oil if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Tea tree oil is easy to use. If you are using the tea tree oil undiluted, or “neat”, do a patch test first. Then use up to 3 drops of undiluted tea tree essential oil directly on the fungus.

If you are diluting the tea tree oil, add it to a carrier oil, such as coconut oil. You can either use a cotton swab to apply it and allow it to dry or place a cotton ball soaked in the diluted tea tree oil on the affected area for a few minutes.

You can also do a foot soak a few times per week. Add five drops of tea tree oil to a half-ounce of carrier oil, mix them, stir into a bucket of warm water, and soak your feet for 20 minutes.

Keep your nails neat and nicely trimmed during the healing process. Use clean nail clippers, scissors, or a nail file to remove any dead nails.

Also, keep your affected nails as clean and dry as possible. Always wash your hands thoroughly after treating your nails to avoid spreading the infection.

You need to be consistent with the treatment in order to see results. It usually takes a few months for the nail to heal completely. Healing time depends on how severe the infection is and how quickly your body responds to the treatment.

The fungal infection is cured when you’ve grown an entirely new nail that’s free from infection.

You can continue the tea tree oil treatment after the nail has healed to ensure that the nail fungus doesn’t return.

It’s important that you use a high-quality tea tree oil for best results. Here are some things to look for when buying tea tree oil:

  • The oil needs to be 100 percent pure.
  • Buy an organic oil, if possible.
  • Look for a tea tree oil that has a 10 to 40 percent concentration of terpinen. This is one of the main antiseptic and antifungal components of tea tree oil.

You can buy tea tree oil online or at a local health store. Always buy from a brand that you trust. The supplier should be able to answer any questions you have about their product.

Research your brands and manufacturers. Essential oils can have issues with purity, contamination, and strength. The U. S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) doesn’t regulate essential oils, so it’s important to purchase from a supplier you trust.

How to store essential oils

Store your essential oils away from direct sunlight, moisture, and extreme temperatures. They should be okay at room temperature. If you live in a very warm or humid climate, you can store them in the refrigerator.

If you’ve taken steps to treat your nail fungus but it isn’t improving or starts to get worse, it’s important that you see a doctor. Nail fungus has the potential to cause other complications, especially for people who have diabetes or a weakened immune system.

Using tea tree oil should be a safe and effective method for treating nail fungus, but it’s still important that you use it with care. Keep an eye on the effect it’s having on your nail fungus and possibly on the skin around it. Discontinue use immediately if you experience any adverse effects.

Also keep in mind that it may take some time to completely heal nail fungus.

Effectiveness, how to use, and side effects

We include products we think are useful for our readers. If you buy through links on this page, we may earn a small commission. Here’s our process.

Nail fungus, or onychomycosis, can affect the nails on the hands or feet. Toenail fungus is particularly common.

Most treatments for nail fungus do not clear the fungus entirely but can help prevent it from spreading. However, these conventional medications can cause skin irritation and other symptoms, such as ingrown nails.

As a result, some people have turned to natural products, such as tea tree oil, to treat nail fungus.

While tea tree oil does appear to have antifungal properties, its efficacy in treating nail fungus is unclear. As with conventional treatments, tea tree oil can also cause some unpleasant side effects.

This article outlines research on the antifungal properties of tea tree oil. We discuss whether tea tree oil is effective against nail fungus, how to use it, and its potential side effects.

There are very few studies investigating tea tree oil as a specific treatment for nail fungus. We outline the available research below.

Findings from lab studies

Share on PinterestCurrent reseach into tea tree oil as a treatment for nail fungus is sometimes conflicting.

A 2013 laboratory study found that tea tree oil is effective in treating the fungus Trichophyton rubrum (T. rubrum). This particular fungus commonly affects the toenails and can cause athlete’s foot.

The study showed that tea tree oil was significantly more effective at inhibiting the growth of T. rubrum than a placebo.

However, the researchers experimented using lab-grown T. rubrum cultures and human nail clippings. It is not clear whether tea tree oil would have the same effects on infected nail tissue in humans.

The researchers also administered the tea tree oil in a nanosuspension. A nanosuspension contains small particles of a drug suspended in water, which makes the drug easier to absorb. It is not clear whether widely available forms of tea tree oil would have the same effects on nail fungus.

Findings from studies involving humans

Two earlier studies investigated the effects of tea tree oil on nail fungus in humans.

A 1994 study found that tea tree oil applied directly to toenail fungus is as effective as clotrimazole cream. Clotrimazole is an antifungal cream available on prescription or from a pharmacy.

A study published in 1999 investigated whether an antifungal cream containing tea tree oil could help manage toenail fungus. The researchers used tea tree oil alone as a placebo. Participants applied either the combination cream or the placebo for 16 weeks.

The combination cream completely cured the nail fungus in 80% of the participants. However, none of the people who used the tea tree alone saw any improvement. This suggests that tea tree oil alone may not be an effective treatment for nail fungus.

Contradictory results

The three studies provide varied results regarding tea tree oil’s efficacy as an antifungal nail treatment.

Further research is necessary to determine the effects of tea tree oil in humans. Scientists believe that any future research should examine the effects of widely available forms of tea tree oil.

Share on PinterestA person can apply tea tree oil to a nail using a cotton ball.

Although the research on tea tree oil and nail fungus is unclear, the oil does appear to have some antifungal properties. Some people may, therefore, wish to try it alongside conventional treatments for nail fungus.

Tea tree oil is relatively easy to use. As with conventional medications, a person would likely need to use it daily for several weeks, months, or longer before noticing results.

Always mix essential oils with a carrier oil before applying them to the skin. Doing so helps to dilute the essential oil, reducing the risk of side effects when it contacts the skin. Carrier oils also help to deliver or “carry” essential oils into the skin. Two potential carrier oils include olive oil and coconut oil.

Methods for applying the tea tree oil mixture to the skin include:

  • soaking a cotton ball in the oil and holding it against the affected nail for several minutes
  • using a cotton swab to apply a layer of oil to the affected nail and allowing it to dry
  • adding the oil to a tub of warm water and soaking the affected hands or feet

During treatment, a person should keep their toenails as clean and dry as possible. This includes keeping the nails trimmed.

Tea tree oil can cause several unwanted side effects.

Never take tea tree oil internally. Swallowing tea tree oil can lead to the following serious side effects:

  • confusion
  • decreased muscular control
  • loss of consciousness

Tea tree oil can also cause side effects when a person uses it topically. The following side effects usually affect the area of skin where the individual applied the oil:

  • redness
  • swelling
  • itchiness
  • stinging
  • dryness
  • scaling skin

Parents and caregivers should not use tea tree oil on a child’s skin, unless under the direction of a pediatrician.

Tea tree oil is available to purchase from pharmacies and online.

Share on PinterestThere are a number of nail fungus treatments available in pharmacies and online.

There are several over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription treatments for nail fungus.

Most treatments require several months to take effect. In some cases, the treatment may only help stop the fungus from spreading or getting worse.

Some potential treatment options include:

  • the medicated nail lacquer amorolfine
  • other OTC medicated topical solutions (e.g., ciclopirox, efinaconazole, and tavaborole)

oral antifungal medications (e.g., terbinafine and itraconazole)

People may also wish to try additional home remedies for nail fungus. Some people claim that the following home remedies might help, although there is little scientific evidence to support these claims:

  • applying Vicks vapor rub
  • using oregano oil
  • applying vinegar or doing vinegar soaks
  • placing chopped or crushed garlic on the nails
  • soaking feet in a Listerine foot soak

So far, research investigating the use of tea tree oil for nail fungus has provided conflicting results. Further research involving human participants is necessary to determine whether, and to what extent, tea tree oil is effective.

However, tea tree oil does appear to have some antifungal properties. People may, therefore, wish to use it alongside conventional treatments for nail fungus.

People who use tea tree oil should be aware of the potential side effects it may cause. If a person experiences any side effects, they should stop using the oil and consult their pharmacist for advice on alternative treatments.

People who are concerned about nail fungus might consider seeing a doctor who can provide stronger medications to treat the infection. People should be aware that the treatment may take a long time to begin working.

Tea Tree Oil for Nail Fungus: How to Do it, Does it Work and Is It Safe? Among its medicinal properties, tea tree oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties and can be an effective treatment for nail fungus.

Nail fungus can be difficult to treat because it cannot get rid of it right away. If you use tea tree oil consistently, you should see results over time. Please note that the results will not be instant.

Read more to learn more about tea tree oil treatment for nail fungus.

Does tea tree oil work?

Research evidence supporting the use of tea tree oil for the treatment of nail fungus is mixed. Some research points to the potential of tea tree oil as an antifungal agent, but more research is needed.

Prema 2013 study, tea tree oil was effective in reducing the growth of the fungus Trichophyton rubrum in nail infections. T. rubrum is a fungus that can cause infections such as athlete's foot and toenail fungus. Improvements were seen after 14 days.

This study uses an in vitro model, sometimes referred to as a test tube experiment. An in vitro test experiment is carried out in a test tube, not on an animal or human. Larger human studies are needed to disseminate these results.

You can also combine tea tree oil with standard treatment creams. A small 1999 study found that participants were able to successfully get rid of nail fungus using a cream containing butenafine hydrochloride and tea tree oil.

After 16 weeks of treatment, 80 percent of participants who used this cream had cleared their nail fungus without recurrence. None of the placebo group cured nail fungus. Further research is needed to determine which of these ingredients is most beneficial in treating nail fungus.

Results 1994 study Pure tea tree oil was found to be as effective as the antifungal clotrimazole (Desenex) in treating fungal nail infections. Clotrimazole is available over the counter (OTC) and by prescription.

After six months of twice daily treatment, the results of both groups were similar. Although both groups had positive results, relapses were common. Further research is needed to determine how to treat nail fungus without relapse.

Is it safe?

It is a common siguran that tea tree oil is used topically in small amounts and when properly diluted.

Never take tea tree oil by mouth. Avoid using tea tree oil on children without consulting a doctor.

Tea tree essential oils should be diluted with an oily oil such as sweet almond oil.

Tea tree oil may cause an allergic reaction. For some people, it can cause skin irritation such as redness, itching, and inflammation.

Even when using diluted tea tree oil, always do a skin test before use:

  • After you drink the oil, dilute it: for every 1-2 drops of tea tree oil, add 12 drops of carrier.
  • Apply a dilute amount of penny oil to the forearm.
  • If you do not experience irritation within 24 hours, it should be safely applied elsewhere.

Talk to your doctor before using tea tree oil if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

How to use

Tea tree oil is easy to use. Add tea tree oil to a carrier oil such as coconut oil. This dilutes the oil and reduces the chance of a reaction. You can use a cotton swab to apply it and let it dry, or apply a cotton swab dipped in diluted tea tree oil to the affected area for a few minutes.

You can also soak your feet several times a week. Add five drops of tea tree oil to half an ounce of nasal oil, mix them together, stir in a bucket of warm water, and soak your feet for 20 minutes.

Keep your nails neat and nicely trimmed during the healing process. Use clean nail clippers, scissors, or a nail file to remove dead nails.

Also, keep affected nails as clean and dry as possible. Always wash your hands thoroughly after handling nails to avoid spreading infection.

You must be consistent in your treatment to see results. It usually takes several months for the nail to heal completely. The timing of treatment depends on how severe the infection is and how quickly your body responds to treatment.

A fungal infection is treated when you grow a new nail that is not infected.

You can continue the tea tree oil treatment after the nail has healed to ensure that the fungus does not return.

Purchase of essential oils

It is important to use high quality tea tree oil for best results. Here's what to look for when buying tea tree oil:

  • The oil must be 100 percent pure.
  • Buy organic oil if possible.
  • Look for tea tree oil with 10 to 40 percent terpenes. It is one of the main antiseptic and antifungal components of tea tree oil.

You can buy tea tree oil online or at your local health store. Always buy from a brand you trust. The supplier must be able to answer all your questions about their product.

Research your brands and manufacturers. Essential oils can have issues with purity, contamination, and persistence. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate the use of essential oils, so it is important to buy from a supplier you trust.

How to store essential oils

Store essential oils away from direct sunlight, moisture and extreme temperatures. They should be fine at room temperature. If you live in a very warm or humid climate, you can store them in the refrigerator.

When to ask for help

If you have taken steps to treat your toenail fungus and it doesn't get better or gets worse, it's important to see a doctor. Toenail fungus can cause other complications, especially in people with diabetes or a weakened immune system.

Excursion

Using tea tree oil should be a safe and effective treatment for nail fungus, but it's still important to use it carefully. Pay attention to the effect that the fungus has on the nails and possibly on the skin around it. Stop use immediately if you experience any side effects.

Also be aware that nail fungus may take some time to heal completely.

Tea Tree Oil for Toenail Fungus: How It Works, Does It Work and Is It Safe

Contents

Overview

Tea Tree Oil is an essential oil with many therapeutic properties. Among its medicinal properties, tea tree oil has antifungal and antiseptic properties and can be an effective treatment for nail fungus.

Nail fungus can be difficult to treat because it cannot get rid of it right away. If you use tea tree oil consistently, you should see results over time. Please note that the results will not be instant.

Learn more to learn more about tea tree oil treatment for nail fungus.

Does tea tree oil work?

Research evidence supporting the use of tea tree oil for the treatment of nail fungus is mixed. Some research points to the potential of tea tree oil as an antifungal agent, but more research is needed.

Prema 2013 study, tea tree oil effectively reduces the growth of Trichophyton rubrum in nail infections. T. rubrum is a fungus that can cause infections such as athlete's foot and toenail fungus. Improvements were seen after 14 days.

This study uses an in vitro model, sometimes referred to as a test tube experiment. An in vitro test experiment is carried out in a test tube, not on an animal or human. Larger human studies are needed to disseminate these results.

You can also combine tea tree oil with standard healing creams. A small 1999 study found that participants were able to successfully get rid of nail fungus using a cream containing butenafine hydrochloride and tea tree oil.

After 16 weeks of treatment, 80 percent of participants who used this cream had cleared their nail fungus without recurrence. None of the placebo group cured nail fungus. Further research is needed to determine which of these ingredients is most beneficial in treating nail fungus.

Results 1994 study Pure tea tree oil was found to be as effective as the antifungal clotrimazole (Desenex) in treating fungal nail infections. Clotrimazole is available over the counter (OTC) and by prescription.

After six months of twice daily treatment, the results of both groups were similar. Although both groups had positive results, relapses were common. Further research is needed to determine how to treat nail fungus without relapse.

Is it safe?

It is a common siguran that tea tree oil is used topically in small amounts and when properly diluted.

Never take tea tree oil by mouth. Avoid using tea tree oil on children without consulting a doctor.

Tea tree essential oils should be diluted with an oily oil such as sweet almond oil.

Tea tree oil may cause an allergic reaction. For some people, it can cause skin irritation such as redness, itching, and inflammation.

Even when using diluted tea tree oil, always do a skin test before use:

  • After you drink the oil, dilute it: for every 1-2 drops of tea tree oil, add 12 drops of carrier.
  • Apply a dilute amount of penny oil to the forearm.
  • If you do not experience irritation within 24 hours, it should be safely applied elsewhere.

Talk to your doctor before using tea tree oil if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

How to use

Tea tree oil is easy to use. Add tea tree oil to a carrier oil such as coconut oil. This dilutes the oil and reduces the chance of a reaction. You can use a cotton swab to apply it and let it dry, or apply a cotton swab dipped in diluted tea tree oil to the affected area for a few minutes.

You can also soak your feet several times a week. Add five drops of tea tree oil to half an ounce of nasal oil, mix them together, stir in a bucket of warm water, and soak your feet for 20 minutes.

Keep your nails neat and nicely trimmed during the healing process. Use clean nail clippers, scissors, or a nail file to remove dead nails.

Also, keep affected nails as clean and dry as possible. Always wash your hands thoroughly after handling nails to avoid spreading infection.

You must be consistent in your treatment to see results. It usually takes several months for the nail to heal completely. The timing of treatment depends on how severe the infection is and how quickly your body responds to treatment.

A fungal infection is treated when you grow a new nail that is not infected.

You can continue the tea tree oil treatment after the nail has healed to ensure that the fungus does not return.

Buying essential oils

It is important to use high quality tea tree oil for best results. Here's what to look for when buying tea tree oil:

  • The oil must be 100 percent pure.
  • Buy organic oil if possible.
  • Look for tea tree oil with 10 to 40 percent terpenes. It is one of the main antiseptic and antifungal components of tea tree oil.

You can buy tea tree oil online or at your local health store. Always buy from a brand you trust. The supplier must be able to answer all your questions about their product.

Research your brands and manufacturers. Essential oils can have issues with purity, contamination, and persistence.


Learn more