(NaturalNews) Essential oils are mostly used in aromatherapy for their wonderful and healing scent, however, they actually have much more to offer. For centuries, traditional Chinese and Indian medicine have used essential oils to successfully treat a broad range of conditions, which has now sparked the interest of the scientific world.
Research has shown that essential oils possess strong antimicrobial properties that can be used to kill even the toughest bugs out there. The skin is our largest organ; it is also the most sensitive part of our bodies, and is prone to rashes and infections. Though there are numerous over-the-counter creams and lotions available to treat skin diseases, most of them contain harmful chemicals that can do more harm than good.
The use of essential oils to treat skin infections – among other health issues – is rapidly growing in popularity because they act as natural medicine without any side effects or added chemicals.
The best essential oils to treat skin infections
Essential oils are potent plant medicines that in some cases will need to be diluted with a carrier oil, especially when applied to sensitive skin, such as the skin of babies and young children. To avoid an allergic reaction or irritation, it is always a good idea to try a small amount on the skin first. Wait an hour or so, and if no reaction appears it is safe to go ahead.
1. Lavender essential oil
A true cure-all, lavender essential oil should be part of every first aid kit. The oil has antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory properties which soothe skin rashes and many other skin infections. Furthermore, lavender essential oil speeds up the healing process of scrapes, bruises and insect bites or stings.
Lavender oil is mild enough that it doesn't need a carrier oil; it can be used directly on the skin to do its magic.
2. Tea tree essential oil
Just like lavender oil, tea tree oil is well known for its potent antibacterial, antiviral and anti-fungal properties. It is for this reason that many cosmetic companies add tea tree oil to their products. It can be used to treat insect bites, warts, minor burns, bruises and scrapes.
It can be applied directly to the skin to treat acne, fungal infections, ringworm and athlete's foot. Tea tree oil is a stronger essential oil that may cause mild irritation or reddening if used undiluted. Therefore, if you have sensitive skin, you may want to dilute the oil in aloe vera gel or coconut oil (or any other carrier oil of your choice) before applying it to the affected area.
3. Roman chamomile essential oil
If you have sensitive skin, then this is the essential oil for you. The oil can be used to treat red, inflamed or sensitive, acne-prone skin. It has also been shown to be very useful in the treatment of eczema and hemorrhoids.
Furthermore, this sweet-smelling essential oil is much gentler than tea tree oil. It can be used undiluted or diluted in an antibacterial carrier oil, such as coconut oil, for the most delicate skin types. Because of its gentle nature, it can be used to treat diaper rashes without harming the delicate skin of your little one.
4. Lemongrass essential oil
If you are suffering from Athlete's foot or other fungal skin infections lemongrass essential oil should be your go-to remedy, since it is considered the best essential oil to treat fungal infections. Furthermore, it can be used to sterilize pores, serves as a natural toner and strengthens skin tissue, making it an effective cleanser for all skin types.
However, if you have sensitive skin, lemongrass oil may create a rash, discomfort or even a burning sensation. Also, pregnant women should not use lemongrass essential oil because it stimulates menstrual flow which on very rare occasions may lead to a miscarriage.
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