Top Antibacterial Essential Oils
Sometimes even a minor cut or scratch can lead to a much bigger health problem. That is because #bacteria can invade and infect your injury, making something at first insignificant very significant indeed. One way to keep this from happening, as well as protect against unhealthy airborne bacteria and pathogens, is with essential oils (EOs). There are a few EOs that show excellent antibacterial properties, and you should keep them on hand at all times.
Essential oils derive their antibacterial effect from their unique natural chemical makeup, as each essential oil is made up of several, sometimes hundreds of distinct natural chemicals. Many are found to have antimicrobial activity, and boast synergistic effects. A blend of these oils delivers more potency than any one oil can by itself.
Several studies have found that Carvacrol, the primary molecule found in oil of Oregano is stronger than others in its antimicrobial activity. Other studies found that a blend of Carvacrol and Thymol are more potent together than on their own.
1996 Study Reveals Top Antibacterial Essential Oils
In 1996, a study was conducted where 10 important essential oils were tested for their ability to repel 22 common forms of bacteria. Those clinical tests also subjected those same essential oils to 12 fungi that commonly infect humans. The findings were impressive, with 4 of the essential oils tested effective at repelling and treating all 22 bacterial strains.
Eucalyptus, Orange, Peppermint, and Lemongrass oils inhibited every bacteria they were exposed to. Palmarosa and Aegle essential oils inhibited 21 different bacteria. Ageratum and Patchouli oils were successful in combating 20 of the 22 bacteria, with Geranium and Citronella oils effective in inhibiting at least a dozen bacterial strains.
Of the 12 fungi also used in this clinical experiment, all were inhibited by Lemongrass, Patchouli, Orange, Citronella, Geranium, Aegel, and Palmarosa Oils. Peppermint and Eucalyptus, 2 of the essential oils, which were effective against all 22 bacterial strains, were also excellent in inhibiting 11 of the 12 fungi they were exposed to.
Unfortunately, not all of the more than 90 essential oils were tested in that important 1996 experiment. However, aromatherapy and essential oil practitioners know there are several more oils, which offer antibacterial properties for particular applications.
For example, Tea Tree essential oil (also called Melaleuca oil) is known as an excellent acne treatment. This is because the specific bacteria, which cause and aggravate acne are warded off by the particular antibacterial properties that Tea Tree oil delivers. Lemon essential oil is likewise effective for treating skin conditions caused by bacterial infection.
Cassia, Cinnamon and Clove essential oils are also full of antibacterial properties.
Eucalyptus essential oil works well as a natural pest repellent, and also as an anti-inflammatory application as well as an antibacterial agent.
Lime essential oil is both antibacterial and antiseptic, and can be used without diluting.
Thyme oil provides excellent defense as an antiviral, antimicrobial, antibacterial, and antiseptic agent, though it should probably be diluted in almost every case.
Choosing The Right Oils
It is important to select the right essential oils of antibacterial use and in the right amounts.
Tea Tree is one of the most widely used antibacterial essential oils, and makes an ideal addition to a home’s natural first aid kit.
Geranium essential oil is a great option to have on hand at home, as it is an antibacterial that is gentler in action and scent. It has significant healing properties, and is ideal for both dry and oils skin, allowing for an antiseptic that will not dry out any skin tone. Being that it is an anti-inflammatory, astringent, and general tonic, Geranium is also good for acne, general dermatitis, and eczema.
Lavender essential oil has both antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, and it also helps alleviate stress, works well for cuts, insect bites, burns, and scrapes.
When significant antibacterial action is required, Oregano oil is a good choices, and ideal for fighting stubborn nail fungus, but too intense for use on soft tissue areas.
Essential oils may be the perfect replacement for that bottle of Neosporin or rubbing alcohol in your medicine chest, and natural remedies may be the ideal solution for many of the common mild injuries we incur on a day-to-day basis.
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