Tea Tree Oil For Lice Removal – How Effective Is It?

The presence of lice in head is a huge concern for many people. At times, the irritation and itchiness caused by head lice is unbearable. There is no special time or age where lice gets into our head,having said that they are seen commonly among kids and adults who lives with kids. However there is no reason to panic, as the presence of head lice in no way indicates your hair is not clean or healthy. There are many remedial measures which you can make use of in preventing head lice. In this article we will be discussing in detail about how tea tree oil can be used to get rid of head lice.

tea tree oil for lice removal

Lice are small insects that lives on our body and feeds on blood. If not treated, they can grow in numbers within few days. Apart from that it is also possible for them to spread from one person to another through close contact or by sharing same comb or clothes (personal items). They cause a kind of tickling effect on head like something moving over hair, this can be really irritating at times. The simplest and easiest method of dealing with head lice is combing your hair thoroughly every morning. Continuing this process for a week will bring amazing results.

Apart from this there are other clinical methods that are found to be effective in preventing head lice. From hair care products or medicines to completely natural oils, there is a lot of things you can follow to control head lice. Before moving onto the details, let’s see what are the most common symptoms of lice.

Symptoms of Lice

Well the most common symptom that indicates the presence of lice will be itchiness. However, these symptoms may vary depending upon the kind of lice you have.

  • Sometimes at the beginning of head lice, there won’t be any notable symptoms except a kind of itchiness once or twice in a while. This itchiness may well start 1-2 months before the lice begins to spread. Once the impact of itchiness increases, people will start scratching their scalp which will make the skin to appear raw.
  • If it is pubic lice then the symptom will be severe itchiness. They may even lead to the appearance of small marks in thighs and arms. Sometimes they will fall into the edges of eyelashes thereby causing irritation.
  • In case of body lice, you can be sure if any symptoms of bad itchiness occurs especially at night. Marks will be visible on parts of skin which comes in contact with clothes. Here lice and it’s eggs will be seen on the individual’s clothes rather than on the body.

Scratching your body out of itchiness may lead to various sorts of skin infections. In extreme cases, these skin infections will make the skin darker and thinner. When it comes to head lice, this can cause hair loss which eventually leads to balding.

Now that we are aware of the possible symptoms of various types of lice, let’s learn who are at the risk of getting infected by lice.

Who’s at Risk of Getting Infected by Lice?

There are many ways through which you could get affected by lice. Sometimes no matter how much you try, you just can’t stop them from getting into our body. Here we will briefly discuss some of the common cases of getting infected by lice.

  • It is found that kids who attends daycare schools are at a higher risk of transmitting or getting infected by lice as they tend to play together and might share their hats and other items.
  • People who lives in unhygienic circumstances are prone to get infected by lice. As they might not have good enough conditions to take bath or wash clothes.
  • Those who gets in sexual relationship with multiple people are also at a higher risk of getting infected by lice.

Now that we have understood the kind of conditions that could lead to head lice, we will now move on to the possible solutions that can be done in order to deal with such situations.

How to Get Rid of Lice?

Almost all the methods rely on some ways to suffocate the lice. As we know for treatments concerning our body, it is always better to follow natural methods rather than choosing artificial methods. So here we will briefly touch on some natural tricks you can try at home.

Many people think combing hair on a regular basis can effectively prevent the impact of lice to a great extend. The treatment of suffocating lice and makes them slower is what which makes it easy to catch them on comb.

Combing with Oil

Combing along with oil can be done in different ways. First by applying oil directly to hair and then comb and secondly by applying oil on to the hair brush and comb. Both are equally effective and can be tried to feel the difference.

combing with tea tree oil

  1. First step is to gently separate the hair into different sections using a clip.
  2. Now start combing your hair and once it is finished try rinsing it with a shampoo and repeat this process.
  3. Dry up your hair using a cotton towel and you can soak it in a small solution of bleach and rinse.

Follow these procedures regularly for a week. Start combing the hair routinely for the next 2 weeks will do a great deal in getting rid of head lice.

Treatment with Essential Oils

Many research works have proved that essential oils works well in getting rid of head lice. But it is highly recommended to apply the oil on your hand before applying on to your hair, as people might be allergic to some oils. Although the chances of allergic reactions will be very small, it is better not to take any chances.

Of the many available oils, tea tree oil is considered as the most effective among all essential oils. Let’s learn in detail about tea tree oil and how they helps in getting rid of lice.

Tea Tree Oil

Tea tree oil is yellowish in color and is extracted from the plants of tea tree. They are a native of Australia but are also found in other regions. For centuries, they have been used extensively for healing injuries in skin and their rich medicinal values makes them good enough in fighting against lice. In fact according to many researches, among all other oils it was tea tree oil that brought out the best results for getting rid of head lice. So we will discuss in detail on the working of tea tree oil for lice treatment.

How To Use Tea Tree Oil For Lice Removal In 7 Steps

  1. Purchase pure tea tree oil, which is readily available in most of the health food stores. Tea tree oil is found to have natural antimicrobial, antibacterial and anti inflammatory properties that makes them an effective remedial measure in reducing the number of lice. Combination of tea tree oil along with other oils like lavender is capable of killing lice eggs and thereby reducing their number. Even though many shampoos and hair conditioners have tea tree oil as an active ingredient, still they are not found to be effective enough to kill off lice.
  2. Purchase a comb preferably – lice comb since their teeth are closely spaced that will help you to check out the hair near scalp without much effort. In case you don’t have a lice comb, it is advisable to use a magnifying glass that will do the purpose.
  3. Prepare a solution of shampoo and tea tree oil – since the pure version of tea tree oil has the history of leading to skin irritations, it is always better to mix them up with a few drops of shampoo before using. But for best results, it is advisable to mix few drops of lavender or coconut oil along with this solution. The presence of coconut oil will do a great deal in suffocating the lice which eventually leads in getting rid of them. Make sure you stir them so as to stick the solution together.
  4. Paste this mixture on to the hair, while doing so make sure they are applied directly to the scalp as that is where most of the lice and their eggs will be present. Once it is applied, mask your hair with a shower cap and leave it untouched for around 20- 30 minutes. If any kind of itchiness is felt, then immediately wash of the mixture from your hair and dry up with the help of a towel, as this might be an indication of allergic reactions.
  5. Press your hair gently with your fingers and form lathers, make sure you do this with the purpose of reducing as many lice as possible. Meanwhile continue rinsing your hair with warm water.
  6. Now apply hair conditioner, since they are more thicker they will be capable of getting rid of lice which were not killed by tea tree oil treatment. They will also make it easier to run the comb through hair.
  7. Use the comb to arrange the hair, make sure you start from the scalp as this is where presence of lice will be more prominent. If you have long hair, separate them into different sections so as to make combing easy and quick. Make sure you do this step carefully because missing out on even a few lice could let them grow as a colony and start the whole infection process again. For best results, repeat this process regularly for 2-3 weeks even though it might sound little harsh, it is found to be effective in killing off the lice completely.

We understood how to effectively make use of tea tree oil to get rid of lice. There are many other agents of tea tree oil which can act as a supportive element for lice removal treatment. One of them is tea tree shampoo, which is available in almost all health stores.

Tea Tree Shampoo for Lice

Tea tree oil is now available in the form of shampoo and are found to be effective in removing lice. They are available in the form of tea tree shampoo, it is famous for its antiseptic properties. The shampoo contains around 3% of tea tree oil which is capable of stimulating the scalp without letting it to dry out. It is assumed that regular usage of tea tree shampoo will prevent hair from dandruff and lice. Tea tree shampoo will be effective among people who is suffering from dry scalp or extreme itchiness due to the presence of head lice. Apart from that tea tree shampoo is completely natural and Eco-friendly as they don’t contain any artificial colorings or fragrances.

Risks of Using Tea Tree Oil

Due to its medicinal values, tea tree oil has found themselves an active ingredient of many cosmetic products ranging from shampoos, conditioners to skin care products. This has increased its popularity to a new level. But still it is important to realize the possible side effects that comes along with the over usage of tea tree oil.

One of the most common side effect associated with tea tree oil is skin irritation. This may lead to redness, itchiness or inflammation in some extreme cases. So it is always better to test the oil before applying. This is because some people will be allergic to the components present in tea tree oil, hence their body will react. In addition to this, tea tree oil is also found to cause hormonal imbalance especially in boys. Over usage may lead to increased growth of breasts in boys, which eventually affects their self esteem. For pregnant ladies, it is always recommended to consult a doctor before consuming any kind of oils.


We all are aware of the irritations caused by head lice and the impacts it can have on daily activities. So it has to be treated wisely and you should be ready to spent some time for the same. But after choosing a treatment method, out of our frustration we often look for quick results. Most of the time, this often tends to slow up the treatment process thereby delaying the results. It is the same with tea tree oil, no matter how good it is in getting rid of lice, they need time and proper aid for better results.

As a matter of advice, we would like to let you know that no matter how powerful an oil is, before applying them to your body make sure you consult a doctor and listen to his opinions. Also make sure you perform an allergy test with that oil prior to use. Head lice is a major concern and there are many effective ways to deal with them. Tea tree oil is only one among them. There are plenty more out there ready to explore. Meanwhile we would love to hear your experiences, if you ever had a chance to use tea tree oil on hair or if you have any other possible remedial treatment method for lice removal, please feel free to share with us.

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