Does Tree Tea Oil Prevention Or Treatment For Lice Work?


I remember back in elementary school when my mother and the teachers told my classmates and me about the importance of never sharing hairbrushes. That was because if I was to share a hairbrush with a classmate who had lice, and they passed the brush back to me, and I used it – that meant I would have lice too. That is a significant problem primarily among school-aged kids. However, anyone can end up with lice.

There is one fortunate thing nowadaysif you were to end up with lice, and that there are better treatments for it than there were in the past. One common remedy for lice is the use of tea tree oil.

What Is Tea Tree Oil?

If you think that this oil comes from your teabag, then you are wrong. However, it is understandable that you would think that way since the name can be confusing. Tree teal oil is native to Australia, and it is also known as Melaleuca oil; and it has many excellent uses, including killing lice. However, experts have mixed things about tea tree oil being as potent when killing lice as it once was.

In addition, tea tree oil as a treatment alone is not as effective as it once was because of the overuse of insecticides as tea tree oil has been one for years. Therefore, evidence shows that lice began building up resistance to the oil. However, it is not entirely useless either, and it can still provide enough benefits when it comes to preventing lice from going into your hair, more so than treating it if you already have lice.

How Is Prevention Different From Treatment?

Prevention of something happening does not let it occur. That means you can find a way from having lice in your hair which is prevention. Treatment is taking care of the problem if it has already happened. If you have lice and need to remove them, you have to look for treatment. When it comes to tea tree oil, it is more effective at preventing a lice outbreak than treating the problem.

That is why it is a great idea to have a bottle of tea tree oil in your medicine cabinet if there is a concern about lice. If you put tea tree oil on your hair before you have any lice, then there is an excellent chance that it will repel the lice from going to your hair to lay eggs. The other great thing about tea tree oil is that it is very soothing on the scalp. You only need to put in a few drops of the essential oil and rub it in well. Therefore, lice find the odor of tea tree oil repulsive, which is why they will stay away from you if you have it on you.

However, the bad news is that if you already have lice, tea tree oil will not do much to treat the issue. Even though lice cannot stand the smell of tea tree oil, it is not enough to keep them away from your scalp and hair if they are already there. The reason is that tea tree oil does not suffocate lice, and lice have already developed a resistance to an ingredient in tea tree oil. Therefore, even though it does not work when treating lice, it still works as an excellent preventative measure.

When Is It Best To Use Tea Tree Oil When It Comes To Lice Prevention?

You can begin to use tea tree oil for your child before camp or school starts because an outbreak of lice can happen unexpectedly, and there is no way to predict when it can happen. However, if you don’t, you will need to begin applying tea tree oil to your child’s scalp as soon as there is news circulating about an outbreak happening at school or camp. You will also need to begin using it if a family member has lice or feels that you have had exposure to an outbreak. Lice do not only happen to kids. Lice do not discriminate regarding age, race, religion, income, or social status.

How Do You Evaluate The Presence Of Lice On Hair?

You cannot evaluate your hair if you think you have lice, as you will need to have someone else do it. However, if you feel that your child or a family member has lice, then there is a way to check for it. You also want to keep in mind that if your child has lice, there is an 80 percent chance that you or a sibling will have it. The best thing to do when checking for lice is to check the front of the hairline and the crown. You also need to check behind the ears and behind the neck for lice.

Begin to separate the hair by using a plastic comb. Press the comb down on the hair so you can make the eggs or nits visible. Then begin looping the hair around the comb so you can have an easier time seeing the lice and the nits. You will need to sift through the head, and it will take about 15 minutes. If you do notice lice, the first thing to do is not to panic. Even though tea tree oil will not help when treating lice, there are other treatments you can utilize, and you can go to the pharmacy for help with that. Therefore, it is not a problem you cannot solve, even though it will be messy.


Lice is a significant problem for everyone, mainly school-aged children, because they are the most likely to end up with lice problems by being with other kids at school or camp. However, there are treatments and prevention measures that you can take when it comes to outbreaks of lice‘. For example, the use of tea tree oil is an excellent preventative measure because lice find the odor of this essential oil repugnant. However, when it comes to treating lice with tea tree oil, it does not help very much since it does not kill them off despite the odor. There are other treatments if lice are present, however.