How Do I Use Tea Tree Oil for Ringworm?

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  • Written By: Meshell Powell
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 14 September 2019
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The use of tea tree oil for ringworm is largely considered to be a safe and effective way to rid the body of this type of fungal infection, although a medical professional should always be consulted for an accurate diagnosis before beginning self-treatment. Pure tea tree oil may cause skin irritation, so many medical practitioners suggest diluting the oil before use. The diluted solution is usually applied directly to the lesion several times per day until the infection is gone. Those with multiple ringworm lesions may benefit from adding a few drops of oil to the bath water. Any specific questions or concerns about this treatment should be discussed with a doctor or other medical professional.

In spite of the potential for skin irritation, some people believe that tea tree oil is the most effective for treating fungal infection such as ringworm when used full-strength. Before attempting this, a small amount of the oil should be applied to a healthy area of skin with a cotton swab to test for sensitivity. If redness, burning, or other forms of skin irritation occur, the oil should be diluted before it is applied to the affected area or not used at all.


Diluted tea tree oil may be equally as effective as the pure oil and contains less of a risk of causing skin irritation. A few drops can be added to bath water a couple of times per day to help kill the fungus. After the skin has been blotted dry, a diluted mixture may be applied directly to the lesions between two and three times per day.

There are several ways to dilute oil that will be used for ringworm infections. The oil can be mixed with water before using a cotton swab to apply the solution to the lesions. As dry, flaking skin is a common symptom of fungal infections, a carrier, such as almond oil or olive oil, may be used instead. Aloe vera gel or vitamin E oil are also good choices, as these products are known for their skin-healing properties.

As fungal infections are contagious, it is important to carefully wash all towels, sheets, and clothing during the treatment process. Several drops of the tea tree oil can be added to the washing machine in order to kill any fungus that remains on these items. This oil may also be used to wipe off counter tops or other surfaces that may have come into direct contact with the ringworm lesion.


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Post 3

My son had a ringworm infection on his scalp once, so I added tea tree oil to his shampoo and it cleared up in a week! Even his doctor was surprised about it.

My sister had a ringworm infection once too and I remember her telling me that she was mixing it with castor oil and applying it directly on her skin. I think coconut oil would be another great carrier oil for tea tree oil because it also has natural anti-fungal properties and is gentle on skin.

Post 2

@fBoyle-- You might be allergic to tea tree oil. This is why a skin test is recommended before using natural oils. Did you test the oil on your arm first?

Tea tree oil is very effective for a ringworm infection but it's a very potent oil and it should not be used undiluted. Diluted tea tree oil is enough to work against ringworm and the risk of irritation is too high with undiluted oil.

I personally think that the best way to use tea tree oil is to add a few drops to bath water. This might not seem like a lot, but sitting in bath water for at least fifteen minutes will be enough for the tea tree oil to be effective.

Post 1

I tried tea tree oil for ringworm but it made my skin very red and itchy, so I had to wash it off. I had this reaction despite diluting it, I have no idea why.

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