(This information is for those who might like to know a little more about the specific essential oils we use.)
Lavender is the most is the most versatile and popular of all essential oil and should be included in any anti-bacterial skin healing. Lavender has often been called the “medicine chest in a bottle” for its broad range of applications. Every home should keep Lavender on hand, even if no other oil is used, as it is so very effective on burns. Lavender essential oil is an antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and is helpful in the healing of small burns, cuts and insect bites.
Its anti-inflammatory action is responsible for the beginnings of modern aromatherapy when Dr. Jean Valnet discovered Lavender’s healing properties after being burned in a laboratory accident. (Lavender is considered to speed wound healing and reduce scarring.)
The oil is also pleasantly calming, and can be used to reduce stress in a variety of situations. A commonly used technique is to apply Lavender oil ‘neat’ (undiluted) to the soles of the feet of patients recovering from almost any ailment. This shouldn’t be overlooked since lavender is a brilliant soothing agent for nearly every situation. In addition to anti-bacterial use, its aroma will bring calm – and that can be useful in many situations where an antiseptic is required.
Spike lavender is produced from flowers growing in France. It is a cousin to “true” lavender and appears as a cross between Lavender and Sage. Spike lavender is the more ‘medicinal’ of the lavenders, with a more powerful antiseptic action. It is noted to have bactericidal, antiviral, decongestant, and expectorant properties. This is one reason we also use it a diffuser to help upper respiratory conditions that often accompanies an infection.
An interesting recent study on test-taking college students showed the diffusion of lemon oil into a room improved test scores more than any other oil. However, in addition to its mind-brightening qualities, it has other qualities that also interest us.
Lemon oil (citrus lemon) has antiseptic-like properties and contains d-lemonene compounds that have been studied for their effects on immune function, lymphatic, circulatory, and digestive systems. It is anti-bacterial and can stimulate white blood cells, phagocytes, and lymphocytes to fight against infection.
Perhaps, even more importantly, it is beneficial for the skin and useful (along with our lotion components) in softening scar tissue that can result from deep infection wounds (like MRSA)!
As a bonus, it also is very helpful in diffusing into air to disinfect the room air. The strong antiseptic qualities of this oil has an antiseptic nature that helps reduce sore throats flu and colds. (Another reason to add it to our House & Room Anti-Bacterial Defense.)
Olive Leaf Extract
Although not strictly an essential oil, many people fail to fully appreciate what olive leaf extract can do for skin infections.
It has been used as a natural antibiotic for thousands of years. When the active components of olive leafs were isolated in 1969, an upsurge of research has resulted in dramatic discoveries. It is used in hospitals in Hungary to overcome MRSA with good success rates! Research at theUpjohn Company, was published by the American Society for Microbiology. They found that the active components in Olive Leaf, elenol acid and calcium elenolate, inhibited the growth of every virus, bacteria, fungi and protozoa they were tested against (over 30).
The extract is an extraordinary herbal anti-bacterial as well as anti-viral extract. This new proprietary phytochemical extract is not only safe, but is also a nontoxic immune system builder. With its natural antibiotic action, it is beneficial for bacterial infections even when antiobiotics are ineffective and is a non-toxic way to strengthen the immune system.
The orange tree is native to Asia, and was brought to the rest of the world by travelers and explorers. Orange essential oil is cold pressed from the peel of the orange. Sweet orange essential oil is produced from the fruit of the orange tree while other ‘orange’ essential oils are from the bitter orange tree.
Citrus essential oils like orange, lemon, and lime, are antiseptic and antibacterial. Lemon is the strongest antiseptic of the group, but orange essential oil works will in a synergy with lemon to provide maximum antibacterial benefits of both.
Orange has been touted as an anti-inflammatory, anti-septic and anti-bactericidal. This is one reason it is common to see it so often in household cleaners. In combination with the other essential oils it is also useful in combating bacterial infections as well as colds and flu.
Orange scents are also energizing and uplifting. The scent of oranges is a very real aid in helping the mental attitude of someone suffering from infectious diseases. It helps cheer a person up as well as helping relieve indigestion (orange helps encourage the creation of saliva that can aid digestion).
Oregano is the all-time heavy-hitter of essential oils for anti-microbial action. Oregano is serious medicine and has been the subject of many successful scientific evaluations. It has a broad spectrum of bactericidal and anti-microbial action. Oregano is a powerful antibacterial agent that kills staph, e coli, listeria and more than 25 different bacteria.
Laboratory research at Weber State University, Ogden, Utah, showed a 99 percent kill rate against Streptococcus pneumoniae – even when used in 1 percent concentration. It is anti-bacterial, anti-viral, containing 31 known anti-inflammatories, 28 antioxidants, and 4 potent COX-2 inhibitors. Researchers say 12 microliters of oregano is equal to 10 units of penicillin as an antibacterial agent (but it doesn’t kill the good bacteria!)
Researchers at Georgetown University found oregano oil at relatively low doses inhibited the growth of staphylococcus bacteria as effectively as the standard antibiotics.
Carvacol and thymol are the primary active constituents. These compounds act as anti-bacterials. Among 52 plant oils tested in one study, oregano was found to have the strongest action against Candida albicans, as well as E. Coli, Salmonella and Pseudomonas bacteria (a strain that is becoming more difficult to treat with conventional medicine due to development of drug resistance).
In the book The Practice of Aromatherapy, Jean Valnet discusses how it is potent enough to sterilize sewage water – other researchers performed this test and found a 1/4000 dilution of the oil sterilized septic water.
(Oil of Oregano capsules, processed for ingestion, are found in health food stores. It is this same oregano essential oil, typically diluted in olive oil, then capsulated.)
For the next essential oils, go Here.