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Tea Tree Oil and Head Lice

olive oil in a glass caraf with black olives and greenery on table

Updated on December 26, 2019

Does tea tree oil actually work to kill head lice? How about tea tree oil killing nits? A group of students from UC Irvine in Orange County called us to say that they had heard that applying tea tree oil to the hair was an effective way to get rid of nits and lice. They were calling us to see if this was true. There is some truth to that but there is also some fallacy. Tea tree oil acts to suffocate lice much as other viscous products do like mayonnaise or other oils. To that end, tea tree oil may be helpful in killing bugs. There is no evidence, though, that the scent of tea tree oil is particularly effective in repelling or killing bugs or that tea tree oil is more effective than other occlusive products which get into the breathing apparatus of lice and suffocate them.. The other piece to the question is regarding tea tree oil being effective in killing nits. The answer to that question is "no". Nits have a very hard shell and the tea tree oil can not penetrate them at all. To eradicate a case of lice, you have to pull out all of the nits; leaving nits in the hair is a recipe for the lice hatching from these nits and the case continuing. Therefore, tea tree oil is not an answer to ending a lice problem. It may help, but there are better options to kill the bugs and a lice expert knows the best way to get rid of your nits. LiceDoctors has been out in the field eliminating nits from over 450,000 heads. We can get rid of your lice problem today..safely and naturally. Questions? Call us at 714-395-5181.