Patient: I’m afraid I put too much tea tree oil in my bath water. My skin is burning and I feel very slightly light headed. Is this a serious issue?
Doctor: Hello,Thank you for your query at AskTheDoctor.com.I understand your concern.Tea tree oil if in contact with the skin in excessive amounts does cause local burning and irritation but won’t have any systemic effects, so do not worry about any systemic issues like palpitations, giddiness or anaphylaxis.The skin can burn for some time, prophylactically you can take Loratadine 10 mg SOS and if required again once daily at bedtime.Apart from that just carefully observe your skin for any blisters or rash. Let me know if you experience any other symptoms.Hope this was helpful,Feel free to discuss further,Regards.
Comments / Follow Ups
Patient: Thank you. Yes, that was very helpful. I have pretty bad eczema and had heard tea tree oil can alleviate the symptoms. I was doing research about tea tree oil’s toxicity and found conflicting opinions as to weather the tea tree oil could be toxic through absorption and/or cause various mental side effects. This slightly concerned me as I felt light headed, almost dizzy, while soaking, which slowly went away. The burning sensation has completely disappeared and no blisters or rashes have appeared. After bathing, I showered in cold water and washed all the burning areas with soap. After drying, I applied a lotion to all the areas. Are these actions what prevented blisters or rashes? As the redness on my arms has somewhat lessened, I would like to try to use tea tree oil again. Could you recommend a good dosage or an alternative? Also is the light headedness a common side effect? I realize it may have been a coincidence.
Doctor: No, light headed was was probably triggered because of excessive amounts.
You can mix around 10-15 ml in a bucket of water and then shower.
As you said there are contrasting evidences, and the benefits are still not conclusively documented. You can also apply calamine which treats eczema well.