We are independent & ad-supported. We may earn a commission for purchases made through our links.

Advertiser Disclosure

Our website is an independent, advertising-supported platform. We provide our content free of charge to our readers, and to keep it that way, we rely on revenue generated through advertisements and affiliate partnerships. This means that when you click on certain links on our site and make a purchase, we may earn a commission. Learn more.

How We Make Money

We sustain our operations through affiliate commissions and advertising. If you click on an affiliate link and make a purchase, we may receive a commission from the merchant at no additional cost to you. We also display advertisements on our website, which help generate revenue to support our work and keep our content free for readers. Our editorial team operates independently from our advertising and affiliate partnerships to ensure that our content remains unbiased and focused on providing you with the best information and recommendations based on thorough research and honest evaluations. To remain transparent, we’ve provided a list of our current affiliate partners here.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Using Tea Tree Oil in Pregnancy?

Dan Harkins
Updated May 17, 2024
Our promise to you
WiseGeek is dedicated to creating trustworthy, high-quality content that always prioritizes transparency, integrity, and inclusivity above all else. Our ensure that our content creation and review process includes rigorous fact-checking, evidence-based, and continual updates to ensure accuracy and reliability.

Our Promise to you

Founded in 2002, our company has been a trusted resource for readers seeking informative and engaging content. Our dedication to quality remains unwavering—and will never change. We follow a strict editorial policy, ensuring that our content is authored by highly qualified professionals and edited by subject matter experts. This guarantees that everything we publish is objective, accurate, and trustworthy.

Over the years, we've refined our approach to cover a wide range of topics, providing readers with reliable and practical advice to enhance their knowledge and skills. That's why millions of readers turn to us each year. Join us in celebrating the joy of learning, guided by standards you can trust.

Editorial Standards

At WiseGeek, we are committed to creating content that you can trust. Our editorial process is designed to ensure that every piece of content we publish is accurate, reliable, and informative.

Our team of experienced writers and editors follows a strict set of guidelines to ensure the highest quality content. We conduct thorough research, fact-check all information, and rely on credible sources to back up our claims. Our content is reviewed by subject matter experts to ensure accuracy and clarity.

We believe in transparency and maintain editorial independence from our advertisers. Our team does not receive direct compensation from advertisers, allowing us to create unbiased content that prioritizes your interests.

Some rightly worry about taking antibiotics to fight skin irritations or other bacterial infections when pregnant or breastfeeding. For fear of lessening the natural immunity of their developing children, some turn to a natural alternative medicine with proven antibacterial qualities, which is tea tree oil. This derivative of the plant Melaleuca alternifolia is reputed to effectively conquer numerous ailments. Medical experts recommend a doctor's approval when using tea tree oil in pregnancy or while breastfeeding though, since as of 2011 it has not been proven unequivocally that this essential oil is completely safe for the very youngest developing humans.

Using tea tree oil in pregnancy, first and foremost, must only be done topically. Medical authorities empasize that this herbal extract is toxic when ingested by mouth, but it is unclear at exactly what level in humans. Therefore, all people, pregnant or otherwise, should only use it to treat visible conditions on the skin and potentially the genitals.

If a doctor approves, tea tree oil in pregnancy could naturally help the body heal various bacterial infections. Numerous studies have proven its effectiveness as an antiseptic and antifungal agent. According to the University of Western Australia's Tea Tree Oil Research Group (TTORG), no known natural substance is a better antiseptic. In 2011, the Mayo Clinic maintains that more study is necessary, but that the oil is clearly effective for a range of fungal and vaginal infections as well as for improving common acne.

This does not mean using tea tree oil in pregnancy or at any other time will not result in adverse effects, similar to the occasional reactions that will be experienced with synthetic antibiotics. Allergic reactions could result in a rash, hives or even some swelling, particularly if highly concentrated solutions are used. Those allergic to eucalyptus also are advised to exercise caution, since that plant's oils are commonly paired with commercial tea tree oils.

The TTORG maintains that tea tree oil may someday replace conventional antibiotic creams for treatment of skin irritations. Since it is toxic, however, it will not replace orally administered antibiotics. Using tea tree oil in pregnancy may not be advisable for other reasons too, besides the unknown effects on fetal development. According to the Mayo Clinic, a problem could stem from another benefit of tea tree oil — its suspected easing of the force of contractions. This, in turn, could prolong delivery or even endanger the baby and mother.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Dan Harkins
By Dan Harkins , Former Writer
Dan Harkins, a former military professional, brings his diverse life experiences to his writing. After earning his journalism degree, he spent more than two decades honing his craft as a writer and editor for various publications. Dan’s debut novel showcases his storytelling skills and unique perspective by drawing readers into the story’s captivating narrative.

Discussion Comments

Dan Harkins

Dan Harkins

Former Writer

Dan Harkins, a former military professional, brings his diverse life experiences to his writing. After earning his...
Learn more
WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.

WiseGeek, in your inbox

Our latest articles, guides, and more, delivered daily.