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Eucalyptus (generic name)

treats Decongestant/expectorant, Skin ulcers, Arthritis, Dental plaque/gingivitis, Headache, Tick repellant, Smoking cessation, and Asthma
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Eucalyptus oil (E. globulus Labillardiere, E. fructicetorum F. Von Mueller, E. smithii R.T. Baker)

Category

Herbs & Supplements

Alternate Title

Cineole

Synonyms

1,8-cineole, aerial eucalyptus, Australian fever tree leaf, blauer gommibaum, blue gum, C10H18O, cajuputol, camphor oil, catheter oil, cider gum, cineole, Citriodiol®, crown gall, essence of eucalyptus rectifiee, essencia de eucalipto, eucalypti aetheroleum, eucalypti folium, eucalyptol, Eucalyptus camaldulensis (Red gum), Eucalyptus citriodora (Lemon-scented gum), Eucalyptus coccifera (Tasmanian snow gum), Eucalyptus dalrympleana (Mountain gum), eucalyptus dried leaves, eucalyptus essential oil, Eucalyptus ficifolia (red flowering gum), eucalyptus flower, Eucalyptus fructicetorum F. Von Mueller, eucalyptus globules tree, Eucalyptus globulus Labillardiere, Eucalyptus gunnii (cider gum), Eucalyptus johnstonii (yellow gum), eucalyptus leaf extract, Eucalyptus leucoxylon (white ironbark), Eucalyptus maculate, Eucalyptus occidentalis, Eucalyptus parvifolia, Eucalyptus pauciflora subsp. niphophila (snow gum), Eucalyptus perriniana (spinning gum), eucalyptus pollen, Eucalyptus sideroxylon (red ironbark), Eucalyptus smithii R.T. Baker, Eucalyptus urnigera (urn gum), Eucalyptus viminalis Labill (euvimals), Eucalyptus polybractea, Eucalyptus spp., eucalytpo setma ag, fevertree, gommier bleu, gum tree, kafur ag, lemon eucalyptus extract, lemon-scented gum, malee, Meijer® (eucalyptus oil, camphor, menthol), mountain gum, myrtaceae, oil of eucalyptus citriodora, oleum eucalypti, red flowering gum, red gum, red ironbark, schonmutz, snow gum, southern blue gum, spinning gum, stringy bark tree, Tasmanian blue gum, Tasmanian snow gum, urn gum, verbenone, white ironbark, yellow gum.

Background

Eucalyptus oil is used commonly as a decongestant and expectorant for upper respiratory tract infections or inflammations, as well as for various musculoskeletal conditions. The oil is found in numerous over-the-counter cough and cold lozenges as well as in inhalation vapors or topical ointments. Veterinarians use the oil topically for its reported antimicrobial activity. Other applications include as an aromatic in soaps or perfumes, as flavoring in foodstuffs or beverages, and as a dental or industrial solvent. High quality scientific evidence is currently lacking.

Eucalyptus oil contains 70-85% 1,8-cineole (eucalyptol), which is also present in other plant oils. Eucalyptol is used as an ingredient in some mouthwash and dental preparations, as an endodontic solvent, and may possess antimicrobial properties. Listerine® mouthrinse is a combination of essential oils (eucalyptol, menthol, thymol, methyl salicylate) that has been shown to be efficacious for the reduction of dental plaque and gingivitis.

Topical use or inhalation of eucalyptus oil at low concentrations may be safe, although significant and potentially lethal toxicity has been consistently reported with oral use and may occur with inhalation use as well. All routes of administration should be avoided in children.

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