Neem Oil Uses & Benefits

Neem oil is very effective ayurvedic remedy for a variety of skin diseases, hair loss, dandruff, acne or pimples, eczema, psoriasis and several other diseases. Neem oil reduces itching, removes dead cell debris and works as an antiseptic as well as disinfectant.

Pure Neem oil is extracted from the seeds and fruits of the Neem Tree (Azadirachta Indica). The colour of Neem oil varies according to its extraction method. It may have following colours.

  1. Golden Yellow
  2. Yellowish Brown
  3. Reddish Brown
  4. Dark Brown
  5. Greenish Brown
  6. Bright Red

Pure Neem oil has a strong aroma and odour, which resembles with mixture of garlic and peanut.  Neem oil contains Triterpenoid saponins (triterpenes). Azadirachtin is one of the most known Triterpenoid present in the Neem. These phytochemicals are responsible for the bitter taste of neem oil.

Phytochemistry (Active Constituents)

Neem oil contains triterpenes (Triterpenoid saponins). Azadirachtin is a common phytochemical present in neem oil, which has a great therapeutic value.

The antiseptic, antimicrobial, antiviral, antipyretic, antifungal and antihistamine properties are contributed to neem oil due to the presence of Nimbin Triterpenoid.

Several sterols such as STIGMASTEROL, CAMPESTEROL and BETA-SITOSTEROL are present in neem oil. Pure neem oil contains following fatty acids.

  • Oleic acid (Omega-9 fatty acid) = 25 to 54%
  • Hexadecanoic acid (Palmitic acid) = 16 to 33%
  • Octadecanoic acid (Stearic acid) = 9 to 24%
  • Linoleic acid (Omega-6 fatty acid) = 6 to 16%
  • Alpha-linolenic acid (Omega-3 fatty acid)
  • 9-Hexadecenoic acid (Palmitoleic acid)

Alkaloids

  • Nimbin
  • Nimbidin
  • Nimbinene
  • Tannins
  • Flavonoids
  • Sesquiterpene Derivatives

Medicinal Properties

Neem Oil has following healing properties.

Primary Actions

  • Antiseptic
  • Antimicrobial
  • Antiviral
  • Antipyretic
  • Antifungal
  • Antihistamine
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Demulcent
  • Antihyperglycemic
  • Analgesic
  • Anthelmintic
  • Antioxidant
  • Antibacterial
  • Antipruritics
  • De-toxicant
  • Anti-malarial

Secondary Actions

  • Diuretic
  • Emmenagogue
  • Contraceptive
  • Abortifacient
  • Spermicidal

Other properties

  • Insect repellent
  • Insecticide
  • Bio-pesticide

Therapeutic Indications

Neem Oil is helpful in following health conditions.

External Use – Local Application

  • Gingivitis
  • Pyorrhea
  • Itching
  • All types of dermatitis
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis
  • Dandruff
  • Head lice
  • Acne or Pimples
  • Scars
  • Inflamed wounds
  • Fungal infections of skin
  • Erysipelas
  • Scrofula
  • Urticaria

Internal Use – Oral Intake

  • Diabetes
  • Piles
  • Fever
  • Malaria
  • Intestinal worms
  • Birth control

Benefits & Medicinal Uses

In traditional medicine and alternative health systems, Pure Neem Oil is an important skin medicine, which has potent action to reduce itching, skin inflammation, pain, burning sensation, tenderness and skin irritation. Although, oral use of neem oil is uncommon, but oral intake is also beneficial for piles, diabetes, fevers, malaria, intestinal parasites and family planning.

Skin Diseases

Before you starting applying, Neem oil onto the skin, you require considering two main points.

  1. Application of Pure Neem Oil
  2. Neem Oil Dilution

Generally, people with hypersensitive skin should not apply pure neem oil to prevent skin irritation. It occurs mostly in people born in cold countries (western countries). In Asian countries, Pure Neem Oil application has rarely reported skin irritation. If you have sensitive skin, then you should dilute the neem oil keeping neem oil percentage between 3 to 25%.

How to Dilute Neem Oil

You can use one of following most suitable things for you for diluting the pure neem oil.

Carrier OilSkin Conditions
Sesame OilDryness, Pain, Intense Itching, Raised Bumps or Swelling
Coconut OilBurning Sensation, Skin Tenderness, Redness, Sensitivity
Olive OilItching, Oily Skin, Thickened skin
BeeswaxCuts, Crust Formation, Scaly Skin, Skin Eruptions, Leak Fluid
Petroleum JellyCuts, Dryness, Cracked Skin

Acne, Pimples & Whiteheads

Neem oil is effective for people with following symptoms or health conditions.

  • Whiteheads or clogged pores
  • Tender papules or small red bumps
  • Painful acne lumps
  • Pus filled lumps
  • Cystic lesions
  • Oily skin

Pure Neem oil is not suitable for people with dry and sensitive skin. In this case, you should dilute neem oil with sesame oil or olive oil for best results.

Note: Direct application of pure neem oil may also not be suitable on face because it may cause irritation when you get exposed to the sunlight. Therefore, we suggest using it by diluting the neem oil with carrier oils.

How to use neem oil for acne

You can prepare a paste using neem oil with following herbs.

HerbsQuantity
Aloe Vera Pulp1 tsp.
Turmeric Powder1/4 tsp.
Honey1 tsp.
Neem Oil1 ml
Rose waterQ.S.

Mix these ingredients with neem oil and rose water. Apply this paste on the affected area with acne. In blackheads, you can add oat’s powder, cinnamon powder and Manjistha (Rubia Cordifolia) powder to increase its efficacy.

You can also use diluted neem oil straightly on the affected areas with pimples or acne at night before sleeping. It would help curing the acne and preventing acne scars.

Note: Single day use may not be helpful, you should follow this remedy for several days or until you get complete relief from acne. In addition to this, you should also take capsules of aqueous extract of neem leaves for more beneficial results.

Eczema and Neem Oil

Neem oil reduces symptoms of eczema and gives relief from intense itching, leaking fluid, and watery eczema. We found it more effective for Dyshidrotic eczema in which blisters develop on the skin and liquid discharges and itching is main concern.

How to Use neem oil for eczema

First, you should dilute the neem oil with carrier substance described above according to your symptoms. Then first, check any allergic signs by applying it on a little part of your skin. If there is no abnormal thing occurs, then you can apply diluted neem oil on skin affected with eczema. After a few days, increase the concentration of neem oil and reduces its dilution over a period of a week or two. Then use pure neem oil on the affected parts with eczema. It helps a lot, but you should not go under direct sunlight after applying pure neem oil. The best suitable time for applying pure neem oil is night just before sleeping.

Scabies

Neem oil is less effective for scabies as compared to paste made of neem leaves and turmeric powder. We do not suggest you using neem oil for scabies treatment. Instead, you should use modern medicine (PERMETHRIN) for this or you may try using turmeric and neem leaves powder paste on whole body.

Other Uses

Insect repellent, insecticide and pesticide

Neem oil has insect repellent, insecticide and pesticide properties due to LIMONOID Alkaloids present in it. This phytochemical works hormonal system of insects, which helps either repelling them or killing them. Neem oil is a good natural bio-pesticide, which can decrease the requirement of chemical pesticides.

Dosage

In external use, a thin layer of neem oil is applied. It can also be used by diluting it with favorable oils such as coconut oil, sesame oil or olive oil.

Internal intake of neem should not exceed from 500 mg per day. Generally, 250 mg twice a day is most suitable dosage for diabetic people and patients with piles. The continuous use should not exceed from 6 weeks to prevent its unwanted effects. A gap of 30 days should be taken in between restarting the internal regimen of neem oil.

Caution & Side Effects

Is neem oil safe?

The external application of neem oil is LIKELY SAFE and WELL-TOLERATED in most of people.

The oral use of neem oil can cause following side effects.

  • Loose stools
  • Vomiting or nausea
  • Acidosis

The long-term internal use can lead to following adverse effects.

  • Encephalopathy
  • Liver damage
  • Decreased Fertility
  • Seizures in children

These toxic effects might occur if neem oil contains aflatoxin (carcinogen & toxin from the fungus Aspergillus) or other toxic substances. Short-term oral use may be suggestible, but long-term use of neem oil internally is not advisable due to chances of these toxic effects. Neem leaves are generally more beneficial for oral intake and safer than neem oil.

Contraindications

The oral use (internal intake) of neem oil has some restrictions, which include.

  • Children
  • Pregnant women
  • Women trying to conceiving
  • Weak people

FAQs about Neem Oil

Can we use Neem oil as a mosquito repellent? How to use Neem oil as a mosquito repellent and what is Neem oil repellent recipe?

Yes, Neem oil can be used as mosquito repellent. According to some studies, it is likely to number of mosquito bites.

It can be used in 2 ways.

Skin Application:

Mix Neem Oil (2%) in coconut oil (98%) and apply regularly on the skin. This mixture also provides other benefits. It reduces itching and prevents skin diseases.

Burning the lamp mixing 1 to 2 percent Neem Oil:

Burning the kerosene lamps with 1 to 2 percent Neem oil can also help. You may need to burn it for 12 hours.

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