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The Darker Side Of Eugenol Oil

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by The Bug Doctor

There seems a clamor that’s building which is now become a low roar. Eugenol oil is peaking the interest of many a consumer for its quick knock down properties of insects, spiders and even weed control. This miracle product is fast becoming the talk of forums and soon to supplant bed bugs as the #1 question on my Ask The Bug Doctor feature of this website. Let’s face it, no one ever heard of this product really until a little TV show came around called Billy The Exterminator and now it seems to be all the rage. You can often see the star of the show sprit-zing Eugenol oil from a nondescript bottle and he often explains its virtues. The intranet is filled with references and websites that tout its goodness for the environment because of its natural ingredients. I mean who can argue with cloves mixed with water right? As is so often the case with this or any product there are downfalls or hidden side effects but for some reason very few people wish to speak up when it involves a environmentally safe product. This article deals with the darker side of Eugenol oil and I believe it’s something you should consider.

What is it and where is it used?

Eugenol oil is clove oil which is made up of the extract of dried flower buds, leaves and stems of the tree Syzygium aromaticum (EasternPicture 3 The Darker Side Of Eugenol Oil Hemisphere) or Eugenia caryophyllata and Eugenia aromaticum (Western). So far so good. It is listed as a Minimum Risk by the FDA and is used for the purposes of food flavoring, cosmetic, dermal drug delivery, dental, aromatic, soaps detergents and many other well known things. It is considered SAFE by the FDA for everything except fish and humans consuming fish treated with Eugenol. It is also well known for its ability to kill weeds and even bugs. Eugenol is great for breaking down waxy coatings and fast absorption so plants treated dry out quickly and pests with their waxy outer coating also succumb to its effects when sufficient amounts are used. The residual of clove oil is short lived so its non persistent nature makes it ideal for many applications.

What we do know

Clove oil is toxic to human cells, if ingested in sufficient quantity or injected it has been shown to cause life-threatening complications, including Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome, Fulminant Hepatic (Liver) Failure, and Central Nervous System Depression. The lethal oral dose is 3.75 g per kg body weight and ingestion is the most common way for these severe consequences to occur. Clove oil is toxic to the liver and nervous system and there have been reported cases of acute sickness and deaths with as little ingested as 8 ml. Clove oil is highly cytotoxic to human skin cells at concentrations as low as 0.03 percent. Eugenol is rapidly absorbed and metabolized in the liver when ingested, and 95% of the dose is excreted within 24 hours.

What we don’t know

There are very few conclusive studies on the effects of clove oil (Eugenol) but both the FDA and the EPA say that it contains 5–15% methyl eugenol which the US National Toxicology Program (NTP) determined that methyl eugenol is “Reasonably Anticipated to be a Human Carcinogen.” This data has been deemed questionable since other studies have not come to this conclusion and as such Eugenol is not required to be listed as a carcinogen. This said, California still requires any product that has 8.5% Eugenol or higher place the signal word “Caution” on the label and a “Keep Out of the Reach of Children”warning as well. Gloves and eye wear requirements are also listed for mixing and use.

OK so does it kill insects?

The insecticidal properties of clove oil has been studied since the 1940s. Clove oil toxicity to different types of insects varies considerably. Very high application rates are needed to effectively control Coleoptera (weevils and beetles), moth caterpillars, lice and cockroaches. Some insects are affected quickly while others seem much more tolerant. Adding plant oils from mustard, coconut, seasame or sunflower seem to enhance the pesticidal properties. (Again no studies) German roaches seem to need the higher doses while American roaches do not, follow up studies found that Eugenol in high enough doses disrupts cell binding of octopamine which results in an insects death.

Conclusion

Picture 4 273x300 The Darker Side Of Eugenol OilEugenol is being used more frequently for everything from termites, beetles and even dust mites with water as the most common carrier. Its sudden rise in popularity can be attributed to peoples desire to use ‘green earth friendly’ products and the desire to be safe and get away from man made chemicals. Hopefully I’ve given no illusions in this writing, the LD50′s (Lethal dose rates) are well within desirable limits and Eugenol is used for many beneficial things. But Eugenol doesn’t come with any instructions and about the only conclusive studies of importance are that it takes HIGH DOSES to be effective in pest control and SMALL AMOUNTS to cause possible serious and harmful problems. With the publics propensity to over use things like pesticides and the fact that high doses of something so harmless sounding as clove oil I don’t think it’ll be long before studies will HAVE to be done not out of curiosity but due to mounting cases of The Darker side of eugenol oil.


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  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Yea you’re right- but 8 ml is still a whole lot less than a 1/4 pound…. cheaper too.

  • Demaroge

    1 ounce is lethal to a small child weighing 17 pounds. I believe this weight would be a mobile child.

  • Demaroge

    The Bug Doctor I very much appreciate the information. I am also surprised at many people’s reading comprehension. I do have a product with Eugenol in it. I will use it with caution.

    I would like to say that many, MANY natural substances are very dangerous. A person can die from an overdose on Vitamin D3, Vitamin A or Iron. Arsenic is one of the most common natural elements in the world as is water. Yep, you can die from ingesting (or inhaling! LOL) too much water! Just because something is ‘natural’ doesn’t mean we should use it carelessly.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Well said & Thank you.
    I do admit, I’m not a ‘professional’ writer, I’ve been killing bugs 8 to 10 hours a day for the past 28 years. In that time I’ve seen TOO many egregious applications of “safe,green,natural etc..” all hap hazard if for no other reason that the person had a sense of built in safety because it from the earth… Your view point and advice is well worth someone considering.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Unfortunately it’s not always the child we should worry about… Parents see this home remedy and think since it’s natural it can’t hurt–then, as many do, the attitude of “a little is good so MORE will be better” kicks in….. and therein lies the problem.

  • Smiles

    Great post. I fully agree with your message. I am a chemist and feel like I am constantly on damage control with people that believe natural means safe, whole, and good. Just because something is natural doesn’t mean it’s safe and just because it’s synthetic doesn’t mean it’s harmful.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Thank you & you are right…

  • sellous1

    Mr. Chemist,

    Are those prescription drugs prescribe by doctors safe? Better yet! A friend of mine just lost her sight due to prescription drugs.

    I have been using clove essential oil for years and it is much safer and more effective than the poison many doctors prescribe, in fact it works well on tooth aches, and various types of arthritis much better than prescribed pain killers: What you need to do is to educate people on how to use clove oil in a safe manner and let people be aware of the dangers involved in the use of most prescription drugs.

    My great gran parents as well as my parent use Clove in cooking and they lived over the age of 80. People who taking medication have their nerves,kidneys and other organs damaged by the poison in most of them.

    A Medical Doctor once told my friend that some of the things he prescribes for his patients he would never give it to a member of his family due to the health risk involved.:

    Come clean and speak the truth, tell the people that natural remedies along with a change in diets will do much better than taking a pill with all the poison in it.

    Many dentist use clove essential oil on a daily basis:

    My son extracted a tooth over two years ago, he pined him so much the dentist kept prescribing pain killer and non seem to work, his mother remembering that she had clove oil ran for it put a drop on a cotton swab, rub it on the aching tooth and in less than two minutes the pain was gone.

    People don’t be fooled by some of these corrupt doctors who only seek to make money.

    Do your own research and listen to other people’s testimonies.

    Yours truly

    Silent Prayer Herbal Center:

  • sellous

    Look at the health benefits of Frankincense:

    It is a Super Smart oil that’s good for almost everything, including:

    ADHD

    Alzheimer’s

    Anxiety

    Asthma

    Arthritis

    Cancer

    Cirrhosis

    Colds

    Coughs

    Crohn’s disease

    Digestive diseases (all kinds)

    Fear

    Inflammatory bowel disease

    Laryngitis

    Liver

    Meningitis

    Nervous conditions

    Headaches

    Parkinson’s disease

    Schizophrenia

    Sciatic pain

    Seizures

    Sores

    Scarring

    Skin conditions (all types – esp. good for aging skin)

    Staph

    Strep

    Stress

    Syphilis

    Tonsillitis

    Typhoid

    Wounds

    Warts

    Women’s health

    Ulcerative colitis

    Silent Prayer Herbal Center

  • sellous1

    Mr. Chemist,

    Are those prescription drugs prescribe by doctors safe? Better yet! A friend of mine just lost her sight due to prescription drugs.

    I have been using clove essential oil for years and it is much safer and more effective than the poison many doctors prescribe, in fact it works well on tooth aches, and various types of arthritis much better than prescribed pain killers: What you need to do is to educate people on how to use clove oil in a safe manner and let people be aware of the dangers involved in the use of most prescription drugs.

    My great gran parents as well as my parent use Clove in cooking and they lived over the age of 80. People who taking medication have their nerves,kidneys and other organs damaged by the poison in most of them.

    A Medical Doctor once told my friend that some of the things he prescribes for his patients he would never give it to a member of his family due to the health risk involved.:

    Come clean and speak the truth, tell the people that natural remedies along with a change in diets will do much better than taking a pill with all the poison in it.

    Many dentist use clove essential oil on a daily basis:

    My son extracted a tooth over two years ago, he pined him so much the dentist kept prescribing pain killer and non seem to work, his mother remembering that she had clove oil ran for it put a drop on a cotton swab, rub it on the aching tooth and in less than two minutes the pain was gone.

    People don’t be fooled by some of these corrupt doctors who only seek to make money.

    Do your own research and listen to other people’s testimonies.

    Yours truly

    Silent Prayer Herbal Center:

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    You missed the point of this article because you were to busy trying to sell your link…tsk tsk, that’s a shame.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Please READ more than just the title……I’m sure you’d find it fascinating.

  • Dumuzid

    I wholeheartedly agree with the message conveyed by bug doctor, regardless of the fact I’m a big fan of Billy Bretherton’s TV show. Indeed, having it to be natural doesn’t mean it’s necessarily harmless. I guess it’s a fine alternative if you’re taught correctly about doses and overall security… As in everything, sorcerer’s apprentices put their health at stakes… But sometimes a lesser evil is better to combat vermins.

    …Oh, and I ceased to trust FDA’s conclusions a long time ago. See the example of Aspartame to understand my point.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    I too am a fan of Billy’s ….http://pestcemetery.com/5-days-billy-exterminator/
    and not a fan of the govt’ in general… I guess we have a few things in common ;)

  • James Moore

    Neat clove oil causes chemical burns to the mucous membranes in the mouth. Been there, worn the t-shirt. If you use it for toothache, apply it to the tooth not the gum and rinse your mouth afterward.

  • James Moore

    any pharmacy should carry it.

  • James Moore

    it’s also in Bonjela (same sort of thing but stronger). It also has aniseed in it I believe.

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    I think they all do

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    Good to know..Thx.

  • stu41

    Hello

    I did not see this post pror to using it. All i saw was that eugenol kills scabies in 15 minutes .So , i used it since i fear i got scabies due to handshaking with a person who had it . I mixed 2ml of 100 % pure distiled eugenol , with 60 ml of olive oil(which would make the mixture 5 % eugenol) and applied it thoughout all my skin apart from head . left on my body for 7-8 hours . Now , after reading many things about the side effect of eugenol in high doses , i am really concerned . Did i use a high dose ? Also , i read it causes testicular damage , and this is freaking me out . Any idea ?

    The reason i am concerned about testicular damage , is because i read a study where it had induced testicular necrosis in dogs (even though in that case it was injected intratesticulary)

  • http://pestcemetery.com The Bug Doctor

    stu41–I am replying to this some 5 hours after you posted– & – I believe some time also has gone by since you did this as you indicate the 7 to 8 hours plus the time to land you here. My guess is you have no acute problems & that’s a relief. As far as long term or other damages – you’ll need to consult a Doctor who knows how to determine such things. Eugenol is quickly passed through the body so that’s good… no residuals that I know of.. If it did damage along the way will be something a medical professional will need to determine…I hope all will be fine.

  • stu41

    Thank you for your reply. No , i do not have any problem till now . My only concern is if Eugenol does have long term side effects on the testicles in the above dosage .

  • stu41

    Anyway , it is a tip for me to never trust anonymus postings online by people who without a proper research , give the conclusion .

  • stu41

    Just a question:

    What percentage of Eugenol is actually absorbed through skin?

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