March 20th, 2012

7 Natural Ways to Treat Bug Bites

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7 Natural Ways to Treat Bug Bites Groovy Green Livin

This past Sunday was a gorgeous day in Boston. People were venturing out of their homes to spend the day outside. Bikes were out, skateboards were everywhere and our dog was basking in the warm sunshine.

7 Natural Ways to Treat Bug Bites

We were all hanging out outside until around 6 pm; then it got ugly. The mosquitoes swarmed-and I mean swarmed. When we all couldn’t bare it any longer we went inside to deal with the massive amounts of red bumps that were covering our bodies. Mosquito bites.

Why mosquitoes bite

Did you know only female mosquitoes bite? Proteins in human blood are necessary for the female mosquito to produce fertile eggs. Their male counterparts don’t lay eggs so there’s no need to bite.

Back to the red welts…….

I happen to be one of those people that mosquitoes can’t live without.  I’m usually bitten several times in or around the same spot. The bites turn into big, red welts that are incredibly itchy. I then force my children to use their nails to place a big X over the bites-remember that trick? It works, but unfortunately the bites start to itch again after a few seconds.

Solutions for itchy bug bites

There are quite a few non-toxic remedies for an itchy bug bite.

  1. Make a paste of baking soda and water and put a little dab on the bug bite.
  2. Apply a cold compress-either an ice pack or a washcloth doused in cold water.
  3. Put a little toothpaste on your bug bite.
  4. Rub a piece of sliced onion on the bite. You might need to shower after this remedy!
  5. Apply apple cider vinegar on a cotton ball to the bite.
  6. Rub a bar of wet or dry soap over the bite.
  7. Place cool mud on the affected spot or spots.

If the bite gets infected be sure to contact your physician.

If you’re going to use bug repellent when you venture outside this spring and summer, make sure it’s DEET free.

What tips do you have for itchy bug bites?

photo credit: the lake via photopin (license)


24 Responses to “7 Natural Ways to Treat Bug Bites”

  1. My daughter is a mosquito magnet! She will come in with several bites when no one else has been bitten. And they are nasty.
    Lavender essential oil works for a while for her. This summer I’ll be checking out more homemade bug sprays. I’ve pinned a few to try. We’ll see how it goes.
    What DEET free sprays do you use?

  2. Thanks for the tips! I usually just scratch! lol

  3. We put therapeutic grade lavender oil undiluted on the bite as soon as possible. Make sure you don’t use a lavender scented oil that will not help at all. Real lavender essential oil is anti-inflammatory and good for burns as well. I also use a Young Living essential oil blend called Purification that works amazingly well even on bee and wasp stings, the pain and swelling are gone within minutes.

  4. Thanks for the tip Susan. I haven’t tried lavender oil. I might pick up Purification to have around in case a sting hits over the summer (very likely!).

  5. I do a lot of scratching too Stephanie!

  6. I can relate to your daughter Kristina. You are the second person to suggest lavender oil. Here’s my list of DEET free repellants:

  7. I use pure tea tree oil, and a gel version of it…that actually work in prevention AND when you do get a bite!

  8. I am glad you mentioned mud. I thought I was the only crazy one who put it on their poison ivy. Honestly, it is one of the few remedies that I find helps.

  9. Mud for poison ivy-brilliant Anna! My son had poison ivy head to toe last year. A mud bath would have been perfect!

  10. Michelle, do you apply the tea tree oil directly to the bite? How do you use it for prevention?

  11. These are some great suggestions! My son and I seem to always get the brunt of bites and any remedies we use don’t seem to work. This will be helpful especially for this year… the insect population is supposed to be out of control (due to no freeze this winter)!

  12. Hi Jessi, we are already swarmed by mosquitoes! Try some of these remedies the next time you and your son have bites. Let me know how they work.

  13. Thanks for the tips! I’ve heard this will be a brutal year for mosquitoes and ticks in our area 🙁

    Thanks for participating in the Green & Natural Mamas Bloghop!

  14. Am I the only person who is scared that the bugs are already out? Do we need any more evidence that global climate change is occurring when our winters are so mild and spring comes so early that mosquitoes swarm in mid-March? Scary!

    My tip won’t work for kids, but for us adults who might have a little more impulse control, I’ll say this: avoid the initial scratching frenzy and the overall level of itching will go down pretty quickly and not last as long. When I give in and scratch, my bites continue to itch forever. When I don’t, I get relief pretty quickly. But it’s hard not to give in!!! Try occupying your hands with something so you don’t instinctively touch you skin.

  15. I will definitely try the lavender oil this year — even it if doesn’t work, I’ll smell nice 🙂 My son & I are also bug magnets, and they’ve been bad for a few weeks now here in the Philly/South Jersey area. I can’t imagine what it will be like in August!

  16. Hi Isabelle! Lavender is one of my favorite scents (with vanilla running a close second). The bugs seem really awful already this year. Hopefully one of the natural alternatives will help you and your son. I can relate-I’m a bug magnet too!

  17. […] a cold washcloth on his legs in the middle of the night and he was able to fall back asleep. HERE are a few more natural bug bite […]

  18. […] paste made of baking soda and water works well for itchy bug bites and the same is true for poison ivy. A  Turmeric paste is also helpful. Turmeric contains a […]

  19. A great way to prevent mosquito bites is taking a dryer sheet and rub your legs then put it in your pocket.. It works even though it sounds funny

  20. I am so glad I read this post just in time for backyard cook outs and fun in the sun. One of the plagues of hanging out my family’s yard is the curse of mosquito bites. I am definitely going to try these natural remedies this season especially clear solutions like apple cider vinegar, the ice pack or cool wash cloth. However, I will try anything to stop that torturous itching, even mud!
    Deborah Davis recently posted..Wondering About A Vegan Diet? PETA Infographic Tells AllMy Profile

  21. […] paste made of baking soda and water works well for itchy bug bites and the same is true for poison ivy. A  Turmeric paste is also helpful. Turmeric contains a […]

  22. […] HERE are a few more ways to treat itchy bug bites. If you’re looking for DEET-free bug repellent take a look HERE.Also, these 3 mosquito repelling plants are good to have around. […]

  23. […] There are two brands of bug repellent to add to your summer camp survival kit. I’ve been using  a DEET free bug repellent called Buzzaway  for a few years and it really works well. I’m also trying Babyganics Natural Insect Repellent. If you’re looking for natural ways to treat bug bites take a peek  HERE. […]

  24. This post is really interesting! I have seen my Mom using cool mud when boiled water spill out on her feet. I was really dumbfounded that time, how she could think of that. I do not know either the underlying reason behind cool mud and burnt skin. Anyway, it’s good thing to the natural ways to treat bug bites.
    Ruth recently posted..10 Beach Essentials You Should BringMy Profile

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About Lori

Hi! I’m Lori, a recovering attorney, writer, and mom to three boys. Join me as I uncover and share the latest info on healthy living. Learn more.

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