Ah, summer! I love everything about it from the beach to the long, lazy nights in the backyard hanging out with my family. The music is playing, the food is yummy and then….darn it! Another bug is feasting off my arm or leg.
The one thing I don’t like about this season is these “souvenirs” from our time outdoors. It’s especially tough for moms of little ones who just want to scratch and scratch. Why? It itches, Mom!
First a little info: It itches because mosquitos do drink our blood as food.
You start to scratch because the little buggers inject you with anticoagulant to stop your blood from clotting while they drink. The end result is a minor allergic reaction or red bump that’s itchy.
Here are a few of the most natural, DIY bug bite treatments for your kids. Of course, see your doc if the condition persists or seems serious.
*Your first course of action is to keep some antihistamine cream or stick at the ready to stop the swelling and itch. Let’s say it’s missing or you’re out of it. Rush the bite victim into the kitchen where you can have some damp and chilled (keep them in the fridge always) green tea bags on hand. The cold of the bag will stop the itch and the actual compounds in the tea stop the inflammation.
*Always keep aloe vera in your fridge or grow an aloe vera plant in your home. This plant has amazing anti-inflammatory properties and will draw the sting out of a bug bite. If you keep cold aloe gel in the fridge then the chilliness of it will also stop the itch.
*Still itching? Crush one regular aspirin and mix it with a few drops of water to make a paste. Put the paste right on the bite. The salicylic acid in the aspirin (also anti-inflammatory) gets rid of the itch.
*Insist that your little one takes a quick bath. Take half a cup of oatmeal and put it in the tub as you run the water to help cope with the itch.
*Rubbing alcohol can remove the itch, but going on it can sting, too. Warn your child and say that you’re zapping the bug juices together.
*Do you like to camp? Always keep some honey on hand because it contains a natural antiseptic ingredient. This is also a good way in the wild (or the wilds of suburbia) to prevent infection. (Don’t do this is you plan to stay outdoors, however, as the sugar in honey could bring more bugs your way.)
*Another quick kitchen cure is to rub a basil leaf on the bite. Many moms insist that the itching stops immediately.
*If your kids turn bites into little infections because they scratch all night long then try to make a game out of not itching. Put a piece of clear scotch tape over the bite before bedtime and tell them that there will be a special surprise in the morning if it’s still there.
*You can mix baking soda with warm water by taking one tablespoon of it mixed with one pint of water. Gently apply to bite with clean fingers or a cotton ball. Leave on and then wash.
*Mix baking soda with a few drops of household cleaning ammonia to form a paste. Place on the bite, allow to dry and later wash with warm water.
*Soak a cotton ball in apple cider vinegar and place it on the bite. Leave for several minutes and then wash with warm water.
*Create a thick paste from a pinch of corn flour with several drops of apple cider vinegar. Place on the bite. Allow the paste to dry and the itching will have stopped. Wash with warm water. If your child is squirmy then put a bandage over the mix to keep it in place until it dries.
You can even try a variety of all of the above to get the itch out. Here’s to enjoying the rest of our cherished summer time with our family ~ sans the itchy bug bites!