How To Treat Insect Bites And Stings.

4 minutes read.

Potential Diseases That These Pests Can Carry.

Mosquito bites can cause Zika, West Nile and Dengue.

Fleas can cause bubonic plague and typhus.

Ticks can cause Anaplasmosis and Lyme Disease.

Incidentally, urine is not an effective treatment for jellyfish stings, as featured in Friends!

How to treat insect bites or stings.

Usually, when you’re bitten, you get a red and swollen lump on your skin. Sometimes, you could get a larger area around your bite or sting which becomes red, swollen and also painful. This should go within a week.

To treat your bite or sting:-

  1. Remove the sting or tick if it’s still in your skin.
  2. Wash your affected area with soap and water.
  3. Apply a cold compress like a flannel or cloth soaked in cold water or an ice pack to any swelling for at least 10 minutes.
  4. Raise the affected area if possible. This could help with the swelling.
  5. Be careful if you decide to use homely remedies like vinegar or bicarbonate of soda because there is limited research whether they actually work.
  6. You could take anti-inflammatories and/or antihistamines to help with the swelling and itchiness. Calamine lotion can also help to soothe the itchiness.
  7. Don’t scratch!!
Image from Tenor

Get Medical Advice If:-

  • Your symptoms don’t improve within a few days.
  • Your symptoms are getting worse such as increasing pain, swelling or redness and there is pus oozing out.
  • You have been bitten or stung in your mouth, throat or bitten near your eyes.
  • A large area (about 10cm or more) around the bite or sting becomes red and swollen.
  • You have a high temperature, swollen glands and other flu-like symptoms.

You Will Need Immediate Medical Attention if:-

  • You experience breathing difficulties, dizziness, swollen face or mouth.

If you want to avoid being stung and bitten (don’t we all!) then the following may help.

Avoid doing the wasp dance when being near wasps, hornets and bees. You know what I mean. When you wave your arms around, run around in circles and attempt to swat them. It makes them angry and they’re a lot quicker than you! Just stay calm and slowly walk away.

Wear long sleeves, trousers and shoes when near stretches of water and in forests and woods.

Be careful when you’re near flowering plants, rubbish, compost, stagnant water and outdoor areas where food is served.

I wouldn’t wear any products with strong perfumes because they can attract insects.

Finally, the most effective way to protect yourself is by spraying your exposed skin with insect repellent with at least 50% DEET or diethyltoluamide. Or, if you prefer, some people swear by using tea tree oil. In fact, some studies support this.

Note. Sorry to disappoint but alcohol isn’t an insect repellent!

My Experiences with Insect Bites and Stings.

Without fail, I get bitten/stung every year. I’m convinced that these biting insects have their own blogs detailing humans with the tastiest blood; obviously, I’m one of them!

Everywhere I go in Summer, I think these little blighters alert each other via WhatsApp. Also, I think they ‘bug’ my house to see where I’m going!

I’m more than familiar with red and itchy lumps and sleepless nights. I’ve had them on my legs and shoulders; not a good look.

Actually, I admire the tenacity of horseflies. Many a time, when I pull them off my leg, they cling for dear life. I can almost hear them pleading, “no, no!”

I described my worse encounter with midges in an earlier post. I know I said previously cover your legs but, guess what? They were covered during that experience! They pierced through the fabric!

So, this year I’m going to try and not get bitten or stung. Hopefully, none of you will either. 🤞

Have you got a bite or a sting story to share? Are the biting insects vicious in your country? Let me know in the comments box.

Thank you for reading.

Rachel x

Sources: nhs.co.uk, healthline.com, medicalnewstoday.com, blogs.bcm.edu, everydayhealth.com

11 thoughts on “How To Treat Insect Bites And Stings.

  1. I am allergic to mosquito bites and it makes me unhappy. I hate antihistamine pills but I have no choice. I didn’t know for tea tree oil. I will try it. Thank you Rachel for the tip!

  2. I’ve never had an experience with a horsefly, but that sounds intense! I get quite a few mosquito bites in the summer too. Not itching them is so hard to do. I just put up a screen over my patio door because I saw that mosquitos were flying inside and I wasn’t going to have that haha

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