Just about every place you live you’re going to have to deal with bugs, so it’s good to be prepared with supplies and knowledge of natural remedies for insect bites. Some places have it lucky, like Iceland, which only has 1300 species of insects. Some places are not so lucky; Australia has a staggering 220,000 species of insects, and if what I’ve read online is true then most of them are the size of cars and spit acid. Okay, that’s probably not 100 percent true, but given that they have a spider that EATS BIRDS, I’m going to say they have it pretty bad in the bugs department. Regardless, you’re going to have to deal with bug bites and insect stings at some point. Have these natural remedies for insect bites on hand so that you’re prepared for ant bites, bee stings, and other
What is the difference between a bug bite and sting?
Insect bites and insect stings can both be painful, itchy, and unpleasant, but there are some big differences between the two.
An insect sting comes from either venomous or nonvenomous bugs that use stingers to attack their prey (or to defend their home, like bees). The stingers are typically very small and needle-like at the tip. Some insects will leave the stinger in your skin after you have been stung, others are able to sting you again and again. Insects like hornets, bees, wasps, and scorpions use stingers. Natural remedies for insect bites also work well for stings because they address the basic symptoms of pain, itchiness, and swelling, though you will also sometimes have to remove the stinger.
Insect bites typically come from bugs that use their mouths to bite you. Bugs like fleas, lice, ticks, and mosquitos bite you to drink your blood (ew!) and spiders and ants bite you to defend their territory and themselves. Like insect stings they can be painful, but the most common natural remedies for insect bites cure itchiness, redness, and swelling because that is the biggest side effect from most bug bites.
How to Prevent Bug Bites and Insect Stings
Natural remedies for insect bites are effective for treating a bite or sting after it happens, but sometimes prevention is the best remedy. Prevent bug bites and stings by wearing protective clothing when going out into wooded areas. A natural bug repellant also works wonders to discourage ticks and mosquitos. Avoid wearing perfumed lotions as these attract insects to you.
Be careful when moving through tall grass, shrubs, and heavily wooded areas because that is where you’ll most commonly run into insects. Wear shoes when walking outside as ant hills are often hidden in your lawn. Wasps and hornets make their homes around houses on the ceilings, roofs, and window sill. Some species of wasps are more aggressive than others so be careful when removing wasp nests! Bees, unless seriously provoked, prefer not to sting you and are usually very passive. They may buzz around you if you get too close, but moving away slowly and calmly usually prevents bee stings. Bees are important to fruit and vegetable production so don’t kill them if you can help it!
Common symptoms of insect bites
While it depends on the type of insect, most insect bites are red, swollen bumps on your skin. They usually are very itchy but it’s important not to scratch them! You can give yourself an infection, cause scarring, or even make the itching worse. Natural remedies for insect bites work fast to stop these unpleasant symptoms.
Common Symptoms of Insect Stings
Usually the immediate, sharp pain of an insect sting is a good sign that you’ve been stung. The stinger may possibly be present on or in your skin, accompanied by a red bump. It’s important to remove the stinger as quickly as possible to stop the spread of venom. Tweezers, your finger nail, or the blunt edge of a credit card can be used to remove the stinger.
What to do if you are bitten or stung by an insect
Some insect stings can cause a severe allergic reaction in certain people. Medical treatment will be needed right away for those allergic to bee or wasp stings, for instance. Anaphylaxis occurs in those who are stung by bees and suffer an allergy from their stings. Symptoms of this dangerous reaction include labored breathing, swelling of the throat or mouth, hives, and a racing heart beat. If you or someone you know are suffering from these extreme insect sting symptoms, seek emergency medical treatment right away!
If you are not experiencing these symptoms and find yourself with a non-dangerous sting or bite reaction, you treat the itchiness, redness, and swelling at home with some common natural remedies.
Natural Remedies for Insect Bites and Stings:
Baking Soda Bee Sting Remedy:
Add one teaspoon of baking soda to a cup of cool water, then stir until completely dissolved. Dip a q-tip into mixture and then gentle dap all over the affected area. You can also dip a cotton ball or small piece of cotton gauze into the baking soda/water mixture and use a bandaid to keep the cotton ball or gauze over the wound. Change the dressing and reapply every few hours as necessary.
Vinegar Wasp Sting Cure:
Instantly cure wasp sting pain and swelling by using vinegar to neutralize the wasp venom. Dip a clean cotton ball or a piece of cotton gauze into vinegar, then use a bandaid or medical tape to secure over the sting on your skin. Change the dressing as necessary to treat the pain and swelling from the sting.
Use Papaya to Treat Swelling from Bug Bites:
Papaya enzymes naturally fight inflammation from bug bites. Take a slice of papaya, mash into a fine pulp using a fork, then spread onto the bug bite. Let sit for one hours and then wash off.
Garlic treats insect bites and stings:
Garlic is a natural antibiotic. It can also treat swelling and pain. Peel and mash a fresh garlic clove into a paste and apply directly to the wound. Let sit for one hour and then wash away with cool water. Repeat as necessary. Some people even eat raw garlic cloves before going to areas with mosquitos and ticks because the smell of it in your sweat is a natural insect reppelllant.
Essential oils that treat bug bites and stings:
Rub essential oils on bug bites and stings to stop the pain and swelling. Peppermint oil, lavendar oil, and tea tree oil all work well in this instance.
Use ice to stop pain and swelling from insect bites:
Apply an ice cube to a bug bite. This stops the itching, pain, and swelling immediately.
Toothpaste stops bee sting pain:
Most toothpaste brands use baking soda and peppermint oil, both of which do a great job to treat bee sting pain, itching, and swelling. Apply a thin layer and let dry, then wash away and repeat as necessary.
These are just a few ways to treat insect bites and stings at home naturally with common household products. Make sure to check for allergies before using essential oils on your skin. And if you experience any severe symptoms, it’s important to get immediate medical attention from a doctor. A trip to the emergency room may be in order to prevent a lethal reaction.
Aromatherapy has been around for awhile. Some written records date back to the first century, while other written accounts about treating burns with lavender date back to 1910. However, aromatherapy is a controversial form of alternative medicine. Its efficiency is highly contested, with many people asking is “does aromatherapy really work?”. The answer might surprise you.
The answer as to the truth behind aromatherapy as a form of natural healing is that it depends on HOW you use them and WHAT you are treating.
What Is Aromatherapy?
Aromatherapy uses essential oils such as peppermint oil, lavender oil, vanilla, lemon, and more to affect a person’s mind, mood, or health. According to its proponents, essential oils are used to treat a wide variety of medical illnesses and injuries, relieve psychological ailments, and even have cosmetic purposes. Aromatherapy skeptics believe that many of these health benefits come from the placebo effect – meaning that the treatment does nothing by itself, but may still affect the patient due to the patient’s belief in the remedy – and that aromatherapy can be dangerous if done incorrectly. The truth may be somewhere in between these two sides of the debate.
Does Aromatherapy Really Work?
The simpler aspects of aromatherapy are definitely true; sense of smell is strongly linked to memory in our minds. Smells can affect our mood either positively or negatively. Because we associate some scents with pleasant sensations or memories, smelling them again at a later time can bring about relaxation and happiness. An improved mood does wonders for the human body because it relieves muscle tension, releases endorphins, and lowers our heart rate and blood pressure. Our sense of smell has real affects on our body. Don’t believe me? Coffee drinkers know that the smell of coffee alone is enough to give them a boost of energy. This is because they associate the smell with the energy and pleasure that comes from their morning cup of coffee. That’s a perfect example of one way to see how does aromatherapy really work to fight illness.
Can aromatherapy cure depression? Yes, aromatherapy cures depression in a way that’s different from how an antidepressant medication works. Think of aromatherapy as tool to help focus the mind and reinforce relaxation through meditation or cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). Aromatherapy can help cure anxiety too in the same way. Scent is the most powerful memory trigger, so using a particular scent as you meditate can help you later recall that same relaxed state during a depressive episode or panic attack. A big part of curing depression is focusing your mind on something else and letting the depression fade away into the background, even if only for a few seconds in the beginning. Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is self-feeding and self-perpetuating. By practicing CBT techniques to break out of that depressive cycle, you’ll give your mind a chance to normalize. Scents like lavender have been shown to bring about a state of relaxation; relaxing helps ease anxiety, and anxiety makes depression worse. So using lavender oil may reinforce CBT. Other aromatherapy scents can help with depression and anxiety as well. Citrus scents give you energy and help fight the lethargy that comes with depression, for example. Aromatherapy is not going to hurt your chance to beat depression, and some people swear by it. If you are living with depression then you know even a little bit of hope goes a long way.
But what about illness and injury to our bodies? The use of aromatherapy to treat physical ailments is an old practice, with documentation dating back to the first century. This isn’t surprising given how many modern medcines originally came from plant extracts. Aspirin was originally made from willow trees, for instance. But the question lies in whether or not an externally-applied aromatherapy can have a direct internal affect.
Can aromatherapy cure cancer? Current studies do not support any evidence that aromatherapy can cure a disease like cancer, unfortunately. However, since scent is so closely tied to our memories, there have been claims that it can help with littler things. For instance, the scent of peppermint essential oil can help treat nausea. And since aromatherapy can be used to enhance meditation or positive thinking by associating scents with good feelings, aromatherapy can improve quality of life for some patients. Don’t underestimate the power of improved quality of life!
Some aromatherapy does really work to help fight anxiety and depression, which can in turn help your body to fight diseases like cancer. The scent of peppermint oil can even help an upset stomach! You can give aromatherapy a try by buying a few popular essential oils. See for yourself what works for you!
While some illnesses require medical intervention, others can be safely treated at home with quick home remedies that have been around for years. Our grandparents and great-grandparents used these home remedies and have passed their wisdom on to us. However, there are many who are unaware of the number of effective, quick home remedies that provide instant relief for common problems. Here are 4 different quick home remedies to consider next time you find yourself reaching for a box of pills.
1. Suffering from a cold? Maybe allergies clogging up your airways? You may find yourself becoming more congested during the night. A (mostly) free and quick remedy for congestion in the nose and lungs is breathing in steam from hot water. This opens up your airways, allowing you the breathe easier. A hot shower is one way to allow steam to ease congestion; another method is to boil a pot of water, turn off the burner, and hold your face over the steam rising from the pot. CAREFUL! Don’t burn yourself. Looking for a way to kick your home remedy for common cold into high gear? Add some aromatherapy to the mix! Peppermint oil, menthol, lemon, and eucalyptus scents added to steam will help open your airways. Try tying a eucalyptus branch under your shower head and then have a hot shower, or have a cup of hot peppermint tea.
2. Zzzzzz… Snoring is something that will mostly effect your loved ones, so it’s even more important to treat it. While there is a number of anti-snoring devices on the market, as well as expensive surgeries and medications, it may be best to try to cure your snoring at home first. One effective method is sleeping on your side instead of your back, which alleviates some of the pressure on your airways that causes snoring. If sleeping on your side is uncomfortable, you can try elevating your head by adding an extra pillow or two. This also helps to keep the pressure from restricting your airways. If nothing seems to work, it’s important to seek professional medical advice. Your doctor may diagnose you with sleep apnea, a series medical disorder that requires treatment.
3. Ouch! As Spring and Summer approach, bees will be more active, which means increased potential for bee stings. If you are unlucky enough to have been stung, you can quickly lessen the itching and pain by using a combination of cool water and baking soda. Mix equal parts baking soda and water to form a paste, then apply to the sting and let sit. This can work for just about any bug bite, such as ant bites, wasp stings, mosquito bites, and more. The baking soda will stop the itch and help treat the swelling and pain. It’s a safe and effective home remedy using common household ingredients.
4. Upset stomach? Try an after dinner mint! Peppermint is an excellent natural cure for a wide range of unpleasant stomach problems, including gas, bloating, stomach cramps, and nausea. Peppermint is a soothing, cooling herb that stops muscle spasms and settles your stomach. You can also use peppermint to prevent stomach discomfort before you eat. Try taking a peppermint oil capsule 30 minutes before your next meal. The compounds in peppermint oil contain antispasmodic properties which great reduce the spasms of the intestinal tract and color, as well as relax your stomach muscles, which can help prevent and relieve spastic colon, diarrhea, and nausea.