Healthy Home, Healthy Living
Last Saturday I had a tough night. The trouble started when I couldn't sleep, and no matter what I did to doze off, I stayed wide awake into the early morning hours. Eventually I was successful in falling asleep, but only for a few short hours, because I soon awoke to multiple and particularly enormous mosquito bites all over my feet, legs and face.
With my body burning from the itchiness of the bites, I was frustrated and heart-broken. I had just been through a particularly sleep-deprived week, and knew I wouldn't have another opportunity for a full night's rest for at least another week. Plus, it was not an ideal day to have little sleep and a face full of large bumps - my closest friend was graduating from medical school, and a full day was waiting ahead. In desperation I tried to sleep, but the irritation from the bites made that impossible. So I searched our medicine cabinet for something soothing, and quickly realized we had nothing that could help. I then picked up my phone and started looking for a natural solution that could sooth the bites.
Eventually I came across a few tips to help mosquito bites, particularly one that recommended creating a mixture of one part apple cider vinegar and one part water, and applying it on the bites. Having some vinegar on hand in my cabinet, I tried the suggestion and was so relieved that it worked like a charm! Almost immediately the painful irritation subsided, and within five minutes, the size of the bites significantly reduced. They were hardly noticeable - which was particularly satisfying for the bites on my face! Using the apple cider vinegar allowed me to fall back asleep for a last-minute nap, and made it possible for me to really enjoy the excitement of the big day ahead!
Especially during humid months of the year, mosquito bites are an inevitable annoyance for many of us. Having a natural remedy for bites is a wonderful trick to have in your arsenal! While I haven't tested these myself, here are some other natural remedies for mosquito bites that have worked for other families.
|Epsom salts||Made of magnesium and sulfate, Epsom salt is known to sooth mosquito bites. Soak for 30 minutes to an hour in an Epsom salt bath, or create a compress by mixing just enough Epsom salts to water to make a paste. Apply the paste to the bites, and cover the bite tightly with a hot washcloth for 10 minutes. Repeat as needed.|
|Basil||Heat a few sprigs of basil leaves under some steam, and apply gently to the bites.|
|Essential Oils||Tea tree oil is a great anti-inflammatory, itch-reliever and a guard against infection. Lavender oil works well in soothing mosquito bites, but be aware that it also may attract bees. Both Tea tree oil and lavender may ward off other mosquitos.|
|Banana Peel||Hold the inside (the meat side) of a banana peel on the bite for 5 – 10 minutes, while occasionally rubbing the peel onto the skin. The peel should relieve the itch.|
Also, don't make the same mistake I did! While keeping windows open is a great way to ventilate your home and improve indoor air quality, make sure that there are no holes in your screens.