Herbs2000.com
HERBS - the basics
AILMENTS
MEDICAMENTS
FLOWERS
FACTS
HOME
AMINO ACIDS
VITAMINS
MINERALS
BACH FLOWER REMEDIES
BEE PRODUCTS
AROMATHERAPY
HOMEOPATHY

Insect Bites And Stings

Insects such as the ubiquitous mosquitoes, many blood sucking flies, types of chiggers, animal ticks and fleas, and arachnids like spiders and other insects such as ants, all kinds of bees, flying insects like yellow jackets, all kinds of wasps, and hornets bite, sting or suck on people especially during the months of the summer and all year round in warmer tropical climes. Some cases of insects bites and stings may require immediate medical attention, even if the vast majority of insect bites and stings are neither serious nor very uncomfortable, though in all cases they can lead to itchy and painful sensations in the area of the affected area of skin. The development of severe swelling in the tissues, pain and discomfort, or even fever requiring medical attention can result from bites by some species of spiders and these must be observed closely.

Cases of bites by certain insects deserves special mention, for example if a circular red rash appears on the skin after a bite from an insect while traveling through a forested or woody terrain, it is important to be tested for Lyme disease also known as Rocky Mountain spotted fever. This fever is bacterial in origin and the bacteria is carried by a type of blood sucking deer tick which can be fatal if left untreated. Stinging insects can also lead to fatalities and if stung by a bee or other stinging insects approximately one in fifty people can develop a potentially life-threatening reaction to the venom in the sting. Deaths through such stings are not uncommon and it is important to get the person some medical treatment at the earliest.

The reaction at the site of the bite or sting is the main issue in all cases, as the venom of some insects contains toxins which can swell tissues and cause burning and painful sensations, along with the development of other uncomfortable symptoms leading to a mild or extreme reaction from the person. The reasons why insects like mosquitoes, chiggers, and ticks bite is to simply play out their natural instinct for food, in this case blood, some other insects which bite or sting such as spiders and other stinging insects like bees and wasps only sting or bite as a protective mechanism or to ward you off from their territory. For example, bees tend to swarm and sting, causing immense pain and severe reactions in the patients due to the numerous stings inflicted, such actions are done to protect the hive. Bees and wasps are more likely to sting you if you eat sweet and stick foods in the outdoors or if you wear colorful clothing or perhaps wave your arms wildly around when the bee or wasp is buzzing around you. Spiders will typically only bite if you disturb the web or nesting site of the spider, most spiders are harmless and all spiders will at first instinctively try to flee.

Supplements and herbs

It is important to wash the affected area of the insect bite or sting thoroughly with soap and water to remove all traces of venom or toxins, if it is a sting, physically remove the stinger from the skin and then you can start the treatment using the supplements given here. The swelling if any can be reduced through the use of bromelain, which is a protein-digesting enzyme obtainable from the pineapple, utilize this enzyme until the swelling subsides or recedes. The process of healing and restoration of the affected skin is best carried out through the use of external or topical treatments which can ease the painful and itching sensations at the same time. The itch due to an insect bite can be alleviated and soothed through the use of the oil of the lavender as a topical application. The calendula cream can reduce symptoms of insects bites and stings such as the swelling and itching in the skin, while also performing an antiseptic action, this leads to the prevention of an infection setting in. The calendula cream is made from a flower of the marigold family of plants. The calendula cream can be substituted with the tea tree oil an Australian product if calendula is not available, it is equally effective in dealing with insect bites and stings.

To relieve the pain and the swelling in the inflamed skin after a sting from a bee or similar insect, the use of additional supplements will greatly help. Histamine is an inflammatory compound in the body which causes the reaction to the insect bite or sting and increase the inflammation, the use of supplements of the vitamin C along with quercetin, which is a natural flavonoid, will alleviate the inflammation in the tissues, these two substances can together act as antihistamines and prevent inflammation. Immediate use of these two supplements must start soon after the bite or sting and continual usage is advised until the symptoms slowly reduce or disappear altogether.

Homeopathy

  • Apis
    Apis is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of individuals bitten or stung by insects leading to reddened skin and inflamed swollen tissues in the skin. This remedy is particularly effective with regard to symptoms of bites or stings of any insect where the sensation resembles the sting or burning feeling induced by a bee sting, indeed this remedy is a bee product as is obvious by the name. This remedy is to be utilized only against swelling induced by the bite or sting and especially its routine use for bee stings where no swelling occurs is not advised. The presence of one or more of these symptoms calls for the use of Apis in the homeopathic treatment of the bite or the sting.
  • Arnica
    Arnica is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of insect bites and stings in which the symptoms may include intense bruising and soreness in the affected region of the skin. The presence of these symptoms calls for the immediate use of Arnica in the homeopathic treatment of the insect bite or sting.
  • Cantharis
    Cantharis is to be used in the homeopathic treatment of patients stung or bitten by insects where the reaction includes the development of burning pains that are intense and dominate all other symptoms like swelling. The presence of this particular dominant sensation calls for the immediate use of Cantharis as a homeopathic remedy in the treatment of the affected person.

Additional things you may do

Before you leave your home each morning for the workplace, apply some insect repellent. With regard to this natural insect repellents such as calendula cream and tea tree oil can be used without any fear of side effects. Choice of clothing is very important in dealing with insects and as long as you find yourself spending a lot of time out of doors, preferably put on natural fabrics like white or khaki-colored clothing, these should be comfortable and protect the important parts of the body thoroughly. Such as the legs and the arms, therefore wear long pants and sleeves, this will stop or inhibit the sting of insects and give you protection from clinging insects such as ticks and fleas. A further advantage of wearing light-colored clothing is that it makes spotting an insect a much easier job against the background. Any scent or external application that might potentially attract insects must be avoided or its use on the body restricted, avoid wear perfume especially fruity smelling ones, some kinds of after-shave lotions, hair spray, and do not apply sweet-smelling creams. It is best to avoid antagonizing an insect, so please avoid swatting at flying insects like wasps, hornets or bees. If there is a swarm of insects like bees near you, avoid contact by walking calmly away from the scene or by covering your head while lying down to protect the eyes and the mouth, which are parts of the body more with a greater likelihood of being attacked.

Usual dosage

  • Calendula cream, rub small amount of calendula cream into skin several times daily.
  • Lavender oil, apply a few drops of lavender oil to skin several times daily or as needed. If necessary, use one or two drops every fifteen minutes.
  • Tea tree oil, apply one drop of tea tree oil to skin several times daily. If skin irritation develops, discontinue use of tea tree oil.
  • Vitamin C, 1,000 mg thrice daily. If diarrhea develops, reduce the dose.
  • Bromelain, 500 mg thrice daily (on an empty stomach).
  • Quercetin, 500 mg thrice daily twenty minutes before food. Good idea to combine with bromelain.

For kids

See age-appropriate dosages of herbal remedies

Minor insect bites or stings that cause the development of stinging or burning sensations on the child's skin are easily soothed through the use of a gel made of the aloe vera. The affected area of the child's skin can be alleviated through the use of the gel as necessary and in required amounts until the painful or stinging sensations abates slowly. Insect bites that cause a great deal of irritation on the skin of children can be alleviated and soothed through the use of the calendula herb, either in a tincture form, as a gel, or in the form of a cream, this herb will relieve and soothe the painful sensations. As and when it becomes necessary, the cream or the gel of the herb can be applied onto the affected area directly as a topical or external measure. For various kinds of wounds and stings from insects affecting the skin of children, the tincture of the Echinacea can be very effective as an internal consumable remedy. Dosage of this tincture for children can be a single dose of the tincture, given to the child at intervals of two to three hours, during the first day after the child has been bitten or stung by an insect. After this the dosage can be changed to a single dose of the remedy, three to four time everyday till the affected area or inflammation abates. For your kind attention: because it loses its effectiveness in the long term, children should not be given the herb Echinacea in any form or dosage for a treatment regimen exceeding ten days at one stretch.

An insect bit can also be relieved and the painful toxin can be drawn out of the child's body through the use of the leaves of the plantain and the comfrey as external or remedial measures on the skin of the affected child. A poultice of the leaves of the plantain and the comfrey can also be prepared and applied onto the affected regions of the skin in case of insect bites and stings. A traditional use has been made of the tobacco leaves in the form of a poultice to ward off the pain of bites and stings in children and adults. These herbs may not be easy to find, in such cases an external treatment can also be done using a combination of the Echinacea and the goldenseal herbs, and this can be applied onto the affected area of the skin.

Other beneficial herbs

Comments

BACK TO TOP
References
Glossary
Herbs
Disclaimer & Privacy Policy
Contact Us

2002-2014 Herbs2000.com