Bed bugs can be a real issue in infected homes. These are small parasites that live on your blood. They can stay anywhere, like under the cupboard or in the carpet, but the bed is surely their place of choice; particularly because it is the place where human beings spend a good time of the night and the parasites can easily suck in the blood without disturbance. The bites of bed bugs look similar to that of mosquito bites and they usually appear in clusters or line. Just like leeches, bed bugs have anticoagulant and anesthetic agents in their saliva which makes it painless initially, but as the time goes the bite mark and the itching becomes severe.
Interestingly, the extent of scar and itching caused by the bed bug bites varies extensively from person to person. Some might have just small bumps with minimum itching that goes away naturally within a day without doing anything in extra. On the other hand, there are also people who might develop an infection from the bites along with severe swelling and need to visit the doctor immediately. It totally depends on the immunity of the person and the measure taken to treat it should depend on the extent of the bite marks and itching caused.
The bites of bed bugs are not infectious, and the condition can be worsened by scratching the place. So, if you have been bitten by bed bugs, control the wish to scratch the bumps and resort to any of the home remedies mentioned below. If your symptoms are really severe, visit a skin specialist to get some medicines that will help in easing the pain and reducing the marks. Normally any anti-allergic medication along with a topical calamine lotion can work efficiently to treat the marks and itching caused by bed bug bites. Cortisone ointments are also prescribed often in severe cases.
As soon as you wake up in the morning and notice the bed bug bites, wash the place of the skin properly with water and mild antiseptic soap. Once you have cleaned the place well, apply some ice on it and follow any of the next remedies to get rid of the marks and the itching,
Baking soda and water
This treatment works effectively for most of the people. Make a thick paste of baking soda by adding water to it and then apply the paste on the bug bites. Leave it on for at least an hour or till it gets completely dry. Many suggest leaving it on for hours. Finally wash off the paste with water and pat dry.
Witch hazel is a medicinal plant with astringent properties. You can get a witch hazel astringent lotion from your nearest store. You can apply the astringent directly onto the bite marks and the cooling effect will give you great relief from the itching and will also soothe your skin.
Lemon juice has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. The acidic nature of the juice also helps in killing any germs formed on the place. So, just squeeze out some lemon juice and apply it onto the affected area with the help of a cotton ball. Once you are done, leave it on. You can repeat the process a 3-4 times a day to get best results.
Many suggest that pure honey can be very effective to treat the bite marks of bed bugs and also to reduce the sensation of itching. Honey is a natural antibacterial and anti-inflammatory agent and it comes with a bunch of vitamins that can be really effective to reduce the itching, the redness and the inflammation.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil is a natural yet strong antibacterial and antiseptic agent. Tea tree oil can be effective to get rid of the bite marks of bed bugs and the itching associated with it. It also works efficiently in treating any insect bite and is extensively used for treating acne and dandruff. However, do not apply it directly to the skin, mix it with carrier oil like coconut oil and apply on the affected area.
Aloe vera gel
Aloe Vera is well known for its natural cooling and anti-bacterial properties. Applying some freshly prepared Aloe Vera gel to the affected area of the skin can soothe your skin which will help in easing the itching. Aloe Vera also has anti-inflammatory properties and thus it can reduce the appearance of bite marks.
For many household ammonia works wonder to treat bed bug bites and the itching. Just take some household ammonia on a cotton ball and press it on the bite for 2-3 minutes. You need not to wash the area or rub it off. The itching will not be vanished instantaneously but within 10-15 minutes you are expected to get relief.
Basil essential oil
Basil has anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Applying some basil essential oil on the affected skin can give you quick relief. Just take some of the essential oil on a piece of cotton and apply it onto the skin.
Onion with petroleum jelly
Reportedly, this treatment can help to reduce the itching of bed bug bites and also helps in fading the marks. Squeeze out some onion juice after grinding it and mix it with a bit of petroleum jelly. Apply this mixture to the affected area and leave on.
Toothpaste can be effectively used for treating the bite of bed bugs if the reaction on the skin is not very severe. Just dab some white tooth paste on the affected area of the skin and you will get instant relief due to the cooling effect of toothpaste. It will also reduce the inflammation and help in getting rid of the scar.
Potato juice has cooling and anti-inflammatory properties, which can reduce the itching sensation as well as the bite marks. Grind some potato and squeeze out the juice. Soak a piece of cotton in this juice and place the soaked cotton on the affected part of the skin. Leave on for as long as you can, until the cotton gets dry.
Sandalwood is well known for its healing and anti-inflammatory properties. If you have woken up with itching bed bug bites, just lather on with a runny mixture of sandalwood and clean water on the affected area. Continue layering to keep the sandalwood wet for as long as you can. Do not wash or remove the sandalwood. It will go off automatically as it will dry out. Repeat the treatment 3-4 times a day and the itching, redness and the marks will be gone quickly.
Mint has excellent antibacterial properties. It can also reduce inflammation. Make a paste with some fresh mint leaves, and apply it directly to the affected area. Let it stand till it gets dry, and finally remove with water without rubbing the skin hard. This can be a very effective treatment.
Nutmeg has great healing properties and it is rich with natural ingredients. Mix some nutmeg powder with plain water and apply the paste to the affected area. Layer the mixture on the skin for 3-4 times and then let it get dry. This treatment can effectively reduce the itching, redness as well as inflammation of the bed bug bites.
Fullers’ earth with cucumber
Fullers’ earth is rich in minerals and it has effective anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties. Cucumber on the other hand helps in soothing the skin. Soak some fullers’ earth in cucumber juice and apply the thick paste to the affected area of the skin. Let the pack set until it gets completely dry and finally wash off with water.
This remedy has been pointed by many as one of the easiest ways to reduce the itching, redness and inflammation of bed bug bites. Just wash off the area of the skin with water as hot as you can tolerate. It will increase the discomfort for the first few minutes, but then it will become much comfortable. This folk remedy for bed bug bites is quite popular and is believed to be very effective.