Part two: Natural remedies for treating bug bites and how to remove ticks correctly

The second installment of Natural Home Remedies focuses on how to treat bug bites and correctly remove ticks this summer. The professional residential cleaning experts at MOLLY MAID suggest the following remedies and tips:

Insect Bites

  • Rub an ice cube over the infected area immediately after being bitten. The ice cube will help decrease the inflammation that causes the bite to itch.
  • Peppermint oil can also help speed up the healing process of your insect bite. Apply 1 – 2 drops of peppermint oil to the area. The peppermint oil has a cooling effect, increasing circulation to the infected area. You can also use toothpaste containing peppermint oil; apply a dab to your bite.

Ticks:

Ticks are troublesome insects that can be found in wooded areas and weeds. More often than not, tick bites go unnoticed until the tick falls off of your skin. Symptoms of a tick bite include redness, itching and burning. Here are some preventative measures that can be taken if you happen to be exposed to ticks this summer.

  • If you happen to be walking through a wooded area, make sure to check for ticks once you return home. This can be done by carefully examining your body and clothing. Make sure to have someone check the parts of your body you cannot see such as your back or the back of your neck and legs.
  • If you do happen to find a tick on your clothing that has not yet attached itself to your skin, use a piece of toilet paper or tissue to pick up the tick. Dispose of the tick by flushing it down the toilet to ensure it will not return.
  • If you happen to find a tick already attached to your skin, use tweezers to remove the tick. Make sure to grab the tick by the head – placing the tweezers as close to the skin as possible. Slowly pull the tick upwards until it is free from your skin. Do not pull the tick quickly as this can cause a piece of the tick to remain in your skin – resulting in infection.
  • If you develop a rash following a tick bite, see your doctor immediately.

Tick Removal Myths:

Smearing the tick with petroleum jelly or oil will not remove the tick from your skin. Removing the tick with tweezers is the most effective way to get the job done.

When to Call your Physician:

If you are experiencing trouble breathing, a swollen mouth or throat, rapid pulse or hives following a bee or wasp sting, make your way to the hospital immediately as these are signs of an allergic reaction. You should also contact your physician if you develop a bulls-eye rash or if you experience muscle aches, fever and headache within three weeks of being bitten by a tick. These could be signs of Lyme disease or other infection.