Essential Oils for Bug Bites
So, it is finally nice outside and you are enjoying spending as much time as you can in the great outdoors. But one thing you might not have remembered is that the bugs are out too. When bites and stings happen, it is good to know that you can turn to Essential Oils for all natural relief from itching and pain.
You can easily create a blend of oils to stop that irritation on the spot. There are many options as far as Essential Oils and carriers goes, so you are sure to have something in your home arsenal to help combat the discomfort that comes from the histamine reaction. Focusing on oils that are anti-inflammatory is very helpful for easing swelling, but also using oils that are antimicrobial and analgesic will reduce pain and promote healing.
As you know, this incredibly useful oil is great for soothing your mind, but it is also amazing for soothing skin. Lavender Essential Oil contributes all of the properties you need when dealing with a bite or sting from an insect. This versatile oil relieves pain by calming the nerve response under your skin. It reduces swelling by fighting inflammation and it helps heal the bite by preventing infection. All of these things are important when you are treating a wound of any sort. In addition, Lavender oil is super gentle. This means that it is a great choice for kids, elderly, and dogs too.
Note: Chamomile has the same properties and may be used in place of or in addition to Lavender.
One key thing you need to pay attention to when dealing with a bite or a sting is making sure that it does not get infected. This is where Tea Tree can be very helpful. The incredible antifungal and antimicrobial properties of this oil make it a perfect choice for preventing infection. In addition, Tea Tree helps fight the histamine reaction that happens in your body. A successful study on this Australian plant showed that it can effectively reduce inflammation and block the histamine in only 10 minutes. This basically neutralizes the poison and calms the redness and pain very quickly.
In knowing that the main reason a bug bite hurts is due to the body’s inflammatory response, it is best to try to control that. Rosemary is a powerhouse anti-inflammatory and analgesic. This herbal oil can ease irritation very well by reducing swelling and soothing discomfort. One study showed that patients who used Rosemary oil on shoulder pain reduced their agony by 30%. A separate animal study demonstrated that this pain relieving oil worked better than acetaminophen. Rosemary oil is also loaded with antioxidants which encourages healing.
Peppermint oil is an excellent choice for bug bites because it can eliminate itchiness. It instantly has a cooling effect (due to its menthol content), which is ideal for the burning feeling you often get from a bite or sting. This oil has proven to safely and effectively soothe and even numb an itch. In a study of pregnant women suffering from Pruritis (constant belly itch during pregnancy), Peppermint greatly reduced the level of itch the women experienced. Additionally, this powerful oil is amazing for deterring bugs as well, so if you are using it for a current bite, it may prevent new ones from happening. Peppermint Essential Oil can be very strong and works wonders at a low dilution rate of only 1%.
When it comes to injury from insects, you really want to focus on soothing the pain and reducing swelling as quickly as possible. Choosing a carrier that is just as anti-inflammatory as your Essential Oils will really help you amp up the pain relief. You could create a ready made roller ball blend that is there for you whenever you need it. Simply mix a very gentle, balancing oil like Jojoba with your chosen essential oils and keep it in your roller bottle for when the bugs strike. Another option could be doing a quick, on the spot treatment with a cotton pad. Adding a few drops of Lavender Essential Oil and a teaspoon of witch hazel to the cotton and pressing it onto the irritated area could calm the misery in a hurry. A wonderful choice would be Aloe Vera Gel because it is cooling and helps to reduce redness and inflammation. It also has antibacterial properties to help prevent infection and heal the skin.